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Honolulu officials send more violation notices for vacation rentals, but issue no fines

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The number of notices of violations issued by the city to operators for allegedly advertising unpermitted short-term rentals has risen to 37 with more anticipated in the coming weeks, but no fines have been levied.

The latest notices are part of a ramp-up in city enforcement on suspected violators of short-term rental laws since Ordinance 19-18 (Bill 89) took effect on Aug. 1.

The new law made it illegal to advertise properties for short-term rentals of less than 30 days unless the property owner had previously obtained a nonconforming-use certificate. It also requires properties that have a nonconforming-use certificate to include NUC registration numbers in their advertisements.

The city Department of Planning and Permitting said in a news release that seven of the notices have been corrected, “meaning the operator has either removed the ad, or changed it to comply with the ordinance.”

DPP officials said they are preparing to send at least one operator a notice of order, which carries fines.

According to the new law, short-term rental operators have seven days to resolve a suspected violation. If the city deems the notice of violation as uncorrected, owners are subject to an initial fine of $1,000 and daily fines of $1,000 to $10,000 if the advertisement isn’t removed.

The city said the new ordinance and enforcement efforts “appear to be having an impact on the number of advertisements on hosting platforms.”

Since Aug. 1, the city said short-term rental advertisements across several platforms from dropped from about 5,000 to near 3,400 last week.

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