Jim Holtz property on The Strand

Hermosa Beach multi-unit residence at 72 The Strand owned by Jim Holtz, who relies on short-term vacation rentals. City of Hermosa Beach has made the rentals (like AirBNBs) illegal. 

In a win for Hermosa Beach, a court said the city can continue enforcing its short-term rental ban.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge James Chalfant denied a request stop Hermosa Beach's enforcement of its controversial ban on properties listed on websites such as AirBnB and VRBO. There are currently two lawsuits over the ban.

Jim Holtz, who lives in San Pedro and relies on short term rentals to supplement his income, has sued the city for his right to rent. Despite the ban, rentals have persisted. As of this writing, 14 rooms are listed on AirBnB to rent for this weekend. The fine for the first violation is $2,500.

In a statement, Hermosa Beach Mayor Hany Fangary said the problem is that the short-term rental units are in areas where people live.

“These websites have made it easy and profitable for property owners, especially absentee owners like Mr. Holtz, to rent their properties to a successive parade of vacationers,” Fangary said. “We heard loud and clear from our residents that it frustrates the sense of community to have residential properties rented out as short-term vacation rentals, with different vacationers occupying the property every few days.”

The suit from Holtz says the city needs a permit from the Coastal Commission to adopt its ordinance. The trial for the suit is scheduled for March 2017, said Katie Casey, a representative for the city.

“Hermosa Beach is one of many cities working to curb the expansion of these hotel-like uses into residential neighborhoods,” City Attorney Michael Jenkins said. “We will enforce this ordinance.”

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