Commission authorizes warrants for nonpayment of business license fee

City Cab Company and Creative Hair Works are the first two businesses to run into legal issues for failing to pay its Russell County business license and gross receipts tax.

The Russell County Commission voted unanimously to authorize County Enforcement Officer Bill Friend to issue warrants to the businesses for failing to pay the fee, which became due on Oct. 1, 2007. Businesses cited will have to go to the Russell County District Court and face the likelihood of paying the fee, the late penalty ($1.50 for each day), fines and court costs for the violation.

The county business fee is a new requirement in Russell County, established by legislation which passed the Alabama Legislature during the 2007 regular session. Every business operating in the county has to pay the business license fee, whether inside or outside of Phenix City or Hurtsboro. The fee is 75 percent of the amount required for the Phenix City business license fee.

The deadline for purchasing a business license was originally Oct. 31, but the county commission extended the deadline to the end of 2007 as businesses became more familiar with the requirement. The Russell Council Probate Office mailed 3,200 notices to businesses, with only 400 returned.

An unidentified employee at City Cab could not speak for the management of the business, which he said is owned by Jerico Transportation. A call to Creative Hair Works was answered electronically and was not returned.