Business and Government Affairs
2015 CITY OF CHICAGO TAX CHANGES
Hotel Accommodations (short term vacation rentals purchased via internet), Parking, Non-Title Use and Amusement Taxes have changed for 2015.
For an explanation on these new taxes click here.
As a reminder, restaurant taxes have stayed the same.
Here is the breakdown:
|2015 CHICAGO AND COOK COUNTY TAXES|
|Cook Home Rule||0.75%|
|Chicago Home Rule||1.25%|
|MPEA Tax||1.00%||(must be in MPEA area|
|Total||10.25%||ends 150ft. North of Diversey)|
MINIMUM WAGE ORDINANCE UPDATE
The Lakeview East Chamber of Commerce would like to share with you the following update from the Illinois Retail's Merchants Association regarding the Minimum Wage increase for Chicago which was presented at today's City Council Meeting:
At today’s City Council meeting, Mayor Emanuel will introduce the attached ordinance to establish a Minimum Wage for Chicago. The ordinance largely follows the recommendations that were made by the Mayor’s Minimum Wage Working Group of which IRMA was a part. You will recall that we voted “NO” on the recommendations made in the report and we object to much of the data contained therein.
Nevertheless, it was expected that the Mayor would introduce an ordinance today to establish a Chicago minimum wage of $13 over the next four years. All employers in Chicago, unless you qualify as an exempted employer in current state law, must pay employees aged 18 and older a wage no lower than the following:
1. 7/1/15: $10.00/hour
2. 7/1/16: $10.50/hour
3. 7/1/17: $11.00/hour
4. 7/1/18: $12.00/hour
5. 7/1/19: $13.00/hour
All of the aforementioned minimum wage mandates will be in effect unless the state or federal government sets a wage that is higher for each year.
For employers that have tipped employees the minimum wage will change as follows:
1. 7/1/15: $5.45/hour
2. 7/1/16: $5.95/hour
3. Starting 7/1/17, the wage will increase yearly based on CPI
(1) any employer employing fewer than 4 employees, exclusive of members of his immediate family;
(2) employees providing domestic service in or about private homes;
(3) outside salesmen;
(4) employees of religious corporations or organization whose functions are spiritual or religious, i.e., priests, rabbis,
ministers, nuns, reverends, and other such individuals who perform similar functions as their primary duties;
(5) employees of college/university work-study programs;
(6) drivers of commercial vehicles who are subject to state and federal hours-of-service regulations
(7) The city minimum wage law will allow for a 90 day training wage of $0.50 less than the current state minimum wage.
(8) Both the learner’s exemption and the exemption for people with certain disabilities as provided by state law will remain.
(9) Employees of other units of local government with offices in Chicago, state and federal employees that work in the city and employees of the Chicago Public Schools, Park District, Transit Authority, City Colleges, Housing Authority and the Public Building Commission are all exempt from the requirements of the minimum wage law.
(10) Subsidized temporary youth employment program and transitional employment programs are exempt from the law if such programs are coordinated by the government or non-profit entities.
Other issues of note:
The minimum wage law can be waived under a collective bargaining agreement.
All employers must post a notice at the business location informing employees of the law and their rights under the law. A private right of action is established.
An employer who violates the minimum wage law could get their application for a license denied and could be barred from doing business with the city.
Fines/fees for violating the ordinance will be assessed.
It is our understanding that the Mayor will hold this ordinance until the General Assembly amends the state minimum wage law during the legislative veto session in November/December. Although, we cannot guarantee that his position won’t change between now and then. CRMA will have ongoing discussions with the Mayor’s office and Council members until the ordinance has a hearing.
Please click here to read the proposed ordinance and contact your Alderman to voice your opinion regarding this important ordinance.
