Short-term rentals conundrum

As a full-time resident of Pitkin County, I appreciate the commissioners’ efforts to get a handle on adverse effects of short-term rentals on the community and character of Aspen. Two of the rules listed in the Aspen Times May 12th edition would affect every homeowner the same — requiring licenses and limiting rental days to 90 per year.

Whether I agree or not, these rules are fair. However, I strongly oppose granting licenses only to property owners who have previously rented in the past five years, as this limits the rights of some property owners but not all. How is this less offensive than the afore-proposed restriction of allowing only permanent residents to rent short-term? I think it outrageous that I, as a local, year-round resident, do not have the same rights as my neighbor under these regulations.

There are countless examples of changing situations, e.g., a family eager to travel can freely do so as the last child leaves for college or an owner’s financial situation changes making renting attractive. Why is it OK to take away the option of an owner to rent because they have not in the past? I know that it is exceedingly difficult to come up with a solution for this issue, but I encourage the county commissioners to seek ways that have equal impacts on every property owner.

Deborah Tomlinson