Business Slide Cannery Row at Night - Photo by Israel Serrano

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Before selecting a particular location, check with the City of Monterey's Planning Division to make sure that your business meets Zoning Code requirements. Certain areas of the City are zoned for Commercial and Industrial Uses. Additional requirements for the operations of a business are also included in the Zoning Code. You need to verify that the zoning classification of your proposed location allows the kind of business you plan to operate. Contact the Planning Office, (831) 646-3885 for more information.

Some commercial businesses must also obtain a Use Permit to operate in the City of Monterey. Use Permits enable the City to review and control the operations of businesses which might have a detrimental impact on other nearby businesses or residents. Such businesses include fast food restaurants, businesses providing live entertainment, and/or businesses with late hours of operation adjacent to residential areas. Contact the Planning Office,(831) 646-3885 to determine whether or not you will need to obtain a Use Permit.

All new signs require a sign permit, and may require approval from the Architectural Review Committee. Information on signage requirements can be obtained from the Planning Office, (831) 646-3885.

Construction of a new building or an addition to an existing building will require approval of the Architectural Review Committee and building permits. Planning Staff can provide you with information Regarding Planning and Building Code requirements for your proposed business. Contact the Planning Office, (831) 646-3885 for more information.

Once your project has been approved, you need to contact the Building Safety Division to make sure your proposed project meets current building code and fire safety requirements. All new construction must be approved by the Permits & Inspections Office and may require review by the Fire Marshall before you can occupy your new or improved space and open your business. For more info contact the Permits & Inspection Office,
(831) 646-3890.

California State Board of Equalization
111 East Navajo Dr. Ste 100
Salinas, CA 93906
(831) 443-3003

(Hair stylists and barbers) need to obtain a license before starting their business from the Board of Barbering and Cosmetology.

Independent Massage Technicians when applying for a business license must provide a copy of a California Massage Therapy Council
Massage Establishments must go through the Monterey Police Dept. before submitting their business license application. Call Monterey Police at (831) 646-5698

Applicants must provide a copy of their IRS 501-(c)(3) form designating them as a non-profit. Information can be found at

Contact Us

(831) 646-3799
Fax: (831) 646-3793
Citizen Comment Form

Finance Department
735 Pacific Street, Suite A
Monterey, CA 93940
Fax: (831) 655-0562
(831) 646-3940

Planning Office
570 Pacific St
Monterey, CA 93940
(831) 646-3885
Fax: (831) 646-3408

Renew Your Business License

Monterey City Disposal