Letters to the Editor

Disturbing the peace

Many Florida single-family residential communities are under siege by short-term vacation rentals, houses in traditional neighborhoods that are rented out by the owner and loosely managed by a company for a few days at a time.

To rent a house costs hundreds of dollars a night, resulting in the creation of party mansions where groups of out-of-towners arrive, throw parties and create havoc. It’s disconcerting to have new strangers next door every weekend.

The Legislature stole the authority from communities in 2011 by preempting local government control over these businesses. Corporations and absentee owners are profiting from the beauty and tranquility paid for by residents. Our neighborhoods are for our families and aren’t intended to be vacation resorts. Short-term rentals are an invitation to commit crimes, and there is no oversight of the occupants or their intentions.

Each municipality should decide what is best for its residents.

Tallahassee should not dictate to the communities on this. Lawmakers should repeal this statute and restore the power to the people.

Mary Kramer, North Bay Village