Trades and Contractor Licensing

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Licenses Issued by the City of Rochester

Submitting a License Application 

These license types are being transitioned to a new online licensing system, Accela. You can access the system through the Citizen Access portal and can enter your application for a new license or a renewal of an existing license directly into Accela. No paper application is required, unless you are unable to use the online system for some reason.

Guide to Using the Citizen Access portal for license applications

Unless otherwise indicated, all license applications must be approved by the City Council before a license can be issued by the City Clerk's Office. All materials must be in AND approved by staff in the either the Building Safety or Public Works departments as well as the City Clerk's Office before a license application is approved by the City Council. Please plan accordingly, and submit your application in advance to allow time for this review and approval process.

Any paper license applications or other required documents can be submitted by mail or in person to the City Clerk's Office at 201 4th St SE, Room 135, Rochester, MN 55904.

Renewing a City License

All licenses issued to contractors or tradespeople must be renewed on an annual basis, and expire each year on Dec. 31. Current licensees will receive renewal information via email if available or  U.S. mail. Additional information on license renewals is also available online. Renewals will incur a late fee if not completed prior to Jan. 1.

Contractors Requiring a City License to pull Public Works Permits 

Sewers and Drains

Sewer and Drain License Application Packet
*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system

Requirements for contractors working on sewers and drains in the city are outlined in Rochester Code of Ordinances Chapter 12-2

This is an annual license, expiring every year on Dec. 31. The annual license fee is $55, and is not prorated, regardless of when during the year a license is obtained. Licensees who do not renew an existing license by Jan. 1 are subject to a $15 late fee on the renewal.

Sidewalks and Driveways

Sidewalks and Driveways License Application Packet - for asphalt or cement
*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system

Requirements for contractors working on sidewalks, curbs, gutters and driveways in the city are outlined in Rochester Code of Ordinances Chapter 9-18.  A separate license must obtained, and a separate application completed, for asphalt and for cement work.

This is an annual license, expiring every year on Dec. 31. The annual license fee is $55, and is not prorated, regardless of when during the year a license is obtained. Licensees who do not renew an existing license by Jan. 1 are subject to a $15 late fee on the renewal.

Note about Applying for Permits from Public Works

With the completion of a notarized form submitted directly to the Public Works Department, Licensed Contractors can request permits by fax, email, phone or in person. Once your license application has been approved, or anytime you have changes to relevant staff, make sure to complete a new Authorized Permit Requesters Form. Check with the Public Works Department for more information about this form or the permit process.

Trades Requiring a City License to pull Building Safety Permits

HVAC Master Installer

HVAC Master Installer Individual License Application Packet
*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system

Requirements for HVAC (Heating, Ventilating, and Air Conditioning) contractors working in the city are outlined in Rochester Code of Ordinances Chapter 4-3 and Chapter 4-4.  The master installer license is issued to the individual applicant, and is not directly tied to the contractor the master installer is employed by. For that reason, the application must be signed by the individual applicant and the license must be sent directly to the home address of the applicant, not the contractor/business for whom they work.

This is an annual license, expiring every year on Dec. 31. The annual license fee is $36, and is not prorated, regardless of when during the year a license is obtained. Licensees who do not renew an existing license by Jan. 1 are subject to a $12 late fee on the renewal.

*Before an applicant can obtain a Master Installer license, they must first have a certificate of competency issued by the City of Rochester. Certificates of Competency must be obtained through the Building Safety Department. The application form for a certificate of competency and an FAQ about HVAC licensing from Building Safety are linked here for the convenience of applicants. The certificate of competency application and required $25 fee for each area of competency must be submitted directly to Building Safety, NOT the City Clerk's Office. Contact Kirk Luthe in the Building Safety Department with questions or for more information about obtaining a certificate of competency.

Certificate of Competency Application - return to Building Safety Department with required fee
FAQ about HVAC Licensing from the Building Safety Department

HVAC Contractor

Requirements for HVAC (Heating, Ventilating, and Air Conditioning) contractors working in the city are outlined in Rochester Code of Ordinances Chapter 4-3 and Chapter 4-4. Before a contractor can apply for an HVAC Contractor license, they must have at least one licensed master installer employed full time. An HVAC Contractor license can be submitted at the same time as a Master Installer License application, but will not be approved until the Master Installer license has been approved.

This is an annual license, expiring every year on Dec. 31. The annual license fee is $75, and is not prorated, regardless of when during the year a license is obtained. Licensees who do not renew an existing license by Jan. 1 are subject to a $15 late fee on the renewal.

HVAC Contractor License Application Packet
*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system

Sign Erector

Requirements for contractors who erect or maintain signs in the city are outlined in Rochester Code of Ordinances Chapter 5-8.

This is an annual license, expiring every year on Dec. 31. The annual license fee is $55, and is not prorated, regardless of when during the year a license is obtained. Licensees who do not renew an existing license by Jan. 1 are subject to a $15 late fee on the renewal.

Sign Erector/Contractor License Application Packet
*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system

Other Licenses

Tree Contractor

Requirements for contractors who erect or maintain signs in the city are outlined in Rochester Code of Ordinances Chapter 5-17.

This is an annual license, expiring every year on Dec. 31. The annual license fee is $55, and is not prorated, regardless of when during the year a license is obtained. Licensees who do not renew an existing license by Jan. 1 are subject to a $15 late fee on the renewal. Once an application for a tree contractor is complete, it must be approved by the Director of Park & Recreation, or the City Forester as his designee, and will be issued upon that approval.

For questions about licensing requirements for tree contractors, please contact the City Forester, Jeff Haberman, at 507-328-2515.

Commercial Tree Work License Application Packet
*Only submit a paper application if unable to use the online application system

Other Licenses Required

State Licenses 

In some instances, the City of Rochester requires a license from the State of Minnesota in order to do work in the city. This includes electricians and plumbers. For more information about these requirements, including links to state licensing information, please see the information Building Safety provides regarding construction and trades licensing.