Occupational License FeesAny person, partnership, corporation, or other legal entity is required to register with the City prior to conducting business within the City limits. Fees may vary based on the business activity being conducted, as described in the following:
Local Businesses: A local business is one that either owns a properly zoned business site or has a valid lease of six months or more for such a site within the City limits. In addition, a business that involves regular and routine visits to an established customer base (such as water delivery, mail courier, etc.) may be deemed a local business. For local businesses there is a one-time registration fee of $50.00 due with the application. A cash bond of $275.00 may also be required.
Once registered, the business will receive an annual form to file based on the net income earned within Bowling Green at the rate of 1.85%. The form is called a Net Profit License Fee Return, and it is filed at the end of the business’ normal tax year. A copy of the federal return must accompany the completed City Net Profit Return. If a business finds it necessary to request a federal extension, they will also need to request an extension with the City by submitting a copy of the federal extension request along with 90% of the estimated amount that will be due on the return (the minimum amount accepted is $30.00).
If a business has employees, an occupational withholding fee of 1.85% must be withheld by the employer from all employee’s gross wages earned for work or services performed in the City. The employee tax applies even if the employee does not reside inside the City limits, because it is based on where the work is performed, not residency. Larger businesses file and pay this fee monthly, while small businesses file on a quarterly basis.
Transient Registrations: Businesses that do not qualify as a “local business,” will normally fall under the definition of a transient business, contractor, professional services, or peddler. Registration fees for transient forms of business are based on the number of days and the number of employees/representatives that entity will have while engaging in business within the City. Businesses registering as transient are not required to submit the employee withholding fees or annual net profit return.
Other Special Businesses: Certain other businesses, such as flea markets, consignment shops, or businesses that provide live entertainment have special fees and registrations that will apply.
Alcoholic Beverage Control: Under the City Code, the Chief of Police, has been appointed as the Alcoholic Beverage Control Administrator for the City. By local option election, businesses located within the City limits are allowed to sell distilled spirits and malt beverages either by the package or drink. Hours of sale are governed by the City and vary depending upon the type of license issued. Sunday sales licenses are available to qualifying restaurants or convention center operations. All applicants for alcoholic beverage licenses must complete a comprehensive set of forms for the City, State and Federal licenses. The licensing process normally takes five weeks. Applications are obtained and returned to the Occupational License Division, at 1017 College Street for review and processing.
For more information, please contact us at this office at
(270) 393-3000 voice, (270) 393-3636 fax, or email us.
The following information and forms can be downloaded to assist businesses in complying with our requirements:
NOTICE OF RATE CHANGE IN
Ordinance No. BG2006-28 City Occupational License Fees decreased from 2% to 1.85%
OCCUPATIONAL LICENSE FEES
Effective Date January 1, 2007
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Gross wages earned within the City after Janurary1, 2007 are subject to the 1.85%.
The rate change for Net Profit returns took effect until the first full business year that began on or after January 1, 2007.
Cash Bond Refund Request
Employee Withholding Tax Form 1.85%
(For employee withholding taxes after January 1, 2007)
Net Profit License Fee Return 1.85% (General Instructions)
(newly revised for all fiscal or calendar years beginning after January 1, 2017)
Request To Close License Account
Annual Wage Reconciliation Form
Tow Truck License