Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility City of Monterey, CA

Starting your Business

The City of Monterey is anxious to assist new businesses to assure their successful location in Monterey. Starting a new business requires a major commitment of time, energy, and capital. You will also be required to obtain a business license, and other required zoning, planning, and building permits, depending on the nature of your business. Most important to your success is the development of a business plan, which describes how your business will be managed and operated. A business plan is also essential if you are seeking financing for your business.

buylocalhomepgBuy Local
The City began a Buy Local campaign to encourage residents to do just local! By supporting our local businesses, we’re supporting the jobs these businesses provide to our friends and neighbors; the other local businesses that supply them and the jobs they create; services and programs provided by our City; and we’re helping the environment.

More Information

Starting your Business

About Business Licenses

If you plan to operate your business in the City of Monterey, you must apply for your business license in the City of Monterey. The only requirement is that you have a fixed place of business.

Fees are based on your estimated receipts for the next year. If you are a new business, the fees are based on estimated receipts. In estimating gross receipts, sales tax receipts should be excluded form the total. Business licenses are renewed annually in July of each year at the beginning of the fiscal year. For more information, visit the City's Finance Department.
Fictitious Name Statement

If the name of your business is different from your own legal name you must file a Fictitious Business Name Statement. The Fictitious Business Name Statement is filed with the County Clerk. It may be necessary for you to go to the County Clerk's office in Salinas and fill out the forms establishing the name of your company. If you need to file, you should do so within 40 days of starting your business. The forms can be obtained from:

Monterey County Clerk 
168 West Alisal St., 1st Floor
P.O. Box 29
Salinas, CA 93902
(831) 755-5450

The current filing fee is $40 for businesses with one owner and one business name. Your fictitious business name will be effective for 5 years. There is an additional charge of $7 for each additional business owner or business name. After filing, you will be required to publish a legal notice of your business name in any newspaper of general circulation in the County where the principal place of business is located, once per week for four consecutive weeks, and to file an affidavit with the County Clerk within 30 days after publication.
Financial/Technical Assistance

A. California Coastal Rural Development Corporation
 offers a variety of small business loan programs to assist businesses and farmers with financing. Established in 1982, the organization is dedicated to economic development and job creation. Our mission is to assist enterprises to grow, thrive, and prosper, enabling the overall economic development of our communities.

221 Main Street Ste 301
Salinas, CA 93901
Call Loree Van Bebber (831) 424-1099, Ext. 205 
or Carole Cook, Ext. 203
Visit them on the web at

B. The County of Monterey, Environmental Resource Policy Division Office of Economic Dev. provides financing information and assistance to small businesses throughout the County. For more information call them at (831) 755-5390.

Environmental Resource Policy Division Office of Economic Development
P.O. Box 180, 240 Church Street - Room 301, Salinas, CA 93902 
Phone: (831) 755-5390
Monterey County Economic Development

C. Central Coast Small Business Development Center
This organization provides no cost, hands-on technical assistance and support to small business on the Central Coast. For information or assistance, from Monterey call (800) 464-6136, or write to Central Coast Small Business Development Center at Cabrillo College, 6500 Soquel Drive, Aptos, CA 95003.