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Most businesses are subject to a basic business license tax of $145.15, plus employees fees of $2.55, $4.95, or $7.40 for each employee depending on the type of business. Please refer to the schedule below for applicable taxes for your type of business. If you are unsure what your taxes will be, please ask for assistance. Payment of business license taxes are due on or before starting date of your business in Santa Cruz. Penalties are applied to late payments.

Class A Business:
(Retail, wholesale, contract, construction, manufacturing) $145.15 base tax plus
$2.55 per employee
Class B Business:
(Services, hotels and motels, apartment houses, commercial property renting or leasing, recreation and entertainment services and facilities) $145.15 base tax plus
$4.95 per employee
Class C Business: (each professional needs a separate license)
(Professions including, but not limited to, accountants, architects, attorneys, auctioneers, chiropractors, dentists, engineers, insurance brokers, medical/health professions, physicians, real estate brokers, security brokers, and veterinarians) $145.15 base tax plus
$7.40 per employee

Occasional Transactions:

Persons having no fixed place of business within the city who come into the city for the purpose of transacting a specific item of business at the request of a specific patient, client, customer, or contractor will have their business license tax prorated as follows:

# of days conducting business:

% of Total Business License Tax:









120 or more


If you have questions regarding license fees, please phone our office:

City of Santa Cruz
Finance Department
809 Center Street, Room 101
Santa Cruz, CA 95060
Last updated: 7/16/2014 11:12:53 AM