(Chuan D. Vo photos for RedEye )
Making an establishment more dog friendly could get a lot easier – and cheaper – for Chicago restaurants.
Under a proposed consolidation of business licensing the City Council is scheduled to consider Wednesday, a separate license for "dog-friendly" areas at bars or restaurants will be eliminated, according to Jennifer Lipford, Director of Public Information in the city's office of Business Affairs and Consumer protection.
While the rules regarding dogs at businesses won't change–pets still can't eat inside while food is being served and they must remain in a designated area–businesses won't need to apply for a separate, $125 license.
"What they will need to do is list it on the new license application," she said. If approved by the city council, the new rules will go into effect Jan. 1, 2013.
"Since, the licenses have seen a rise in popularity. By the end of 2008, 58 businesses had paid for dog-friendly privileges. Currently, 98 businesses hold the licenses."
The city had required the separate license for businesses since 2008, issuing the first license to Blackie's at 756 S. Clark Street. Since, there's been 98 businesses in Chicago that have tacked on the additional license for dog-friendly areas.