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Starting a Business

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The following is a basic guideline of information you will need to begin a business in Okaloosa County. Additional information or requirements should be addressed with the appropriate agencies.

Business Tax Receipt for Okaloosa County 

A Business Tax Receipt (formerly County Occupational License) is issued by the Tax Collector for the privilege of operating a business. Anyone providing merchandise or services to the public, even though a one-person company or home based occupation, must obtain a county business tax receipt to operate.
 
The Business Tax Receipt fee is $35 per location, regardless of the nature of the business.
 
Before an Okaloosa County Business Tax Receipt can be obtained, a business must meet all conditions required by city, county, state or federal agency regulations which apply to that business or occupation. Many businesses will be subject to zoning codes.
 
In Okaloosa County, a business located within a city limit requires both a municipal license and a county license to operate. If the nature of a business takes employees inside a city limit to conduct business even though the business establishment is in the county, it may be necessary to obtain a city license also.
 
License application and appropriate fee information may be obtained at:

Ben Anderson, Tax Collector

Okaloosa County tax Collector
Four County-Wide Locations
850-651-7300, okaloosatax.com
Permits or inspections can now be researched on Okaloosa County’s web site: co.okaloosa.fl.us

You can also apply for a Business Tax Receipt online by clicking here.

 

City Occupational License

If your business will be in the city limits you will need both a municipal and county license. The following is a list of offices where you may apply for a municipal occupational license within Okaloosa County.

Municipality Contact Information
Town of Cinco Bayou
10 Yacht Club Drive
Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548
850-833-3405
CincoBayou.com
City of Crestview
198 N Wilson Street
Crestview, FL 32536
850-689-1618
CityofCrestview.org
   
City of Destin
4200 Two Trees Road
Destin, FL 32541
850-837-4242
CityofDestin.com
City of Fort Walton Beach
107 Miracle Strip Pkwy
Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548
850-833-9500
FWB.org
   
City of Laurel Hill
8209 N Highway 85
Laurel Hill, FL 32567
850-652-4441
City of Mary Esther
195 Cristrobal Road
Mary Esther, FL 32569
850-243-3566
CityofMaryEsther.com
   
City of Niceville
208 N Partin Drive
Niceville, FL 32578
850-729-4008
Niceville.org
Town of Shalimar
2 Cherokee Road
Shalimar, FL 32579
850-651-5723
ShalimarFlorida.org
   
City of Valparaiso
465 Valparaiso Parkway
Valparaiso, FL 32580
850-729-5402
Valp.org
 
 

Certificate of Occupancy

After you have selected the location of your business, a certificate of occupancy must be obtained from the proper building inspection division. This also applies to zoning permits (Certificate of Use). The following is the building inspection division for Okaloosa County.

Okaloosa County
Building Inspection Department
1804 Lewis Turner Boulevard
Fort Walton Beach, FL 32547
850-651-7180

Small Business Development Center

The University of West Florida's Small Business Development Center provides consulting services to businesses in all stages of development, from pre-venture to maturity.

Small Business Development Center
University of West Florida
815 N Beal Parkway. Suite A
Fort Walton Beach, FL 32547
850-863-6552, www.sbdc.uwf.edu

Okaloosa Building and Sites Database

Okaloosa County has launched a website dedicated to powerful business information research and access to available properties and sites. This economic development tool is a partnership between the Economic Development Council of Okaloosa County and the Emerald Coast Association of Realtors. Using Geographic Information System (GIS) Software, the website provides immediate access to in-depth information that previously took weeks to research. Now, data including dynamic real estate, demographic, and industry breakdowns are available free and instantly for all cities in Okaloosa County, along with a database of available properties with images.
 
Utilize the widget below or visit www.okaloosasites.com to get started! 
 
 

Industries

Okaloosa County is host to a wide array of businesses and industries. From Tourism to Aerospace & Defense, our diversity reflects th...
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TeCMEN

The Technology Coast Manufacturing and Engineering Network, TeCMEN, was established by the Economic Development Council of Ok...
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