For the fourth time in the last year, a Fox Point man has been cited for running afoul of the village's time-share ordinance, an ordinance the man's lawyer says is unconstitutional and doesn’t apply to his client.
The ordinance, enacted in 2011, requires all time-share properties to meet state statutes and to be part of the village's Planned Development Overlay zoning.
William Andrew Kops received his latest municipal citation in early July, after a California woman and her family agreed to rent his property at 721 E. Daisy Ln.
Police received an anonymous call about people coming and going from the house on July 2. Police responded to the home and saw a U-haul truck in the driveway, according to the police report.
After knocking on the door and trying to make contact, officers left but returned later that night to find an SUV in the driveway. Contact was made with a California woman who said she had agreed to rent the home until July 8, while in town directing a play at a Milwaukee festival, the police report said.
The woman paid $900 through a website that connects homeowners with those seeking a short-term rental, according to the report.
Police say they found Kops had also been advertising the house on other sites, including Craigslist and Hotpads.com.
Kops has been cited three other times for violating the ordinance, most recently in late June, when six people from Kansas City, MO, were in town for Summerfest and agreed to rent the property for two days. They later called police after they say they found the home to be “just filthy,” according to the police report.
The woman who filed that complaint says she performed an online search and found Kops’ rental. After email and phone correspondences between her and Kops, an agreement was made to rent the home for two days — June 29 and 30 — for $700, plus a refundable $700 security deposit, the report said.
The woman said she immediately began to think something was wrong when they met at the residence on the afternoon of June 29. Kops required them to park in the garage and said there would "be no need" to open the window blinds, according to the report.
Because the home was dirty, the group decided to leave at about 12:30 a.m. the first night and instead rent a hotel room, the report said. The complainants said they have asked Kops to refund money for the second night.
That scenario is similar to what . According to police reports, in each instance an out-of-state woman agreed to rent Kops' house but later contacted police, saying she had found the home in an unclean condition.
Kops received a citation for a violation of the village's time-share ordinance in connection with each reported incident.
Fox Point’s time-share ordinance has two key provisions:
- Any time-share property in the village must comply with the Wisconsin law that regulates such properties, establishes rules for the management of time-share properties and include protections for those who purchase time shares.
- Time-share properties are subject to the village’s Planned Development Overlay zoning amendment, which allows for greater flexibility than basic zoning regulations.
When reached for comment, Kops referred Patch to his attorney Michael Winter.
In a written statement, Winter noted that Kops had been “casually” renting out his home for “many years” before Fox Point’s ordinance was passed.
In addition, he contended that:
- Kops’ home is not considered a time-share property as described in Wisconsin statutes.
- Fox Point’s time-share ordinance violates the constitutional rights of a homeowner to use his property in a manner consistent to the uses he had before the passage of the ordinance.
- The Planned Development Overlay zoning district referred to in the village ordinance “is not designed for one residential property but rather a planned unit development.”
"Mr. Kops' use of his property by occasionally renting it out therefore is not illegal or improper," Winter wrote.
The attorney's entire statement is attached to this article.
Editor's note: Kops has filed a small claims court lawsuit, which is pending, alleging that Patch’s report on the August 2011 and February 2012 citations is defamatory. Patch stands by its reporting, and the action is pending.
Patch editors Adam McCoy, Matt Schroeder and Mark Maley contributed to this report.