Lyon rejects new business license fees |

Lyon rejects new business license fees

Dave Frank

Lyon County commissioners rejected a staff proposal to raise annual business license fees $50.

The increase would have collected about $100,000 a year for the financially struggling county, according to County Manager Dennis Stark.

But the commission decided Thursday that many businesses also are struggling, Commissioner Larry McPherson said.

“As we sat there, we said, ‘Let’s face it. These are tough times. We want to be friendly to businesses, not chase them away,'” he said.

Stark had said the business license fee hasn’t been raised in several years and it was one of only a few fees staff proposed raising.

“I believe a lot of businesses are operating in the red currently,” Commissioner Chuck Roberts said. “I just don’t think the appropriate message to business is to add an expense.”

The county has had the highest unemployment rate in the state the entire year. It’s May rate was 14.7 percent, according to he Nevada Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation. Its highest rate was 15.6 percent in February, the highest rate ever recorded in the county.

Annual business license fees are currently $100 for businesses with one to three employees, $125 for businesses with four to 15 employees, $225 for businesses with 15 to 50 employees and $600 for business with more than 50 employees.

County staff did not include the fee increase in their budget for next fiscal year, said Comptroller Josh Foli. The budget was built on current fees, which brought in $280,000 last year, he said.

Commissioners approved some fee increases that Foli said will not raise a significant amount of money.

These include raising the business license application fee from $20 to $25, adding a 3 percent charge to payments by credit card and adding a $1,000 charge for an amendment to a planning development agreement.

The planning fees were added because of the staff time required to process the amendments, Foli has said. The county added the credit card fee because its bank charges 3 percent to process credit card payments.