Steven Merryday (Chief Judge U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida) denied lifting the ban on short term vacation rentals yesterday, instead opting to hear from both sides before deciding.
There are now two cases being considering at the same hearing. In addition to the temporary restraining order filed by attorney Patrick LeDuc, there is a case for damages (due to lost revenue) being presented by attorney Luke Lirot from Clearwater, Florida. The reason the judge combined the cases is clear. Both cases hinge on the same argument: it is unlawful to let hotels, resorts and timeshares rent units and not let private vacation rental owners/managers do the same. The loss of revenue is devastating to an industry that is only viable a limited number of months each year.
At this time, we do not know when the hearing will take place. We will keep you informed of any updates.