Controversial “Alojamento Local” legislation “delayed until after municipal elections”

News today (Monday) is that a controversial upgrade to “Alojamento Local” (AL) rules and regulations is not only being delayed until after municipal elections in October, it may not go ahead at all.

So says national tabloid Correio da Manhã, citing the main point of discord being the proposed clause prohibiting homeowners on condominiums from renting out to holidaymakers without the permission of their homeowners’ association.

Sources talking to the paper said MPs now realise that the proposed change was made “without hearing all the concerned parties involved” – including secretary of state for tourism Ana Mendes Godinho.

Says CM, Socialist MPs fear the resulting controversy “could damage the party’s chances” in the elections, scheduled for October 1.

The official line is that AL (local lodging) is “an activity of great economic importance for many families, and that to alter the rules at this time does not seem very intelligent”.

The news follows a trip to the capital to complain about the proposed change by the Portuguese AL association ALEP on Thursday.

Members of the delegation left their meeting with government officials “with the conviction that the PS is open to rethinking the proposal”, adds CM.

Meantime, new rumbles have appeared over the possibility of homeowners being financially penalised if they remove a property from the AL ‘regime’ and start using it once again for private use.

Say reports this morning, giving up on AL would involve ‘capital gains tax’ – yet “not many people know this”.

ALEP’s president Eduardo Miranda claims the legislation is one of the “biggest impediments” to people signing up to the regime, and thus the possibility is that this aspect of AL law may also need changing.

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