September 2, 2016
Airbnb sued a third California city Friday, arguing that the beach town of Santa Monica violated federal laws protecting privacy and online speech. In its 22-page suit filed in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles, the company alleges that an ordinance Santa Monica officials passed in May 2015 violates the 1st and 4th Amendments of the U.S. Constitution with a series of onerous requirements for property owners who offer short-term rentals. The ordinance mandates the property owners, or “hosts,” meet requirements such as posting their business licenses on their online listings and adhering to city fire and building codes. The law also subjects data held by the rental websites to review. Property owners and rental websites such as Airbnb and Homeaway could face civil and criminal penalties for violating the law…..