Services Departments Government

Starting A New Business

Step One: Research

General Information provides resources to help high-tech startups get launched, funded, and grow into successful companies.

The Oregon Economic and Community Development Department’s (OECDD) website has a lot of useful information. OECDD is part of our state government. This website has a lot of information on how to start a small business.

The Oregon Small Business Development Center has many tips on starting a small business. It is part of the US Small Business Administration.

Business.USA.Gov is a newly launched federal government web site that provides business owners with a one-stop resource that searches the federal government agencies that regulate or serve businesses for compliance information or resources.

Clackamas County Assessment & Taxation provide answers to many of the frequently asked questions about Business Personal Property Tax.

Minority Status

The following websites are aimed at minority owned businesses. This also includes a woman owned business or a business owned by someone who is disabled.

Avita is a website that assists minority entrepreneurs in starting a business.

The Oregon Association of Minority Entrepreneurs is an association that is a partnership between ethnic minorities, entrepreneurs, education, government and established corporate businesses to promote and develop entrepreneurship and economic development for ethnic minorities in the State of Oregon.

The Women Entrepreneurs of Oregon is a resource guide for women owned businesses.

Step Two: Business Licenses


If you live inside the city limits of any city, you may need a Business License from that city.

CanbyBusiness License
DamascusDamascus Website
EstacadaMunicipal Code, Business Licenses and Forms
Happy ValleyMunicipal Code
Lake OswegoBusiness
MilwaukieBusiness Fees
Municipal Codes
Zoning Ordinances
MolallaMunicipal Code
Oregon CityMunicipal Code
SandyMunicipal Code
Business Information
TualatinBusiness License
West LinnBusiness License
WilsonvilleBusiness License


If you live in unincorporated Clackamas County, though you have one of the above cities for an address, you will not need a business license as Clackamas County does not have business licenses.

Clackamas County may require a Home Occupation Permit for businesses located in the unincorporated area. Details can be found in the Home Occupation Zoning Ordinance. Planning has also created a brochure with all the necessary information on Home Occupation Permits. If, after checking to see if you need a Home Occupation Zoning Permit, you find you need one, you can download the Permit Application (PDF) to fill out and submit.


Register your business with the State of Oregon.

To find out if there are licenses required by the state of Oregon, go to Oregon Business Licenses and follow the easy instructions to find out which additional permits you might need. In addition, the Business Referral Wizard will help you determine which licenses and permits might apply to you.

Step Three: IRS

Starting a Business

EIN (Employee Identification Number)

Small Business Resource Guide

This publication by the IRS is a wealth of information. It is worth getting on a CD and keeping it handy to answer questions.

Step Four: Networking

One of the ways to contribute to the economic health of our community is to participate in activities that are tied to creating a healthy economy. The following are some organizations in which you can participate.


The chambers of commerce are excellent organizations that offer assistance and networking. The following are in the area.


Other Steps


File a Personal Property report on or before March 1. Call (503) 655-8671 for more information. File with the Clackamas County Tax Assessor at 150 Beavercreek Road, Oregon City, Oregon 97045.

Plan for the Tri-Met Self Employment Tax: (503) 378-4988. Submit forms with Federal/State Income tax returns. Mail to Oregon Department of Revenue, P.O. Box 14780-0, Salem, Oregon. Not applicable in Molalla, Wilsonville, or unincorporated areas outside the Tri-Met Service District boundary.


Comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA): Call Northwest Disability & Business Technical Assistance Center 1-800-949-4232 or Office of ADA, Civil Rights Division 1-800-514-0301 for information on whether your business needs to make special accommodations to the public or your employees.

Secure Workers Compensation Insurance: Contact the Department of Consumer & Business Services, Workers Compensation Division at (503) 945-7888, 21 Labor and Industries Building, 350 Winter Street NE, Salem, Oregon 97310.

Check with the Oregon Occupational Safety and Health Division (OSHA) (503) 378-5910 at their Portland (Field Office to find out which regulations affect your type of business.

Contact the Bureau of Labor and Industries at (503) 731-4073 for information on wage and hour laws, parental leave, civil rights laws and apprenticeship programs. Contact the Bureau of Labor and industries 800 NE Oregon Room 32, Portland, Oregon 97232.

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