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Rental ordinance approved, Board considering short-term rentals in Olde Towne

By Randy Bell

Clinton Mississippi

The Clinton Board of Aldermen is poised to vote on allowing short-term rental accommodations in Olde Towne. The Board at its August 16 meeting unanimously approved a long-debated ordinance regulating the standards for renting rooms, apartments or houses for a period of at least two days but less than a month.


“If it’s going to be something longer than the twenty-nine days, then they would have to do consecutive leases,” said Director of Community Improvement Roy Edwards.


The ordinance requires a public hearing on an applicant’s intent to obtain a permit to operate a short-term rental property. Landowners within 500 feet of the property will be notified by mail. If approved, the applicant would have to pay a $50 annual registration fee and obtain a privilege license from the City.


Any proposed short-term rental property would have to undergo a City inspection before a permit is issued. A permit could be revoked for a violation of the ordinance. Violations could result in a fine of not less than $100 and not more than $500. And if a short-term rental loses its permit, there’s a one-year waiting period before the operator could reapply.


The ordinance requires the principal renter to be at least 21 years of age, prohibits signage identifying short-term rental property and requires the name and phone number of a host to be posted in each unit.


“Somebody that would be available to guests twenty-four hours a day if there’s any problems,” Edwards said.


Maximum occupancy is based on fifty square feet of sleeping area floor space per occupant. No recreational vehicles, buses or trailers may be parked on or visible from the street where a


short-term rental is located.


Before approving the ordinance August 16, Board members said they had worked hard to address public concerns over short-term rentals. Alderwoman Ricki Garrett said they dealt with some “tough issues” but felt “a real spirit of cooperation and collaboration” among her colleagues.


Alderman Jim Martin said he still has some concerns but pointed out that there’s still another vote to come on whether to change zoning to allow short-term rentals limited to Olde Towne.

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