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Letter to the Editor: Measure 21-203 to outlaw more Vacation Rentals outside city limits

Letter to the Editor:  Don’t turn desirable neighborhoods into “motel rows.”

Vote YES on measure 21-203 this November 2nd!

Memories are often forgotten in short order – but people who lived here in 2007 will remember what happened back then.

Many of us are concerned about our neighborhoods and how they are not set up to feed and protect renters and day visitors – especially in the event of a flood or an earthquake. The tourists would be in a panic and would begin to break into our homes in order to save themselves and their families. There would be nowhere for them to run to, except the higher elevated areas – if they can reach them.  Likewise, even without earthquakes or floods, the rapid addition of many Short Term Rentals would turn quiet and enjoyable neighborhoods into crowded, noisy streets with parked vehicles everywhere along with loud parties that disturb as well as disrupts the neighborhoods.

The local residents will also try to survive and protect themselves during and after an earthquake. We have no idea how large a number of people would be here on any given day! This is unreasonable!! We have a right to peaceful and safe enjoyment of our homes and neighborhoods.  But it is becoming impossible because of the invasion of Short Term Rentals (STR’s) in our R-1 & R-2 zoned unincorporated areas! (Outside City Limits)

Our belief is that the owners and management companies of the STRs, in our low-density residential neighborhoods, need to bear this responsibility themselves and ensure their renters are protected.  That means not only emergency supplies like food and water but also liability insurance to protect renters against any harm or danger in the event of a natural disaster.

To mitigate risk, there needs to be caps, reduction and phase outs in the number of STR’s, along with requirements to address emergency situations and ensure that roads and side streets are passable for our emergency responders at all times which is critical for paramedics to get to the scene of people in distress.

The mission statement of the Lincoln County Board of Commissioners states: “The mission of Lincoln County is to provide essential public services, both legally required and locally desired, in an efficient, effective and respectful manner.”  I want to emphasize the “locally desired” part of this mission. The out-of-town owners of these STR’s are NOT locals while WE ARE LOCALS as well as registered voters!  We should be the County Commissioners’ number 1 priority. Please vote YES on 21-203 to Save Our Neighborhoods!!

Julie & Mike Pearson
Gleneden Beach

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