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Business Toolkit

The City of Eureka has development a business toolkit in partnership with the North Coast Small Business Development Center (SBDC) to help guide new businesses through this City and its departments. The toolkit can be navigated within the City's website, or can be downloaded as a PDF. Please give us feedback on the document so it can continue to meet the needs of our diverse business community!



Create a Business Plan

Plan for Location & Workspace Needs

Fulfill Business License and Permit Requirements

Plan for Equipment

Get Funded

Engage for Success


Create a Business Plan

A business plan will help you clarify your business goals and identify action steps for achieving those goals. If you're missing important details regarding your business, drafting your plan will make those "trouble spots" obvious and will make it easier to reach out for targeted assistance. A business plan is also important for investors, who will typically ask to see realistic projections for a project’s timeline and costs.


Understand Your Location and Workspace Needs vs. Government Requirements

Requirements and safety codes can greatly affect  your business in a wide variety of ways, from how a space is used to how equipment is installed. Before deciding on a location, it is incredibly important to have a thorough understanding of how and when your space will be used.  We recommend making a list of everything you will be doing in the space and calling the Economic Development or Planning Department to make sure you have a full understanding of the regulations outlined in the Eureka Municipal Code. This will help you identify what type of space you’ll need, as well as help you think through special inspections of permits you’ll need to do business. Are you a small office-based startup? If so, consider using a local co-work space!

  •  Read the tip-sheet “5 Questions to Ask Before You Sign a Lease” located in this guide.
  • Consider co-working options as outlined in the resources section.
  • Use our interactive online map tool to locate your business and determine its zoning,
  • Contact Eureka’s Planning or Economic Development Division for information about a location’s zoning designation and development/renovation requirements.


Understand Business License and Permit Requirements

You’ll need to give your business a name, and decide what legal structure it will follow. Then you’ll need to apply for the business permits and licenses that apply to your business.

 Completing these steps involves time and money. Help from legal professionals and business consultants may help you stay on track and within budget.

  •  Review the business license page on the Finance Department section of the website.
  • Visit the state-run CalGold website to confirm which permits and licenses you’ll need and feel free to follow up with the Economic Development Department or SBDC for guidance
  • .Consult with an appropriate professional if necessary, and begin completing applications.


Plan for Equipment

Before you purchase equipment (especially pre-owned equipment), be sure to identify where you might need special permits or inspections. As a general rule, equipment that needs to be installed (bolted to ceiling, floor, or wall), emits fumes or smoke, makes noise, or discharges waste will require an inspection and/or permit by the Building Department.

  •  Create a list of the equipment you will need and how that equipment will be installed.
  • If your process involves water discharge, you should also contact the Public Works & Utilities Department for more information.


Get Funded

Financing a new business can be challenging, especially for first-time entrepreneurs. Take stock of your savings, and investigate grants and small business loans offered by local, state, and federal agencies. Banks and credit unions—particularly local ones—are also worth looking into.

  •  Budget based on your space and equipment needs assessment
  • Start contacting financing agencies using the Financing section.


Engage for Success

Eureka businesses thrive on collaboration and communication. Decide what channels fit your businesses and personality, and network for success.

  • Review the list of networking resources in the following section.