Mayor Falls into Tourist Trap Skip to content

Mayor Falls into Tourist Trap

Róbert Ragnarsson, the mayor of Grindavíkurbær, Southwest Iceland, this week issued a formal apology for having put municipal property on the Airbnb tourist accommodation website for personal financial gain.

What at first seems like a shocking breach of the rules seems slightly more defensible when it is noted that Róbert put his own spare bedroom on the website for tourists to rent out this summer. However, as his house is owned by the municipality, he should have sought permission from the council before doing so.

Local media Stundin exposed the scandal two weeks ago and the mayor has now responded with the following apology on the official municipal website:

Around the middle of August I registered one bedroom in my home for rent to tourists on the website Airbnb, as has been reported in Stundin. I deregistered the room from the website on September 10.

Given that I have use of a house owned by Grindavíkurbær, I should have sought permission from the owner before I registered the property on Airbnb. I did not do that, which was a mistake that I apologize sincerely for.

Respectfully,

Róbert Ragnarsson, mayor

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