Measure A will protect La Quinta neighborhoods from vacation rentals

Quarters are for neighbors. The passage of Measure A in La Quinta on Nov. 8 will enshrine that message in law, which can only be changed by another vote of the electorate.

In January 2021, I read a letter to the Mayor and City Council in the minutes at a special City Council meeting specific to short term vacation rentals. In that letter, I said, “Don’t get me wrong. You (the city council) can create an ordinance now, much like the vision proposed by Neighbors for Neighborhoods (N4N), and you can be heroes. Or you may face a referendum in an election not too far away that will create a more restrictive ordinance for STVRs in our city (a permanent elimination) that you would then be forced to enforce.

Here we are. Measure A is this referendum and it is a permanent solution: the right of La Quinta voters to take matters into their own hands by exercising their democratic right to vote.

My wife, Dori, and I know the neighborhoods of La Quinta. We have lived at La Quinta Cove for 42 years. We raised our children here, both of whom graduated from La Quinta High School. I served on the La Quinta Planning Commission for a total of 12 years. Dori served the La Quinta Community Service Commission for five years. We were both honored as “pillars of the community”. We have invested our lives in La Quinta.

Supporters of short-term vacation rentals are seen dressed in yellow during a council meeting at La Quinta City Hall in La Quinta, Calif., Tuesday, June 7, 2022.

As a member of the Community Services Board, Dori has worked to expand our public recreational resources, especially for our youth.

As a member of the Planning Commission, I have worked to maintain the integrity and quality of development in La Quinta by trying to ensure that our existing single-family neighborhoods remain that way and improve over time. This is called “zoning”.

Zoned single family areas, like many HOAs, north of La Quinta and the creek, are sacred. They exist and no government, city or state, should be allowed to de facto rezone them for commercial purposes without a clear vote from the residents of those communities. This is what La Quinta did, and this is what Measure A will correct.

Under current tourist commercial zoning, Measure A will provide for more than 1,000 legal and licensed STVRs in tourist commercial zones in La Quinta by approximately 2025, when the phase-out is complete. That’s more than there are today. Contrary to scare tactics, the city’s revenue will not be fatally reduced. It is also important to note that Measure A maintains a landlord’s right to rent a B&B or guesthouse while the landlords remain on the property and can control the impact on neighbors.

These neighborhoods are where working families can thrive. Allowing these neighborhoods to become commercial ventures for out-of-town investors not only ruins the neighborhood, but also destroys the family’s ability to house themselves.

We have all heard the horror stories. If you live in La Quinta and your neighbors are your friends and you know that the peaceful enjoyment of your home is your right, then you should feel an urgent need to vote for Measure A in November and preserve your neighborhood from passengers. , parties, weekend holiday renters.

Paul Quill is a resident of La Quinta. Email him at [email protected]

About Michael B. Billingsley

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