Aspen moratorium too abrupt |

Aspen moratorium too abrupt

Aspen City Council’s unnecessary moratorium harms people. The issue is not employee housing versus free-market housing. The Aspen Board of REALTORS® (ABOR) strongly supports housing opportunities for everyone. Access to affordable and attainable housing is crucial to supporting and maintaining the quality of life in Aspen and the entire valley.

ABOR’s members are committed to working with elected officials, housing authorities and everyone involved to find creative, effective and sensible solutions that allow reasonable access to housing for everyone who makes up the core of our vibrant community.

The issue is reasonable regulations for short-term rentals and land use. This requires engaging the entire community and having a deliberate, balanced approach to regulations.

ABOR supports reasonable regulations for short-term rentals — regulations acknowledging rights of homeowners and maintaining the character of our neighborhoods. We’ve communicated our willingness to City Council to seek this balance and will continue to do so. This is not unique to Aspen: Communities nationwide and within our valley — like Snowmass and Carbondale — are proceeding thoughtfully with these very same issues.

This is a complex issue that is not easily solved, but we are committed to a reasoned approach with the best interests of the community in mind. But the drastic heavy-handed moratorium puts an unfair and unexpected burden on homeowners who suddenly have uncertainty about what they can or cannot do with their own homes.

Careful policy is what Aspen needs, not immediate and punitive action wielded in 24 hours. ABOR’s lawsuit asks a judge to determine whether City Council violated its own charter, Colorado law and Constitutional protections of due process when it improperly invoked its emergency powers to enact Ordinance 27.

Now is the time to trust everyone to work together. ABOR will participate in these discussions as proud members of this great community.

Maria Cook

CEO, Aspen Board of REALTORS®