Canton OKs penalty waivers, payment plans for overdue fees

The Canton City Council has authorized staff to waive penalties and negotiate payment plans for business fees and utility payments overdue as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. CITY OF CANTON
The Canton City Council has authorized staff to waive penalties and negotiate payment plans for business fees and utility payments overdue as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. CITY OF CANTON

Seeking to give a break to businesses and residents hammered by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Canton City Council has authorized staff to waive certain penalties and late fees for licenses, excise taxes and utility payments.

As companies have sought relief from the city on business license renewals, staff has been granting extensions of payments and waiving late fees through the end of May, City Manager Billy Peppers told the council. The city also has been calling businesses that had not sent in their renewals to ask if they too needed extensions, and has opted not to shut off due to nonpayment essential utilities such as water and sewer services.

Peppers asked the council to approve a measure that would let staff work with customers to create payment plans so they can catch up on their accounts and not be charged penalties during the current fiscal year. The measure applies to business license renewals through May 31, excise tax payments due for the months of February through May, and utility accounts through the May billing cycle.