Business

Annual filing of Kent B&O taxes now available for qualifying businesses

For the Reporter

Qualifying businesses can now file their business and occupation (B&O) taxes annually instead of quarterly with the city of the Kent.

The change is in line with suggestions from business owners, those whose quarterly B&O taxes due were less than $250 for each quarter of 2013, to file annually.

Other qualifications include:

• Must have previously filed city B&O tax returns for 2013

• Possess a city business license

• Have paid all city B&O, admissions, gambling and utility taxes owed

• Be registered for online filing

The change will save a lot of time and effort for those qualifying businesses says city auditor Robert Goehring.

"This change will benefit about 40 percent of businesses that paid the tax last year, as well as those that filed but didn't owe any tax. From the beginning, our desire has been to partner with the business community to ensure correct filing, while also easing the administrative burden of compliance," Goehring said.

Previous filers receive email notification March 14 of their placement on annual filing status. Qualifying businesses that don't receive this notification have until March 31 to submit an application for annual filing status.

The City Council also recently approved exemptions and deductions for some non-profit organizations such as homeowners associations and labor unions, as well as deductions for initiation fees, dues, contributions, donations, and tuition.

"These changes are more generally consistent with the exemptions and deductions offered by other cities," Goehring said.

The due date for annual returns for 2014 is Jan. 31, 2015. Businesses, regardless of their filing status, are required to register with the city and file their B&O tax returns online at KentWA.gov/CityTaxes.

The online filing requirement was instituted October 2013.

"Online filing is secure, fast and free and decreases the likelihood of errors or omissions," Goehring said.

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