RGA Bylaws - Town of Gibsons

On Tuesday, July 26, 2022, new bylaws regulating the operation of Residential Guest Accommodations (RGAs) were adopted by Council.

Bylaw 666 – Business License Bylaw

Bylaw 1125 – Bylaw Notice Enforcement

Bylaw 1065 – Zoning Bylaw

Enforcement of the new bylaws will begin on January 1, 2023.

In the meantime, property owners who would like to offer a dwelling unit as an RGA are asked to apply for a business licence and/or a Temporary Use Permit, depending on your circumstance.

Residential Guest Accommodation (Short-Term Rental) Regulations: History of Development

From October 11 to November 1, 2019, public input on the regulation of STRs was collected through the following methods:

  • online survey: accessed from the Town website – 70 surveys submitted
  • small group discussions: 2-hour meetings held October 22nd and 23rd.  A total of 23 participants provided insights and heard other participant’s perspectives in these meetings.
  • open house hosted October 22nd from 6:30pm to 8pm – 3 people attended
  • Residents and short-term rental operators were also invited to submit letters, emails and other forms of input that best suited them. Three followup emails/letters were submitted as of November 5th.

On December 3, 2019, a Staff Report and the Consultant’s report were presented to Council. Read the reports here.

Subsequently, Council passed the following resolution: R2019-385 – That staff refine and revise bylaws, to implement short-term rental accommodation regulations and licensing using hosted short-term rental regulations; And that un-hosted short-term rental accommodation regulations and licensing be deferred until after completion of the Sunshine Coast Housing Needs Assessment.

On May 5, 2020, staff presented three STR-related bylaws for consideration and were directed by Council to seek a legal review of the amendments prior to first and second readings. Key changes to the STR regulations included:

  • Merging B&BS with STRS;
  • Requiring a property owner or authorized operator to be on-site during a guest stay;
  • Enhanced business license requirements; and
  • Increased fines for certain violations.

Read the related Staff Report here.

On June 16, 2020, Council accepted staff recommendations that:

The report titled Short-Term Rental Bylaws for Consideration be received; and that Council gives the following bylaws First and Second Readings: 1. Zoning Amendment Bylaw No. 1065-47, 2020; and that Council gives the following bylaws First, Second, and Third Readings: 2. Business License Amendment Bylaw No. 666-10, 2020; 3. Notice of Enforcement Amendment Bylaw No. 1125-07, 2020; and further that an electronic Public Hearing be scheduled to begin at 5:30 pm on July 14, 2020, as authorized under Ministerial Order M139/2020 and in accordance with Section 465(3) of the Local Government Act.

Read the related Staff Report here.

On June 24, 2020, Council set a Virtual Public Hearing to accept comment from the public on the above noted bylaws for Tuesday, July 14, 2020 at 5:30pm.

Virtual Public Hearings were conducted on Tuesday, July 14th and July 21st.

At these meetings, Council heard from the public on three bylaw amendments related to short-term rentals, including  Bylaw No 1065-47, 2020, Business License Amendment Bylaw No 666-10, 2020 and Notice of Enforcement Amendment Bylaw No 1125-07, 2020.

Following the Virtual Public Hearing on July 21st, Council chose to defer making a decision on adoption of the bylaws until the Regular Council Meeting to be held on September 1, 2020.

On September 28, 2021, a Special Committee of the Whole was held in order to conduct a workshop with Council on Short Term Rentals. The objective of the workshop was to review and prioritize Council’s goals for regulating short-term rentals in order to provide direction on how to proceed with amending the Town’s related regulations.

Read the related 09-28-2021 Staff Report, which includes workshop materials, here.

View a video of the COW meeting/STR workshop here.

During the course of the workshop, Council determined that its goals in developing short-term rentals regulations (in order of priority) are:

Primary Goals

  1. Retaining long-term rental supply in Gibsons
  2. Keeping the scale of business appropriate to residential neighbourhoods

Secondary Goals

  1. Responding to the needs of homeowners who wish to have added revenue
  2. Providing tourist with accommodation options for staying in Gibsons

On October 5, 2021, Council resolved that “short term rentals be regulated based on Council’s four prioritized goals” as listed above.

On February 15, 2022, a Statement of Intent (SOI) for Gibsons’ short-term rental regulatory and enforcement program was received and approved by Council.

Read Staff Report 03-15-2 and Statement of Intent here.

Following approval of the SOI, draft bylaws were prepared, with the lead project consultant working closely with the Planning and Bylaw Enforcement team to test the bylaws. The bylaws underwent a legal review before being brought before Council for consideration of readings on June 14, 2022.

Read the related 06-07-2022 Staff Report, which includes the Gibsons Residential Guest Policy Summary and FAQ, here.

On June 14, 2022, three updated draft Bylaws for residential guest accommodations or “RGAs” (previously known as Short Term Rentals), were brought before Council and received first and second readings.

On June 28, 2022, a virtual Public Hearing was held via Zoom to consider the new bylaws. 19 speakers and 26 written submissions came forward. Public input was balanced, with both opposition and support for the proposed zoning amendment bylaw.

On Tuesday, July 12, 2022, new bylaws regulating the operation of Residential Guest Accommodations (RGAs) received third reading.

On Tuesday, July 26, 2022, new bylaws regulating the operation of Residential Guest Accommodations (RGAs) were adopted by Council.