The association is disappointed with Anna Maria City for continuing to pursue a Declaratory Judgment as it relates to vacation rentals in Anna Maria City. We had hoped the cooperative nature of our industry over the past few years has provided proof positive that our industry as well as the Anna Maria Island Vacation Property Association (AMIVPA) seeks cooperation to continue to work towards balance in our small knit community. It was a difficult decision however the Anna Maria Island Vacation Property Association sent the following letter to AM City…
At the February 12th Work Session of the Anna Maria City Commission, Commissioners voted 3-2 to pursue a declaratory judgment in regards to short term rentals in the R1 district. The Anna Maria Island Vacation Property Association has been encouraged by the collaboration of both Citizens and officials to mitigate any impacts of short term rentals in our community through the development of rational standards. We feel we were very close to resolving any legitimate outstanding issues.
There have been four written legal opinions on this issue, three of which are consistent with the most recent opinion of Ms. Trevarthen, that short term rentals in the City of Anna Maria is a legal activity. The recent decision for Anna Maria City to continue with a declaratory judgment provides proof positive that the City seeks more than its stated intentions, since the revised State statute provides all the flexibility needed for regulating “bad actors.” Frankly there is no other logical basis for a decision to move forward.
It is now clear the City has no interest in collaboration and we have, apparently, been naive in presuming otherwise. Regrettably, given the extreme adversarial position now taken by the commission, the association must abandon all collaborative efforts with the City. In addition, we find this most recent turn of events requires the Association to vigorously oppose any and all present and future attempts at regulating seasonal vacation rentals. It is disappointing it has come to this, as we had high hopes that our collaborative approach would ultimately achieve the balance we all strive for.