What does the License Collector do?

License Collector Mavis T. Thompson, Esq. featured in The St. Louis American explaining what the License Collector does for the City of St. Louis.

November 13, 2017 | 2 min reading time

This article is 4 years old. It was published on November 13, 2017.

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The License Collector’s Office is authorized by Missouri State Statute to license businesses that operate in the City of St. Louis. It is a fee-revenue-generating office which collects business license fees and distributes approximately $61 million annually to the city’s general fund and other city and state agencies, such as Saint Louis Public Schools, public libraries, MSD, and a state fund for the blind.

Pursuant to statute, a percentage of these fees are retained to operate the office, which includes over $90,000 annually for leasing office space in City Hall. The office doesn’t receive any revenue, cars or salaries from the City of St. Louis.

Since taking office, we have achieved major accomplishments, including but not limited to the following.

On track to eliminate multi-year delinquencies. To date, we have  attained 100 percent compliance from such businesses that we have contacted, resulting in an additional $100,000 of revenue.

Drafted and implemented a Comprehensive Business Closure Policy. Because our No. 1 goal is to keep businesses in business, we enforce this policy only when we have exhausted all efforts to bring a business into compliance.

Proposed ordinance to increase late fees. This is an attempt to generate more revenue for the City.

Introduced new methods of payment. Payment options now include telephone, credit, debit and online.

Increased staff salaries. This was an attempt to match staff job duties and work performance. We have currently raised the minimum salary to $12/hour for entry-level positions.

Convened forums related to business topics. Topics include tax preparation, entrepreneurship for seniors and veterans, impact of the Affordable HealthCare Act and MBE/WBE/DBE certification.

Ongoing collaboration. We work more closely with other entities that impact the licensing process.

Initiated “City Business Open House” series. At these events, businesses can showcase and/or sell their products and services in the City Hall Rotunda.

Multicultural messaging. We published informational literature in Braille, Spanish, Bosnian and Vietnamese to accommodate the evolving demographics of the city.

Clean audit. We earned a “No Deficiencies/No Recommendations” audit of our

Finance Department from the Comptroller’s Office.

Best Place to Work. We received 88.29 score from the St. Louis Business Journal’s “Best Places to Work” in St. Louis edition.

Your License Collector is at work for you. Thank you for the opportunity to serve.

Mavis Thompson is the License Collector for the City of St. Louis. She is also an Attorney and a Registered Nurse.


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