The 2015 Utah's Freest Cities Ranking

Bountiful (9/50)(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 (6/50)

This category compiles scores on 17 different data points to determine how well Bountiful respects and protects the liberty of its citizens.

Metric Rank Category Weight Description Reference
Code Accessiblity3510%This city's laws are available online and in a searchable PDF document.PDF document format
Dog Licensing2310%Depending on whether the dog is fixed or not and the length of the license you purchase, licensing fees for each dog ranges from $8.33 to $40.6-32-010 (Davis County)
Free Speech115%This city does not require a permit to stage a protest on public property.
Daytime Curfew110%This city does not impose a daytime curfew on minors.
Vice Regulation3410%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.6-12-109(g), Davis County regulation
Campaign Contribution Limits110%This city does not regulate free speech by imposing a limit on campaign contributions for city elections
Loitering110%The city does not include any specific loitering laws in its code.
Violation of Ordinances210%While some ordinances may impose a specific penalty, in Bountiful the default penalty for a violation of any city ordinance, if not specified, is a class C misdemeanor which carries a fine of up to $750.1-4-101
Gun Regulation815%Under authority granted from state law, Bountiful has chosen to regulate the discharge of firearms in city limits; however, the city's law does make an exception for self-defense.10-1-109(c)

Private Property (10/50)

63 different data points are included in this category to discern the degree to which Bountiful respects and protects private property rights.

Metric Rank Category Weight Description Reference
Conditional Use Permit Fees2010%The cost of a conditional use permit is $200. Additionally, the city may charge a fee of $50 for a hearing.Application
Fee Schedule
Home Building Fees3510%The total cost of permit fees for building a typical single family home is $9,710. This includes $1,834 in permit fees, $7,876 in impact fees, no site plan approval fees, and no plan check fees.Per city staff
Animal Restrictions2215%Chickens are permitted in at least one residential zone with a $5 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 2 dogs, allows 8 chickens, and 5 beehives.8-2-113, 14-22-101, 8-04-104
Short-term Rentals1715%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.Per city staff
Taxes & Cost of Government830%The cost of government in Bountiful as a share of the total taxable economic base is $55 per $10,000. As a share of total personal income, the cost is $209 per $10,000. On a per capita basis, the cost is $429. The city gets 21% of its tax revenue from property taxes, 36% of its tax revenue from sales tax, and 43% from other sources including fees and fines.City Financial Statements
Bonded Debt1015%The city does not have any general obligation debt. However, if counting revenue bonds, the city's debt limit utilization would be 3.60%.City Financial Statements
Lobbying15%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 (17/50)

The final category includes 35 different data points in an effort to review Bountiful's protection—or violation—of the free market.

Metric Rank Category Weight Description Reference
City-owned Enterprises3015%This city owns 4 enterprises that could instead be offered by the private market: a redevelopment agency; an electric power company; a garbage collection service; a golf course; City Financial Statements
Beer Sale Restrictions1210%This city regulates the retail sale of beer by prohibiting sales from 1 am to 6 am.5-7-110(i)
Alcohol Licensing3210%The city requires $300 for a retail beer license, $350 for a restaurant license, and $400 for a tavern license.City Fee Schedule
Sales Tax2020%This city imposes a combined sales tax rate of 6.6% 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 4.25%, and a leasing tax at 7.5%.State Tax Commission
Business Licensing535%This city charges the following licensing fees: $25 for a home occupation license; $65 for a small commercial license; $2650 for a large commercial license; $125 for a temporary firework stand; $125 for a temporary christmas tree lot; and $50 for two solicitor licenses.City Fee Schedule
Commerce Regulations2310%Bountiful requires dance halls to close between midnight and 6am, and prohibits horse-drawn carriages from operating between 6pm and midnight on school nights, and 6pm and 1am on weekends.5-3-101

City Data

Overall Ranking: 9/50

Click here to compare Bountiful's data compared to the other cities.

Year incorporated: 1892
Population (2010): 42,552
FoG: Six-member Council

County: Davis
Class: 3
Cluster: E

MHI: $65,050.00

Best Score


Worst Score

Home Building Fees