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City business licence changes set to go into effect

All businesses in Grande Prairie that did not require a business licence previously will be required to obtain a license to operate as of May 1st.

The city describes businesses that need to obtain a license as any trade, business, or occupation that has intent on making a profit.

“It’s directed to retail stores, restaurants, and accommodation types of businesses,” says Business Licence Coordinator Megan Dennis. She adds the city is looking to create a more even playing field.

Previously, commercial businesses were not required to obtain a license to operate but, with the Business Licence Bylaw C-1393, they will no longer be required to pay a small fee, after that mandate was scrapped by council.

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Dennis says the city is looking to broaden the scope of the businesses operating in the municipality. She believes the amended bylaw will help provide key data for economic development and growth.

If the business applies for a license on May 1st, 2021, that license will be effective up until May 31st, 2022.

The businesses that are exempt in the business licence bylaw are:

  • An employee of a business who holds a valid business licence;
  • Municipal government offices and services;
  • Provincial government offices and services;
  • Federal government offices and services;
  • Charitable or non-profit organizations;
  • Any person specifically exempt from municipal licensing by legislation;
  • A business that rents a stall, table, or space as a vendor at a tradeshow, farmer’s market or community event; and
  • A non-resident business whose only business activity is the supply or delivery of wholesale or bulk goods to a resident business.

Business licences are required to be displayed so that it is visible to customers, and must be renewed yearly. Business licences are used to protect public health and safety by confirming that all businesses within the city are following local laws and regulations.

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