Business Licensing & Taxes
This page contains information about business licensing and taxes in Elkins. Scroll down to learn more.
All businesses located in or performing work in Elkins must have and display a city business license. This includes businesses located in Elkins who transact all of their business outside of Elkins.
Business licenses are issued for the period of the city’s fiscal year, i.e., July 1 of one year through June 30 of the following year.
Before applying for a business license, you must first:
- Apply for a zoning permit, to ensure that your business is allowed to operate in the proposed location (click here for more information)
- Obtain a state business license (you will need to provide a copy to the Treasurer’s Department)
Forms and payment may be submitted by mail or in person at City Hall. Acceptable forms of payment include cash, money orders, personal checks, and debit or credit cards.
Street Vendor Licensing
Effective September 19, 2019, any person licensed as a vendor as defined by City Code Ch. 17 Article II, must also be issued a street vendor license and operate in accordance with the provisions as outlined here.
Before applying for a street vendor license, you must first:
- Fill out an application
- You may download and completed it offline but it must be submitted to the Treasurer’s Office in person
- Depending upon the type of business and the vendor’s location, other documentation may be required at the time of the application
- Vendors participating in approved fairs and festivals within the city will not be required to obtain a separate license for that particular event
Business & Occupation Tax
Business and occupation (B&O) taxes are charged against your gross business income, at various rates for different categories of business. If you operate a business licensed in Elkins, you must file business tax returns even for years in which you had no business income. Revenues from this tax are deposited into the city’s general fund.
The table below shows the B&O tax rates charged by the City of Elkins. For example, to take the top line of the table, the tax rate on coal production is 0.69 percent, or 69 cents for every $100 of gross income.
|Business Classification||Tax (as percentage of gross receipts)|
|Sand, gravel, or other mineral product not quarried or mined||1.94|
|Oil, blast furnace slag||1.94|
|Natural gas in excess of $250 quarterly||3.88|
|Limestone or sandstone quarried or mined||1.00|
|Other natural resource products||1.38|
|Selling tangible property (retailers, restaurants, etc.)||0.20|
|Wholesalers and jobbers||0.13|
|Electric light and power companies; domestic and commercial lighting||4.00|
|Electric Light & Power Companies; all other sales and demand charges||3.00|
|Natural gas companies||3.00|
|All other public service or utility business||1.31|
|Service or calling; and all other business||0.50|
|Rentals, royalties, fees and otherwise||0.50|
|Banking and other financial business||0.75|
Another category of tax charged to businesses in Elkins is hotel/motel tax. As permitted under state code, the City of Elkins charges hotel and motel operators a tax on the cost of each occupied room. As per city ordinance 180, approved September 4, 2014, the current rate charged is 6 percent. The tax is due and payable monthly, on or before the fifteenth day of the calendar month next succeeding the month in which the tax accrued. The Treasurer’s Department sends a year’s worth of tax return forms to each hotel and motel operating inside city limits before July 1 of each year.
Who Must Pay Hotel/Motel Tax?
The definition of “hotel” used by Ordinance 180 is provided below:
“‘Hotel’ means any facility, building or buildings, publicly or privately owned (including a facility located in a state, county or municipal park), in which the public may, for a consideration, obtain sleeping accommodations. The term shall include, but not be limited to, boarding houses, hotels, motels, inns, courts, condominiums, lodges, cabins and tourist homes. The term “hotel” shall include state, county and city parks offering accommodations as herein set forth. The term “hotel” shall not be construed to mean any hospital, sanitarium, extended care facility, nursing home or university or college housing unit, or any facility providing fewer than three rooms in private homes, not exceeding a total of ten days in a calendar year, nor any tent, trailer or camper campsites: Provided, that where a university or college housing unit provides sleeping accommodations for the general nonstudent public for a consideration, the term “hotel” shall, if otherwise applicable, apply to such accommodations for the purposes of this tax.”
What Hotel/Motel Tax Pays For
Fifty percent of the revenues from this tax are appropriated to the city’s convention and visitor’s bureau. The balance is used for the support of city parks and recreation facilities, beautification projects, and similar uses, as stipulated by West Virginia Code §7-18-14.