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October Tourism Authority Report: Maui County Vacation Rentals at 21% and Hotels at 14.2% Occupancy | Maui Now

 

Maui vacation rental

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The Hawaiʻi Tourism Authority (HTA) released its Hawaiʻi Vacation Rental Performance Report for October. It shows Maui County had the largest vacation rental supply of all four counties with 138,500 available unit nights, which was a decrease of 53.5 percent compared to a year ago.

Unit demand was 29,051 unit nights (-87.6%), resulting in 21 percent occupancy (-57.6 percentage points) with an average daily rate (ADR) of $227 (-36.2%). Maui County hotels were 14.2 percent occupied with an ADR of $226.

For the entire state, the total monthly supply of statewide vacation rentals was 373,600 unit nights (-57.0%) and monthly demand was 85,000 unit nights (-86.4%), resulting in an average monthly unit occupancy of 22.7 percent (-49.1 percentage points). Hawaiʻi’s hotels had an average occupancy rate of 19.7 percent.

It is important to note that unlike hotels, condominium hotels, timeshare resorts and vacation rental units are not necessarily available year-round or each day of the month and often accommodate a larger number of guests than traditional hotel rooms. The unit average daily rate (ADR) for vacation rental units statewide in October was $208, which was higher than the ADR for hotels ($174), according to the report.

The state’s pre-travel testing program started on Oct. 15, allowing passengers arriving from out-of-state and traveling inter-county to bypass the mandatory 14-day self-quarantine with a valid negative COVID-19 test result from a trusted partner. All other transpacific travelers continued to be subject to the 14-day self-quarantine. The counties of Kauaʻi, Hawaiʻi, Maui and Kalawao (Molokai) also had a partial quarantine in place in October.

For Maui County, travelers awaiting their pre-travel test results were allowed to stay at a vacation rental as their place of quarantine. On Hawaiʻi Island and Kauaʻi, legal short-term rentals were allowed to operate as long as they were not being used as a quarantine location.

On Oahu, short-term rentals (rented for less than 30 days) were not allowed to operate at the beginning of October. However, when Oahu moved to Tier 2 of its Reopening Plan on Oct. 22, legal short-term rentals were allowed to reopen.

Other Island Highlights:

Oahu vacation rental supply was 96,500 available unit nights (-59.4%) in October. Unit demand was 26,300 unit nights (-84.6%), resulting in 27.2 percent occupancy (-44.3 percentage points) and an ADR of $173 (-32.7%). Oahu hotels were 22 percent occupied with an ADR of $158.

The Big Island vacation rental supply was 80,000 available unit nights (-61.7%) in October. Unit demand was 17,416 unit nights (-86.7%), resulting in 21.8 percent occupancy (-40.8 percentage points) with an ADR of $192 (-26.3%). Big Island hotels were 19.8 percent occupied with an ADR of $140.

Kauaʻi had the fewest number of available unit nights in October at 58,500 (-52.5%). Unit demand was 12,300 unit nights (-86.1%), resulting in 21.0 percent occupancy (-50.6 percentage points) with an ADR of $261 (-34.2%). Kauaʻi hotels were 21.3 percent occupied with an ADR of $212.

The entire report is available by clicking here.

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Los Angeles County dining; Nevada ‘pause’; 256K US deaths

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Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla said the company also plans to submit it’s COVID-19 vaccine to other regulatory authorities around the world.

USA TODAY

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has urged Americans against traveling for the Thanksgiving holiday.

Based on the latest data from the Transportation Security Administration, many aren’t listening: TSA screened more than 1 million travelers on Friday for just the second time since March, followed by nearly a million more on Saturday.

The strict holiday messaging isn’t new. Health officials during the second wave of the H1N1 influenza epidemic in 1918 issued a similar warning: “See that Thanksgiving celebrations are restricted as much as possible so as to prevent another flare-up.”

Meanwhile, some people have taken to the streets, again, to protest restrictions. In Southern California, hundreds gathered in Huntington Beach on Saturday to protest the state’s overnight curfew. In Oregon, people caravaned to the state Capitol in Salem after Gov. Kate Brown ordered a two-week “freeze” earlier this month.

