Nantucket Voters Reject Proposal To Limit Short-Term Rentals

A proposal to restrict short-term rentals on Nantucket was soundly defeated at the island's annual town meeting Saturday.

The Alliance to Protect Nantucket’s Economy said the measure was defeated on a vote of 625 to 297 at Nantucket's annual town meeting, held outside the island's elementary school.

It would have required a minimum stay of seven consecutive days for short-term rentals — and limited the total number of days properties could be rented each year to 45.

ACK NOW argued that the proliferation of short-term rentals limits the amount of affordable housing available on the tiny island off Cape Cod favored by wealthy vacationers.

Tobias Glidden heads the group. He told WBUR the fight to regulate the short-term rental market on the island is not over.

"It will come up at next year's town meeting, yup. And potentially a special town meeting in the fall."

Glidden says short-term rentals negatively affect the quality of life for island residents — and take away from year-round housing.

Opponents, including property owners, business owners and real estate professionals, touted a UMass study suggesting limits on short-term rentals would lead to more than 100,000 fewer visitors a year and millions of dollars in lost wages and tax revenue for the island of some 11,000 year-round residents.

With reporting by WBUR's Fausto Menard and The Associated Press