Council passes streamlined business license bylaw

A new streamlined business license and rate bylaw was passed by council at the Monday, Jan. 23 regular meeting. The new bylaw looks at ways to make it easier to conduct business in High River, for both residents and non-residents, by simplifying and improving the business licensing process.

“Developing ‘business friendly’ policies that make things easier for both current, as well as new businesses, is a high priority,” said Jodi Dawson, manager of economic development for the Town. “We want to support our business community, as well as attract new residents and investors to town and it is important that the business licensing process is straight forward and easy to follow.”

One of the major changes to the bylaw was to combine the “Storefront” and “Home Occupation” licenses into one category named “Resident.” There will now be just one license for all businesses operating in High River, whether it is located in a resident’s home, or at a commercial location. The rates have also been harmonized, which means that businesses operating out of a home will see savings when applying for or renewing their business license.

Another important change was renaming the “Student” category to “Youth” and increasing the age from 18 to 25. Entrepreneurs that are 25 years old or under can now apply for a no charge business license.

“We want to encourage our own young people to stay and invest here, while also encouraging young people from outside of the community to establish themselves here. This is a small policy change that can help us do that,” added Dawson.

Additional changes to the bylaw included:

· Added a monthly option for temporary or seasonal business to provide more flexible options for businesses that may only be in operation for part of the year.

· Created a “good neighbour” discounted rate for residents from the MD of Foothills.

· General clean-up and changes to the bylaw for clarity and to simplify the administrative process for Town of High River staff.

This article was originally posted on the Town of High River Website. To view the original article click here

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