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Last Update on July 03, 2015 07:10 GMT

IN THE NEWS: PHILADELPHIA LEGALIZES AIRBNB-TYPE RENTALS BEFORE POPE VISIT

PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- Philadelphia has legalized and plans to tax Airbnb and other short-term rentals ahead of Pope Francis' visit in September and next year's Democratic National Convention.

Airbnb says the city on Wednesday became the nation's largest to legalize rentals through online marketplaces. It joins San Francisco and Portland, Oregon, among cities authorizing the transactions.

Philadelphia also changed zoning rules to allow rentals in residential areas and is subjecting them to an 8 1/2 percent hotel tax. The rentals had been operating tax-free.

City Councilman William Greenlee says Airbnb-type rentals are essentially short-term hotels and should be made to follow the same rules.

A permit is required for rentals lasting more than 30 days. The city says homes can't be rented out for more than 180 days per year.

IN THE NEWS: MAN ACCUSED OF USING SELFIE STICK TO RECORD FEMALE NEIGHBOR

BETHESDA, Md. (AP) -- Police in Maryland have accused a Bethesda man of using a selfie stick to record videos of the woman who lived above him.

According to police, 60-year-old Donald F. Beard attached a camera to a long metal pole and used the device to record videos through a window for more than a year.

While searching Beard's electronic devices, detectives say they uncovered 16 videos of the woman, including one showing her naked. Beard is facing four charges, including using a camera to record a private residence.

Court documents say Beard told police he wanted to collect evidence of the woman spending time with married men so he could tell their wives.

Beard's attorney Stanley J. Reed told the Washington Post on Wednesday that Beard will plead not guilty.

 
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