1221 SW 4th Ave. Suite 210, Portland, OR 97204
In response to feedback and ideas from the public, Commissioner Steve Novick plans to propose an amendment to the Portland Street Fund program to exempt some very small businesses from the fee and to cap the fee paid by others. The work group that developed the non-residential proposal discussed exempting or capping the fee for the smallest businesses but did not include either an exemption or a cap.
This amendment to the proposed Portland Street Fund program would provide relief for small businesses that earn less than $50,000 in annual gross revenue. Home-based businesses that have less than $50,000 in gross revenue would be exempt and pay nothing under the proposal, while all other businesses with gross revenue under $50,000 would pay $3 per month.
These new elements of the Non-Residential Transportation Fee help to ensure that it does not overburden micro businesses, which are characteristic of Portland’s unique local economy. For example, Commissioner Novick received an e-mail from Jane Staugas, who told him the proposed Non-Residential Transportation Fee would have a significant effect on her recently-launched business, Bridgetown Bow Ties. Staugas makes handmade ties in her home and sells them online. She has registered her business through the Oregon Secretary of State and the City’s business license division. She was dismayed to learn she would need to pay an estimated $180/year under the Portland Street Fund proposal introduced last month. The amendment that will be offered this week would exempt Bridgetown Bow Ties and other home-based businesses that earn less than $50,000 gross revenue annually from the Non-Residential Transportation Fee.
The amendment is estimated to reduce revenue collected through the Non-Residential Transportation program by $2.19 million annually and would require one additional staff person at the City’s Revenue Division.
City Council will consider the amendment at its meeting on Wednesday, December 10. Members of the public are welcome to attend the meeting and provide public testimony about this amendment. Additionally, written testimony may be submitted to email@example.com.