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Posted: July 18, 2013 9:00 p.m.

Enforce equally or not at all

One thing small business owners particularly resent is being saddled with local laws that government officials don’t enforce equally or at all.

Covington Councilman Keith Dalton operated a home-based business for more than a quarter century and never once secured a local business license from the city. When the issue finally came to a head, he paid a $50 prorated share for 2013 with no additional fees or fines. If that’s enforcement, what’s the point?

We understand local business licenses mainly exist as another source of revenue for government and are not an official regulatory step. However, we’ve found most small business owners are hard-working, caring folks who pride themselves on doing business the right way and do their best to comply with each of the myriad of city and county ordinances and state laws on the books.

If the city of Covington has ordinances that can’t be enforced, then the city should either hire more code enforcement officers or begin cutting out extraneous ordinances. In either case, the businesses owners doing things the right way would appreciate either the equal enforcement of local laws or a reduction of their regulatory burden.

We suggest city officials take time to review their ordinances to figure out which ones really matter and which ones are only there for show. Don’t penalize the people who follow the rules.

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