As part of the City’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the City will be working with the owners of short-term rentals within City limits to address the concerns of residents about non-essential travel and potential COVID-19 exposure from the availability of vacation rentals in the community.
The City has received some comments from residents voicing concerns about short-term rentals attracting travelers from outside the community who may increase the risk of spreading COVID-19. Short-term rentals, also sometimes referred to as vacation rentals, are a popular option for lodging around the world. A dwelling unit that is rented in full or in part to a temporary occupant for fewer than thirty consecutive days is considered a short-term rental. Individuals renting these properties are typically from outside the community.
The City will be issuing notice to owners of known short-term rentals within City limits requesting that owners encourage potential guests to abide by stay at home orders that are now in place in almost all states and discouraging non-essential travel during the pandemic. These actions will help limit the cascading impacts on critical services by limiting spread of COVID-19 and will help hospitals, first responders, and other healthcare services continue to provide services for those who need them in the coming weeks and months.
Short-term rental companies are now exploring ways to help customers who may have had travel plans impacted by the pandemic. One such company, AirBnB, in an attempt to encourage people to stay at home, now allows no cost cancellations and also has funding some funding through the CARES Act to pay some property owners up to 25% of rental fees for eligible cancellations through May 31st.
With confirmed community spread of COVID-19 in Mesa County, Mesa County Public Health has provided guidance for residents and potential visitors to avoid overcrowding and accidental social gatherings. These are unprecedented times, and the City of Grand Junction believes that limiting opportunities to spread COVID-19 will help the health of the community.
Contact: Greg LeBlanc, Sr. Assistant to the City Manager 970-244-1557 or firstname.lastname@example.org