By Tiffeny Owens
The Cullman Times
It’s that time of year again. Time for Cullman County businesses to renew their annual business licenses with the probate office.
Renewal notices have gone out and clerks have already begun processing new licenses good through September 30, 2014, said Cullman County Probate Judge Tammy Brown.
“You can not legally conduct business without first purchasing a business license,” Brown said. “For the most part, everyone gets their license renewed each year. We have probably less than 10 percent of the businesses that don’t make it by the Oct. 31 deadline.”
County business licenses can be purchased one of two ways: via mail (which includes a $2 fee) or by visiting the probate office on the first floor of the Cullman County Courthouse. Licenses can also be purchased at the probate office’s three satellite offices: Dodge City Town Hall, Hanceville City Hall or the Baileyton sheriff’s substation.
Brown said her office has sent out 2,825 renewal notices. Those who do not renew their business licenses by Oct. 31 will face a penalty of 15 percent of the total license cost plus interest (based on the state’s guidelines) that is calculated daily.
Brown advised county business owners who do business in cities like Cullman to check with municipalities to see if they need to obtain an additional city business license.
Examples of various types of business licenses include: auctioneers, automobile dealers, fireworks, pawnbrokers, handguns and knives and shotguns, rifles and ammunitions.
Once the probate office issues business licenses, it is then the sales tax office’s responsibility to enforce the laws related to businesses turning in their monthly sales tax.
“We have a very good working relationship with our sales tax office, and they do a good job for us,” Brown said.
Business licenses generated $80,000 in revenue for the county this past year.
For more information, call the Cullman County Probate Office at 256-775-4802 or 256-775-4859 or go online to cullmancourts.org.
* Tiffeny Owens can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 256-734-2131, ext. 135.