Required Business Licenses-Registrations

Starting a business triggers licenses-registrations from City, County, State, and Federal agencies.

Review the list below to see which licenses-registrations might be required. Then go to our online permit tool,, to find out which City of Petaluma permits you might need and estimate fees.

The State of California’s website also can help you find out what licenses-registrations will be required based on the type of business you want to operate.

Business License / Tax Certificate

City of Petaluma Finance Department
Register your business in the City of Petaluma and pay business tax.


  • Issued over the counter or by mail. Cost is $45 for the first year and then $.16 for every $1,000 of gross sales every year thereafter.
  • Permit requires approval by planning to assure business use complies with zoning rules (also required for established business moving locations)
  • Massage Therapists must provide copy of California Massage Therapy Council certification.

Child Care Licenses

California Department of Social Services
Required for Child Care facilities at home or in a center

Adult Care Licenses

California Department of Social Services
Required for Adult Care facilities

Elderly Care Licenses

California Department of Social Services
Required for Elderly Care facilities

State Business Registration

California Secretary of State Business Programs Division
This Division of the Secretary of State registers and authenticates business entities and trademarks

Import/Export Regulations

US Customs & Border Protection
Individuals or businesses that import and/or export raw materials or finished products should refer to the US Customs & Border Protection site

Professional Licenses

California Department of Consumer Affairs
This state department issues licenses in more than 100 business and 200 professional categories

Contractor License

Contractors State License Board
License required for contractors

Sales Tax / Resale Permit

California State Board of Equalization
This department administers California’s sales and use, fuel, alcohol, tobacco, and other taxes and collects fees.

Food Inspections and Permits

County of Sonoma Department of Health Services
Permits are required for commercial and home-based food manufacturing

Body Art Practitioner and Facility Registration

County of Sonoma Department of Health Services
Body art practitioners and body art facilities (including temporary facilities) must register and are subject to inspections

Liquor License

California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control
Any permanent or temporary business that produces or sells alcohol is subject to the licensing and inspection requirements of the ABC