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Business License Taxes & Fees

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Chapter 5.07 of the Chula Vista Municipal Code establishes the Master Tax Schedule for Business Licenses, and can be accessed here.

Business License Tax and fee information is provided below to aid in calculating Business License Taxes and fees due.  Any error or omission does not excuse business owners of any responsibility or liability when establishing a business in the City of Chula Vista.  Review the entire schedule to determine what taxes and fees apply to your business. 

If you have questions, please contact a Business License Representative.

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Contact Us

City of Chula Vista | Finance Department
Monday - Thursday: 9 am - 4 pm
Friday: 9 am - 12 noon
(619) 585-5624

Business License Tax

Business License Taxes are prorated quarterly at time of issuance, as follows:

Business Type
1st Qtr
2nd Qtr
3rd Qtr
4th Qtr*
Employee Tax**
Businesses with 5 or fewer employees, with a fixed location in Chula Vista
No tax for 5 or fewer employees
Businesses with more than 5 employees, with a fixed location in Chula Vista
$6.50 per employee
Out of city businesses, with no fixed location within Chula Vista
$6.50 per employee


*Business license applications processed in the 4th quarter of the calendar year (October 1 through December 31) pay taxes/ fees for the 4th quarter of the current year and for all of the following year.

**When counting employees, DO NOT count business owner(s) as employees.

SB 1186 - CA State Disability Access Fee

Effective January 1, 2018, all cities and counties throughout California are mandated by the State to collect a $4.00 fee on every local business license application or renewal.  This fee applies to all licenses, including, but not limited to, all in-city commercial and home-based, all exempt, all non-profits, landlords, out-of-city, and all contractors.  You can view the SB1186 mandate here

Penalty Fees

Business License Taxes are due in advance.  Taxes not paid in advance are assessed a 10% penalty each month, up to 60%.

Zoning Fees

A zoning review fee is required for all new businesses with a fixed location within the City of Chula Vista.  This is a one-time fee, due at application.

Business Type
Zoning Fee
Home-based business   $25.00
Commercial address, not open for business at time of application   $100.00
Commercial address, open before application date   $200.00

Miscellaneous Special Fees

Change of Classification
Change of Location   $12.00 
Doing Business As (DBA) Name Change  $5.00 
Duplicate License, per copy   $5.00 


Special Business Classification Taxes and Fees

The following Special Business Classifications are subject to the following tax schedule, in place of the Business License Tax shown above.

Business Type Tax
Amusement Video, Weighing Machines $30.00 per year, per machine
Billboards & Bill Posting (Advertising) $75.00 per year, per billboard
Bingo License* $50.00 per year
Card room, per table Fee varies - paid quarterly
Closing Out Sale, first 60 days * $30.00 per location

Closing Out Sale, 30 day extension (max 1 extension)*

$15.00 per location

Dances for Youth (requires adult-sponsored group payment) **

$15.00 per year, $5.00 per day
Ambulance Attendants/ Drivers $5.00 per year, per attendant

Amps/ Other Devices for Announcing and Advertising

$10.00 per day, per vehicle
Handbill/ Sample Distribution $25.00 per quarter, $5.00 per day
Jewelry Sold at Public Auction** $100.00 per sale, per location
Junk & Secondhand Dealers** $200.00 per year, per location
Manufacturer, 5 or fewer employees $25.00 1st year, $52.50 per renewal
Manufacturer, more than 5 employees $52.50 + $3.25 per employee, per year
Massage Parlor, Bathhouse, Art Studio $250.00 per year
Pawnbroker** $200.00 per year
Pool & Billiard Hall $150.00 per year
Professional, In-City $25.00 1st year, $105 renewal
Professional, Out-of-City $105 per year
Promotional Event, Non-Profit (3 day max)** $5.00 per event
Real Estate Broker $25.00 1st year, $105 renewal
Real Estate Salesperson $25.00 per person, per year
Special Event (Carnival, etc.)* $250.00 per day
Taxicab Business* $150.00 per year
Taxicab Vehicle(s)* $25.00 per vehicle
Vending Vehicle $200.00 per year

**Police Department approval required before issuance of license.

Business Types Requiring License Fees in Addition to Business License Tax

The following business classifications require a separate license, in addition to the Business License Taxes above.

Business  Type
 License Fee
 Amusement Arcades
 $150.00 per year
 Peddler/Solicitor* (taxable property)
 $25.00 per person, per year (not prorated)
 Peddler/Solicitor* (no taxable property)
 $75.00 per person, per year (not prorated)
 Vending Machine
 $15.00 per year
 Live Entertainment**
 $200.00 per year
 Dance/Dance Halls
 $200.00 per year, per location

**Police Department approval required before issuance of license.

Professional Business Types

The Professional Business Type, as listed in the Special Business Classifications above and the Downtown Improvement District Assessment below, includes the following:

  • Accountant
  • Anesthesiologist
  • Appraiser
  • Architect
  • Assayer
  • Attorney
  • Auditor
  • Bacteriologist
  • Chemist
  • Chiropractor
  • Consultant
  • Dentist
  • Engineer
  • Entomologist
  • Esthetician
  • Geologist
  • Holistic Health Practitioner
  • Hypnotherapist
  • Oculist
  • Optician
  • Optometrist
  • Osteopath
  • Pharmacist
  • Physical Therapist
  • Physician
  • Physiotherapist
  • Podiatrist
  • Psychiatrist
  • Psychologist
  • Real Estate Broker
  • Social Worker
  • Stock & Bond Broker
  • Surgeon
  • Surveyor
  • Taxidermist
  • Veterinarian

    Apartments, Hotels and Motels

    Please contact a Business License Representative at (619) 585-5624 or for current tax and fee schedules.

    Downtown Improvement District (DID) Assessment

    did_map_altBusiness owners with a business address in the Downtown Improvement District (DID) are required to pay the DID assessment.  Home-based businesses in the DID area DO NOT pay the DID assessment.

    • Professionals: $100.00
    • All Other Business Classifications: $50.00 + $6.00 per employee (no charge for 1st employee)
    • Maximum DID Assessment: $100.00

    Downtown Improvement District (DID) Addresses

    Addresses subject to the Downtown Improvement District (DID) Assessment are as follows:

    • 277 - 299 Alvarado Street (odd numbers only)
    • 250 - 399 Center Street
    • 200 - 399 Church Avenue
    • 400 - 450 Church Avenue (even numbers only)
    • 291 - 344 Davidson Street
    • 301 - 399 Del Mar Avenue (odd numbers only)
    • 260 - 350 E Street (even numbers only)
    • 265 - 399 F Street
    • 301 - 349 Fourth Avenue (odd numbers only)
    • 251 - 299 G Street (odd numbers only)
    • 280 - 298 G Street (even numbers only)
    • 300 - 309 G Street
    • 201 - 299 Garrett Avenue (odd numbers only)
    • 300 - 349 Garrett Avenue
    • 303 H Street (Gateway)
    • 333 H Street (Gateway)
    • 200 - 399 Landis Avenue
    • 250 - 399 Madrona Street
    • 300 - 314 Park Way
    • 200 - 499 Third Avenue

    View a map of the Downtown Improvement District (DID)

    Downtown Improvement District (DID) Penalty

    Delinquent DID Assessments are subject to a penalty of 10% of the Assessment plus 1.5% per month until the assessment is paid in full.

    Fire Code Inspection Operational Permit Fees

    Your business may be subject to Fire Code Inspection Operational Permit Fees.  If applicable, these fees are due upon business license application and annual renewal.  Please contact the Fire Prevention Division for current fees applicable to your business at (619) 691-5055.

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