Business Licenses

All businesses operating in El Cerrito are required to apply and obtain a Business License in accordance with El Cerrito Municipal Code, Chapter 4.32.

As of January 1st, 2021, the penalties for unpaid business licenses are set at 100% of the Business License Tax. The original due date was 7/31/20. Due to COVID19 impacts, the original due date was extended to 9/30/20. Three notices have been mailed out from June 2020- January 2021 in attempt to collect the fees. If you have not paid your business license fees and do not know the amount due or have any questions or concerns, please contact Toni Casados.

Business License Penalty Schedule

Business License Renewals

Business License Renewal notices will be mailed by the end of June 2020.

Please renew your business license online beginning July 1, 2021 for Fiscal Year 2021-22. Payments received after July 31 are subject to penalties.

Renew your business license online here.

Annual business licenses expire on June 30 each year.
Read the business license renewal FAQ.


Measure X - Contra Costa County Sales Tax: On November 3, 2020 Contra Costa County voters approved a half cent retail sales tax increase that will take effect on April 1, 2021. This applies to taxable sales in El Cerrito and the tax rate will be 10.25%. There are exemptions, including food sales. More information about Measure X is available here.

Business License Hours

Please visit the hours page for more information.

Please email the Community Development Department or call (510) 215-4314.

New Business Licenses

The City of El Cerrito requires anyone who is doing business within city limits (including operation of rental property) to obtain a business license and pay the license tax.

If you are opening a new business in El Cerrito, you can complete a Business License Application and then mail to the City with the required payment.

If you are applying for a home based  business, you must apply for a Home Occupation Permit through the Planning Division. Please send this application with your business license application to Toni Casados for ALL home-based businesses for review.

Please see the Master Fee Schedule FY2020-21 for business tax rates.
The Business License Tax Ordinance defines the business license requirements, process, and tax rates.

Business Search

Search for currently licensed businesses operation in the City of El Cerrito. Please note that certain businesses may be excluded from this list for privacy reasons.

Create a report of currently licensed businesses. 

Email the Community Development Department or call at 510-215-4314 for assistance with completing your business license application and determining the amount of taxes and fees due.