BUMPER STICKER CONTEST:
TOWN LAW: SHORT TERM RENTALS
Our Town government is considering again a new Town Law pertaining to Short Term Rentals. An historical principle of our founding fathers is still core to Republican Principles today. That is limited government. We believe this new law is redundant to 4 laws already in place, an unnecessary intrusion on many people, and it will be an expensive proposition for many including our Town Government.
Attached please find our Position Statement. We hope you will stay vigilant and informed, attend any public hearing, and make your views known. As always, we are more than happy to hear comments for or against our views. This forum has proven to give many people an opportunity to both inform and become informed.
Town of Chester Republican Committee.
Proposed Short Term Rental Law for Town of Chester, June 2022
We have reviewed the draft of the Short -Term Rental Law being proposed for the Town of Chester and are responding with our recommendations and explanations for those recommendations.
We believe that adding a new law is mostly redundant to laws already contained within our Zoning Local Law, our Noise Control Local Law, Property Maintenance Local Law and County Laws pertaining to building Codes. They contain the Health, Safety and Welfare needs already. The only “seeming” benefit is the new revenue stream that the applications provide for Town and County.
That revenue stream, however, comes with the question of, if County or Town will have the ability to make the investments necessary to make it function properly. We believe, before each Board Member puts their personal approval on this Law, they must do some cost-benefit analysis and can explain to the public what the expected revenues will be. Then they need to explain what expenses and new efforts will be put in place to make the law function. Based on history, we have sound reasoning for the last statement. Both at the Town level and at the County level.
First is our County Considerations: Our last ZEO had two experiences with properties that would fit into the question about the ability to physically do the number of potential inspections. One was with cleaning up a property for neighbors when an owner had died and property remained vacant and in disrepair. By current law, County could have cleaned up the property and added the cost to the taxes. The County did not have the money to be able to do that and we can imagine that County logically may have many similar circumstances. It’s a big investment.
A second situation was with a permitted addition of a rental unit to a house. Before occupancy, there must be an inspection and then the approved certificate of occupancy. In this case, the apartment was occupied before approval. County, when asked to make an inspection and enforce the law said that “there must be a hundred of similar situations and we just don’t have the resources to follow up on each of these”.
Next is our Town Considerations: A few years ago we passed a Local Property Maintenance Law. The heart of the law was that if an offender did not clean up the property, the Town would do it and add all cost to that individual’s tax bill. Then we found that there was not enough money to carry the threat out to enforce the law.
We know the number of potential applications for STR would be substantial. The number of 300 known rentals had been mentioned. Add to that probably an equal number of homes doing personal renting which has not been established. It will be an expensive proposition if we plan to actually enforce the law.
We know an abusive neighbor is very difficult. But this new law is no different than what we have now…it won’t stop violations before they happen. It will only respond to problems in the same way as current laws. Between the current Local Laws of Property Maintenance and Noise control, Zoning Local law and County Building and Codes Law it is covered in a manner that could reasonably be enforced if budget monies were available.
It is our recommendation for broad distribution of Guidelines for homeowners renting their properties. It should emphasize that complaints (by neighbors or renters) of health, safety or wellness issues as well as abuses of parking and noise will be investigated and enforced with penalties within our local laws.
One of the core historical principles of being Republican has always been Limited Government. This new Short Term Rental Law is redundant as well as being one more intrusion into Americans Lives.
Town of Chester Republican Committee
Mail: Chester Republican Committee
P. O. Box 391
Chestertown, New York 12817
POSITION STATEMENT – June, 2021
ON WOKE, CRT, Cancel Culture
We believe that the United States of America is the greatest nation in the history of our planet. It does have flaws. All nations do. Human beings manage all nations and we all have flaws.
We should all be proud though, that our “balance sheet” shows that we have done more good for the people on our planet than any other nation. A major factor in that result is that we have had Freedom of Speech”. Right now in America people in powerful positions with the aid of our countries enemies are attempting to eliminate Freedom of Speech for those of us who do not agree with them. They have been using intimidation, coercion, threat and indoctrination.
All of these have been in play in our Education system in particular. In our “Message for the times” posted on our web site dated 4/25-21 we mentioned that we need to put our efforts into what we realistically can have impact on. While it’s hard to do much on a National Level, we are a small enough community where we know our teachers, administrators, and Board Members on a personal level. They get pressures from State, from their unions and even national. We urge you to learn what your teachers, administrators, and board members believe in and what they are teaching our children. If you disagree, let them know and do what you can to persuade them to not allow these deceptive practices destroy their faith in their country.
Message for the times we are in – 4-29-21
Our country is in troubled times. We are as divided as during Viet Nam, the Civil War, and when our founding fathers delivered for us our Declaration of Independence, our Constitution, and Bill of Rights. It’s a dangerous time. Let’s all hope and pray that we come out of the current melee with those great gifts from our founding fathers intact.
This message is to let the people in our Town know where we stand, what our local party believes is our obligation, and what we can actually have impact on. It is encapsulated in the mission statement we endorsed to guide us when we first formally organized a little over a year ago. The mission statement is as follows:
“to enable and empower Town Citizens, Businesses, and Visitors to enjoy, prosper, and live the American Dream. Further, to help create a living environment to encourage younger generations to stay in the town to achieve that American Dream.”
Very short, very limited, and yet, very broad…it is aimed at what we have interest in and the ability to have direct impact on. Our hope is that the population here supports our desire to limit our efforts to the primary goal of making the Town of Chester be all that it can be and the best that it can be. We hope that you will join us in unity for positive goals wishing and working for the best for everyone living, working, and visiting the Town of Chester.