City of Ojai Transient Residential Rentals Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) There has recently been a lot of discussion about the growing number of transient rentals in the residential areas of the City. Many cities throughout California have recognized this issue and have recently adopted new ordinances regulating transient rentals. A community workshop has been scheduled at 6pm on July 2, 2015, at the Boyd Center, 510 Park Road, Ojai, CA, to: a) learn about this issue, b) understand community perspectives on transient rentals in residential zones, and c) help the City Council develop thoughtful policies for regulation of this use. Q: What is a transient rental? A: Any rental of all or a portion of a property for occupancy for a period of thirty days or less. Q: Is home-sharing considered to be a transient rental? A: Yes. Home-sharing is the practice of renting sleeping space in a house that is otherwise occupied by the long-term residents. Rental of rooms or sleeping space for a period of thirty days or less constitutes a transient rental. Q: Are transient rentals permitted in residential zones? A: Generally no. There are one or two exceptions where the Planning Commission issued a conditional use permit in the past. Currently, there is a moratorium on the issuance of new conditional use permits for transient rentals in residential zones. Common practice in cities allowing transient rentals is to issue business licenses for those meeting listed requirements in the regulations. Q: What will happen to someone who engages in transient rental of residential property without a permit? A: Transient rentals in residential zones without a permit are a violation of the Ojai Municipal Code. Violators can be charged with an infraction or misdemeanor, issued administrative citations, and/or prosecuted in court. The City Council has directed that enforcement actions not be undertaken prior to the community workshop on July 2, 2015.
Unpermitted transient rentals that occur after that date may be subject to enforcement action. Q: What options will be considered by the City Council on July 2nd. A: The City Council has not limited the options that will be considered. There are a wide range of approaches that have been adopted in other cities, and those approaches will be discussed at the workshop and described in a staff report that will be posted on the City website one week prior to the workshop. Q: How can I voice my concerns so that future regulations do not impact me negatively? A: Those who attend the workshop will be asked to share their concerns and interest as it relates to a series of questions about transient rentals in residential zones. Q: Will the City Council make a final determination on how transient rentals will be regulated at the July 2, 2015 workshop? A: No. The purpose of the workshop is to share information, exchange ideas among community members with differing perspectives, and to identify matters which should be researched further before final decisions are made. It is an important step in developing thoughtful policies.