Hawaii’s home-sharing economy is under threat by some Hawaii lawmakers who want to ban it, and others who want to tax it. But our lawmakers should stick to a simple principle: no taxation without legalization.

For years, Hawaii counties have been eager to ban home-sharing platforms like Airbnb, which allow locals to rent space in their home to vacationers.

Now, government inspectors are knocking on doors and issuing fines to local families using Airbnb and other platforms.

At the same time, Hawaii state lawmakers are eager to capture $26 million dollars in tax money every year from short-term vacation rentals.

The best solution would be for Hawaii lawmakers to neither tax it, nor ban it. The decision to share one’s own home with a guest should be the sole right of the property owner.

However, if legislators want to tax it, then they should first take steps to legalize the practice of home sharing.

Instead of micromanaging our lives and our property, lawmakers should respect our right to share our homes with whomever we wish, be they friends or vacationers, or both. No taxation without legalization!