If you plan to operate a business in the state of Georgia, you must obtain a city or county business license. This license is sometimes called an Occupational Tax. In some cases, such as if your business will be operated in Walker County but outside any city limits, no license is needed. You should discuss the details of your situation with the licensing department. The fee for a license is contingent on the location, type, and size of your business.
The City of Chickamauga requires a Business Application to accompany the Occupation Tax payment. This form can be downloaded from the city’s website at http://cityofchickamauga.org/business.asp.
This form and payment are to be mailed or returned in person to the Chickamauga Planning Commission located at:
Chickamauga City Hall
P.O. Box 69
103 Crittenden Avenue
Chickamauga, GA 30707
Telephone: (706) 375-3177
The City of Rossville requires a Business Application to accompany the Occupation Tax payment. To start the process, visit Rossville City Hall between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. to complete the application for a City Occupation Tax Certificate and a consent form for a criminal history check. Be sure to bring a driver’s license, as they will ask to make a copy to keep it on file. Once the history check is complete, the building in which you are going to occupy must be inspected by the Building Inspector or Assistant Fire Chief to see if the building is up to compliance. The entire process usually takes three working business days, depending on the inspection of the building.
The City Hall representative will also ask that you fill out an emergency information card for the Police Department to have on hand if there were an emergency at your business.
Rossville City Hall
400 McFarland Avenue
Rossville, GA 30741
Telephone: (706) 866-1325
If your business will be located with the LaFayette City Limits:
The City of LaFayette requires a Business Application to accompany the permit fee. The application can be picked up from City Hall.
You will need to bring the completed application and your business license fee (based on number of employees) to the Tax Clerk’s Office at:
LaFayette City Hall
207 S. Duke Street
LaFayette, GA 30728
Telephone: (706) 639-1500
If your business is located somewhere else and you are looking to do business within the City Limits of LaFayette:
You are required to have a business license issued in Georgia. If you normally do not need a business license (located in unincorporated Walker County) but would like to do work in LaFayette, City Hall will require that you obtain a Business License from the City or elsewhere in Georgia. Contact City Hall to check if you need this license.
If your business is in the LaFayette Downtown Development Authority area:
You may contact the Main Street and Economic Development Office for additional help that might be available, such as technical assistance, facade grant program or making contact with local media. The DDA stretches along two corridors: Main Street from Hendrix Street on the north to Fortune Street on the south, on the east on Duke Street from the U.S. Farm Service Agency south to the LaFayette library, and west along Patten and Villanow streets over to Chattanooga Street.
Lookout Mountain requires that you visit City Hall to pick up a business license application. The applicant will then be added to the agenda for the next City Council meeting where the council and Mayor will review the application. If the Council concludes the business complies with all local ordinances and zoning codes, the application will be approved and you will be required to submit a $100 business license fee. You will then receive your business license in the mail in about 10 business days. You are required to renew your business license each year.
Lookout Mountain City Hall
1214 Lula Lake Road
Lookout Mountain, GA 307
Telephone: (706) 820-1290
Businesses Outside Any City Limits
If your business is located in Walker County but outside any city limit, a business license is not required. However, you must make sure that you are operating in an appropriately zoned commercial or industrial area. See the Zoning section of this book for more of those details.
To verify that your business is located within City Limits, you can call that city’s City Hall.