Permits, Licenses, and Approvals
Opening a business can be complicated; we are here to help you navigate through the necessary permits, licenses, and approvals needed to get started.
All businesses need a Business Occupancy Permit before opening. Apply online through the Business Occupancy Permit application. This permit requires inspections from different City departments to ensure your business space is up to code.
Permits are also required when making modifications to your building or tenant space. Contact Code Enforcement with questions about what permits may be required for your business. For all commercial building permits you will need to fill out the Plan Review Application. Other permits include:
Selling food or alcohol? Businesses need annual licenses to do certain things. Contact the Clerk's Office for questions about licensing. Licenses can be applied for online and include:
- Adult-Oriented Entertainment licenses
- Alcohol Beverage Retail licenses
- Animal Sales and Service licenses
- Cigarette, Tobacco, and Nicotine Products Retailer licenses
- Food licenses
- Hotel, Motel, and Tourist Rooming House licenses
- Tattoo and Body Piercing Establishment licenses
- Transient Merchant licenses
Certain uses and exterior site, landscaping, and architectural changes require special approval by the Plan Commission or Common Council.