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Council to Clean Up Outdated Regulations for Small Biz

Council will recommend changes to nit-picky regulations that vex owners, New York Post says.

The city council announced on Tuesday that they will be going through “outdated and onerous laws” that have slapped small businesses with hefty fines, and will recommend that the Bloomberg administration change or remove them from the books, according to the New York Post.

Some of the more obscure laws that the council will take another look at are: requiring companies to put their business-license numbers on business cards and mandating large signs instructing customers to call 311 with complaints.

“We could fill up a wall with all the signage that’s required,” Robert Bookman, an attorney representing business owners, told the Post.

Bookman cited the story of an Upper West Side newsstand operator, who was recently fined for making the 311 sign too small – 8 1/2-by-11 inches instead of 11-by-17 inches.

In July, Public Advocate Bill de Blasio charged that the city wasn’t complying with his request for information about the fines given to small businesses since 2002.

"We need answers about what this ‘fine-first, ask questions later’ enforcement is doing to our small businesses and their ability to survive in this economy,” de Blasio said in a statement.

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