PLASTIC BAG ORDINANCE:
Sponsors: Alderman Moreno, Cardenas, Austin and O'Shea
- Prohibits stores from providing plastic bags to customers
- Stores are retailers that have three or more locations having common ownership, or any retailer that is part of a franchise
- Restaurants are exempt
- Stores must provide reusable bags, recyclable paper bags or commercially compostable bags or any combination thereof
- Stores must establish an in-store collection program for recycling plastic bags, except for stores that are prohibited from offering plastic bags and except for restaurants and any store that is not a chain store
- Stores over 10,000 sq. ft. will have an effective date of 8/1/15 and stores 10,000 sq. ft. or less will have an effective date of 8/1/16
to read the substitute ordinance which passed committee click here
SUNDAY LIQUOR SALES WILL START AT 8AM
Alderman Pat O'Connor sponsored a proposed ordinance to allow the sale of alcohol for certain packaged good licensees at 8am on Sundays which passed in the Committee on License and Consumer Protection. The ordinance will allow supermarkets (food stores with at least 10,000 sq. ft. of retail sales space where the sale of liquor does not comprise more than 25% of the floor area devoted to retail sales) to sell alcohol on Sundays starting at 8am instead of the current 11am. Supermarkets would have to submit plans for the store that specify the floor area and location of alcohol sales as well as pay a $250 fee for the plan review. The ordinance also deletes the provision that currently allows all packaged goods license holders to sell alcohol at 8am on Sundays if Sunday falls on Christmas Eve or New Year’s Eve.
To review full ordinance click here
SUNDAY PAID PARKING
The following streets will have paid parking on Sundays:
North Broadway from Diversey Parkway to Cuyler Avenue
North Halsted Street from Barry Avenue to Dakin Street
North Clark Street from Diversey to Byron Street
Belmont-Racine east to Broadway
MAYOR EMANUEL ANNOUNCES NEW ONLINE TOOLS FOR SMALL BUSINESSES
New Small Business Center Site Now Available in both English and Spanish;
Site Selector Site Will Help Business Owners Search for Everything from Commercial Properties to Zoning Requirements and Available Incentives
Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced today two online tools to help small business owners access critical services that will help them get started and grow. The first is a website for the Small Business Center (SBC), available in English and Spanish that will serve as a one stop shop for entrepreneurs and business owners. The second, which was completed in conjunction with World Business Chicago, is a new and improved Site Selector tool to help small businesses search for commercial sites available for lease or sale. Both sites were developed in cooperation with the Mayor’s Innovation Delivery Team and following consultations with businesses and the Mayor’s Small Business Advisory Council.
“Small businesses are the backbone of our economy and I am committed to making City Hall a partner to these job creators,” said Mayor Rahm Emanuel. “These new online tools will help Chicago’s small business owners access the resources they need to not only open their doors in Chicago, but succeed.”
The new SBC website, which can be accessed HERE, allows business owners to access important information in a customer-friendly layout and includes the following features:
- Financial assistance tool – Helps direct businesses to the appropriate resources based on their needs. It also contains information about workshops and an updated directory of financing opportunities including microloans, traditional loans, grants, and tax credits
- Interactive map with services across the city – The map helps small business owners find supportive services in their neighborhood, including Neighborhood Business Development Centers, Alderman Offices, and Illinois Small Business Development Centers.
- Business Licensing Factsheets for individual license categories – For the first time, business owners will find fact sheets explaining the business license types, the cost of each license, and which inspections will be necessary for common license types.
The Site Selector tool, which can be accessed HERE, is a free service for small business owners looking for commercial and industrial space in Chicago. The tool also helps brokers and property owners promote available properties in the city. Neighborhood Business Development Centers (NBDC) will work with local property owners to identify properties in their communities that are for lease though not listed with a broker and will post availability on Site Selector. Posting and searching for listings are both free.
“Site Selector is great for potential business owners looking for properties. Not only does it help locate available properties, it includes a lot of information like the properties zoning which is critical to making a good choice,” said Dan Stratis Vice President & Managing Broker, @properties Commercial.
Listings are sourced by the NBDCs and 120 independent Chicago brokers, and maintained by the Small Business Center. To date, there are 757 retail listings and 405 office space listings.
“Site Selector has helped us develop new relationships with brokers and owner and we work together to promote our available sites,” said Roger Sosa, Back of the Yards Neighborhood Association.
