Voting no on Measure 21-203 is vital to the community, businesses and those that rely on tourism to sustain a living. I own an STR in unincorporated Lincoln County. My STR is my retirement income. If I cannot rent out my STR, I literally have no retirement income. I have trouble believing that other human beings want to take away my retirement income. It’s unthinkable.
I know of others in my community that use their STR as retirement income. The community that I’m in was designed to be a tourist community. The developer designed it for the purpose of creating a resort community. Currently, 80 percent are STRs in my community.
There has been quite a bit of misinformation about STRs on websites and social media. Things like STR’s are unregulated, and they all have septic tanks, and that local law enforcement is overburdened. In my community, I’m on the city’s sewer. I don’t have an in-ground tank. The STRs in my community are very well regulated. We have to abide by strict county standards, and we also have strict HOA standards. I emailed the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office about being overburdened. I was told the sheriff’s office is under staffed, and that tourist season is busy, but they cannot say that is due to STRs in unincorporated Lincoln County.
Every STR in the county pays an annual license fee and a 10 percent tax on every booking. The backers of Measure 21-203 believe that one size fits all. This is not true. Some of us will be financially ruined if this passes. A one-size-fits-all approach does not work.
If this measure passes, who will pick up the shortfall for the missing revenue in the county? That is millions of dollars that will not be going to local hospitals, local law enforcement and local schools. STRs provide jobs to many in the community. The only thing this one-size-fits-all approach accomplishes is less dollars in the county, less jobs in the county, and less business in the county.
I know some who support Measure 21-203 have moved here to retire. The Oregon coast is a great place for that, but they moved into a tourist town. They have to expect tourists in a tourist town. They should have done their due diligence.