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PTC fears long lines for mandatory in-person business license renewals

So far the long lines at City Hall from businesses renewing their annual occupational tax licenses have not come to fruition.

Which of course leaves a bigger worry that the lines will be even longer if more businesses put off the task, which this year is complicated by new state and federal requirements.

City officials are cautioning businesses to avoid renewing their licenses on Wednesdays if at all possible because parking in the area is usually taken up by municipal court.

This is the first year that a business representative must present their identification in person so it can be checked for their immigration status, officials said. The representative does not need to be the owner of the business, but the city will need to copy the identification of the person who is the signatory on the occupational tax forms, explained city spokesperson Betsy Tyler.

The city also has to use the same federal E-Verify system to check the immigration status of all vendors it has contracts with, officials have said. In the past, business owners have been able to send in a copy of their identification but that is no longer allowed due to the changes in the law, officials have said.

The deadline to file the occupational tax license and paperwork is Dec. 31. Anticipating a crush of businesses, a queue has been established inside City Hall and preparations have been made for both customer service windows to be available for the procedure.

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