JACKSON – Code enforcement officials in Jackson issued more than a dozen summonses regarding the illegal rental of private pools in recent weeks.
The Jackson Police Department issued a press release on July 22 and reported that the township’s code enforcement office had been receiving complaints from residents in reference to pools illegally being rented out for use, in violation of a municipal ordinance which prohibits that practice.
Code enforcement officers located and responded to several locations to address the matter, but still had several images that were included with online pool rental listings that they could not identify or locate, according to the press release.
With assistance from police and members of the community, code enforcement officers were able to track down several more residences that were violating the ordinance.
In an interview with the Tri-Town News on Aug. 5, Jackson Code Enforcement Supervisor Andrew Cheney said the issue has been resolved as of that date.
“In one week we probably received between 10 and 15 complaints. Most of them were coming in about the website Swimply, which is out of California. People were advertising their pool rentals through there,” Cheney said.
He said by using the website, code enforcement officers were able to track down most of the residences in Jackson where a pool was being rented.
“With some (rentals) you would only get a picture (of the pool) and you wouldn’t get the exact address until you booked the pool, but we were able to use our investigative skills – most of us are retired police officers (now working in code enforcement) – so we are pretty adept in going about an unorthodox way to find out what we need,” Cheney said.
He said the code enforcement officers found out where most of the advertised pool rentals were located and then issued summonses to the homeowners.
“The ordinance also (states) that you cannot advertise to rent your pool. Besides renting the pool itself being illegal, advertising the rental is also illegal, and that is what most people we were catching were issued a summons for,” Cheney said, adding that between 15 and 20 summonses were issued.
“With that, most of them seemed to pull their pool off the website, everything just seemed to disappear in that one-week period. Once the summonses hit the mail and people started getting them, all the stuff seemed to be pulled down,” Cheney said.
He said the issue appears to have been resolved, “unless they found another venue that we haven’t located yet through the internet.”
“We have our ways of finding them and once we come across them we take action on them. So far it seems to have calmed down a little bit; it was that one- or two-week period where it seemed to be just off the wall,” Cheney said.