Short-term vacation rental bill barely passes House

'This bill does not do enough.'

With just two days left to go before the 2024 Legislative Session ends, the state House approved a short-term vacation rental measure to adopt new regulations on rental platforms like Airbnb and Vrbo. But the Senate has to approve the legislation as well.

The House narrowly approved the measure (SB 280), with a vote of 60-51. The vote took place a day after the bill sponsor, Bay County Rep. Griff Griffitts, introduced a 44-page amendment with new provisions to make it more palatable to members who have expressed concerns about the legislation.

Among the latest changes: A new “grandfather” clause that allows local governments to keep their own local vacation rental ordinances that were introduced before 2016 — specifically carving out Broward and Flagler counties.

In addition, the bill would remove the listing of physical addresses in a statewide registry of vacation rentals.

The bill does maintain funding for the Department of Business Professionals and Regulations (DBPR) to hire nine more officers to oversee vacation rentals across the entire state, a provision that Brevard County Republican Rep. Randy Fine mocked on the floor on Wednesday.

“There will be nine people — not in your homes. Not in your neighborhoods, not in your counties. Not in your cities — there’ll be nine people here (in Tallahassee). I know the person who sits in my City Hall cares about problems with vacation rentals. I don’t trust that somebody up here will,” he said.

A problem that critics have with both versions of the bill is when it comes to sanctioning vacation rental owners who violate local ordinances. Five or more violations on five separate days during a 60-day period would generate a suspension.

“This bill does not do enough,” said Palm Beach County Republican Rep. Rick Roth, referring to how the violation process is listed in the bill. “If you are in a coastal county, you need to be careful about how you vote on this bill. This bill needs to be improved. We can do better than this.”

“I’ve got significant concerns that this bill doesn’t reign in the party houses,” said Palm Beach County Republican Rep. Mike Caruso, who was speaking on the “pro” side as the House debated the measure.

“I’ve got concerns that local governments still lack flexibility that they need to significantly minimize public safety risk that are inherent in vacation rentals, and I’ve got significant concerns with the lack of protections against sex offenders.”


Mitch Perry reporting. Florida Phoenix is part of States Newsroom, a nonprofit news network supported by grants and a coalition of donors as a 501c(3) public charity. Florida Phoenix maintains editorial independence. Contact Editor Diane Rado for questions: [email protected]. Follow Florida Phoenix on Facebook and Twitter.

Florida Phoenix

Florida Phoenix is a news and opinion outlet focused on government and political news coverage within the state of Florida.


  • Missed The Whole Point

    March 7, 2024 at 5:26 am

    Ft Lauderdump and Dayton Bleach are carved-out to completely miss the point; now only the Panhandle dump-spring-break spots get a little help.

  • Sure. AirBnB is the real problem 🤷🏻‍♂️🤦🏻‍♂️

    March 7, 2024 at 6:00 am

    Police officers don’t exactly have the best reputation these days, and one Florida cop’s actions haven’t done much to improve that reputation. As Local 10 reports, on Tuesday, Detective Victor Manuel Montalvo was driving an unmarked Miami-Dade Police Department car when he crashed into another marked police cruiser. He then reportedly pulled his gun out, forcing the officer whose car he just hit to draw his gun as well, before Montalvo eventually dropped it.

    • Tom

      March 7, 2024 at 6:43 am

      Sounds like the Keystone cops – literally.

Comments are closed.


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