Planning commission opposes VHR ban north of Cave Rock

Asking why Douglas County was changing its vacation home rental ordinance even as petitioners are gathering signatures to change it, planning commissioners voted 7-0 to recommend denial of a rental ban north of Cave Rock.

According to the county, there are 13 rentals in the area, and there have been no documented complaints to either code enforcement or the Sheriff’s Office from any of them.

“We have to be mindful there is a pending … initiative to eliminate most, if not all VHRs,” Planning Commissioner Paul Bruno said. “My suggestion to my colleagues is that it may be improvident in terms of thinking through the steps that will be coming in the weeks and months ahead. We should leave the ordinance alone for a while and let the initiative work its course.”

Petition organizer Jeanine Shizuru agreed, noting the irony that she, Planning Commissioner Kirk Walder and former VHR task force member Dan Aynesworth found themselves on the same side of the issue.

She said the ordinance change was a public relations disaster for the county.

On Tuesday, planning commissioners referred to the change as spot zoning and expressed fears the county was heading into troubled legal waters.

Planning Commissioner Dave Nelson, whose married to Shizuru, said he couldn’t vote for something he felt was “arbitrary and capricious.”

Planning Commission Chairwoman Maureen Casey said she felt approving the ordinance would result in a court case.

“Like my compatriots, I cannot support this ordinance,” she said. “It makes no sense. We have a duty to not enable the board of commissioners to land the county in court. They have a duty to the people who elected them to stay out of court as much as possible.”

On Thursday, Douglas County commissioners are scheduled to conduct a public hearing on the second reading of the ordinance and forces are gathering to reject it.

Glenbrook resident and property manager Kevin Kjer called the ordinance a solution in search of a problem.

“No evidence has been provided that it requires special protection,” he said.

Southern Wine & Spirits of Nevada and Glenbrook homeowner Larry Ruvo’s attorney provided public comment in favor of the change, claiming there were several violations reported in the neighborhood.

Walder said he contacted Ruvo’s attorney and learned that the violations were reported to the homeowners association and predated the enactment of the new code.

Letters from Ruvo’s law firm, Luis Roca Rothgerber Christie are posted to the planning commission’s web site.

They indicate an ongoing dispute between Ruvo and the Glenbrook Homeowners Association over guests using the beach and dock and parking golf carts on his property.


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