State law requires all cities that issue business licenses adopt a new model ordinance and revenue threshold by January 2019 (RCW 35.90.080).
- City Business Licensing Resources and Deadlines under Chapter 35.90 RCW (via MRSC)
- Download the model ordinance language.
- Read BLS's model ordinance FAQs
- Download the Association of Washington Cities White Paper (pdf)
- Partner Change Requests for New License Types with Threshold
Make business licensing easier for your local business community
Did you know more than 90 percent of businesses apply for and renew their licenses online?
BLS offers a "one-stop" local licensing solution to relieve the workload of license renewals. We serve 70+ cities with more joining BLS each year.
Partnership with BLS supports your city staff and business community by removing roadblocks. This saves your local businesses time when they apply for and renew city and state licenses. Your staff, meanwhile, get fast turnaround, detailed reporting, and increased compliance – with no added cost.
Our revenues increased 15 percent in the first year. With BLS, we are able to identify our businesses and their employees more easily.
~ Carrie Lewellen, Business Manager, City of Vancouver
- No mailings or collections
- Licenses renewed annually by BLS
- Payments managed by BLS
- GIS integration requires licensing in city limits
- Tax account discovery increases compliance and revenue
- Local regulatory control
- Intuitive licensing "wizard" for applicants
- Toll-free customer service line
- No trip to city hall
- On-demand license printing
Cities retain local control and sign up for free
As a BLS partner, you will continue to:
- Approve or deny local licenses
- Close city business endorsements that are out of compliance
Changes in 2017 and beyond
Lawmakers unanimously approved EHB 2005 to have cities add a combined licensing service by the end of 2027. Our team will work with local governments for a smooth transition for partnering cities. We provided the first city onboarding schedule to stakeholders in January 2018.
Access ATLAS for local control
ATLAS is Revenue’s combined tax and licensing administration system. Cities access ATLAS through a portal to manage accounts and generate reports in real time. See ATLAS up close in this video on the Association of Washington Cities’ YouTube channel.
Types of licenses available with BLS
- General business
- General business (non-resident)
- Employee range
- Head count (FTE)
- Home occupation
- Exempt (no fee)
- Small business (reduced fee)
BLS does not manage local regulatory licenses such as peddler’s licenses and temporary licenses.
Contact us to sign up or learn more about the benefits of partnership. Call (360) 705-6777