CROWN POINT | An attempted first business registration program is headed back to committee before a final vote by the Crown Point City Council.
Ken Christensen was one of two business owners to object to the measure, which had been set for a vote Monday by the council.
"You need to do everything in your power to encourage business," Christensen told council members. "Adding this is too onerous."
An ordinance under consideration sets a March 1 deadline to register. Timely registration is free, but failing to register can result in a $100 fine.
The council in November approved the measure on first reading and held it over for a final vote.
Council committee members who crafted the measure said Monday they'd kept it cost-free to businesses that comply to avoid creating a hardship.
"We don't want it to be a burden. That's why it's free," said Councilman Bill Feder, D-1st, chairman of the council ordinance committee.
Councilman Mark Schweitzer, R-at large, said city officials had done much to promote local business, including supporting a Shop Local campaign.
"This is not going to harm business. That is not the intention here," Schweitzer said.
The city would gain a comprehensive list of business owners and business landlords on record should public safety or other emergencies arise.
Christensen, whose scrapbooking shop Cafe Crop recently relocated to the Old Lake County Courthouse shops, wasn't convinced.
"Make it a volunteer program," he said. "Sell me on its benefits and then ask me to cooperate."
Further discussion is set for Dec. 19 at a meeting of the council ordinance committee. The meeting, in City Hall, 101 N. East St., is open to the public.