Chamber consulting members about fees for proposed storefront business licence

HUMBOLDT — An effort to gather the thoughts of business owners about a plan to implement a storefront business licence has begun.

“Right now, we don’t know which businesses are in Humboldt because there’s no licensing,” Muench said in late December. “We’re looking at having a small fee that we can use to prepare things like a directory that we can offer to the public if they’re looking for a plumber or electrician in town.”

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At the April 22 council meeting, council decided to ask the business community for input on how it should charge for the licence to pay for the cost of administration.

Brent Fitzpatrick, the Humboldt and District Chamber of Commerce’s executive director, said they’ve sent out an email to all of their membership on May 10 asking them what they think.

“It's their feelings and thoughts are going to be reflected in our message that we give back to council,” he said.

In the city’s 2019 budget, passed in December, it assumed the licence would generate $20,000, based on 200 commercial properties paying $100. At that time, council acknowledged they would be voting on the storefront business licence program’s final form at a later date.

Later on, in April, Muench said the city wasn’t wedded to any particular fee cost or structure, and that the city wanted feedback on how to proceed.

Fitzpatrick said the chamber is supportive of a program that will allow them to know who is operating what businesses.

“I can say that our business retention and expansion committee are very much in support of this,” he said.

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