Santa Monica Steps Into Airbnb Firestorm

The City of Santa Monica, which over the last few years has earned itself the reputation as a technology startup friendly city--has just stepped into a major Internet firestorm, after the City Council cracked down on vacation rentals through Airbnb and other sites, banning renting out residences for less than 30 days, and forccing homeowners who rent out extra rooms--or even their couch--to get business licenses, and pay a 14% tax. The city council approved the move on Tuesday night. The move is an interesting one, given the large number of Airbnb-inspired, peer to peer marketplace startups which either have operations or are headquartered in Santa Monica.