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(A) Definitions. For the purpose of this chapter the following definitions shall apply unless the context clearly indicates or requires a different meaning.
INTERESTED PARTY. The Town of Palm Shores or any property owner within a 300 foot radius of a vacation or short term rental property.
VACATION RENTAL. Any unit or group of units in a condominium, cooperative, or timeshare plan or any individually or collectively owned single-family, two-family, three-family, or four-family house or dwelling unit that is which is rented to guests more than three times in a calendar year for periods of less than 30 days or one calendar month, whichever is less, or which is advertised or held out to the public as a place regularly rented to guests.
(B) Vacation rental regulations. In accordance with F.S. Ch. 509 vacation rentals are permitted in any condominium, cooperative, or timeshare plan or any individually or collectively owned single-family, two-family, three-family, or four-family house or dwelling unit. In addition, F.S. § 509.032(7)(b) (2014) provides that: "A local law, ordinance, or regulation may not prohibit vacation rentals or regulate the duration or frequency of rental of vacation rentals. This paragraph does not apply to any local law, ordinance, or regulation adopted on or before June 1, 2011". To the extent permitted by F.S. Ch. 509, the town hereby adopts the following vacation rental regulations:
(1) General requirements.
(a) An owner or owner's designated agent is required to obtain a vacation rental permit from the town for each dwelling unit prior to renting any dwelling unit as a vacation rental. Such permit is not transferable to any other unit or person. A change of ownership of the vacation rental unit shall require the new owner or his or her agent to obtain a new vacation rental permit for the residential dwelling unit.
(b) A vacation rental permit is not required if the dwelling unit is located within a community with a homeowner's or property owner's association that expressly regulates or manages such uses. Verification that such use is regulated by a homeowner's or property owner's association shall be submitted by the owner or owner's agent upon request of the town.
(c) Vehicles, watercraft and trailers shall not be placed on the street or in yards. All vehicles, watercraft and boat trailers must be parked or stored off-street in parking spaces specifically designated and approved in the vacation rental permit. One vehicle parking space shall be required per bedroom or efficiency unit and one boat trailer space per vacation rental unit.
(d) Occupants shall be prohibited from making excessive or boisterous noise in or about any residential dwelling unit at all times. Noise, that is audible beyond the boundaries of the residential dwelling unit, shall be prohibited between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 8:00 a.m. weekdays and 11:00 p.m. and 8:00 a.m. on weekends.
(e) All trash and debris on the vacation rental property must be kept in covered trash containers. Each vacation rental unit must be equipped with at least the required trash containers pursuant to the town's trash franchise for such purpose. Owners must post, and occupants must comply with, all trash and recycling schedules and requirements applicable to the vacation rental unit. Trash containers must placed by the street for pick-up by 6:00 a.m.
(f) The owner or agent shall require a lease to be executed with each vacation rental use of the property and maintain a guest and vehicle register listing all vacation rental occupants' names, home addresses, telephone numbers, vehicle license plate and watercraft registration numbers. Each such lease shall be submitted with each vacation rental application to the town and such lease shall state that occupancy shall not occur until the town approves the permit application. Each lease and this register shall be kept by the vacation rental owner and available for inspection by town code enforcement personnel during business hours.
(g) A tenant's agreement to the forgoing rules and regulations must be made a part of each and every lease. These rules and regulations governing tenant conduct and use of the unit shall be prominently posted within each dwelling unit subject to the provisions of this section along with the warning that violations of any of the regulations constitutes a violation of this Code subject to fines or punishable as a second degree misdemeanor and is also grounds for immediate termination of the lease and eviction from the leased premises and criminal penalties under F.S. Ch. 509.
(h) The applicant or agent shall post a "Notice of Vacation Rental Use Application" upon the property, not less than 30 days prior to the date of submittal of the application. Such notice shall remain posted on the property until a decision from the town on the application is made. The notice of application shall be in a form prescribed by the town and shall clearly state the date of posting, name, address and day/evening telephone numbers of each and every agent, caretaker and owner of the dwelling unit; the number of the town code enforcement department; and a copy of the tenants agreement.
