Commission votes not to recommend B&B

Published 10:08 pm Tuesday, September 17, 2019

The Suffolk Planning Commission recommended Tuesday that a conditional use permit not be granted to allow for a bed and breakfast in the Nansemond River Estates subdivision.

The commission, following a public hearing, voted 5-3 to recommend denying the permit application. City Council will have the final say at its Oct. 16 meeting. Chairman Howard Benton, along with commissioners Kittrell Eberwine, John Rector, Mills Staylor and Oliver Creekmore, voted in favor of the motion to deny the permit. Vice Chairman Arthur Singleton and commissioners Johnnie Edwards and Anita Hicks, voted against the motion.

Tiffinee Yancey, the owner of a home at 3404 Dumpling Court, has asked for the permit after learning she was not in compliance with city code by previously operating an Airbnb out of her home.

Email newsletter signup

Four residents of the Nansemond River Estates neighborhood testified during a public hearing that they did not support the home being a bed and breakfast. They said that people staying there make too much noise, drink, have been loud, and have been a nuisance parking their cars all over the cul-de-sac and beyond, and blocking some people from getting out of their driveways. Eberwine said police had been called out to the home on 10 different occasions in the past year.

Yancey, who has lived at the home since 2015 and admitted to and apologized for the issues that led to the complaints, said she had been listing her property on Airbnb since last December. She said the first time she heard complaints about her property was in May.

She received a notice of violation from the city in June 2019 for operating a residential hotel out of her home. Yancey said once she learned about the issues from a neighbor, she changed the Airbnb listing to not allow alcohol, and later pulled the listing once she learned it was in violation of city code.

She said that if her application were approved, she would abide by conditions that would not allow parties, receptions or any outside use of the property, that no long-term rentals of more than 30 days would be allowed, that she would provide breakfast to guests and that she be at the home when they are there.

The conditional use permit would allow for her to use her home as a bed and breakfast with three guest rooms on the second floor of her home. She said she would use the attached two-car garage and her driveway as parking.