Site Selector was developed by World Business Chicago, the city’s economic development arm responsible for business attraction, expansion, and retention. Initially unveiled in beta in 2011, today’s launch marks Site Selector’s emergence as a full-featured product supporting the site location needs of businesses both large and small.
“Site Selector allows users to utilize map layers including industrial corridors, universities, City-owned property, and incentives, in order to visualize the location that would best meet their needs,” said World Business Chicago President & CEO Jeff Malehorn. “This is a unique and easily accessible resource that businesses can use as a first step in the site selection process.”
Chicago is one of five cities to receive an Innovation Delivery Team grant from Bloomberg Philanthropies. Since launching in November 2011, the Mayor’s Innovation Delivery Team has spearheaded a business license reform ordinance that reduced the number of license categories by 60 percent and helped design the Small Business Center to serve as a one-stop-shop for small businesses.
Part of Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Mayors Project, Innovation Delivery Team grants were also awarded to Atlanta, Louisville, Memphis, and New Orleans.
The State of Illinois passed Firearm
Conceal and Carry Act.
This act allows individuals in possession of a concealed carry license (CCL) in the State of Illinois to:
- carry a loaded or unloaded concealed handgun, fully concealed or partially concealed, on or about his or her person, and
keep or carry a loaded or unloaded concealed firearm on or about his or her person within a vehicle.
|Press Release Date: October 11, 2013|
Signs Can Be Posted & Must Meet Regulatory Requirements
SPRINGFIELD – Illinois State Police Officials today released information on regulatory requirements for concealed carry signage under the Firearm Concealed Carry Act (430 ILCS 66/1, et. seq.).
Individuals licensed to carry a concealed firearm under the Firearm Concealed Carry Act are prohibited from carrying a firearm on, or into, any of the prohibited areas listed under Section 65 of the statute. Private property owners may also prohibit individuals from carrying a concealed firearm on, or into, property under their control.
Owners of any statutorily prohibited area or private property, excluding residences, where the owner prohibits the carrying of firearms must clearly and conspicuously post the Illinois State Police approved sign, in accordance with 430 ILCS 66/1, at the entrance of the building, premises or real property:
HB183, Section 65 (Prohibited Areas) (d) Signs stating that the carrying of firearms is prohibited shall be clearly and conspicuously posted at the entrance of a building, premises, or real property specified in this Section as a prohibited area, unless the building or premises is a private residence. Signs shall be of a uniform design as established by the Department and shall be 4 inches by 6 inches in size…. Please refer to Section 65 (Prohibited Areas) for more information on statutory regulatory requirements for signage as well as where concealed weapons are prohibited.
Pursuant to Section 65(d) of the Firearms Concealed Carry Act, signs must be of a uniform design and the Illinois State Police is responsible for adopting rules for standardized signs. The Illinois State Police has proposed rules which require a white background; no text (except the reference to the Illinois Code 430 ILCS 66/1) or marking within the one-inch area surrounding the graphic design; a depiction of a handgun in black ink with a circle around and diagonal slash across the firearm in red ink; and that the image be 4 inches in diameter. The sign in its entirety will measure 4 in x 6 in.
The Illinois State Police’s proposed administrative rules allow the design and posting of a larger sign if the property owner believes the entrance of the building, premises or real property requires it. The administrative rules proposed by the Illinois State Police would also permit a larger sign to include additional language. These administrative rules have been filed with the Illinois Secretary of State pursuant to the Illinois Administrative Procedure Act
HERE IS THE OFFICIAL SIGN FOR YOUR BUSINESS:
(1) Any building, real property, and parking area under
the control of a public or private elementary or secondary
(2) Any building, real property, and parking area under
the control of a pre-school or child care facility,
including any room or portion of a building under the
control of a pre-school or child care facility. Nothing in
this paragraph shall prevent the operator of a child care
facility in a family home from owning or possessing a
firearm in the home or license under this Act, if no child
under child care at the home is present in the home or the
firearm in the home is stored in a locked container when a
child under child care at the home is present in the home.
