Opening an antique or secondhand shop in Minneapolis will likely soon be an easier process.
Tuesday, a City Council committee voted to update the city's rules for stores that sell used goods, lowering some licensing fees and doing away with some restrictions that had lumped many types of businesses in with pawn shops.
If approved by the full council, license fees paid by vintage and used clothing shops will drop from more than $300 to $100. Other changes include updated rules for the types of purchases and sales store owners must report to the city.
The adjustments are part of a broader effort by the city to overhaul regulations some business owners have labeled as overly burdensome. Mayor Betsy Hodges and City Attorney Susan Segal drafted a list of proposed changes earlier this year. Others, including the secondhand store updates, have been introduced by Council Member Andrew Johnson.
Before Tuesday's vote, one southwest Minneapolis secondhand store owner told council members that the moves will help encourage businesses that fit in with the city's sustainability goals.
"This de-regulation has gone a long way to help small businesses," said Andrew Brooker, who runs Piccadilly Prairie. "This is one of the greenest industries the city can support. Unlike recycling, reuse is something that takes very little effort."
Above: Antiques on display at Minneapolis shop Art and Architecture in May 2014. Ben Brewer/ Special to the Star Tribune