Northampton on path to require minor SUP for new short term rentals

October 11, 2023

The Northampton Board of Supervisors indicated they would be requiring a minor special use permit(SUP) for any new short term rentals at Tuesday night’s regular board meeting in Eastville in the near future.

Board Chairman John Coker made that comment while the Board discussed one of two resolutions it passed unanimously on the issue of short term rentals.

The first resolution officially sent the matter of how to regulate short term rentals within the County to the Planning Commission. It stated that the Board of Supervisors found “the public necessity convenience, general welfare, and good zoning practice require that certain amendments be made… and that such amendments are hereby initiated and referred to the Northampton County Planning Commission for its recommendations.” It was passed unanimously.

The second resolution was also passed unanimously. Brought about following a Virginia Senate bill sponsored by Senator Lynwood Lewis, which would have exempted a short term rental from local zoning requirements as long as it was managed by a licensed Virginia real estate brokerage, it read in part “legislation proposed in 2023, specifically HB 2271, and SB 1391 supported by the Virginia Real Estate lobby, would eliminate the locality’s ability to restrict or manage by ordinance any short term rental managed by a Virginia realtor who may not even live in Northampton County or even on the Eastern Shore… the Northampton County Board of Supervisors requests our local representatives in the General Assembly and the Senate and all of our citizens and taxpayers to oppose any legislation that would assign the rights of Northampton County’s elected officials to a private entity eliminating the ability of locally elected officials to manage and/or limit Short Term Rentals in our County.”

Mapp, Mapp and Klein Injury Attorneys

During the public comment period, Board Chairman John Coker clarified any existing short term rentals in Northampton County, excluding incorporated towns, would be grandfathered in, but new short term rentals would have to go through the minor special use permit process.

Both the Planning Commission and the Board of Supervisors will hold public hearings on the matter which will allow for public input to be obtained.

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