COVID-19 RESPONSE: Melbourne City Council Approves Fee Waivers, Deferrals to Directly Assist Businesses
By Space Coast Daily // April 22, 2020
designed to directly assist businesses
BREVARD COUNTY • MELBOURNE, FLORIDA – Recognizing that many of Melbourne’s businesses have been severely impacted by COVID-19, the Melbourne City Council approved at its special meeting on Tuesday night a package of temporary fee waivers and deferrals designed to directly assist businesses, including:
• Waiver of special activity application fees for business promotions.
• Waiver of review fees for building and fire prevention for small businesses (500 or fewer employees) repair or improvement permits under $25,000 in value. Review of plans by Code Compliance and payment of inspection fees will still be required.
• Waiver of review fees for Historic and Architectural Review Board.
• Waiver of On-Site Outdoor Seating application review fees for on-site seating and allowance for all restaurants to create or expand outdoor seating up to the allowed occupancy level once permitted to re-open by the Governor. This includes the allowance to place outdoor seating within parking or landscaped areas as approved by the City.
• Elimination of code enforcement fines by encouraging compliance in lieu of fines, except in cases of serious health or safety concerns.
• Deferral of Fire Inspection fees.
Waivers will stay in place until September 30, 2020. All applications and permits would still be required to be reviewed and approved by the City, however, no fees will be charged.
In addition to providing fee waivers to help businesses recover, the City is also participating in a collaborative effort to help market local businesses as they begin to re-open.
“Since the beginning of the COIVID-19 emergency, the City of Melbourne has made a conscious effort to keep essential City services available for residents and businesses, particularly the services for the development and business communities,” said City of Melbourne Public Information Officer Cheryl Mall.
City staff along with representatives from Melbourne Regional Chamber, Melbourne Main Street, Eau Gallie Arts District, and the Orlando Melbourne International Airport have formed a task force that has been meeting once a week to discuss ideas and develop plans to promote the re-emergence of Melbourne’s business community through a “Melbourne: Back in Business campaign.”
“Although projects and development are continuing to move forward in the City of Melbourne, COVID-19 has changed the economic landscape for many in the small business community,” said Mayor Kathy Meehan.
“Now more than ever, it is important for the city and business community to work cooperatively and creatively to help small businesses and residents rebuild and recover from the effects of the Coronavirus pandemic.”
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