The Bar Harbor Town Council has a workshop scheduled for next week to discuss housing. One major policy question, and the most controversial, is off the table for that meeting: whether or how to further regulate or limit vacation rentals.
A moratorium on new, non-hosted vacation rentals was one of six ideas floated by councilor Gary Friedmann in a letter asking to keep housing on the council’s agenda. His proposal also included zoning changes to allow rooming houses and dormitories, and allowing higher density in areas served by town water and sewer. He suggested working with The Jackson Laboratory to plan an employee housing project that “contributes to the tax base” and partnerships with organizations such as Island Housing Trust and the National Park Service.