Salmon Arm councillors say request for a lower 2021 business licence fee not possible. (File photo)

Salmon Arm councillors say request for a lower 2021 business licence fee not possible. (File photo)

Salmon Arm business’s request for reduced 2021 licence fees denied

City councillors refer to value from econonic development society support, low rate, strict rules

In response to a request for a reduction in the City of Salmon Arm’s 2021 business licence fee due to the effects of COVID-19, city council said that won’t be happening.

Evelyn Johnson with Smooth As Silk Electrolysis Studio wrote to council on Feb. 1, stating she was extremely disappointed to see her bill was for the full $200.

She pointed out that in 2020 the provincial government ordered all personal care businesses closed in March and they were not permitted to open until the end of May. She said insurance companies and professional associations offered rebates or discounts on 2021 rates and asked why this was not offered for business licences.

“I believe this is an example of where you can disburse some of your COVID-19 Relief Funds,” she wrote.

Coun. Louise Wallace Richmond acknowledged Johnson’s concerns, adding that, as a small business owner herself, she knows times are tough.

She explained that the city can’t pick and choose which business licence gets a discount and for what reason because rules are strict regarding assistance to business.

She pointed out the city can, however, ensure that the city’s economic development society is well equipped to deliver a number of services of great value to businesses, everything from a digital recovery program, to workshops on social media and more.

Read more: Shuswap entrepreneurs nominated for Small Business BC Awards

Read more: Five Salmon Arm businesses set to close

“I feel it’s important to offer confidence, extreme confidence, that there is good value in those business licences including things like fire inspection and business development services,” Wallace Richmond said.

She added that it’s possible, in the long run, with all the services being provided, businesses are getting more for their $200, post-Covid, than they were before.

Coun. Kevin Flynn agreed.

He noted that, unlike a lot of the city’s contracts, fees for service and everything else that has a cost of living increase, he doesn’t think the city has changed its business licence fee in more than 10 years.

He said a business licence fee review is long overdue and suggested Salmon Arm’s fee would likely be low if compared to other communities. He also agreed the city can’t look at every business individually to see how they were impacted by the coronavirus.

“I empathize but I don’t see anything we can do.”
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

BusinessSalmon Arm council

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A man wearing a mask against coronavirus walks past an NHS advertisement about COVID-19 in London, Tuesday, Feb. 2, 2021. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)
92 new COVID-19 cases, no new deaths: Interior Health

The region is reporting 92 cases after the weekend

Shuswap Youth Launch Team members Claire Waite, Abbigail Paetsch, Mikayla Wilkinson, Brynn Gowen and Caillie Hay-Vicars pause for a picture on the day of the Shuswap Youth Launch interactive event, Thursday, Feb. 25. (Contributed)
Shuswap Youth Launch team over the moon with success of interactive event

Salmon Arm youth team invited to apply for $100,000 grant

City council passed resolution in support of an expansion of the licence area at Salmon Arm’s Marionette Winery for the inclusion of a lounge area. (Marionette Winery/Facebook)
City opts out of public hearing for lounge addition at Salmon Arm winery

Marionette Winery expanding licence area to host small gatherings

Fundraising continues to support the Larch Hills Nordic Society’s campaign to install six kilometres of lighting at the popular Shuswap cross-country ski area. (Brad Calkins photo)
Phase 1 of light installation at Shuswap’s Larch Hills to begin this spring

Fundraising efforts continue to illuminate six kilometres of trails at cross-country ski area

Island Health chief medical officer Dr. Richard Stanwick receives a first dose of Pfizer vaccine, Dec. 22, 2020. (B.C. government)
COVID-19: B.C. seniors aged 90+ can start to sign up for vaccination on March 8

Long-term care residents protected by shots already given

Langley resident Carrie MacKay shared a video showing how stairs are a challenge after spending weeks in hospital battling COVID-19 (Special to Langley Advance Times)
VIDEO: Stairs a challenge for B.C. woman who chronicled COVID-19 battle

‘I can now walk for six (to) 10 minutes a day’

Pastafarian Gary Smith, pictured here dressed as a pirate, wanted to wear his tricorn (also pictured here) in his driver’s licence photo, arguing that the display was a religious observance. Photo: Facebook
B.C. Pastafarian loses Supreme Court fight to wear pirate hat in driver’s licence photo

Gary Smith of Grand Forks, put his case to the Supreme Court in Rossland in early February

A student from Dawson Creek is the winner of Tolko’s Orange Shirt Day design contest for 2021. (Tolko photo)
Tolko contest features northern winner

Student from Dawson Creek beats out entries Canadawide for Orange Shirt Day design contest win

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s coronavirus situation, May 8, 2020. (B.C. government photo)
B.C.’s weekend COVID-19 cases: 532 Saturday, 508 Sunday, 438 Monday

Fraser Health still has most, eight more coronavirus deaths

The Vernon Public Art Gallery's new Regional Reach program which sends supplies and lessons to classes, has been a hit in the North Okanagan classrooms. (VPAG photo)
Travelling art kit a hit in North Okanagan schools

Art Gallery’s new Regional Reach program delivers art education to the classrooms

A kaleidescope of colours was captured over Lake Country Sunday, Feb. 28. (Wendey Innes-Shaw photo)
Colourful close to month with North Okanagan sunset

From all angles: Vernon and Lake Country photographers capture sunset Feb. 28

Vernon’s Noric House long-term care facility’s COVID-10 outbreak has been declared over by Interior Health. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
COVID outbreak at Vernon’s Noric House declared over

10 deaths were linked to the outbreak at long-term care facility

(File photo)
UBCO introduces another reading break in November

The break only affects the Okanagan campus

An injured skier was helivaced from Apex Mountain Resort to Kelowna General Hospital Monday, March, 2021. (Linda Geggie / Facebook)
Injured skier helivaced from Apex Mountain Resort

The skier was taken to Kelowna General Hospital

Most Read