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Posted on: February 27, 2020

City to amend business license ordinance

business license

The City of Taylor is in the process of amending its business license ordinance, increasing the penalty for infractions while further emphasizing the step-by-step process businesses must go through to legally operate in the community.

“We are trying to clear up any confusion on what actually happens when you apply for a business license,” City Clerk Cindy Bower said. “Most business owners believe once they pay the fee, everything is done and they will get their license. This is not true.

“According to our ordinance, they have to pay a licensing fee and be in compliance with various departmental guidelines. Only then are they able to operate legally in Taylor.”

A new resolution will be proposed during an upcoming City Council meeting that changes the penalties for a business license violation to a civil infraction from a misdemeanor, punishable by fines and fees as established within the ordinance.

When applying for a business license each business owner must receive approval from the following departments to operate legally in Taylor:

  • City Clerk
  • Building
  • Planning/Zoning
  • Fire
  • Treasury

Just because a business representative pays its licensing fee with the City Clerk does not mean that it automatically gains its license. If any of the above listed departments does not approve, the license is denied and the applicant must resolve the issue with the department in question. If the business starts operation before the issues are resolved, it is doing so in violation of the ordinance and without a valid license to operate. 

All of this information is provided to any business license applicant when they initially apply and in subsequent renewal letters. However, it is often overlooked. 

Clerk Bower pointed out some common business license violations:

  • Lack of an approved Certificate of Occupancy
  • Lack of inspections
  • No approved Letter of Intent to do business on file
  • Applicant is indebted to the City (typically for Personal Property taxes)

Any applicant should keep in mind that if a physical copy of their new business license is not received within four to six weeks from when they applied, they should reach out to check the status of their application.

“Just because they have applied for the license does not mean that they will receive it,” Clerk Bower said. “It is the business owner’s responsibility to follow up during the process to make certain that they are compliant.”

If you have questions on the licensing procedure, please contact the Clerk’s Office at (734) 287-6550 Option 6.

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