Thursday, June 20, 2024

: Pateros City Council asked to reconsider nightly rentals


PATEROS – A Pateros homeowner asked the Pateros City Council to revisit its nightly rental zoning code for R-1 zoned properties during the regular monthly meeting of the city council on April 17.

Katie Sloss, who owns a home at 123 Chris Street with her husband, Paul Servino, read from a prepared statement, requesting that their home in the R-1 zone be allowed nightly rental status.

“We are asking the city council to change the zoning codes to allow R-1 zoning to apply for permits because we believe we should be treated the same as the waterfront homes, the homes in R-2 and R-3, and those in mixed commercial use in the downtown area,” Sloss said.

Some of the waterfront homes Sloss mentioned are just 75 yards from her Chris Street home.

City planner Kurt Danison attended the meeting to respond to Sloss on behalf of the city.

“We put nightly rentals regulations in place back in 2014,” said Danison. “Wc ended up putting moratoriums in place because they take up housing stocks.”

Under the Pateros Municipal Code (PMC) Chapter 17.12 Establishment of Districts and District Standards, Section 020 designates that nightly rentals are one of the prohibited uses for R-1, single family residential. Nightly rentals are allowed per Section 030, waterfront residential, R-1-A, Section 040 mixed family, and Section 050 multifamily.

Danison said one of the major complaints the city has received about nightly rentals in single family neighborhoods is over the disruption they cause. He said allowing nightly rentals along the waterfront made more sense because many of those are second homes and not occupied while R-2 (mixed family residential) and R-3 (multifamily residential) zones are higher density.

Danison said there are three ways to change the zoning code:

• The council can pass a resolution requesting a change the code.

• The planning agency can request a change to the code.

• A homeowner can petition the city requesting a zoning change.

“The important thing to note is that any change that would allow nightly rentals in an R-1 zone would not just apply to you, it would apply to the entire zone,” Danison said.

Nightly rentals must first complete an administrative permit that requires a business license, 24-7 contact, health inspection and more for approval. At this writing there are five properties undergoing the permit process, If all are approved that will bring the number of nightly rentals in Pateros to seven.

“That’s a pretty good percentage of our housing stock,” Danison said.

Sloss and Servino bought their 1920’s house in November 2021 to have a place to stay when they visited Sloss’s parents. They spent more than half a year and used several local workers and all local businesses to complete the remodel.

“We knew we wouldn’t be able to occupy the house full time for the next few years,” said Sloss, “and we hoped to offset some of the monthly costs with a combination of monthly and nightly rentals.”

Danison said the city is considering nightly rentals only along the riverfront to make more affordable housing available for monthly rentals and noted that nearly every town in North Central Washington, not just Pateros, suffers from a shortage of affordable housing.

The council took no action at the meeting but assured Sloss that her request is being taken into consideration.



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