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May 30, 2013

Village still working on tourist accommodation law changes

New public hearing at least a month away

(Continued)

“I understand there are properties in this town that are horrible,” he said. “I say go after those properties.”

Paul Kuhn, who lives at 51 Chestnut St., expressed support for the proposed changes, saying that his family has dealt with problem renters for years, telling the story of a problem with a nearby property that is not owner-occupied.

“That began 15 years of residential hurt based on non-conforming properties,” he said. “We have been through hell.”

Fly Creek attorney Les Sittler, who wrote the Soule agreement around 2001 and the subsequent Ostapeck agreement not long afterward, also spoke at the April hearing. Sittler, who was there representing a number of clients, said last week that he is happy that the board has listened to the objections of his clients and other property owners.

“I am very gratified that the board said, ‘hey, we need to look at this some more,’” Sittler said. “It was a very mature decision on their part.

“I would say that the devil is in the details, and I would have to see the final proposal, but I understand that they have taken our concerns seriously,” he said.

Sittler said that the issues raised during the original agreements are very similar to the current concerns of his clients.

“You can’t just take away people’s property rights,” he said. “I would say they have to think this through very carefully.”

“I think former mayor Wendell Tripp said it best when he said, ‘there are no bad people in this.’ I thought that was great,” Sittler continued. “These are all neighbors. Having seen a lot of this stuff over the years, I would hope they can find a middle ground.”

No public hearing was called on the issue for the board’s June meeting, meaning the earliest the proposal can come up for a vote would be July. Tillapaugh, meanwhile, said that work on the revised proposals is still underway.

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