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Would municipal and inter-community business licensing work in Taylor?

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TAYLOR, B.C. – The District of Taylor recently discussed the idea of municipal and inter-community business licenses in Taylor.

The District says the purpose of the licenses would be “to foster economic development through collaboration, reduce unnecessary red-tape, support local businesses and demonstrate business friendliness through the establishment of municipal and inter-community business licensing.”

In late 2016, the Ministry of Small Business and Red Tape Reduction: Small Business Division held meetings with community stakeholders to give more information on business licensing. The communities involved included: City of Dawson Creek, City of Fort St. John, District of Chetwynd, District of Hudson’s Hope, District of Taylor, District of Tumbler Ridge and the Village of Pouce Coupe.

The District of Taylor says that the reason for the licenses would not be to generate revenue but to help recover the costs included in with business development. City staff proposed two options for fees of licensing. They were as follows:

Option 1: Perpetual Business Licensing If Council is in favour of perpetual (no end date or annual renewal fee) business licensing, the fee structure is proposed as follows:

  • Home-Based Business: $25
  • Commercial Business: $35
  • Industrial Business: $45
  • Non-resident: $35

Option 2: Annual Business Licensing If Council is in favour of annual business licensing, the fee structure is proposed as follows:

  • Home-Based Businesses: $20
  • Commercial Business: $30
  • Industrial Business: $45
  • Non-resident: $30

The main objectives of establishing business licensing regulations according to the District is to:

  • Ensure the health and safety of the general public while visiting business establishments within a municipality
  • Ensure compliance with municipal bylaws and other necessary requirements
  • Encourage and support business retention and expansion
  • Establish a business community network
  • Provide a catalyst for overall economic development success

But Mayor Rob Fraser is wondering what the business license would actually be used for.

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“I am absolutely against using a business license for enforcement. Is it the intent that these will be mandatory? Do you have to have a business license?”

He also had questions of how getting a business license could be enforced.

“Most of these things can already be enforced through our zoning, through our fire inspection, we’re not doing fire inspections yet with our businesses, not until we get that lined up and I think pushing business licenses onto a small business community, the idea is that your bisnesses are performing well and safe for the public. I don’t think requiring people to do business licenses are going to get us any further along that track compared to where we already are and until we are doing well on that track, why would you?

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