Dewey businesses should pay fair share

July 19, 2013

The Dewey Beach Town Council will this Friday decide whether to place a referendum on a gross receipts tax on the ballot this fall. Frankly, I don’t know what there is to discuss. Let the town’s voters decide this issue. I call on the council to green-light this referendum.


Dewey Beach needs a steady stream of revenue to take the town into the future. Too many of its income producers (transfer tax, parking fees, etc.) are too unpredictable. The business community needs to step up to the plate and do their part.


The small gross receipts tax under consideration would cost businesses nothing. Any tax will be passed on to their customers. Are the worried that their customers, when the find out that a $3 beer now costs $3.09, will go to Rehoboth or Fenwick Island? Nonsense. Dewey’s summer inhabitants come to Dewey for Dewey, and aren’t going to be deterred by a few cents’ tax. And no one else will put up with their customers anyway. No one.


As a property owner who rents my house out, I am already paying my share. First, I pay a license fee. Second, my tenants pay a 3 percent accommodations tax. In essence, as a small business owner, I am contributing, through my tenants, a gross receipts tax.


I am doing my part. In fact, I am doing more than my part. My one rental property isn’t the reason we need an army of seasonal police. It’s the businesses, especially the bars, which need to pay for this army. They cause the problems; let them pay for the solutions.


Gene SirLouis

Washington, D.C.

Dewey Beach


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