1. The notice must include the following statement:
"Any interested party has the right to object vacation rental permit to the within 30 days from the date the notice has been posted to the town. You may have other rights that the town cannot enforce. Review of a vacation rental permit application by the town will consider the existence of valid private deed restrictions, restrictive covenants or other restrictions of record which may prohibit the use of the dwelling unit for vacation rental purposes. You may wish to consult an attorney concerning these private rights."
2. The applicant or agent shall provide proof to the town of posting the "Notice of Vacation Rental Use Application." Proof shall be in the form of an affidavit signed under penalty of perjury. Such affidavit shall be supplied by the town. The permit shall not be issued until proof of this notification is provided and the permit has been approved by the town after completion of an on-site inspection of the subject dwelling unit by the Building and Code Enforcement Department. When approved by town, the permit shall not be issued until 30 days after the date of posting of the notice of application.
3. If the vacation rental permit is issued the owner shall send a notice to all interested parties with the following information: The name, address, and telephone number of the vacation rental manager, the telephone number of Town Code Enforcement Department and the number of the special vacation rental permit shall be posted and visible from the front property line of the vacation rental unit.
(i) A vacation rental permit shall be revoked by the Mayor and/or fines levied by the Code Enforcement Special Magistrate or a court of competent jurisdiction after a finding of a violation by the permit holder of this section, the permit or permit conditions or any material misrepresentation on the permit application, after the owner is given notice and a hearing is held by the Code Enforcement Special Magistrate or a court of competent jurisdiction.
(j) A vacation rental use permit shall expire at the end of the term as shown in the lease on file with the town.
(k) After the effective date of the ordinance from which this section is derived, leases, subleases, assignments or any other occupancy agreements, for compensation which meet the definition of a vacation rental:
1. Shall not be entered into or renewed once they have expired or have terminated unless a vacation rental permit is first obtained; and
2. Any pre-existing vacation rental uses must be discontinued no later than 30 days after the effective date of the ordinance from which this section is derived. Such pre-existing vacation rental uses may be continued upon compliance with this Code.
(l) In addition to any other remedies available to the town (including code enforcement pursuant to F.S. Ch. 162); the town or any or other adversely affected party may enforce the terms of this section in law or equity. Any citizen of the town may seek injunctive relief in a court of competent jurisdiction to prevent a violation of this section or to revoke a vacation rental permit as set forth in this section.
(m) A vacation rental shall not be eligible for a special activity permit.
(n) No temporary storage containers may be stored on the vacation rental premises. The term TEMPORARY STORAGE CONTAINER shall mean any container, structure, box, cylinder, or crate made of any material not permanently affixed to real property, that is enclosed or capable of being enclosed on all sides, top and bottom, that is stored, placed, located or put on any real property within the town for the purpose of storing personal property, construction material, trash, refuse, garbage, debris, or other material or matter.
(2) Application for a vacation rental permit. Each property owner seeking a vacation rental permit shall, no later than 15 days prior to the scheduled date of the desired rental period, submit an application in a form specified by the Mayor or designee, along with an application fee in an amount of $500 to be amended from time to time by resolution of the Town Council. At a minimum, the application shall include all of the following:
(a) The name, address, phone number, and email address of the owner(s) of record of the dwelling unit for which a permit is sought;
(b) The address of the unit to be used as a vacation rental;
(c) The name, address, phone number, and email address of the designated vacation rental manager;
(d) The owner's sworn acknowledgement that he or she has received a copy of this section, has reviewed it and understands its requirements;
(e) Proof of compliance with F.S. Chapters 212 (Florida Tax and Revenue Act) and 509 (Public Lodging Establishments), and F.A.C. Rules 69A-43 (Uniform Fire Safety Standards for Transient Public Lodging Establishments) and 69A-60 (the Florida Fire Prevention Code), where applicable;
(f) A copy of the valid annual vacation rental inspection report as required by division (B)(4);
(g) A detailed sketch of the vacation rental property's floor and site plan, including but not limited to square footage, number of bedrooms, kitchen, pool and parking areas;
(h) The number and location of designated parking spaces legally available for occupants of the vacation rental, excluding public parking spaces;
(i) An indication of whether pets will be allowed in the vacation rental;
(j) The owner's agreement to use his or her best efforts to assure that the vacation rental use of the dwelling unit will not disrupt the residential character of the neighborhood, and will not interfere with the rights of neighboring property owners to the quiet enjoyment of their residences; and
(k) A written agreement between the owner and the occupant(s) which shall acknowledge all of the following:
1. The name of all persons who will be occupying the unit;
2. The license tag numbers for all vehicles that the occupant(s) will be parking at the unit, with a total number not to exceed the number of legal parking spaces at the unit, as designated on the vacation rental permit;
3. The occupant(s)' agreement to abide by all the requirements of this section, and acknowledgement that his or her rights under the agreement may not be transferred or assigned to anyone else; and
4. The occupant(s)' acknowledgement and agreement that violation of the agreement or this section may result in immediate termination of the agreement and eviction from the vacation rental unit by the owner or resident agent, and potential liability for payment of fines levied by the town.
