Truckee Town Council hears first reading of short-term rental ordinance |

Truckee Town Council hears first reading of short-term rental ordinance

At its Tuesday meeting, Truckee Town Council engaged in a roughly four-hour discussion revolving around the town’s short-term rental policy.

Short-term rentals, defined as housing units rented for less than 31 consecutive nights, have operated in town for several years, but have increased by 81% from 2012 to 2018.

The new regulations, not yet in effect, will again be heard at a later Town Council meeting in October. They would set rules designed to minimize nuisance issues such as overflow parking, trash, noise, and occupancy levels. The ordinance would also create a framework for license operators. Finally, the ordinance would establish a higher level of accountability on short-term rental operators.

Last month, the town published a public review draft ordinance, and more than 300 individuals voiced concerns regarding the length of the commenting period, whether the ordinance would discriminate against certain types of properties, COVID-19 restrictions, accessory dwelling units, registration fees, and enforcement.

Of the comments received, town staff said 171 were generally in support of the measure, and 43 were opposed. Public comments also raised concerns on whether a short-term rental ban would increase long-term rental availability.

Among the topics discussed were the language centered on accessory dwelling units and the town’s newly adopted Long-Term Rental Program, which is designed to convert short-term rentals into long-term units for locals. Town staff estimates there are roughly 100 legal accessory dwelling units within Truckee.

The ordinance also includes a maximum occupancy limit for short-term rentals, limiting usage to two people per bedroom plus two additional individuals, excluding children under 5 years old. There are also operational standards that include a designated contact person, requirements that limit on-street parking, trash services, and a future bear shed requirement.

Ultimately, the Town Council approved of the language via a 4-to-1 vote. Councilman Tony Commendatore was the lone dissenter.

Justin Scacco is a reporter for the Sierra Sun. Contact him at or 530-550-2643.

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