Committee Committed to Protecting Local Business from "Unfair Competition"

Robert Thomas

If you’re an RM of Moose Jaw based business with no property in the City and you want to acquire a business license, be prepared to shell out $350 annually based upon a calendar year.
That’s what one local, but out of town, cleaner found out.

In a request to Executive Committee, Rhonda Wedhorn, asked to have her 2017 $350 business license prorated, or pay $25 for 2018. The prorated request came from the fact that the business license was bought in August and had to be renewed in January. The City offers $25 Category licence to resident businesses earning less than $50,000 annually.

In a written report to committee members, it was revealed that Wedhorn did not live, own property nor rent any property in the City to conduct her business from and therefore was considered a transient business.

“I am appealing as I feel this is not fair to small businesses that are trying to succeed in your city. I suggest a more fair practice would be, to have a license in effect for 12 months from the purchase date or prorated for the number of months until years end,” she wrote.

Administration told the committee it would be cost prohibitive to track business licenses from one year of the date of purchase. Licenses are tracked based on an ordinary calendar year for any business, no matter how long they operate in the City.

The reason for the $350 transient business license was to protect local business from “unfair competition” the committee heard. The license fee is based upon the cost of administering it.
Bylaw enforcement officer Stacey Landin said “I believe in every case they are advised at that point it does say clearly it is for a calendar year.”

The committee voted unanimously to deny the appeal.

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