(l) Any other information that this section requires the owner to provide to the town as part of application for a vacation rental permit.
(3) Vacation rental dwelling unit posting. There shall be posted within the dwelling unit, all of the following information:
(a) The name, address, phone number, and email address of the vacation rental manager;
(b) The maximum occupancy of the unit;
(c) The maximum number of vehicles that can be parked at the unit, along with a sketch of the location of the parking spaces;
(d) The location of the nearest hospital and police station;
(e) Legible copy of the vacation rental permit;
(f) Legible copy of this code; and
(g) Legible copy of the agreement between the owner and the vacation rental occupant(s), for the duration of the rental period covered by that agreement.
(4) Annual inspections/re-inspections of vacation rentals.
(a) Prior to approval of a vacation rental permit, an inspection of the dwelling unit for compliance with zoning, building, housing, density, life/safety and fire codes or regulations is required to be conducted by a Town Code/Building Inspector. If violations are found, all violations must be corrected and the dwelling unit must be re-inspected prior to issuance of any vacation rental permit as provided herein.
(b) Dwelling units used for vacation rentals must be properly maintained and must be re-inspected annually.
(c) If the Code /Building Inspector(s) has made an appointment with the property owner to complete an inspection, and no adult person was at the dwelling unit to admit the inspector at the scheduled time, the applicant shall be charged a "no show" fee in an amount to be determined by resolution of the Town Council to cover the expense incurred by the town.
(d) If the inspector(s) is denied admittance by the property owner, or if the inspector(s) fails in at least three attempts to complete an initial or renewal inspection of the dwelling unit because there was no adult person present to admit him or her, the inspector(s) shall provide notice of failure of inspection to the property owner by certified mail or other legal service to the address shown on the existing vacation rental permit or the application for vacation rental permit. Within ten days after receipt or refusal of such notice, the property owner shall arrange for the inspector(s)' access to the dwelling unit for the completion of the required inspection.
(5) Code violations.
(a) If an owner of a dwelling unit used for vacation rentals has been cited and found to be in violation of a zoning, building, housing, density, life/safety or fire code or regulation by the Code Enforcement Special Magistrate, the order of the Special Magistrate shall include payment of an administrative fee for each required inspection or re-inspection of the dwelling unit in an amount to be determined by resolution of the Town Council. The required inspection fees shall be included as part of the administrative costs assessed by the town and shall be included in any liens filed by the town.
(b) Each day of renting a dwelling unit for vacation rental use without having a valid vacation rental permit shall constitute a separate and distinct violation of this section.
(C) Vacation rental manager.
(1) All vacation rental units shall have a vacation rental manager, who has been issued a vacation rental manager license by the town. The vacation rental manager shall be available 24 hours per day, seven days a week for the purpose of promptly responding to complaints regarding conduct or behavior of vacation rental occupants or alleged violations of these regulations. Any change in the vacation rental manager shall require written notification to the Planning Department and notification by certified return mail to all interested parties.
(2) Complaints to the vacation rental manager concerning violations by occupants of vacation rental units to this section shall be responded to within one hour. The neighbor who made the complaint shall be contacted by telephone or in person and informed as to the results of the actions taken by the manager. A record shall be kept of the complaint and the manager's response for a period of at least three months after the incident, which shall be available for inspection by the County Code Enforcement Department during business hours.
(3) Vacation rental manager license. A vacation rental manager license is required from the town for an individual to be a vacation rental manager under the provisions of this section. The vacation rental manager shall be:
(a) The designated contact for responding to complaints made by neighbors against vacation rental tenants; and
(b) Responsible for maintaining the guest register, leases, and official complaint response records for a vacation rental unit as required by this section.
