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Neighbors are the priority

You do not have to be an English major to know the difference between a residence and a business called a "short-term rental." A dictionary will do, but not if you are the Groton Town Attorney. According to his reasoning, no change in zoning regulations is needed, because that might mean his interpretation of “residence” and “hotel” and the advice he has given town staff is not only faulty, but ludicrous. He tortured the definition of the word “dwelling” to the delight of the audience until that word fled the room in exasperation.

At the meeting of the P&Z on Wednesday evening with the consultant, Horsley/Witten, which has been hired by the town to sort out topical problems like data centers, cannabis, and short term-rentals, Mr. Cody tried to pass around that STR Kool-Aid, but nobody was drinking. The consensus of the cmmissioners at this early stage seemed to be that STR’s are for-rofit businesses and need to be regulated, perhaps as only owner-ccupied, which means your neighbor is still a permanent feature of the landscape. Further discourse with the Town Council as well as with the P&Z will follow, until a suitable resolution is finally proposed. Hopefully, a final ordinance and regulation will recognize neighbors are priority.

Bruce McDermott



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