WILLIAMSON – At a regular meeting of the Williamson City Council held Thursday evening, council voted to rescind a recently passed amendment to the cities’ Business and Occupation (B and O) tax ordinance.
The council originally approved an amendment to the B and O tax ordinance in late August which allowed for a 25 percent increase in B and O taxes. The action was rescinded because the tax increase exceeded legal maximums set by the West Virginia State Code.
Councilwoman Judy Hamrick approached the subject during the Old Business portion of the meeting’s scheduled agenda.
“We have visited the B and O ordinance issue a couple of times. Tonight, I would like to make a motion that we rescind the ordinance that was passed back to the original ordinance because of an error. I would like to make that in the form of a motion,” Hamrick stated.
The motion was seconded by Councilman Matthew Newsome. During discussion, Williamson City Clerk Larry Brown asked for clarification. “Is it for the entire amendment or just the last amendment raising the rates?” Brown questioned.
Hamrick explained that the rescinded action would only impact the B and O rates. Larry Brown responded stating, “They were above the amount allowed by law.”
Williamson Mayor, Robert Carlton responded, “We have a motion to rescind the increase in the B and O rates. The net effect of that is we found after the review of the state code that the rates will go back to the former rates which are, in fact, the maximum allowed to be charged by the state code. In other words, our ordinance would have been above what the state statutes allowed.”
Following Carlton’s statement Larry Brown said, “That was caught before billing back in August when they went into effect. No excess was collected.”
After the discussion, the council voted unanimously to rescind the B and O tax increase and return to former rates.
The Williamson City Council meets the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at 6:00 p.m. in Council Chambers at Williamson City Hall.
(Courtney Harrison is a news reporter for the Williamson Daily News. She can be contacted at [email protected] or at 304-235-4242 ext. 2279.)