Renting homes to vacationers causing stir on Grand Island

Posted at 7:52 PM, Jul 05, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-10 09:54:41-04

Officials in the town of Grand Island and members of the community are meeting Tuesday night to vote on new regulations intended to crack down on rules pertaining to tourist vacation homes. Many of these homes are being rented to people from round the world at competitive prices.

For the past four years, Anne Fahning and her husband have been renting out their property on Grand Island to tourists looking for an affordable, nice place to stay. In 2012, they bought and refurbished a Victorian home and decided to publicly rent it, using sites like Airbnb to promote business and help boost the local economy. 

"Grand Island is an interesting community. People get up in the morning, they leave the island and they go to work, they don't necessarily shop here day in and day. When we bring visitors into Grand Island we encourage them to stay on the Island," she said.  

But, not everyone seems to agree, or as Fahning says, "get's it."

"The people that spend their money and come here, this is not riff raff, these are wonderful people, loving families that come here, they don't cause problems. I have a wonderful neighbor, he built his home knowing this was a vacation rental and he actually has more of a rapport with my tenants than I have," she expressed. 

Fahning said that she has and other vacation home owners have seen and read the proposed regulations in preparation for tonight's hearing and find them to be fair and reasonable

A final decision will be announced within the next few weeks following Tuesday night's vote.