📈 Today’s numbers: The U.S. has reported more than 12.2 million cases and more than 256,700 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University data. The global totals: 58.5 million cases and 1.3 million deaths. 

🗺️ Mapping coronavirus: Track the U.S. outbreak in your state.

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Wisconsin Rep. Bryan Steil tests positive for COVID-19

Wisconsin Rep. Bryan Steil has tested positive for COVID-19, the Republican congressman announced Sunday.

“After working in Washington, D.C., all of last week, I began experiencing mild symptoms this weekend and contacted my health care provider while at home in Janesville. I took a COVID-19 test today and the test results came back positive,” Steil said in a Twitter post.

Steil said he is quarantining and will work from his home. He was first elected in 2018 and held his seat in this month’s election.

Hundreds of bodies from NYC’s spring surge still in freezer trucks

Hundreds of bodies are still stored in freezer trucks at a disaster morgue set up during New York City’s coronavirus surge in the spring, according to the city’s Office of Chief Medical Examiner.

Many of the 650 bodies at the disaster morgue on the Brooklyn waterfront are of people whose families can’t be located or can’t afford a proper burial, officials told The Wall Street Journal.

Normally, the deceased would have been buried within a few weeks in a gravesite for the indigent on Hart Island in the Long Island Sound. But as COVID-19 deaths surged in New York in April, with as many as 800 deaths in one day, Mayor Bill de Blasio pledged that mass burials in temporary graves wouldn’t take place.

The city is slowly reducing the number of bodies in storage, with the number declining from 698 to 650 since mid-September, according to Dina Maniotis, the chief medical examiner’s office’s executive deputy commissioner.

Nevada Gov. Steve

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Hennepin County allots $5 million for indoor recreation facilities including gyms, entertainment venues

Hennepin County officials allotted $5 million Friday for locally-owned gyms, fitness facilities, and other indoor recreation and entertainment venues with up to 50 employees that will be affected by COVID-19 restrictions.

Businesses eligible for $15,000 grants include climbing facilities, trampoline parks, theaters, cinemas, concert halls, museums, stadiums, arcades, bowling alleys and martial arts, dance and exercise studios. The application deadline is noon on Dec. 2.

Gov. Tim Walz this week ordered bars, restaurants, gyms and entertainment venues to close Saturday through Dec. 18. The County Board on Wednesday approved $8 million for bars and restaurants.

To be eligible for relief funding, a business must be a fixed, permanent commercial establishment in good standing with the Minnesota Secretary of State and current on property tax payments. If a business has multiple locations, it can receive up to three additional grants.

County officials learned this week from the state’s Department of Economic Development that restaurant employment in Hennepin County, before this week’s restrictions, was down 48.7% compared to this time last year. That reflects a loss of 25,912 jobs in the county.

DAVID CHANEN

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Proposed Boulder County regulation threatens region’s generations-long vacation rental tradition

BOULDER, Colo., Nov. 20, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — A group of homeowners in unincorporated Boulder are raising concerns about proposed changes to Article 4 of the Boulder County Land Use Code and a proposed licensing ordinance to regulate short-term dwelling rentals and bed-and-breakfast uses, arguing the changes are unnecessary and threaten to destroy a decades-long tradition of tourism in the area. 

Specifically, homeowners are concerned that the recitals to the proposed ordinance suggest that the County has decided that short-term rentals are harmful to the community and that the new regulations are too complicated, too harsh and could have a crippling effect on the area’s long-standing tradition of vacation rentals. Further, the loss of economic tourism spending could negatively impact the entire county — something a pandemic-weary economy can ill afford. 

