Clallam panel recommends size limits on vacation rentals, B&Bs

PORT ANGELES — The Clallam County Planning Commission has backed a proposal to limit vacation rentals and bed-and-breakfast inns to 10,000 square feet and five guest rooms.

The commission voted 6-3 to recommend an ordinance that would amend standards for vacation rentals and add new standards for bed-and-breakfasts.

The proposal would affect new vacation rentals and bed-and-breakfasts in single-family dwellings in unincorporated areas.

It would not affect the proposed 32,000-square-foot bed-and-breakfast at 695 E. Sequim Bay Road because that application has been vested by the Department of Community Development.

If approved by the three commissioners next month, vacation rentals and bed-and-breakfasts between 4,000 and 10,000 square feet would be required to have conditional use permits.

“My concern all along has been the one size fits all,” said Planning Commission Vice Chairwoman Connie Beauvais, a Port of Port Angeles commissioner, before voting with the majority Wednesday.

“I need to be assured that it’s going to fit the neighborhood that it’s in.”

Dissenting members of the planning commission favored an earlier proposal to allow up to eight guest rooms with a conditional use permit required for six or more guest rooms.

County commissioners are expected to hold a public hearing March 7, Principal Planner Kevin LoPiccolo said Thursday.

Clallam County has an existing ordinance for vacation rentals but no permanent zoning for bed-and-breakfasts, which are regulated only by definitions.

Under county code, bed-and-breakfasts are defined as single-family dwellings occupied by the owner or manager with five or fewer rooms for overnight accommodations.

After neighbors objected to Judy Lee’s proposed bed-and-breakfast on East Sequim Bay Road, county commissioners enacted a six-month ordinance limiting structures in rural residential zones to 10,000 square feet.

“That’s due to expire on March 6,” LoPiccolo said.

County commissioners are expected to discuss a three-month extension of the 10,000-square-foot restriction in a Monday work session, with action to follow later this month.

Meanwhile, Lee and her attorneys are challenging a recent determination that the bed-and-breakfast should be regulated by the International Building Code rather than International Residential Code.

County Building Official Annette Warren determined — and the Clallam County Building Code Board of Appeals upheld — that the massive structure is a Group R-1 boarding house and should be designed and built to commercial standards.

Lee filed a lawsuit in Kitsap County Superior Court, saying the Board of Appeals’ Dec. 12 decision was erroneous and should be overturned.

Voting in favor of the new ordinance were Planning Commission Chairwoman Nancy Esteb, Tom Montgomery, Robert Miller, Scott Clausen, Jane Hielman and Beauvais.

Gary Gleason, Steve Gale and Leo Leonard voted no.

All nine members of the planning commission voted to approve a subsequent recommendation to amend the definition of bed-and-breakfasts inns and add a new definition for bedroom units.

The planning commission had discussed the proposals in five work sessions prior to Wednesday’s public hearing, which drew split testimony from industry proponents and residents concerns about maintaining the rural character of their neighborhoods.

“I have no objection to people making money,” said Greg Madsen, who lives near the proposed bed-and-breakfast on East Sequim Bay Road.

“I do object to people making money, or being approved to make money, on the backs of people living in tranquility.”

Francisco de la Cruz, another Miller Peninsula resident, said he supported economic development in “appropriate areas and zones.”

“You can’t just have willy-nilly, Wild West kind of stuff,” de la Cruz said.

“I know that ruled the day for quite a while in here in Clallam County. Sorry, those days are over.”

De la Cruz added that the square-foot restrictions in the proposed ordinance “make sense.”

“We don’t want a mansion next door,” he said.


Reporter Rob Ollikainen can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 56450, or at

More in News

Lydia Madruga, left, and Judy Perry, both of Port Angeles, examine plants and flowers in the backyard garden of Lorenzo Portelli and Darlenme Sabo, a stop on Saturday’s Petals and Pathways garden tour. The event, hosted by the Master Gardener Foundation of Clallam County, showcased a collection of private and public gardens in Port Angeles and served as a fundraiser for the Woodcock Demonstration Garden near Agnew and Master Gardener plots at the Fifth Street Community Garden in Port Angeles, as well as community outreach and education programs. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)
Garden tour

Lydia Madruga, left, and Judy Perry, both of Port Angeles, examine plants… Continue reading

Bayside Housing to take over Port Townsend shelter July 1

Jefferson County, service agency reach $350,000 agreement

Clallam County Fire District 2 places two measures on ballot

Levy lid lift, EMS levy ‘a big ask,’ fire chief says

Joshua Percival of the Washington State Emergency Management Agency at Camp Murray installs a communications antenna on the recently replaced tsunami alert siren near Port Angeles Boat Haven on Friday in preparation for bringing a second siren into the downtown area online. The original siren at the same location was destroyed when an automobile struck the pole in April 2023, sending the siren crashing to the ground. The unit supplements a siren at First and Lincoln streets, covering the central Port Angeles area. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)
Siren replaced

Joshua Percival of the Washington State Emergency Management Agency at Camp Murray… Continue reading

Work to begin on fish project on Highway 101 south of Forks

Work crews will begin a fish passage improvement project on… Continue reading

Health warning lifted at East Beach on Marrowstone Island

Jefferson County Public Health has lifted the health warning from… Continue reading

Abby Counts, 8, with assistance from her father, Taylor Counts, an EMT with Clallam 2 Fire-Rescue, gives a newly acquired tender truck a ceremonial wash down during a push-in ceremony on Saturday at the district’s Station 22. The truck, tender 22, cost $459,439 and was paid for by the fire district’s 2020 levy lid lift. Saturday’s ceremony also included a blessing by the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe and a “push-in” of the truck into its berth. The tender replaces a 31-year-old truck that had reached the end of its useful life. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)
New tender

Abby Counts, 8, with assistance from her father, Taylor Counts, an EMT… Continue reading

The 95 Port Townsend High School seniors walk through the rhody garden at Fort Worden State Park on their way to the graduation ceremony on Friday. (Steve Mullensky/for Peninsula Daily News)
Graduation walk

Port Townsend, Chimacum ceremonies

Lands commissioner wary of federal plan to kill thousands of owls

Washington’s public lands commissioner, Hilary Franz, is voicing skepticism about a federal… Continue reading

Operations scheduled at Bentinck range this week

The land-based demolition range at Bentinck Island will be… Continue reading

Weekly flight operations scheduled

There will be field carrier landing practice operations for aircraft… Continue reading