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The Brick Council approves ban on short-term home rentals

BRICK, NJ – For residents of Jaywood Manor Drive, the summer weeks have turned into a festive parade, with dozens of vehicles sporting out-of-state license plates blurring the streets. Some weekends there were weddings or other events.

However, none of this was welcome.

A house across the street “was used as an event venue,” Brian Clark, who lives on Jaywood Manor Drive, told The Brick City Council on Tuesday before he voted unanimously to approve an ordinance prohibiting short-term rentals in much of the township. “It’s a cul-de-sac of 15 houses. It’s not for that kind of business.”

“I didn’t go to a dead end so I could watch the cars go up and down the street,” said Daniel Ciarcia, another resident of Jaywood Manor Drive. He described the parties as loud and attracting dozens of people. There were a lot of home weddings, the owner of which lives out of state.

“There was a shoot for an erotic video,” Ciarcia said. “She (the landlord) cannot control the tenants.”

Joe Mecca, who owns a house on Princeton Avenue that overlooks the Metedeconk River, urged council to file the order. In an email read by company administrator Joanne Bergin, Mecca said the ordinance punishes those who responsibly rent to responsible people.

“We turned down a lucrative deal with ‘Jersey Shore’,” Mecca said of the MTV TV show. “We rely on renting to pay for property taxes, maintenance and utility bills.”

“This ordinance does nothing to prevent a big party,” he said. “It doesn’t matter. The ordinance as proposed is not going to stop selfish people.”

The ordinance, which was introduced two weeks ago, bans rentals of less than 30 days, except for legally operated hotels, motels, rooming houses, guesthouses and bed and breakfasts. It includes an exception for accommodation on Barrier Island but imposes a minimum of 7 days per stay from May 15 to October 15.

The ban initially applied to owner-occupied homes where they rent a room while living in their home, but this provision was removed before Tuesday evening.

The order came after four years of efforts to resolve the issues through a so-called “pet shop” order, which imposed penalties on landlords who rented out to tenants convicted of crimes such as drug distribution. . While this has helped the city control some issues, the growing trend of internet rentals such as Airbnb and VRBO has created a new set of issues that weren’t easily resolved, Township Attorney Scott Kenneally said. .

It left residents such as Patricia Campbell, who lives near Princeton Avenue along the Metedeconk River, and Tom Fortier, who lives in the Baywood section, make phone calls to the police who could hardly do more than enforce noise ordinance or enforce code, which was not open on weekends when problems occurred.

“After Sandy a lot changed,” Fortier said, noting that people grabbed properties damaged by Sandy, didn’t necessarily bother raising them and only used them as vacation rentals.

“There are crazy parties in these houses and some are renting without CO (certificate of occupancy,” he said. “It’s a quality of life issue for most of us.”

Campbell said the owner of his neighborhood had rented a revolving door from revelers, who were shooting fireworks and had no respect for neighbors. The house has a sleeping capacity of eight people, but the ad says it can accommodate 12 people, with more coming for the holidays.

“Our house, which is open all year round, is not pleasant in the summer,” she said.

The hearing revealed a conflict between neighbors in the Midstreams section. Kristian Calibuso, senior vice president of Trinity Solar, bought a house on Manorside Drive over the summer and, in addition to renting it, said he himself used the house for reunions with his family. and his friends. He said neighbors harassed him for being in his pool at night and taking pictures of him and his friends. Someone even called and complained when his trash cans had not been taken off the street by 6 a.m., he said.

Neighbors complained that most of the people using the property were renters and complained about drivers speeding through the area regardless of the fact that it was a residential area, and people roaming the area. the neighborhood while they attended parties.

“He turned it into a hotel,” said Robert Mangano. “He has rights but what happened has nothing to do with leasing to responsible people.”

“It’s a citywide problem,” said Colleen Leone, who lives near Calibuso. “People buy a second home and then quickly turn it into a lucrative proposition.”

Darcy Seiler, who rents her home in the Cape Breton section, said one of the problems is some areas that started as short-term rental areas became mostly full-time residential neighborhoods.

“Rentals make money for the community,” she said. “I think there should be a better way to control this.”

Mecca and Mark Cassidy, who rents a house in Kingfisher Court, urged council to consider other options, such as a hefty fine if something goes wrong.

“Belmar is fined $ 5,000” for problematic rentals, Mecca said, and landlords and tenants could be required to post a deposit for large events, like weddings cited on Jaywood Manor Drive.

City Councilor Paul Mummolo urged them to contact him in the coming week so that ideas can be discussed to find common ground for responsible owners.

“We don’t want to harm the people responsible, but it has become a serious quality of life issue,” Mummolo said.

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