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City may just let state issue business licenses


Due to complications from a new state law, the city of Grand Coulee is considering no longer issuing business licenses.

The new law requires a lot of extra work for the city to coordinate with the state and the businesses, work that City Clerk Lorna Pearce feels may not justify the $4,500 a year the licenses bring into the city.

If Grand Coulee chooses to continue issuing licenses, Pearce explained, their licenses would have to be issued from the state of Washington website.

“We’ll have to wait for them to give us our money, pull reports from them to see who paid for their licenses, and on top of that any business that does not either net or gross $2,000, we cannot require them to have a license. So there’s a whole other tracking process that has to come into play. To me, what we put out in time to generate them, to mail our three, four, or five notices to those who don’t pay, it truly isn’t a money-making process.”

Pearce added that the process may be worth it for a larger city where the licenses bring in more revenue, but she speculated that other small cities would also opt out of issuing licenses.

“It’s going to be more advantageous for the smaller entities to not even do a business license,” she said, “I don’t think the state realizes this.”

“At what point in time did we leave the United States of America and become communist Russia?” quipped Councilmember Tammara Byers.

“It’s dictate from above,” added Councilmember Alan Cain.

The board voted to wait until their next meeting before making an official decision regarding discontinuing their issuance of licenses.


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