Republican Sen. Gilbert Warren Petersen wants the Attorney General to investigate an ordinance passed by Paradise Valley that regulates short-term home rentals, which he says violates state law, while the lawmaker himself owns a million dollar luxury Airbnb listing in Gilbert.
If Petersen’s lawsuit succeeds in overturning Paradise Valley’s order, it would effectively prevent other cities and towns from pursuing other similar orders, including in Gilbert, where Petersen’s Airbnb is located.
Petersen’s list, discovered by Arizona Mirrorcosts $557 a night and sleeps up to nine people, according to “Warren’s” listing along with a photo of the senator.
In a text message to shimmer, Petersen said he doesn’t believe owning an Airbnb is a conflict of interest while filing a complaint with the attorney general’s office regarding the regulation of short-term rentals. He emphasized his belief that Paradise Valley violates state law with its regulations.
peterson filed a complaint against Paradise Valley on an ordinance the city passed earlier this year to curb so-called “party houses.” Airbnb has been a major player in the fight against the order.
The challenge is known as complaint SB1487, named after a 2016 law that allows any lawmaker to ask the attorney general to review an action by a municipality or county if they believe that action violates state law. If the Attorney General finds a violation, the offending law must be repealed or the violator loses the money they receive from state income tax revenue, which for Paradise Valley would be approximately $1.6 million, according to the League of Arizona Cities and Towns.
Peterson said he has no plans to operate the home as a long-term vacation rental.
“Also, I listed about a month ago as a regular rental. It probably won’t be a vacation rental in the next six months,” Petersen told the shimmer, adding: “None of us should be fine when cities break the law.”
Petersen argued that the Paradise Valley ordinance passed in late January goes beyond what is allowed by a state law passed in 2016 that limits municipalities’ ability to regulate short-term rentals inside. of their borders.
In 2016, the Arizona Legislature passed a bill prohibiting municipalities from enacting STR regulations except in specific circumstances. It was touted by Governor Doug Ducey and other legislators at the time as stimulating the short-term rental market, although Ducey has since said lawmakers will “revisit” regulation of short-term rentals after a series of complaints from cities and towns that find themselves without a way to sue bad actors.
The ordinance requires owners to be on site for certain events, to meet their guests within an hour of arriving at the property, to perform background checks on each guest, to provide the owner’s name and contact information to the city , to install a landline telephone, to prove that the customer has read the rules and regulations established by the city, to clean the air filters every three months and more.
Petersen argues the order violates that law because it imposes different requirements on specific short-term rentals, has “significant” new obligations for them, and “heightens regulatory burdens on businesses by subjecting platforms to new liability and disclosure requirements in violation of state and federal law.
When asked if owning such a large Airbnb property could be considered a conflict due to the fact that one’s ownership could be affected by a decision, Petersen dismissed those concerns.
“I don’t think Gilbert would break the law,” Petersen said.
Petersen’s Airbnb is highly rated by those who have stayed there.
“The garden was so much fun and everyone loved the water slide,” wrote Juliet, adding “Warren was good at communication and the house was very clean!”
The 4,000-square-foot, four-bedroom, three-and-a-half-bathroom home doesn’t allow for partiespets or smokers, but includes a three-car garage, climbing wall, trampoline, and heated pool.