When the clock counts down to zero on New Year’s Eve, the clock starts ticking for Richland County businesses to renew their business licenses – and the Business Service Center provides online resources to make doing so faster and more convenient.
All Richland County business licenses expire each year on Dec. 31. The deadline for applying for a new license, without incurring penalties, is March 15 each year.
The Business Service Center (BSC) staff encourages business owners – especially those who own home-based businesses – to understand the need for obtaining an up-to-date Richland County business license. A business license is used to, among other things, enhance community safety, increase a business’ credibility among customers and serve as a means of communicating by County officials.
“Business licenses are a critical tool for cities and counties to help enhance the health, safety, and welfare of the community,” said Pam Davis, Manager of the Business Service Center. “And getting businesses from outside Richland County to contribute more than 10 percent of the funds generated to support the services and programs enjoyed by Richland County residents and businesses.”
Businesses can quickly and easily renew their licenses by using the BSC’s online resources. The BSC website offers online renewal with instructions to guide business owners through the process, as well as a checklist to help businesses know what information is needed before they begin. Businesses receive a $10 discount off the renewal fee for using the website.
Businesses contribute to the economic and social well-being of the Richland County and the BSC staff works year round to serve this vital component of the community, acting as a “one-stop shop” for business owners. The BSC staff also works to ensure business owners and residents understand the reasons why business licenses are important:
- Health, safety and welfare: Business licenses help ensure businesses operate lawfully and meet the County’s requirements to do business – thereby promoting the health, safety and welfare of the community. This attracts more businesses and residents, further enhancing the community.
- Non-resident support: Business licenses from out-of-county and out-of-state businesses result in non-resident businesses helping support the needs of Richland County.
- Credibility: Business licenses demonstrate a business’ commitment to operating lawfully, and allow potential customers, clients and patrons to identify legitimate, lawful businesses.
- Fictitious names: Business licenses give businesses a way to operate with trade names, or fictitious names. The Secretary of State’s Office no longer registers “Doing Business As” or “DBA” names.
- Communication: Business licenses serve as an important communication tool with Richland County, allowing Richland County to know its business community and how to reach them. Business licenses serve as a tool to facilitate businesses’ awareness of local and state requirements affecting them.
- Revenue: Business licenses fund other critical County services, such as law enforcement and emergency medical services.
- Diversification: Business licenses diversify the County’s revenues – so the impacts of economic downturns are spread over multiple revenue streams.
To renew Richland County businesses online, visit www.richlandcountysc.gov/bsc. While there, check out the updated Richland County Business Handbook. For more information, contact the Business Service Center at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 803-576-2287.