(3) Any building, parking area, or portion of a
building under the control of an officer of the executive
or legislative branch of government, provided that nothing
in this paragraph shall prohibit a licensee from carrying a
concealed firearm onto the real property, bikeway, or trail
in a park regulated by the Department of Natural Resources
or any other designated public hunting area or building
where firearm possession is permitted as established by the
Department of Natural Resources under Section 1.8 of the
(4) Any building designated for matters before a
circuit court, appellate court, or the Supreme Court, or
HB0183 Enrolled LRB098 05760 MGM 35799 b
Public Act 098-0063any building or portion of a building under the control of
the Supreme Court.
(5) Any building or portion of a building under the
control of a unit of local government.
(6) Any building, real property, and parking area under
the control of an adult or juvenile detention or
correctional institution, prison, or jail.
(7) Any building, real property, and parking area under
the control of a public or private hospital or hospital
affiliate, mental health facility, or nursing home.
(8) Any bus, train, or form of transportation paid for
in whole or in part with public funds, and any building,
real property, and parking area under the control of a
public transportation facility paid for in whole or in part
with public funds.
(9) Any building, real property, and parking area under
the control of an establishment that serves alcohol on its
premises, if more than 50% of the establishment's gross
receipts within the prior 3 months is from the sale of
alcohol. The owner of an establishment who knowingly fails
to prohibit concealed firearms on its premises as provided
in this paragraph or who knowingly makes a false statement
or record to avoid the prohibition on concealed firearms
under this paragraph is subject to the penalty under
subsection (c-5) of Section 10-1 of the Liquor Control Act
HB0183 Enrolled LRB098 05760 MGM 35799 b
Public Act 098-0063(10) Any public gathering or special event conducted on
property open to the public that requires the issuance of a
permit from the unit of local government, provided this
prohibition shall not apply to a licensee who must walk
through a public gathering in order to access his or her
residence, place of business, or vehicle.
(11) Any building or real property that has been issued
a Special Event Retailer's license as defined in Section
1-3.17.1 of the Liquor Control Act during the time
designated for the sale of alcohol by the Special Event
Retailer's license, or a Special use permit license as
defined in subsection (q) of Section 5-1 of the Liquor
Control Act during the time designated for the sale of
alcohol by the Special use permit license.
(12) Any public playground.
(13) Any public park, athletic area, or athletic
facility under the control of a municipality or park
district, provided nothing in this Section shall prohibit a
licensee from carrying a concealed firearm while on a trail
or bikeway if only a portion of the trail or bikeway
includes a public park.
(14) Any real property under the control of the Cook
County Forest Preserve District.
(15) Any building, classroom, laboratory, medical
clinic, hospital, artistic venue, athletic venue,
entertainment venue, officially recognized
HB0183 Enrolled LRB098 05760 MGM 35799 b
Public Act 098-0063university-related organization property, whether owned or
leased, and any real property, including parking areas,
sidewalks, and common areas under the control of a public
or private community college, college, or university.
(16) Any building, real property, or parking area under
the control of a gaming facility licensed under the
Riverboat Gambling Act or the Illinois Horse Racing Act of
1975, including an inter-track wagering location licensee.
(17) Any stadium, arena, or the real property or
parking area under the control of a stadium, arena, or any
collegiate or professional sporting event.
(18) Any building, real property, or parking area under
the control of a public library.
(19) Any building, real property, or parking area under
the control of an airport.
(20) Any building, real property, or parking area under
the control of an amusement park.
(21) Any building, real property, or parking area under
the control of a zoo or museum.
(22) Any street, driveway, parking area, property,
building, or facility, owned, leased, controlled, or used
by a nuclear energy, storage, weapons, or development site
or facility regulated by the federal Nuclear Regulatory
Commission. The licensee shall not under any circumstance
store a firearm or ammunition in his or her vehicle or in a
compartment or container within a vehicle located anywhere
HB0183 Enrolled LRB098 05760 MGM 35799 b
Public Act 098-0063in or on the street, driveway, parking area, property,
building, or facility described in this paragraph.
