At the most recent Caliente City Council meeting, the council approved a conditional use permit for a year and business license to Rheajean Roberts to have a vacation rental, “Caliente Cottage Street,” at 290 Main Street. The Planning Commission also gave approval.
Some neighbors had objections and letters were sent out to them explaining that this will be an improvement to the city in terms of motels and places for people to stay during events and holidays.
Roberts has two other vacation rentals. The rentals are booked through an agency and deposits have to be made to ensure that there are no problems. Councilman Victor Jones asked about the room tax. City Attorney Dylan Frehner said that will fall under the same requirement as the motels. Frehner further stated that if they charge for a night, the room’s tax is 10 percent of what the rate is. They will have to fill out the paperwork and submit it on the 15th of each month, showing what their occupancy was.
A public hearing was held on a complaint to revoke Mull’s Midway Motel’s business license for failure to comply with a city ordinance. It was stated that the room tax had not been paid for some time and this has been an ongoing problem.
Frehner noted that a certified letter had been sent but not picked up and he would like to table the matter until a letter could be hand delivered to the Mulls. The council agreed.
A suggestion was made for the Room Tax Board to meet and give its input.
Jerry Carter said he wants at least to see a deposit addressed. He will meet with the Room Tax Board and get a spreadsheet going.
A long discussion took place about setting policy and/ or rates for special events. Jones said he wants to keep the events coming in, making sure it is fair to the city, the residents, business owners, and the events taking place.
Mayor Tommy Rowe said we don’t want to discourage events coming to the area. There’s a need to create a checklist identifying what constitutes an event.
Promoters Regan Gubler and Donald Jackson give back to the community by donating to different non-profits. This year they donated to the Box Car Museum, Caliente Elementary, and always to the Fire Department.
“The community needs to know of the thrift and the impact to the local nonprofits and volunteers,” said Jones.
It was mentioned that Frehner is in negations with the union and should be on the next agenda for approval.
The next meeting will be Oct. 5.