Airbnb fights NY attorney general's subpoena - Fox 2 News Headlines

Airbnb fights NY attorney general's subpoena

Posted: Updated:
NEW YORK (MYFOXNY) -

Renting out someone's apartment is an easy way to get an inexpensive place to stay if you're a tourist, and cheaper and more convenient than most hotels. But now the government is stepping in and trying to get a handle on a booming business that may not be playing by the rules.

State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is squaring off in court with multi-million dollar Internet company Airbnb.

Airbnb advertises places to stay in 34,000 cities in 192 countries. But what it is doing in New York City has officials on alert. The popular site lists everything from a bunk bed for $22 to an entire luxury apartment for five figures. You can book whatever you like, as long as you'd like, just like any travel site. Airbnb tells us it is a way for apartment dwellers to make extra cash, and give tourists affordable options. But the attorney general says it violates state housing law that bans sublets of less than 30 days.

State Sen. Liz Krueger says that in the city's super tight housing market, it puts city residents at a disadvantage.

Schneiderman estimates that two-thirds of the nearly 40,000 rentals are illegal. While Airbnb portrays the renters as individuals, the AG says some are speculators cashing in, with one company listing 134 different apartments. Because Airbnb is an Internet company, it's not even clear if local laws apply.

A federal crackdown could be in the future, says Rep. Charles Rangel.

The neighbors of those renting on Airbnb can be in for surprises and safety concerns, say community activists. Reports of brothels, late-night parties, front doors left open, and overcrowding can create havoc with New Yorkers' everyday life, says Tom Cayler of the West Side Neighborhood Alliance.

And for parents the risk of transient strangers coming into contact with their children is real, says City Council Member Robert Jackson.

Airbnb says it intends to keep fighting the attorney general's demand for personal information about who is renting out their apartments on the site. Airbnb also says it would like to pay $21 million in taxes if officials would just allow it.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Suspect dead following police chase

    Suspect dead following police chase

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 11:12 AM EDT2014-09-16 15:12:59 GMT

    At least one suspect is dead in a police-involved shooting in Rutherford, New Jersey.The shooting occurred at about 2:30 a.m. at Rutherford Ave. and Ridge Rd. following a chase. Investigators are piecing together what happened. One occupant of an SUV was shot and pronounced dead at a hospital. The other occupant was unharmed and was arrested. The preliminary investigation shows a state trooper and police officers from Lyndhurst and Rutherford were involved in the chase.

    At least one suspect is dead in a police-involved shooting in Rutherford, New Jersey.The shooting occurred at about 2:30 a.m. at Rutherford Ave. and Ridge Rd. following a chase. Investigators are piecing together what happened. One occupant of an SUV was shot and pronounced dead at a hospital. The other occupant was unharmed and was arrested. The preliminary investigation shows a state trooper and police officers from Lyndhurst and Rutherford were involved in the chase.

  • Trump Plaza closes; mogul Donald Trump may step in

    Trump Plaza closes; mogul Donald Trump may step in

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 10:41 AM EDT2014-09-16 14:41:06 GMT
    A fourth Atlantic City casino has gone out of business.  Trump Plaza shut its doors at 6 a.m. Tuesday.  The casino at the center of the Boardwalk and the end of the Atlantic City Expressway has been declining for years, performing worse than any of the city's other casinos.
    A fourth Atlantic City casino has gone out of business.  Trump Plaza shut its doors at 6 a.m. Tuesday.  The casino at the center of the Boardwalk and the end of the Atlantic City Expressway has been declining for years, performing worse than any of the city's other casinos. Real estate mogul Donald Trump took to Twitter on Tuesday to say he left Atlantic City years ago but may return.
  • Wedding reception at country club ends with brawl

    Wedding reception at country club ends with brawl

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 8:37 AM EDT2014-09-16 12:37:23 GMT
    New York State NewsNew York State News
    Police say they're investigating a large brawl that broke out at the end of a wedding reception held over the weekend at a suburban Buffalo country club. Officials tell local media that seven different police agencies were called in late Saturday to break up the fight at the Orchard Park Country Club. Officers say dozens of the approximately 200 guests were involved in the melee, which broke out after a member of the wedding party was tossed off the premises for inappropriate behavior.
    Police say they're investigating a large brawl that broke out at the end of a wedding reception held over the weekend at a suburban Buffalo country club. Officials tell local media that seven different police agencies were called in late Saturday to break up the fight at the Orchard Park Country Club. Officers say dozens of the approximately 200 guests were involved in the melee, which broke out after a member of the wedding party was tossed off the premises for inappropriate behavior.
Powered by WorldNow

WJBK-TV | Fox 2
16550 West Nine Mile Rd.
Southfield, MI 48075

Main Station: (248) 557-2000
Newsroom: (248) 552-5103

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices