Bill punishing party houses signed by Gov. Ducey

PHOENIX (FOX 10) -- Arizona Governor Doug Ducey signing a new bill that punishes "party house" operators, putting limits on short-term rental homes listed on Airbnb, Vrbo, and other apps.

Governor Ducey signed the bill into law this week, which also allows cities to punish homeowners who let their short-term renters throw large parties that disrupt the neighborhood.

Arizona lawmakers are cracking down on "party houses", homes that are rented out through Airbnb, Vrbo, and other short-term rental apps. Some neighbors have been complaining about unruly guests. Charles Santangelo lives on a mountain in North Phoenix, and said the owner of the house below him has been renting it to large parties for the past year and a half.

"People pulling into our driveways, waking us up, loud music, public urination, litter, fireworks," said Santangelo, in a phone interview.

City officials and police have been repeatedly called to the home, but Santangelo said there was confusion over which agency should handle it.

"She's probably making too much money to care about the effect on neighbors," said Santangelo.

This is exactly what the author of the new law intends to eliminate.

"You purchased your house in a residential neighborhood and I'm your neighbor and I'm disrupted by 50 people at your house drunk, then you're violating my house rights," said State Rep. John Kavanagh (R-Fountain Hills).

"It's just been an absolute nightmare, and just so happy to hear that now it won't be the case anymore," said Santangelo.

Gov. Ducey said the new law will financially punish "party house" operators, and limits the use of short-term rentals. Homes cannot be used for large-scale events, including weddings and banquets. Fines start at $250.

"The final fine on the third can be up to 50% of the revenue from that week," said State Rep. Kavanaugh. "That's the idea if you violate the law three times. You can't control it, maybe you need some extra push to get your house in order. No pun intended."

The bill had an unusual voting pattern in the State Legislature. It passed 42-18, but received support from mostly Democrats, and several Republicans voted no.