Contact Information

201 4th Street SE
Room 135
Rochester, MN 55904 (Map)

Phone: 507-328-2900
Fax: 507-328-2901
TDD: 507-328-2900

Mon-Fri 8:00 am to 5:00 pm

Department Contacts

Licenses and Permits

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The Office of the City Clerk is responsible for business licensing for the City of Rochester, as well as issuing a range of other licenses and permits on behalf of the City. The City Clerk's Office works closely with other City departments required to review and approve applications prior to issuing licenses. Most licenses require the approval of the City Council before they can be issued.

The City Clerk's Office is transitioning to a new licensing system. Once live for each license type, license holders are able to enter applications and renewals online, with communication about licenses occurring electronically in real time. For renewing existing licenses, please carefully review the renewal instructions for your particular license type.

Online Account Access

Visit Citizen Access - to apply online for license types active in the license portal.

The online license portal is active for:

  • Trades & Contractor Licenses
  • Liquor Licenses
  • Animal Licenses
  • Gambling Licenses*
  • Business Licenses*
  • Transportation Licenses*

*Most license types have been transitioned at this time to the new system and are available in Citizen Access for online application and account management. Licenses not yet available are marked in the list below with an asterisk * and require completion of a paper application.

License & Permit information by type

Additional license and permit-related information available from the City Clerk's Office

A to Z listing of City licenses and permits issued by the City Clerk's Office

This is a listing of all city licenses and permits handled by the City Clerk's Office, with links to individual applications and the City rules (ordinances) for each license or permit. 

For a copy of any application forms or for more information, please contact the City Clerk’s Office at (507) 328-2900, or come in to the office in City Hall at 201 4th Street SE, Rochester MN 55904.

See a list of current license holders or to find out if someone has a license by reviewing the Current and Previous Year License Holder information.

Ordinance (pdf) Download License Application

Activities/Sound 
See Special Event           

Resolution 033‑3 Banners
RCO 3-1 Breeding Permits*
Chapter 94 and 94A Bus*
RCO 3-1 Cat Regulations (no license required)
RCO 3-4

Chickens
*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system

RCO 5-9 Circus*
RCO 5-10 Dance (Annual)*
Dance (Single)*
RCO 3-1 Dog Regulations (no license required)
RCO 1-3 Domestic Partnership Registration*
Application
Amendment
Termination
RCO 3-5 Duck
*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system
RCO 5-11
*Resolution 169-00 Setting Fees 

Escort Services*

RCO 3-1 Ferret Regulations  (no license required)
RCO 5-16  Firework Sales*
Fireworks Displays*

Food Vending vehicle

See the following:

  • Mobile Food Unit (aka Food Truck)
  • Vending Cart
  • Ice Cream Vending Vehicle
RCO 8-10

Gambling

Please note: For a single gambling event, the City Clerk's Office must sign off on the Gambling application form. We charge a $15 fee for processing the gambling application.  After City approval, the applicant sends the application to the state with the appropriate State application fee.

*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system

RCO 11-2  Golf Carts*
RCO 4-3 Heating Contractors (Trades & Contractors License)
*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system
RCO 5-20    Ice Cream Vending Vehicle*
RCO 9-11-5 Impaired Child Sign Application*
RCO 5-19

Liquor License Policy Application Guidelines

*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system

Addendums and references for online applications:

ON SALE LICENSES - for businesses serving alcohol for consumption on site only

OFF SALE LICENSES - for businesses serving alcohol for consumption off the premises only

TEMPORARY LICENSES

*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system

RCO 5-15 Massage Therapists (individuals)
*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system
RCO 5-15 Massage Therapy (business)
*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system
RCO 4-3 Master Installers (Trades & Contractors License) 
*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system
RCO 5-21

Mobile Food Unit

Mobile Food Unit Guidance on Vending in the City of Rochester

License Application

Apply for a Downtown Operation Zone Permit 

Food Truck Safety Information from the Fire Department

*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system

RCO 5-12 Moving Permits* - Garages, Houses

Non-Regulated Activities* 
(picketing, bannering, demonstrating or protesting)

RCO 3-2

Outdoor Dog Permits

Application 

Requirements

*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system

Parades, Street Use and Miscellaneous Activities
(See Special Events)
RCO 5-13

Pawn Brokers

*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system

RCO5-4 Pedal Car application
Pedal Car Driver application*
RCO 5-14 Peddlers*
Please note: All applicants for Peddler permits must come in to the City Clerk's Office in person and must bring a Driver's license or other form of photo ID.
RCO 5-14 Peddler- Charitable and Religious Organizations*
RCO 3-3  Pigeon
*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system
RCO 5-11

Private Adult Dancer*

RCO 5-22 Public Transportation*
RCO 11-10 Residential Permit Parking**
RCO 9-1-2 Revocable sign permit (non-profit or city-sponsored organization)*
RCO 12-2 Sewers & Drains (Trades & Contractors License)
*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system
RCO 9-8

Sidewalk Cafe (Outdoor Dining in public right-of-way)
*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system

RCO 9-18  Sidewalks and Driveways  For Asphalt or Cement (Trades & Contractors License)
*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system
RCO 5-8 Sign Erector (Trades & Contractors License)
*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system
Sound Amplification
See Special Event
RCO 8-11

Special Event (guidelines and application)*
Also requires completed License Application Part I above

Please note: Special Event Applications should be submitted no later than 60 days in advance of the event. They will not be accepted less than 30 days before the event. For large scale events involving 1000 or more participants, the application must be submitted 120 days in advance.           
RCO 5-5

Taxicab

Taxi Drivers
*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system

RCO 5-6 Transportation Network Company* (License applies to TNC companies, not drivers - the City of Rochester does not license TNC drivers)
Also requires completed License Application Part I above
RCO 5-17 Tree Work Contractor  (Trades & Contractors License)
*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system
RCO 9-10 Vending Cart
*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system