By a vote of 8 to 4, the Toledo City Council adopted new rules governing internet cafes.
Owners of the 32 internet cafes within city limits are now required to pay a $5,000 annual licensing fee with the city and a $200 fee for each computer in the establishment. Toledo city councilman Mike Collins estimates that this will generate approximately $500,000 for the city's general fund. "Well the reality of it is that the city of Toledo taxpayers are providing a service, this is not taxation," Mr. Collins said.
Joe Rigali, owner of Kings Internet Cafe on Reynolds Road, is not pleased about the new fees. "I wouldn't call it a cash grab, but myself and many of the other owners think the fees are pretty stiff," Mr. Rigali said.
Under the new legislation the cafes will be allowed to operate 24/7. Owners have until September 30 to pay the fees for the 2012 calendar year.