(4) Vacation rental manager license application, issuance, renewal, fines, and revocation.
(a) An individual shall submit an application for a vacation rental manager license in a form prescribed by the town accompanied with a payment of a nonrefundable fee as determined by resolution of the Town Council. The license shall be issued for a period of one year and renewable annually. No individual shall apply for or be issued more than one vacation rental manager license at a time.
(b) After notice is given to the vacation rental manager and a public hearing is held, a vacation rental manager license shall be revoked by the Mayor and/or fines levied by the Code Enforcement Special Magistrate or court of competent jurisdiction upon a finding of: a total of two or more no responses to complaints registered by the public concerning tenants not following the terms of the tenants agreement, during any single year of the vacation rental manager's license; or two or more violations of this section which are pertinent to the duties and responsibilities of a vacation rental manager. A vacation rental manager license shall be revoked if the license holder is found in violation of any of the regulations herein which apply to vacation rental managers.
(c) An individual who has had his or her license revoked shall not be eligible to resubmit an application for obtaining a new vacation rental manager license until two years after the date of revocation of his or her license.
(5) An owner may change his or her designation of a vacation rental manager temporarily or permanently; however, there shall only be one vacation rental agent for each vacation rental property at any given time. To change the designated agent, the owner shall notify the town in writing of the name, contact information and other information required in this section for the new vacation rental manager and pay the applicable fee, if any, determined by resolution of the Town Council. Any notice of violation or legal process which has been delivered or served upon the previous vacation rental manager, prior to the town's receipt of notice of change of the vacation rental manager, shall be deemed effective service.
(6) It shall be the sole responsibility of the property owner to appoint a reliable vacation rental manager and to inform the manager of his or her correct mailing address. Failure to do so shall not be a defense to a violation of this section. No property owner shall designate as a vacation rental manager any person who does not expressly comply with the provisions of this section. The property owner or the vacation rental manager shall be deemed to be the "violator" of this section as the term is used in F.S. § 162.06. Service of notice on the vacation rental manager shall be deemed service of notice on the property owner, tenant and violator.
(D) Health and safety regulations for vacation rentals.
(1) The applicant for a vacation rental permit shall sign a written statement granting authorization to Town Code Enforcement Department and Fire Marshal to inspect the premises of the vacation rental unit prior to the issuance of the vacation rental permit and at any other time after issuance of such permit, concerning compliance with the town code and land development regulations. Prior to any business tax receipt being issued the premises subject to the business tax receipt as a vacation rental shall have a fire inspection performed by the state Fire Marshal. All such premises shall, at a minimum contain smoke detectors and fire extinguishers as required by the applicable fire, electrical and building codes;
(2) The maximum occupancy for a vacation rental shall be determined by the following formula:
(3) All vacation rentals shall have a functioning and operable land line telephone with a current account on the vacation rental premises for emergency contact purposes.
(1) An appeal of any decision of the Mayor may be made by the filing of a notice of appeal with the Mayor within ten days of the written decision of the Mayor and accompanied by an appeal fee in an amount to be determined by resolution of the Town Council. Failure to file an appeal within ten days shall constitute a waiver of all rights to appeal. For purpose herein the term FILED or FILING means the day it is received by the Mayor and no other date.
(2) The public hearing on the appeal shall be scheduled for the first available Town Council meeting following completion of the town's review and evaluation of the application or such other time as is mutually agreed upon between the applicant and the Mayor.
(3) At the public hearing, the Town Council shall consider the appeal application, the relevant support materials, the Mayor's recommendations, and public testimony given at the hearing. If, at any time during the public hearing, the Town Council determines that the appeal is based upon incomplete or inaccurate information or misstatements of fact, it may deny the appeal or refer the application back to the Mayor for further review and revised recommendations. The Town Council shall presume the original decision of the Mayor was correct, and shall only overturn such decision where there has been an error of fact or law. At the close of the public hearing, the Town Council, by not less than a majority of the quorum present, shall approve an order, to be signed by the Mayor, granting, granting with conditions, or denying the appeal.
(Ord. 2014-09, passed 9-23-2014)