The proposed ordinance states that the County has determined that “short-term rental of residential property creates adverse impacts to the health, safety and welfare” of the community and depletes residential housing opportunities, and the rules do much to shut down rental of many properties in unincorporated Boulder County — some of which have been popular rental destinations for decades. For example, the rules impose a bevy of fees, preconditions and time-consuming and expensive licensure requirements that many historic rental properties, whether because of lot size or age, cannot meet.  In addition, the proposed rules ban all wedding activity by rental guests occurring on residential property, impose an eight-person maximum occupancy regardless of the size of the property and put onerous requirements on properties being rented more than 60 days per year. 

“As we all struggle through the pandemic, vacation and short-term rental usage is up in our county’s remote areas because individuals and families can come hike, bike or sightsee and feel comfortable doing outdoor activities while maintaining a safe distance from others,” said Rosemary Donahue, longtime Allenspark resident and rental property owner. “Plus, visitors do more than rent a place to stay — they dine out, visit local attractions, purchase items to take home and more, extending the negative economic impact to cities like Boulder and Longmont. These changes are not addressing actual community needs or issues.”

Other aspects of proposed rules include:

  • The Special Review public hearing process to become eligible to request a license, coupled with all the various inspections and permits, could take up to a year, meaning some homeowners that rely on rental income could be denied an entire season of rental income in order to comply with the new requirements. 
  • The rules impose fines of up to $1,000 per violation per day for perceived offenses, which could include a simple noise complaint, incorrect guest instructions or hosting a small family wedding ceremony. 
  • Only one license is permitted per individual and affiliates (e.g., family or small business), which means those owning more than one rental property could not qualify for more than one license. This would even cover single properties with two dwellings — for example, a house and a cabin — as a
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Catoosa County Sheriff’s Office Offers Vacation Watch

CATOOSA COUNTY, Ga. (WDEF)- If you’re looking for an extra line of security when you’re away from home, The Catoosa County Sheriff’s Office is providing a ‘Vacation Watch’ service.

Whether it’s just a day or six months, deputies have you covered.

“We come out to your house several times -at different times throughout the day and night- check on your house and make sure that everything is the way you left it” says Captain Jeremy Keener.

Captain Keener says let the Sheriff’s Office know if you will have visitors stopping by to take care of needs around the house.

“If you tell us what cars are going to be there, cars that are going to be parked in the drive way, any contact information or people we can call if something were to be wrong” says Captain Keener.

Becky Martin, a Catoosa County resident, tells News 12 that the vacation watch service makes her feel more secure when she’s away from home.

“I did spend Christmas out last year and did not have that available to us. So we might have extended our vacation knowing that was available.”

Captain Keener offers this additional safety tip:

“Lights being left on inside the residence is not a bad thing. Anything you can do to make it look like somebody is there everyday.”

The ‘Vacation Watch’, isn’t just for the Holiday Season. It’s all year ’round. That’s another thing folks in Catoosa County can be thankful for.

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County board calls for tougher vacation rental rules

SALINAS — Monterey County supervisors will back a stricter approach to regulating the local vacation rental industry.

On Tuesday, in response to a request from the county Planning Commission for policy direction, the Board of Supervisors laid out its vision for how the largely unregulated vacation rental industry should be managed.

According to staff, the most recent check on the industry showed more than 600 advertised vacation rentals despite the county issuing only 20 permits.

Generally, the county board called for establishing a limit on the number of vacation rentals allowed under the proposed rules to control the impact on area affordable housing availability. All vacation rentals would be treated as commercial ventures requiring discretionary use permits and review rather than considering them as similar to existing residential uses.

Vacation rentals in the unincorporated areas of the county would also be subject to specific visitor-serving unit limits in areas such as Carmel Valley and Big Sur, according to the county board’s direction. The details of how they would count have yet to be worked out.

The county board’s approach to vacation rental rules diverged markedly from the Planning Commission’s approach. The Commission envisioned unlimited numbers of vacation rentals only constrained by the county’s regulatory structure. It would have distinguished between “limited” vacation rentals with a principal resident on-site and subject to a ministerial permit and “commercial” vacation rentals subject to a discretionary use permit.

The commission also left open the question of whether and how vacation rentals would count against visitor-serving caps.

