Letter to the Editor: Short-term rental restrictions will hurt local economy

My husband and I have owned condos in Breckenridge for 28 years. Currently we own two, which have been evenly split between long term and short term rentals over the years.

The City of Breckenridge has significantly increased license fees for short-term rentals in an effort to increase the number of long-term rentals. For a two-bedroom condo, the permit costs $160 in 2021 and $800 in 2022, with an increase to $1,500 next year. Breckenridge also capped and decreased the number of licenses available.

Punishing owners of short-term rentals is not the way to increase the number of long-term rentals. Some owners, like us, live in Colorado and occasionally use the condos for our personal use. Therefore, these owners will not turn their condos into long-term rentals. The increase in fees will only cause us to increase our rent or lose the income we had planned for retirement.

In addition to not affecting the long-term rental market, the increased fees and licensing cap are detrimental to the local economy. Most short-term rentals are handled by local businesses, which employ locals, keeping the money in the town of Breckenridge. The effect will be to drive out local businesses and funnel the money to larger corporations outside of town, such as Vail Resorts, which is exempt from these changes. For a community that has always prided itself on the family business style, I find it unacceptable to establish laws that favor big business while driving out small local businesses.

I ask Breckenridge City Council to reconsider these changes to avoid the negative impact on the local economy. They should not apply restrictions to the vacation rental industry, which plays a vital role in supporting the community.

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