(23) Any area where firearms are prohibited under
(a-5) Nothing in this Act shall
E-CIGARETTES January 15, 2014
CITY COUNCIL APPROVES ORDINANCE TO REGULATE E-CIGARETTES AS TOBACCO PRODUCTS
City Council today approved an ordinance that will regulate electronic cigarettes as “tobacco products” in the City of Chicago pending further regulations from the Food and Drug Administration. The new policy bans the distribution and sale of e-cigarettes to minors and moves e-cigarettes from in front of the counter to behind the counter in stores where they are sold, making it more difficult for youth to access. The ordinance also prohibits the use of e-cigarettes in restaurants, sports venues, and everywhere else cigarettes are banned and requires e-cigarette dealers to be licensed. Since the Mayor announced that he was joining with City Council members and community groups to support this ordinance, New York City and Los Angeles have taken up similar proposals. Read more here
State court strikes down Illinois Main Street Fairness Act
The Illinois Supreme Court's decided to strike down the Main Street Fairness Act on Oct. 18.
Illinois Governor Pat Quinn signed into law the Main Street Fairness Act in March 2011, requiring all online retailers doing business in Illinois to collect sales tax for the state. But a Cook County judge declared the law unconstitutional in April 2012.
"It's disappointing that the Illinois Supreme Court did not address the constitutionality of the issue, but rather erred in its conclusion that the act violated the Internet Tax Freedom act," IRMA President & CEO David F. Vite said.
The new law was meant to close a painful loophole in Illinois by forcing internet companies to treat a sale as a sale, no matter whether it was done over a counter top or with a keyboard and mouse. Illinois has been losing hundreds of millions of dollars in tax revenue because out-of-state companies willfully evaded their responsibility to collect Illinois sales taxes.
The Illinois Department of Revenue appealed that ruling with the Illinois State Supreme Court in 2012 and IRMA supported the appeal by filing an Amicus Brief on the case. The Brief was filed in partnership with the City of Chicago and the Illinois Municipal League.
Illinois has been losing an estimated $1 billion in uncollected sales tax revenue because out-of-state companies willfully evaded their responsibility to collect state sales taxes. With no federal law in place to force those remote sellers to collect sales tax without a nexus, or a physical location, consumers find it cheaper to buy online.
When online retailers do not collect sales tax, the tax is still owed and the responsibility falls to the customer who is required under current law to report and pay use tax to the state on these purchases. The Main Street Fairness Act was the state's answer to the problem: the law stated that if any remote seller was connected to affiliates with physical locations in Illinois, it would have to either drop those affiliates or start collecting sales taxes for online sales.
Some online retailers, such as Amazon.com and Overstock.com, responded to the law by severing ties with local affiliates in order to avoid paying taxes.
In May, the U.S. Senate voted for the federal Marketplace Fairness Act, requiring Internet sellers with $1 million a year or more in sales outside their home states to collect each state's sales tax. The U.S. House has not voted on the Act.
Vite said the court's decision underscores the need for action in Washington to quickly pass the Marketplace Fairness Act. Until then, sales tax collection laws continue to depend on both where and how a retailer is selling to customers.
"Working with a hodgepodge of laws around the country is intolerable and brick and mortar retailers continue to be at a substantial disadvantage to their online competitors," Vite said.
Public Safety Annoucement
Public safety continues to be a top concern in our community, particularly as crime rates traditionally increase in warmer weather. We encourage you to attend your next CAPS Beat meeting and work with your officers and neighbors to reduce instances of crime in your neighborhood.
Visit the Chicago Police Department website or call 311 to find your beat and upcoming meetings; even if you know your beat, double check as many beats and meetings changed after the 19th and 23rd police district merger earlier this year.
- Restaurant Start-Up Guide
- How to Apply for a City of Chicago Liquor License
- City of Chicago Licensing, Permits and Inspections 101
- Public Way/Grant of Priviledge Permit Application
- Bundle Permit Public Way Use Application
- Home Rule Tax Changes for 2013
- Is Your Business Wheelchair Accessible?
Free Business Education Workshops
The City of Chicago Business Affairs is offers free workshops each month. All workshops are FREE and are located at the City of Chicago Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection City Hall, 121 N. LaSalle St., Room 805.