City Council Bans Airbnb — and One Councilman is Father of a Co-Founder of Airbnb

What happens when you are a councilman of a city whose city council is tasked to vote on whether or not to ban businesses of a certain industry — including one which your son co-founded?

You recuse yourself from voting, of course.

City Council Bans Airbnb — and One Councilman is Father of a Co-Founder of Airbnb

When Joe Gebbia was elected to represent District 4 of the newly incorporated city of Brookhaven in the state of Georgia in December of 2012 as one of the original members of its city council, he likely never thought that he would find the city council on which he served for six years vote on whether or not Airbnb would be banned from doing business.

The only problem is that his son — the junior Joe Gebbia — is one of the co-founders of Airbnb. He recused himself from the vote.

“The Brookhaven City Council approved an overhaul of the city’s zoning laws, including new affordable housing incentives and a ban on renting out single-family homes to vacationers”, according to this article written by Tia Mitchell of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “That change will affect homeowners who lease their property for 30 days or less at a time through short-term rental services like Airbnb or VRBO. Condominiums and other multi-family units can still be rented out, but owners are now required to apply for a permits through the city.”

The city of Brookhaven — which is located just northeast of the city of Atlanta — was approved to become the eleventh city in Dekalb County in the state of Georgia as the result of a referendum on Tuesday, July 31, 2012; and incorporation officially subsequently occurred on Monday, December 17, 2012.

Once he was elected as one of the original members of the council of the city of Brookhaven, the senior Joe Gebbia — who is also currently Mayor Pro Tem of the city — ran as a candidate to remain as a member of the city council unopposed in 2013; and he was re-elected to a full second term of four years in 2017.


In my opinion, Airbnb seems to be as analogous to lodging as Uber is to taxi services. I was completely unimpressed with my first experience using Uber; but I did have a much better experience the next day.

The jury is still out regarding my thoughts pertaining to Airbnb — as I still have never tried it — so I am not particularly sure that I am qualified to comment on the decision reached by the city council of Brookhaven. One thing which may eventually be certain is that you will not be able to use Airbnb as a lodging option in the city of Brookhaven.

As with most other companies — and that especially includes Uber — some people swear by Airbnb; while others avoid it at all costs.

All I know is that despite the aforementioned recusal, the Gebbia family Christmas later this month may be just slightly more awkward this year than in years past…

Sources: The official Internet web sites of the office of Joe Gebbia as Brookhaven council member and Airbnb.

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