Friday, June 15, 2018

Which side are you on?

If the City Council really is going to "war" with Airbnb, as the title of this Clancy DuBos column suggests, a lot will depend on which side the mayor decides to enlist in. At the moment, she's still claiming neutral status.
Through a spokesman, Cantrell told Gambit she supports the study, which began while she was on the council, and she plans to let the council do the legislating. The spokesman added that Cantrell “wants to find the appropriate balance that will serve the residents who rely on the potential income with the needs of their neighbors and neighborhoods.”

Exactly what that “appropriate balance” is could determine whether some New Orleans neighborhoods retain their historic local character — or become overrun with tourists
At this late stage, it's confounding to think that the mayor hasn't made up her mind about this. We're reaching a point where talking about "balance" really just means looking for any excuse to show deference to the real estate vampires while pretending  "show the love" to residents.  But we'll find out soon enough.

In the meantime, keep an eye on your councilpersons for signs of defections.  Even Kristin Palmer who is frequently held up by the anti-STR side as a staunch advocate talks out of both sides of her mouth sometimes.  Here she is in a recent WWL story sneaking in a few lines about "balance" and "blight reduction" as well.

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