Cottonwood Heights (23/50)(1 is most free, 50 is least free)
To learn what the below scores mean and how they were calculated, read our ranking methodology.
Individual Liberty (41/50)
This category compiles scores on 17 different data points to determine how well Cottonwood Heights respects and protects the liberty of its citizens.
|Code Accessiblity||35||10%||This city's laws are available online and in a searchable PDF document.||PDF document format|
|Dog Licensing||3||10%||Depending on whether the dog is fixed or not and the length of the license you purchase, licensing fees for each dog ranges from $5. to $25.||Link|
|Free Speech||30||15%||This city requires a permit to stage a protest on public property, but does not require a fee.||14-56-050|
|Daytime Curfew||1||10%||This city does not impose a daytime curfew on minors.|
|Vice Regulation||34||10%||This city exceeds the regulations of state law on public consumption of alcohol by prohibiting beer in all public places. Smoking is also prohibited in certain outdoor areas.||10-36-065, 14-65-040|
|Campaign Contribution Limits||1||10%||This city does not regulate free speech by imposing a limit on campaign contributions for city elections|
|Loitering||48||10%||The loitering laws in this city prohibit wandering or lingering without apparent reason or at an unusual time or place.||10-36-070|
|Violation of Ordinances||11||10%||While some ordinances may impose a specific penalty, in Cottonwood Heights the default penalty for a violation of any city ordinance, if not specified, is a class B misdemeanor which carries a fine of up to $1,000.||1-08-020, Per city staff|
|Gun Regulation||8||15%||Under authority granted from state law, Cottonwood Heights has chosen to regulate the discharge of firearms in city limits; however, the city's law does make an exception for self-defense.||10-64-030|
Private Property (4/50)
63 different data points are included in this category to discern the degree to which Cottonwood Heights respects and protects private property rights.
|Conditional Use Permit Fees||12||10%||The cost of a conditional use permit is $150.||Fee Schedule|
|Home Building Fees||2||10%||The total cost of permit fees for building a typical single family home is $3,025. This includes $1,834 in permit fees, no impact fees, no site plan approval fees, and $1,191 in plan check fees.||Per city staff|
|Animal Restrictions||11||15%||Chickens are permitted in at least one residential zone with a $25 permit. Beehives are permitted in residential zones without a permit. Assuming a lot size of 0.15 acres, this city only allows you to have 3 dogs, allows 6 chickens, and 5 beehives.||Animal Regulations, 8-13|
|Short-term Rentals||17||15%||This city prohibits property owners from renting their residential property on a short-term basis as is often done through services like Airbnb and VRBO.||19.89, and per city staff|
|Taxes & Cost of Government||5||30%||The cost of government in Cottonwood Heights as a share of the total taxable economic base is $40 per $10,000. As a share of total personal income, the cost is $172 per $10,000. On a per capita basis, the cost is $420. The city gets 47% of its tax revenue from property taxes, 36% of its tax revenue from sales tax, and 17% from other sources including fees and fines.||City Financial Statements|
|Bonded Debt||1||15%||The city does not have any bonded debt.||City Financial Statements|
|Lobbying||1||5%||This city does not employ lobbyists to represent the city.||Per Records Request|
This city also has restrictive land use ordinances that violate property rights.
Free Enterprise (41/50)
The final category includes 35 different data points in an effort to review Cottonwood Heights's protection—or violation—of the free market.
|City-owned Enterprises||30||15%||This city owns 4 enterprises that could instead be offered by the private market: a redevelopment agency; a garbage collection service; a recycling service; a water park;||City Financial Statements|
|Beer Sale Restrictions||21||10%||This city regulates the retail sale of beer by prohibiting sales from 1 am to 7 am.||5-24-290|
|Alcohol Licensing||18||10%||The city requires $300 for a retail beer license, $300 for a restaurant license, and $300 for a tavern license.||City Fee Schedule|
|Sales Tax||41||20%||This city imposes a combined sales tax rate of 6.85% on its citizens. Additionally, residents are required to pay a RAP tax at the rate of 0.1%. The city also has a municipal energy tax rate of 6.0%, a transient room tax at 5.75%, and a leasing tax at 7.5%.||State Tax Commission|
|Business Licensing||40||35%||This city charges the following licensing fees: $100 for a home occupation license; $170 for a small commercial license; $5510 for a large commercial license; $118 for a temporary firework stand; $118 for a temporary christmas tree lot; and $50 for two solicitor licenses.||City Fee Schedule|
|Commerce Regulations||42||10%||Cottonwood Heights prohibits excavations on Sunday. No dancing is allowed between 1am and 7am on any day. Pawn shops cannot be open between 10pm and 7am. All forms of restaurant entertainment (including dancing, singing, stand-up comedy, etc) are not allowed between 1am and 8am. Billiard halls must shut down between 2am and 6am. Card or game rooms must shut down between 1am and 7am. And no sales of valuable items at auction may occur between 6pm and 8am.||5-38-140|