Sounds like your doing work in IL.
The worst I had to pay $75 plus 20K bond to work in a city of less than 1000 people.
I got this from resqcapt19.
(65 ILCS 5/11‑33‑1) (from Ch. 24, par. 11‑33‑1)
Sec. 11‑33‑1. The corporate authorities of each municipality may require the registration of electrical contractors, and may impose an annual registration fee of $25 on each registered contractor. An electrical contractor who is registered in one municipality, however, shall not be required by any other municipality to be registered or to pay a registration fee in the other municipality.

Had my attorny verify it. I fax a copy of my licience (never give to anyone elce) and insurance to the village. On a cover letter I include the following if they intend on charging a EC village registration fee.

"I was informed by my attorney that an electrical contractor can not be required to register or pay a registration fee of more than $25 under Illinois law (chapter 24, paragraph 11-33-1). Also the electrical contractor shall not be required to pay a registration fee in more than one municipality. Enclosed are several contractor registration fees paid this year in Illinois. Below is the exact statute."

Works 1/2 the time. The other times I pay it. I tried going back and forth about it. It was not worth the agervation. It's not leagal but I would rather not get PO over it. Plus they still have to pass you.

I don't have a problem with failed inspections. I do check the local amendments to the code. Talk to the inspector about judgement calls. It does help if you are there for inspection. You can answer questions and ask about anything special they might require or look for in your project. I also tend to excede requirements of the NEC. If a few villages have special amendments I tend to do it in all the jobs if it's minnor just to avoid problems.

I make the GC get the permit or I add that to the bill for the HO.

I can't help you on the bonds. It is crazy to require the EC to buy a bond in every town, village, & city. I think that will go away if they ever get the state wide licenceing. I never got anyone to pay for those. I just figure it in the job. My guy takes about a week to get a 10K bond for about $50. I had to get one the next day for the GC and paid $125 thru someone elce. I never tried but on the back of some it has a cancelation policy. Like you can cancel it after the job and get a parcial refund.