While the supervisors’ approach would eliminate the distinction between limited and commercial vacation rentals, the board expressed support for allowing three so-called “freebies” per year subject to lesser scrutiny, albeit with some regulation and notice to neighbors.

Supervisor Mary Adams, whose district includes the bulk of the local vacation rentals, argued all of them should be treated as commercial ventures requiring use permits because the proposed draft rules were not adequate to protect the area’s neighborhoods and affordable housing. She still believes there is a “sweet spot” that would allow vacation rentals to operate while not alienating the community.

And board chairman Chris Lopez said the goal should be to address both the needs of both the industry and the community.

“I think we agree that (vacation rentals) have a place in our community,” Lopez said. “But we need to strike a balance.”

The board also supported a robust vacation rental enforcement program modeled after the county’s cannabis enforcement approach, tapping transient occupancy tax revenue to hire a third-party contractor to monitor local industry compliance.

“Philosophically, I’m in favor of (vacation rentals) but we’ve got to consider the impact on neighborhoods,” Supervisor John Phillips said, warning the previously proposed rules were “complicated and difficult to enforce” while calling for a simplified approach. “I’m not sure I’d want a (vacation rental) on our road.”

Supervisor Luis Alejo noted Santa Cruz County had experienced the same issues with vacation rentals in past years before adopting regulations and using TOT revenue

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California hits 1 million coronavirus cases as L.A. County urges travel quarantine

Coronavirus infections in California are racing upward at a level not seen since the summer, with the state surpassing 1 million cases on Thursday, and health officials are warning dire action must be taken to stop the spread of the illness.



a group of people standing in front of a crowd: Commuters wear face coverings at Los Angeles' Union Station on Tuesday. (Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times)


© Provided by The LA Times
Commuters wear face coverings at Los Angeles’ Union Station on Tuesday. (Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times)

If the surge continues in Los Angeles County, “additional actions” could become necessary to bring the rate of transmission back under control, Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer said.

Though she didn’t elaborate on what potential new measures could be implemented, Ferrer emphasized that L.A. County remains on a knife’s edge and that everyone needs to do their part to keep conditions from worsening. The warning comes as California joins Texas in becoming the only two states to have officially surpassed 1 million infections.

“We all need to act now,” she said during a briefing. “The actions we take today, tomorrow and next week have tremendous impact on the health and well-being of many, many people across the county. If, collectively, we fail to stop the acceleration of new cases, we will have no choice but to look at additional actions.”

Thanksgiving is shaping up to be a particularly painful choice. The county is recommending that residents don’t travel out of state for the holiday and, if they do, that they quarantine for 14 days upon their return.

“If you are going to travel — which we are recommending you not do, we are actually recommending this Thanksgiving be a stay-at-home Thanksgiving — but if you are going to travel, we do ask when you come back that you quarantine for 14 days,” Ferrer said. “And the tighter you can restrict your activities over those 14 days, the better off we all are.”

Though the idea of not seeing family and friends after such a difficult year may strike some as untenable or unreasonable, health officials have repeatedly warned that gathering with those outside your household heightens the risk of transmitting the disease.

Ferrer acknowledged it was a sacrifice, saying she won’t get to see her grandchildren this year because they live in another state.

“Like all of you, I wish things were really different. But they’re not,” she said. “And my feeling is I don’t want to be one of the people that’s contributing to not only increasing cases that restrict our ability to continue with our recovery journey, but increasing cases that could result in other people getting sick and even dying.”

California has generally banned large gatherings, and says smaller ones of no more than three households may be held outdoors with limitations, including time limits and requirements that attendees physically distance and wear face coverings.

L.A. County, like California as a whole, is seeing a renewed spike in coronavirus infections that currently shows no signs of dissipating. As of Nov. 3, the average number of daily cases in the county was 1,464

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Sonoma County Buys Hotel To House Homeless Vulnerable To COVID

SONOMA COUNTY, CA — The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors approved the purchase Tuesday of a hotel in downtown Santa Rosa for $7.95-million. The hotel will house homeless people who are most vulnerable to developing COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.

