The City of Wilmington now has a short-term rental policy. After batting last night over specific conditions, the council passed the ordinance 4-2 with Councilman Kevin O’Grady walking out before the vote.
It was a long night in City Council chambers, as dozens of residents spoke out about the proposed short-term rental policy that was nearing a vote.
“As a homeowner without off-street parking I’m acutely aware of the parking issues in the HDR. Available on-street parking is under threat and it has been for many years….”
“The matter of short-term rentals has been a long and contentious struggle. And I’m happy to be here tonight for a vote on the issue….”
“I don’t have a short-term rental. But I have a bunch of friends that do. Because they were forced out of this town when our government took away the film-tax incentives in 2014…..”
“If we have short-term rentals in the historic residential district, I believe that people will leave…”
“I believe the council has arrived at a balanced and fair solution….”
The vote means homestay lodging — renting rooms with the host in residence — will be allowed in all residential districts and some commercial and mixed-use districts.
Whole-house lodging would only be permitted in some mixed-use and commercial districts.
But it’s not over yet. Council will revisit whole-house short-term lodging at the October 2nd meeting. The new ordinance takes effect next March.