Since becoming Mayor, I have heard from many Chicago business owners about the maze of red tape they have to navigate in order to get started and growing. Too many Chicago business owners believe that City Hall is an obstacle to growing their businesses and creating jobs. When I took office, I pledged to make government more effective by delivering better services for a lower cost. Last month, my administration made a down payment on this commitment when the City Council passed an ordinance to reduce the number of business licenses by 60 percent. This month, I launched the first in a series of inspections reforms that will reduce the number of required inspections visits, modernize the scheduling of inspections, make inspectors more consistent, and increase inspectors’ focus on higher-risk buildings and businesses.
My reforms begin with new restaurants. This month, I am proud to introduce a new Restaurant Start-up Program that will simplify and streamline the process for getting a restaurant started in the city, making it easier for restaurant owners to focus on attracting customers and hiring workers. To learn more about this new program, visit www.cityofchicago.org/restaurant. This fall, we will cut the number of inspections visits for all restaurants by improving coordination and eliminating redundant inspections.
Over the course of the coming six months, my administration will implement addition reforms that will reduce the burden of inspections for all businesses while preserving health and public safety. Business owners like yourself should focus on your customers, not City Hall, and one of my top priorities as Mayor is to get government out of the way of growing your businesses and creating jobs in our neighborhoods.
In developing these reforms, my administration heard from many of you in business roundtables across the city. Let’s keep working together to ensure that Chicago remains the best place in the world to start and grow a business.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel