CLEARFIELD — A new system is expected to improve how fees are taken, giving online payment options while starting to eliminate a consolidated process of business license renewals that creates a time-consuming process at the end of the year.
The city is implementing a new cash receipting module in the community development department. This module allows for online payment of business licenses and collection of other fees, something which was not done before.
“We have not had the technical ability to do that before,” said City Manager Adam Lenhard. He said the city purchased new software this fiscal year that allows for the change.
“This will work more efficiently because it saves the business owner from having to fill out a hard copy to mail in or from having to come to the city offices.”
All new business license applicants will still need to fill out the hard copy for initial licensure, however.
The city council recently approved changes to Title 4 Chapter 1 regarding business license renewals.
These changes were necessary because online payments and collection of fees would be at the same counter, according to city documents.
The code change deals with the annual renewal of business licenses, which will now be done in the anniversary month when the license was issued. The newly approved code states there is a 45-day renewal period before the licensee would accrue late fees and other penalties for operating a business without a proper license.
The new license period will be a 12-month period from when the license is granted. It is a rolling year, not a calendar year.
Previously, licenses were renewed at the end of the year, creating a time-consuming process that lasted almost a quarter of a year, according to the city proposal.
That documentation states that initially most licenses will still be done at the end of the year, but eventually it will allow for renewal dates to be spread across the year.
All of these changes are also expected to allow better monitoring of business license information. Plus, operating and non-operating businesses will be able to be tracked closer to real time instead of being only available in a once-a-year model.
Lenhard said the changes will be a benefit for all involved.