Chamber of Commerce seeks ammunition for its tax talks with City

By David F. Rooney

The Chamber of Commerce is asking small business owners to give it the ammunition it needs to successfully engage City Council over the issue of what it regards as excessive taxation.

In an e-mail sent to every one of its members, the Chamber is asking them to describe the impact high taxes have had on their ability to operate effectively and profitably in the city.

It notes that small businesses, some of which have closed their doors this year, pay 6.65 times as much tax as residential property owners. And it says that in order to pay their high tax bills, small business owners are forced to cut staff hours and layoff staff as well as cut their traditionally high support for community fund-raising efforts. And finally, it states that City Council is not listening to the concerns of the business community.

Small business is what makes the local economy tick. It is responsible for many of the jobs held by local people and is a major supporter of non-profit organizations in Revelstoke.

The e-mail asks Chamber members to outline their specific concerns so that business leaders can negotiate effectively when they meet with Council on Tuesday, Novemebr 23, at 3:30 pm.

“We look to Mayor and Council for leadership on important issue,” the letter to Chamber members said. “We, as representatives of local business, are willing to contribute to the process by helping create solutions that work for the entire community. Business can no longer bear the weight of the City’s spending.”