By a 31-9 vote, the Senate passed SB 1491 (Stuart), a bill that expands the definition of “agritourism activity” by including the rental of a single-family residence for a period of at least one week. VACo opposes this measure because it further reduces local land use regulatory authority.
Under legislation passed by the General Assembly in 2014, HB 268 (Orrock) and SB 51 (Stuart), localities were restricted from regulating any “agritourism activity” (as defined in Section 3.2-6400 of the Code of Virginia) unless the operation has a “substantial impact upon the health, safety, or general welfare of the public.” Under the 2014 legislation, localities were also prohibited from requiring a special exception, special use permit or any “administrative permit” not required by state law.
SB 1491 has now been referred to the House Agriculture, Chesapeake and Natural Resources Committee’s Agriculture Subcommittee.
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VACo Contact: Larry Land, CAE