BOGALUSA, La. (AP) — Washington Parish officials are initiating procedures to cut down on the number of businesses that are delinquent in paying their annual occupational license fees.

The Daily News reports (http://bit.ly/PzpTll) the decision should help the cash-strapped government retrieve thousands of dollars currently in arrears.

Parish council members are also discussing potential changes to the way those fees are structured, including establishing a new fee based on a business's gross revenue.

Although the exact number is yet to be determined, parish officials acknowledge many businesses currently fail to pay the current $25 annual occupational license fee. To date, parish finance director Donna Alonzo says at least 40 businesses have been identified as delinquent in their fees, and the investigation is continuing.

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Information from: Bogalusa - Daily News , http://www.gobogalusa.com