Ketchum’s “Lease to Locals” program has helped house 23 people since it started in the fall, but city councilmembers last week were left wondering how many more it could accommodate—and who should bear the cost.

April’s update the “Lease to Locals” program—organized by Placemate, formerly known as Landing Locals—generated more than the usual amount of passionate back and forth from the council, with Councilman Michael David bothered by the lack of commitment from the Valley’s other cities, and Mayor Neil Bradshaw and Councilman Jim Slanetz at odds over whether it is the government’s role to support the program.

“I struggle with this a little bit,” Slanetz said last week after Placemate’s CEO Colin Frolich presented a list of companies that have had employees placed under the Lease to Locals program, which pays cash incentives to homeowners who adopt affordable long-term or seasonal leases. “Some of these corporations have billions of dollars in oil and in real-estate holdings, and it comes down to the city and taxpayers that are actually paying to house people.”

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