HAWTHORNE : Council Raises Taxes, Business License Fees

The cost of doing business in Hawthorne has just gone up.

To help the city recover from a $10.5-million fiscal crisis, the council unanimously adopted four new ordinances Monday that increase business license fees and taxes.

The increases will affect the city's 2,000 businesses, from department stores to shoeshine stands.

City Manager Todd W. Argow, who has devised a 24-point financial recovery plan, estimates that the city will generate an extra $1 million a year from business owners, who seem willing to pay the extra costs.

"They're not excited about paying more taxes, but at the same time, they understand we have a financial situation," Argow said. "The incentive is for them to work with us so we can then lower the taxes later."

Under the new system, businesses grossing more than $100,000 a year will pay $120 (up from $75) on the first $100,000, and $100 (up from $45) on each additional $100,000.

They can be taxed on gross receipts up to $500,000, which is 10 times the previous cap.

For smaller businesses, taxes also will be based on gross earnings. The highest will be $120 for a business in the $75,000 to $100,000 range.

Argow said city officials will work with business owners to make sure the new laws are equitable.

"It's not our objective to create an additional burden for businesses," he said. "We want to go back to the businesses and work with them."

Argow said the city has implemented only small increases on license fees.

It will cost $25 to apply for a business permit and $20 each year to renew the permit.

Delivery truck owners will pay $24 to $50 per year for each vehicle entering Hawthorne.

Other individual business owners that the city regulates will pay $20 to $50 for a license.

Copyright © 2019, Los Angeles Times
EDITION: California | U.S. & World