ARTICLE VIII. - SHORT-TERM RENTAL PROPERTIES
Sec. 34-260. - Purpose and intent.
(a) The purpose of this article is to establish regulations for the use of residential dwelling units as short-term vacation rentals and to ensure the collection and payment of hotel/motel fees and occupation tax certificate fees.
(b) "Short-term vacation rental" means an accommodation for transient guests where, in exchange for compensation, a residential dwelling unit is provided for lodging for a period of time less than 30 consecutive days. Such use may or may not include an on-site manager. For the purposes of this definition, a residential dwelling shall include all housing types. This is also identified as “STVR”. This shall exclude bed and breakfast accommodations as they are currently defined by the City of Tybee's Land Development Code. However, bed and breakfast establishments are required to have Occupational Tax Certificates and to pay taxes and fees as required by law or ordinance.
(c) An owner shall be required to designate an agent for any short-term vacation rental unit, whose responsibility it will be to comply with the requirements of this section on behalf of the owner. The owner may be the agent.
(d) "Short-term vacation rental agent" is a local contact person designated by the owner who shall be available at all times to respond to complaints regarding the condition, operation, or conduct of occupants of the STVR. Such person is customarily present at a location within the city for purposes of transacting business, and is responsible for taking remedial action to resolve issues within one hour.
(e) The owner or agent shall not be relieved of any personal responsibility or personal liability for noncompliance with any applicable law, rule or regulation pertaining to the use and occupancy of the residential dwellings unit as a short-term vacation rental unit.
Sec. 34-261. - Application.
(a) Within 90 days of the effective date of the ordinance from which this article is derived, no person shall rent, lease or otherwise exchange for compensation all or any portion of a dwelling unit as a short-term vacation rental, as defined in section 34-260, without the owner or rental agent first obtaining an occupation tax certificate and identifying the location of each STVR with the city.
(b) The city must be notified in writing within seven days when there is a change in property ownership, management, agent or emergency contact. Failure to do so will void any permitted use as an STVR.
(c) The application shall be furnished on a form specified by the city manager, accompanied by a non-refundable occupational tax and regulatory fee. Such application should include:
(1) The complete street address and property identification number (PIN) of the STVR;
(2) Ownership, including the name, address, e-mail and telephone number of each person or entity with an ownership interest in the property;
(3) The number of bedrooms, the maximum occupancy and the number and location of off-street parking spaces on the premises and any off-premises parking applicable;
(4) The name, address and telephone number of a short-term vacation rental agent or local emergency contact if applicable; and
(5) Any other information that this chapter requires the owner to provide to the city as part of the identification for a short-term vacation rental. The city manager or his or her designee shall have the authority to obtain additional information from the applicant as necessary to achieve the objectives of this chapter.
(6) The emergency contact number required.
(7) Proof of liability insurance shall be required along with evidence that insurance company knows the property is being used as an STVR.
(d) The certification form pursuant to this section shall be processed, and added to a database to be kept by staff listing STVR unit information and any citations that occur. The city shall notify the owner and agent of any instances that result in a citation for a code violation or other legal infraction.
(e) Owner or rental agent for a short-term vacation rental shall submit, on an annual basis, an occupational tax certificate to the City of Tybee Island.
Sec. 34-262. - Regulatory fee/renewal.
(a) The short-term vacation rental application shall be accompanied by an initial regulatory fee and be subject to an annual fee every January 1 thereafter, as established by the mayor and city council.
The regulatory fee shall be $100.00 per rental unit. An application is valid when completed and filed along with payment of the application regulatory fee. The fee shall be due January 1 of each year for short-term rental purposes and, if not paid within 90 days thereof, shall be subject to the delinquency and penalty provisions of section 58-163, as applicable, to occupation tax/business license provisions as well as the revocation of any right to use the unit for short-term rental purposes until payment of the penalties and fee. In addition to the regulatory fee license as specified herein, the applicant shall also pay the required occupation tax each year.
(b) Each property or unit shall be issued a unique property identification number.
(c) Failure to apply and/or identify as prescribed by this law will result in a fine of $500 for each month that the unit continues to operate without compliance.
(d) The annual identification of a unit and the regulatory fee are not transferrable. In the event ownership of a unit changes, and even if there is no change in the management company managing the unit, the fee upon ownership change shall be $100.00, if the change occurs prior to July 1 of the year $50.00 if after July 1 of the year.
(e) In the event a management company changes, the unit is to be re-identify by notice to the city and the regulatory fee will be $50.00, if the management company change is after July 1; otherwise, the fee is $100.00,
Sec. 34-263. - Good neighbor policy.
The city shall make available on its website a list of STVR good neighbor policies which STVR agents must share with their clients, owners, and guests.
Sec. 34-264. - Signs.
All one- and two-family STVR units shall post a sign that shall be visible and legible from the address side of the street listing emergency contact name and phone number The emergency contact name and number shall be the STVR agent as required by section 34-260(d) unless otherwise specified and approved by the city staff and any rental agency involved. Such sign shall not be less than 18 inches x 24 inches and shall not exceed 24 inches x 24 inches. The purpose of the required sign is to enable officers and third parties to identify appropriate contacts for issues with the property and/or the occupants and, therefore the sign shall be located in such a location that it faces the street which is listed as the real property address or otherwise located at such location as approved by staff consistent with that purpose. The view of the sign shall not be obstructed by fencing, cars, vegetation, etc.
Multi-family units shall post a sign which shall be visible and legible from a publicly accessible area outside the unit listing the required emergency contact name and phone number. . Signs for multi-family units shall be 8½ inches by 11 inches. All such signs shall be located no further than four feet from the outer most edge of the front entry door or otherwise located at such location as approved by city staff consistent with that purpose. Multi-family units may have one additional sign on the exterior of the property which complies with the standards of the one and two family STVR unit for the purposes of advertising, branding and way finding.
To the extent that the requirements herein are inconsistent with the Sign Ordinance the provisions hereof shall control in the case of short term vacation rental properties and shall supersede any inconsistent provisions of Homeowner Association Agreements or policies or Condominium Association Agreements or policies pertaining to signage.
Sec. 34-265. - Unique location identification number required.
Each short-term vacation rental property or unit is to have a unique location identification number. Any advertising, promotion or notice of availability of a property or unit for a short-term vacation rental occupancy shall include the location identification number or numbers for every available property or unit which is the subject matter of the advertisement, promotion or notice. The phrase "advertisement, promotion or notice" as used herein shall include, but not be limited to, brochures, marketing material and any online, digital, social media or published promotion of any such property or unit. The failure to include such number as required herein shall be a violation hereof and punishable as otherwise provided in this Code.
Sec. 34-266. - Compliance.
(a) It shall be the responsibility of the owner or agent to pay all required taxes required by chapter 58, article IV, room excise tax.
Secs. 34-267—34-299. - Reserved.