Last week, Boston City Councilor Ed Flynn voted in favor of Mayor Walsh’s ordinance to regulate short-term rentals platforms, like Airbnb, and to ban Investor Units – entire buildings or units that are not owner-occupied and strictly used for Airbnb and short-term rentals. The ordinance would also allow for homeowners and owner-occupants of two and three family houses to participate in short-term rental activity. The Boston City Council voted 11-2 in favor of the ordinance, which Mayor Walsh subsequently signed last week.
During the Council Hearing, Flynn emphasized the need to ban Investor Units due to their impact on housing stock and rental prices, as well as quality of life issues that have arisen on account of absentee landlords such as trash removal, parking and noise complaints. Flynn called attention to a plaque dedicated outside City Hall in 1991 by Mayor Flynn titled “An Immigrant’s Gateway” and how the city must do all it can to ensure Boston remains a landing spot for working-class immigrants, as well as a home to long-time residents.
Flynn said,” I am proud of Mayor Walsh’s leadership and his commitment to social and economic justice for all. In the midst of our current affordable housing crisis and concerns regarding our housing-stock, it has been my position since last fall that we should phase out investor units. I support this ordinance and the regulation of short-term rentals so that we may ensure areas like Chinatown remain a neighborhood for working-class immigrants. I want to ensure that immigrant workers and long-time residents will not be pushed out of Boston. I want us to defend our communities from commercialization, investor speculation and to protect the fabric of our neighborhoods.”
For more information or constituent service issues, please contact Councilor Flynn’s office at 617-635-3203 or Ed.Flynn@Boston.Gov.