Determine if You Need a Business License

​You need a business license to operate certain types of businesses in Salem. You also need a license to operate a special event at your property when you charge a fee for that event.

Fees for business licenses vary by license type.

Only the following businesses need a business license in Salem:

​License type ​Requirements ​Salem Revised Code (SRC)
​Marijuana business registration SRC Chapter 31

Multifamily housing:

  • Hotel/motel
  • Apartment
  • Homeless shelter
  • Retirement apartment
  • Room and board
SRC 59.400
Short-term rental SRC 30.1100-30.1110
​Accessory short-term rental ​SRC 30.1000-30.1010; SRC 700.006

Vehicles for hire agency: 

  • Taxi company
  • Wheelchair coaches
  • Transportation network vehicles (Uber and Lyft drivers)

No license required for the following:

  • Limousine driver
  • Ambulance driver
  • Funeral escort drivers
​SRC 30.700-30.745
Street vendors/pushcart SRC 30.900
Mobile food units SRC 30.050(a)(4)

​Tree trimmers:

Working with trees located on public streets, sidewalks, parks or other public right-of-ways.

  • Application form
  • Insurance certificate
  • Pass a public works tree trimming exam
​SRC 30.050(a)(8)

​Dealers in used merchandise:

  • Junk dealer
  • Pawn broker
  • Second hand dealer
​SRC 30.050(a)(3)

​Special events:
A fee-based special activity at a privately-owned location that does not normally operate the requested type of activity.

Activities include:

  • Dances
  • Movies
  • Plays
  • Concerts​
  • Circuses
  • Carnivals
  • Exhibitions
  • Sports
  • Haunted houses
  • Other live, filmed or televised performances
SRC 30.050(a)(6)
​Night club ​SRC 30.050 (a)(5)
​Automobile race tracks ​SRC 30.050(a) (2)
​Tourist parks ​SRC 30.600

Standards for other activities

Though a business license is not required, Salem Revised Code sets standards for a variety of activities. Some of the most common include:

​​No license required

The following types of businesses do not require a license:

  • Limousine driver
  • Ambulance driver
  • Funeral escort drivers
  • Janitorial services
  • Cleaning services
  • Online businesses

Additional information

State of Oregon business registration: All businesses in Oregon must register a business name.

Oregon Liquor license applications, are processed by the Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC).

Contact us

Permit Application Center
General Questions
8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Permit/License Processing
8:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.

Plans Intake
9:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.
555 Liberty ST SE RM 320
Salem OR 97301
Mail payments to:
PO Box 3405
Portland OR 97208