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Published on Friday, March 24, 2017

Business license bills keep moving

EHB 2005 moved out of the Senate Commerce, Labor & Sports Committee last week with a few amendments that AWC generally supported.

The amendments:

  • Extend the date for cities to choose to participate in FileLocal for licensing, from July 2018 to 2020;
  • Change the population-based hardship exemption from the requirement for cities to join the business licensing system from an exemption for cities under 500 to allowing up to a three-year delay for any size city based on hardship; and
  • Move responsibility for staffing and chairing the apportionment workgroup back to the Department of Revenue (at least temporarily).

ESSB 5777 is set for executive session to move the bill out of the House Finance Committee on Thursday, March 30 at 8 am.

Both bills require cities to participate in the state’s Business Licensing Service (BLS) or FileLocal for licensing, require cities to develop and implement a model licensing ordinance that includes a minimum threshold, and create a work group on apportionment of service income under RCW 35.102.130.

AWC hopes we can reach a final compromise that streamlines the license process for businesses and protects local authority.

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