One step closer to 90-day caps on short-term rental accommodation

Published on 09 June 2022

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Byron Shire Council this week made significant progress in managing short-term rental accommodation across the Shire.

The NSW Government’s Department of Planning approved a Gateway Determination for a planning proposal to reduce the number of days of non-hosted short-term rental accommodation in parts of the Byron Shire from 180 days to 90 days.

This means that Council has permission to go forward and put on public exhibition the planning proposal, which involves breaking up the Shire into two types of precincts where either:

  • Non-hosted accommodation will be available for short-term/holiday accommodation for a maximum of 90 days a year, which takes in the majority of the Byron Shire.

or

  • Non-hosted accommodation will be available for short-term/holiday accommodation for 365 days a year including parts of Byron Bay, Suffolk Park and Brunswick Heads.

The planning proposal also looks to mitigate the significant impacts of short-term rental accommodation on permanent rental housing supply, amenity, local character, and community, while still allowing for a diverse and sustainable base of tourist accommodation options to support the local economy.

Byron Shire Mayor, Michael Lyon, said the Council has been working for several years on this proposal and now looks set to be able to implement it once the community has had the opportunity to comment during public exhibition.

“This is about returning properties in key residential areas to the long-term letting pool by setting caps on how many days properties will be able to be rented out for holiday accommodation,” Mayor Lyon said.

“The more rental accommodation that is available for holiday letting, the less stock is there for people looking for long-term, secure housing.

“It is also important that we can give our communities some confidence that the house or unit next door, in their quiet residential area, will not have a continual turnover of holiday makers moving through them year-round.

“The Economic Impact Analysis, commissioned by the NSW Government, showed clearly that allowing 90-day caps will return the largest amount of properties to the long-term pool.

“It won’t be a silver bullet but it will make a difference and we need to make a difference in the housing space,” Mayor Lyon said.

“I thank the NSW Planning Minister, the Hon. Anthony Roberts, for taking into consideration the desperate housing crisis in our shire, exacerbated by the recent floods, and am grateful that our pleas have been heard.

“It is also an honouring of the election promise made when we first met in 2019.

“The next stage in the process will be to put the proposal on public exhibition and I have no doubt there will be a wide range of submissions,” Mayor Lyon said.

“Staff will read and collate all the information received and this will be presented to Council and Councillors will decide on the best way forward for our Shire.

“The NSW Government has given Council a special opportunity to respond to the housing crisis, given the unique challenges faced by our Shire,” Mayor Lyon said.

Staff are now preparing an engagement plan including information for the website and this will be promoted to the community, including how to make a submission.

For more media enquiries call Byron Shire Mayor, Michael Lyon, on 0435 646 365.

 

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