Full-page, spendy ads in the Signal and Daily Astorian speak volumes about the deep pockets and big money that’s funding Gearhart’s Measure 4-188, an initiative that’s working to tear down the integrity of our coastal community. Add to this the paid canvassers, phone surveys, full color glossy mailers. And who’s paying for this? Out of state, out of area big money is paying. They’re paying to sway this election and it’s not in your best interest, dear Gearhart friends and neighbors.
Measure 4-188, the Townsend initiative, would allow unlimited short-term rentals, with no restrictions. It would undermine the fabric of the local community — the permanent and seasonal homeowners and long-term renters. Our comprehensive plan defines Gearhart as a residential community, and aims to keep it that way; Measure 4-188 promotes the opposite — a destination resort for transient vacationers. The result? No more full-time community to give Gearhart its small-town character. No more Gearhart.
That would be the most obvious effect of 4-188 on the community. Beyond that, the potential physical damages to the town’s infrastructure multiply. Short-term rental owners who have complied with the City’s existing rules -— the rules 4-188 would do away with, like inspection of septic systems — are updating systems that often have needed repairs for years. That has been good for the City, and helps prevent the need for a municipal sewer with a potential cost of $100,000 cost per household. Rampant short-term rentals with no restrictions and almost unlimited numbers of paying guests per household would have far-reaching implications for the town as a whole — for those of us, that is, who decided to remain in Gearhart, amid a sea of virtual motels and all the nuisances that would go with them.
Don’t let that nightmare come true. Vote NO on 4-188!