Organizers say a meeting tonight about the growing problem of commercial short-term rentals in Oro-Medonte Township is a call to action.
They say people living in residential areas need to tell the township that licensing such properties will destroy neighbourhoods forever.
Oro-Medonte council has extended an interim control bylaw banning short-term rentals until June 2020 while the municipality reviews the issue and considers licensing these operations.
Opponents say homeowners living next to short-term rentals have needlessly suffered from noise, foul language, trespassing and all-night parties. They say these short-term rentals are properties being used illegally as hotels and resort destinations, and most are near or on the waterfront.
They say there fight is not with homeowners who have traditionally rented out all or part of their home or cottage to family and friends, or traditional bed and breakfasts that are legitimate businesses and are appropriately zoned, or even homeowners who rent or lease their home on a long-term basis.
What they are fighting, they say, is corporate and individual business operators who have purchased homes and have turned them into hotel-like operations to rent to large groups on a daily basis, with no on-site supervision of their transient customers.
Tonight’s meeting is at Lakehead University in Orillia from 7 to 9 p.m.