Jennie Quinlan was one of the first Airbnb hosts in San Antonio when she opened up a room in Alta Vista. Photo by Gretchen Greer.
The City of San Antonio generated over $2 million in Hotel Occupancy Tax (HOT) revenue for the year 2021 from about 2600 short-term rental properties. Credit: Gretchen Greer for the San Antonio Report

San Antonio City Council members provided a litany of suggested changes to the proposed short-term rental ordinance in April. Now City staff has tweaked, cut, and modified the draft to again run the bureaucratic gamut of committees, commissions, and other groups for review.

The revised proposal took its first step through this process Wednesday at the Council’s Governance Committee meeting where the changes – including decreasing registration fees, tightening restrictions on density, and loosening other parts of the ordinance such as requirements for inspections and a board review of applications – were well-received. The five-member committee sent the ordinance on to the next step: a public task force meeting on Thursday, June 28.

Click here to download a summary of the proposed ordinance and here to download an explanation of changes.

The City’s Board of Adjustment as well as the Planning and Zoning commissions will also review the changes over the next few months. Each group slightly shaped and approved the draft last year – but this time those bodies will be briefed and no vote will be taken.

City staff expects to brief Council on the final proposed ordinance – which may be adjusted further before then – in August or September. Briefings in August are largely booked for sessions regarding the 2019 fiscal year budget, City Manager Sheryl Sculley said.

Councilman Roberto Treviño (D1), whose district includes the most short-term rentals and the most tension between the industry and neighborhoods, said it’s important to craft an ordinance that “finds balance” between platforms such as Airbnb and HomeAway and residents seeking to protect their neighborhoods.

Senior Reporter Iris Dimmick covers public policy pertaining to social issues, ranging from affordable housing and economic disparity to policing reform and mental health. She was the San Antonio Report's...