Pacific Grove charts new territory after short-term rental restrictions win at ballot box

For 24 of the past 26 years, Eric Emanuel and his family enjoyed quiet living on Monterey Avenue, a Pacific Grove street lined with quaint homes built in the 1920s. Then two years ago, the duplex two doors down from him was sold and the new owners obtained two short-term rental licenses from the city, one for up to seven occupants and another for up to five. The quiet was shattered by the comings and goings of vacationers.

As heat surrounding the short-term rental controversy rose in 2017, Monterey Avenue residents spoke out at City Council meetings and sent emails asking for stricter limits on short-term rentals. When the controversy boiled over into Measure M – a Nov. 6 ballot measure to limit short-term rentals in P.G. – Emanuel got busy walking precincts.

Despite warnings from outgoing Mayor Bill Kampe and other Measure M opponents that the city would face dire financial consequences from losing more than $1.4 million a year in tax revenue, the measure passed handily, with nearly 58 percent of the vote.

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