SILVER LAKE — Political movements have been spawned to champion civil rights, overturn governments and fight injustice. But in Silver Lake, the right to rent out your place on Airbnb has become a political cause of sorts, reports the Los Feliz Ledger. Two of the candidates in next month’s neighborhood council election, tech firm owner Matthew Desario and actress/bar owner Hope-Taylor Arnold, were “moved to engage local politics” after the current neighborhood council considered a motion last year that would have banned short-term rentals, according to the Ledger story. Desario and Arnold, who have used Airbnb to rent out their homes, are running as part of the “Yours, Not Ours” slate of candidates, whose platform includes support for the “Sharing Economy,” which in this case includes “responsible short-term rentals” as well as sharing tools and parenting cooperatives (there’s also a competing Empower Silver Lake slate).
Desario “brought with him a petition in favor of short-term rentals signed by more than 3,000 Los Angeles residents, including over 600 from the Silver Lake area” to one meeting, said the story. Desario and Taylor-Arnold were also the subject of complaints filed with the department of Building and Safety by an attorney who claimed their homes had been illegally converted into hotels. The complaint against Taylor-Arnold was dismissed but, according to the Ledger, Desario has had to spend $15,000 to remove all the utilities and amenities in his garage to make unusable as living space.