Funds for the purchase of Hotel Azura, 635 Healdsburg Ave., were supplied by the state of California through its Project Homekey program, county officials said Tuesday in a news release.

Once escrow closes next week, the county will convert Hotel Azura into interim housing using Project Homekey funds secured by the county earlier this year.

Hotel Azura has 44 recently remodeled rooms in the center of Santa Rosa, with capacity to house 66 people.

“Adding Hotel Azura into our housing portfolio will give us the opportunity to bring more of our COVID-19 vulnerable individuals who are experiencing homelessness into supportive housing, with a path to permanent housing,” said Susan Gorin, chair of the Board of Supervisors Susan Gorin. ”I applaud the state for helping counties pursue housing that truly meets people’s needs, with supportive services and access to grocery stores, medical services and transportation.”

The county will give priority for the housing resource to people experiencing homelessness who are most vulnerable to COVID-19.

Those housed at the hotel will participate in the county’s ACCESS — Accessing Coordinated Care to Empower Self Sufficiency— Initiative, which county officials described as an innovative program that provides individualized, integrated services to individuals experiencing homelessness based on their needs and supports.

The county and community programs provide wraparound and holistic care and interventions, which are critical to improving well-being and self-sufficiency, county officials said. Services include primary health care, behavioral health services and supports, economic assistance, food assistance, employment training and other services. These resources and services are key determinants of successful housing placement and the permanency of these placements, the county said.

Also on Tuesday, supervisors also approved the purchase of the Sebastopol Inn, pending funding from the state. Because of the large number of applications the state has received for Project Homekey, the Sebastopol Inn application is on a waitlist for funding.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Project Homekey in June, and in July made $600 million in funding available. Of that, $550 million has been provided to cities and counties by California’s direct allocation of the federal Coronavirus Aid Relief Funds, with an additional $50 million provided by the state to supplement the acquisition and provide initial operating funds.

This article originally appeared on the Petaluma Patch

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Fulton County principal, wife drown during Puerto Rico vacation

Westlake High School Principal Jamar Robinson (Fulton County Schools)

The city of South Fulton is mourning after some heartbreaking news about the principal of Westlake High School.

Principal Jamar Robinson and his wife, Marie, died while on vacation in Puerto Rico after reportedly drowning near their hotel.

A native Atlantan, Robinson worked in multiple capacities at different schools in the area before becoming principal at Westlake. He was beloved by his school community.

“His vision was to inspire and motivate—this is something we can all look to do for each other to honor his legacy,” Westlake High School Coach Bobby May wrote on Twitter. “Lift up the people around you, celebrate success, and encourage others to stand up when they have fallen.”

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Back in April, he honored the entire senior class of Westlake with billboards.

It was his way to make things special for students who missed out on the typical graduation because of the pandemic.

Officials for asking for prayers for the students and community of the high school this morning.

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Orange County comptroller sees signs of hope after September hotel stays bring in $7 million

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – Orange County’s comptroller, Phil Diamond, said the tourist development tax dollars from hotel and resort stays around the county continue to go up after the initial plunge this spring due to coronavirus closures.

Diamond announced Monday the September numbers further the trend of increasing collections every month since April.

He said the county brought in TDT collections totaling more than $7 million for the month of September.

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Diamond said that’s a 60% decrease from the same time last year but he added, in looking at the numbers, there are signs of hope.

When you compare September, which is just over $7 million, to the more than $5.7 million in TDT dollars in August of 2020, that’s an increase of over 22%.

Diamond also said travel has slowly been increasing since the month of April, which he attributed to the fact that there hasn’t been widespread outbreaks of COVID-19 at the theme parks.

Diamond said September is the final collection month for the fiscal year, and in comparing the numbers from 2020 to last year, he said they’ve seen a 41% decrease in collections.

Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings said while the promising COVID-19 vaccine news reported by Pfizer was encouraging, he said they may not see a significant improvement in the TDT numbers until late first quarter or second quarter of 2021.

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