Short-term rentals will be the focus of the public meeting

There is a $600 application fee to help “offset the cost of providing services” – municipalities have the authority under the Municipalities Act to impose such fees or charges

A public meeting has been called for June 1 to discuss short-term rentals and new user fees the City of North Bay is seeking to attach to the increasingly popular form of accommodation.

In a zoning bylaw update, the City of North Bay defines a short-term rental (STR) as “all or part of a dwelling unit used to provide accommodation for any rental period of less than 28 days in exchange for payment.”

See related: The Ministry of Finance’s Guide to Home Sharing for Ontario Municipalities

The City’s definition of STR excludes bed and breakfasts, institutional tourist establishments, tourist establishments, tourist camping establishments, motels, resorts or any other similar commercial or institutional use.

STRs are divided into two sections: main and non-main. A short-term main living unit rental also serves as someone’s main living unit. Conversely, a short-term rental of a dwelling other than a principal dwelling does not serve as someone’s principal dwelling.

A zoning by-law amendment will establish where STRs are permitted.

According to a North Bay town staff report“There are clear differences between a main dwelling unit STR and a non-main dwelling unit STR and therefore they should be subject to different standards using a zoning amendment as the primary tool for A main dwelling unit STR is a form of house-sharing whereas a non-main dwelling STR is considered a hotel-like commercial use.”

To learn more about the proposed zoning changes, Click here.

Short-term rentals are often brokered by companies such as Airbnb and VRBO which provide an online marketplace for accommodations for vacation rentals and tourist activities. The prevalence of these online accommodation sites, coupled with the pandemic-induced “staycation” trend, has given some northern Ontario municipalities a desire to regulate the practice and recover the costs of services.

See also: East Ferris plans to bring home short-term rental regulations

And: Bonfield short-term rental review set for long-term

“To offset the cost of providing services, municipalities have the power under section 391(1) of the Municipal law to impose fees or charges on individuals. The City “conducted a cost analysis to determine the total cost of adopting and enforcing the bylaw. The full cost recovery rates were then used as a benchmark against which new charges were established,” according to the staff report.

The draft STR regulation requests a $600 application fee and a $275 application renewal fee for hosts. these cost of using include defined tasks for the average application, including application receipt, review, processing, inspections, notices, orders, monitoring, communications, and inspections.

The appeal fee is $1,600. In addition, waiting charges will be calculated at the rate of $78 multiplied by the number of hours of waiting. These fees are intended to be billed for the actual time spent organizing, documenting and supervising the work outside of the standard fees.

“Calibration of this regulation has been done with the framework of local communities and municipalities of similar sizes in North Bay, where applicable,” according to the report. For a comparative table of applicable fees, Click here.

These user fees are designed to ensure compliance, the report says, and notes that municipalities add these user fees to help offset the impact of municipal services on property taxes.

“The Municipal law and case law requires that there be a nexus or nexus between the fees charged and the costs incurred so that the fees are revenue neutral (long term). In situations where there is also a community benefit associated with providing the service, the fees charged may be less than the full cost recovery rate and part of the cost is funded by the general tax levy. »

The Planning Department’s initial survey of STRs was presented in October 2021 as a high-level overview listing the different options available for regulation. The Commission directed staff to develop a regulatory framework for STRs in North Bay that achieves the following objectives:

  • minimize potential conflicts/compatibility issues in residential areas;
  • directly protect the availability of long-term housing in all residential areas of the city;
  • recognize and capitalize on the positive economic impacts that STRs can have on individuals, businesses and the tourism sector as a whole;
  • protect guests, neighbors and STR operators from a health and safety perspective; and
  • hold non-compliant STR operators accountable and enforce the proposed short-term rental by-law and any other applicable municipal by-laws if/when required.

The public meeting is scheduled for June 1 at 5:15 p.m. Anyone may attend the public meeting and/or make written or oral presentations supporting or opposing the proposed zoning by-law amendment to define short-term rental .