Chelsea increases STRS to 40
By Marco Vigliotti
Chelsea council has approved a long-awaited bylaw establishing rules for short-term rentals, capping the number of available units in the municipality at 40 per year.
The bylaw, passed Thursday during a special council session, comes only days before new provincial rules are slated to go into effect that will prevent municipalities from banning short-term rentals of primary residences. The move paves the way for residents across the province to make use of popular rental platforms like AirBnB and Vrbo.
Municipalities still retain the right to limit the use of short-term rentals and had until March 25 to pass zoning bylaws to restrict the practice.
Earlier in the year, Chelsea council unanimously supported a draft of the bylaw that would restrict the number of short-term rentals in the municipality to 30 per year, or five for each municipal ward.
But this was reversed following public consultations in February, with council upping the number of short-term rentals to 40 and removing the per-ward limit. However, the number of rentals were capped at 10 in Farm Point and 15 for Centre-Village.
Council also opted to restrict short-term rentals to single-family residences, scrap the grace period for current operators and require properties with short-term rentals to have a parking space for each available bedroom. There will be no short-term rentals permitted on Valleyview and Vincent roads in Old Chelsea.
Residents opposed to the bylaw can register their opposition at the Meredith Centre on March 29, between 9 a.m. and 7 p.m. The number of signatures required to trigger a referendum on the bylaw varies based on the number of qualified voters in a specific zone.