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Vacation rentals become a focus of Melbourne Beach mayoral race

2 min read
Vacation rentals become a focus of Melbourne Beach mayoral race

MELBOURNE BEACH, Fla. – In Brevard County’s oldest beach community, there’s a new issue for voters.

Anna Butler lives next to a vacation rental she’s never had an issue with, but said she has friends who complain about another house in their Melbourne Beach neighborhood.

“Huge issue there, parking, noise,” Butler said.

Stew Peters was staying with his family Friday at another vacation house that can host more than a dozen guests.

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“I could see how people would be concerned with not knowing who their neighbors are going to be on a day-to-day basis,” he said.

Running for mayor, Joyce Barton currently serves as vice mayor, a title she writes on her Airbnb listing, which her opponent retired attorney Alison Dennington argues is Barton using her office to make money.

Dennington couldn’t be interviewed Friday, but on her campaign website, she says she would like to create a hotline to report problematic short-term rentals.

Barton said she’d also like to set up a hotline neighbors can call to report their complaints.

“We definitely want to stay on top of it because we want to maintain this quaint charm that we have here in Melbourne Beach,” Barton said.

Last month, the county commission addressed complaints about short-term rentals. 

Then on Monday, VRBO host Teresa Angelico said teenagers damaged her Port St. John house when they invited more than 100 people during a large Halloween party.

“I just don’t think we need more traffic, more parking issues, more possible crime,” Butler said. “We’re pretty insulated here, to be honest, and I don’t mind that.”

In addition to this race, a complete list of everything on the ballot in other Brevard County cities and towns on Tuesday can be found here on ClickOrlando.com.

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