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New York City Airbnb Hosts Hit Hard With New Regulations

The New York City Council has advanced new regulations regarding short-term rentals like Airbnb. The bill intends to force Airbnb hosts to register with New York City’s Office of Special Enforcement. The bill was proposed back in May.

The City is trying to enforce these regulations to enable landlords and tenants from creating illegal hotels. If passed, the host will need to provide the City with information on a monthly basis including addresses, full names, primary addresses and an update on whether they are renting out an entire home, or just a room. Airbnb was quick to comment.

Airbnb spokesperson Liz DeBold Fusco issued the following statement:

“After taking hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions from the hotel industry, we’re not surprised the City Council refused to meet with their own constituents who rely on home sharing to pay the bills and then voted to protect the profits of big hotels. The fix was in from the start and now New Yorkers will be subject to unchecked, aggressive harassment and privacy violations, rubber-stamped by the City Council.”

There is also a lawsuit pending, filed by Stanley (Skip) Karol, a Sunset Park resident, and Airbnb host. Karol claims that the new bill is violating his civil rights due to the fact that hosting an Airbnb is his own source of income. The Office of Special Enforcement paid a visit to Karol’s home and he called it a “frightening experience”.

Karol issued the following statement:

“Of all the Airbnb listings in the entire city, the City chose to go after mine—just days after I raised concerns that their hotel-backed legislation could jeopardize my privacy and rights. I believe that the City has sought to silence me, by not only saddling me with massive fines but also making me feel unsafe in my own home.”

The bill is now in Mayor Bill de Blasio’s hands. If he chooses to sing it, many Airbnb will be hit hard.

Featured Image via Pixabay

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