Santa Barbara Vacation Rental Company Owner Speaks Out After City Issues Subpoena

By Alys Martinez, KEYT – KCOY – KKFX Reporter

The owner of a Santa Barbara vacation rental company is speaking out after the city served her with a subpoena.

Melissa Pierson is one of four vacation rental company owners ordered to hand over transaction records to the city as it begins a crackdown on short-term vacation rentals.

Pierson said her company, Coastal Hideaways has nothing to hide and has always followed the rules during her 20 years in business.

“The guests that come to Santa Barbara have to pay a TOT. We collect that tax every month and send that to the city,” Pierson said.

On top of the 12% tax, Pierson said her clients pay the city an additional two dollars per day.

“That goes towards marketing Santa Barbara and promoting tourists into the area which is what the city wants.”

By eliminating short term rentals, Pierson said the city is shooting itself in the foot.

“It’s millions of dollars that the city will lose if they don’t allow vacation rentals on a short term basis.”

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