3 Airbnb rentals rack up $1 million in fines from city

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ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) – A North Carolina man has racked up more than $1 million in city fines for renting properties on short-term rental sites such as Airbnb.
    
The Asheville Citizen-Times reported Saturday that Reid Thompson is in a protracted zoning battle with the city of Asheville, a hip tourist spot in the Blue Ridge Mountains.
    
The neighborhood’s residential zoning forbids him from renting his three units on a short-term basis, but he’s doing it anyway. He’s been racking up $1,500 a day in fines for the last two years.
    
Airbnb is banned in much of Asheville in an effort to preserve affordable housing. But Thompson said traffic from a nearby Whole Foods grocery store makes his properties unattractive to long-term renters.
    
He wants the city to change the zoning laws in his neighborhood.

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