a.k.a. General Business/Privilege Licenses
ORDINANCE NO. 1786
ORDINANCE NO. 7642: Non-Profits
Contact the North Little Rock Planning Department for zoning regulations that apply to the location for your proposed business. You must get a zoning certificate before applying for a business/privilege license in our office. The zoning certificate is only valid for thirty (30) days after the issue date. After the thirty (30) days have expired, a new zoning certificate will be required to issue a business/privilege license. A zoning certificate is required for all business license applications (including home-based and out of city) and change of address (physical location within the city). For information about a business license application, call 501-975-8617. For more information about zoning, call the Planning Department 501-975-8835.
The City of North Little Rock requires all businesses to obtain a business/privilege license to conduct business within the city limits. If your business is operated out of your home, you are also required to have a home occupation permit. A copy of the residential/commercial lease between the property owner and the tenant occupying the space is required. Non-Profits are also licensed with our City. You must apply for this business/privilege license at the City Clerk’s Office at 300 Main Street (City Hall). Please contact our office for a final quote on the total fees due as variables may apply.
Business/Privilege licenses must be renewed annually.
If a business changes location within the city limits, a new zoning certificate and application are required. There are no additional fees for change of address.
The business/privilege license applications will be held in the City Clerk’s office for no more than thirty (30) days after the date it is received in the office. If the business fails to submit the necessary documents, including a copy of the residential/commercial lease between the property owner and the tenant occupying the space, to issue a license within that time frame, then the business will be required to resubmit the information.
If a business expands services provided, please contact our office for a final quote on the fee for the new and/or additional services.
Click here for a list of instructions regarding Operating a Business in North Little Rock.
Business License Application Forms
All business licenses expire on December 31st of each year. If submitting a statement of closure after a new licensing period begins on January 1st of each year, you may be responsible for any outstanding charges on your account for the current year, as well as any previous years outstanding balances.
Privilege License –All foodservice and lodging (including home vacation rentals) must obtain a general business privilege license from the City Clerk’s Office in order to conduct business within city limits. Even if your main business office is outside of North Little Rock, if you have an establishment in North Little Rock, you must obtain a local business license.
A&P Permit – All food service businesses (hotels/motels, restaurants, convenience stores, movie theatres, food vendors, mobile concessionaires, etc.) and lodging businesses (hotels, motels, bed and breakfasts, inns, home vacation rentals, etc.) are required to have an Advertising & Promotion (A&P) tax permit to operate in North Little Rock. There is no charge for this permit. You must apply online at northlittlerock.org. For more information, contact Janis Alexander at 501-404-0148. The permit does not have to be renewed each year – it expires only when the business closes.
ALL FOOD SERVICE AND LODGING TAXES MUST BE REMITTED TO THE NORTH LITTLE ROCK ADVERTISING AND PROMOTION COMMISSION (A&P).
To remit taxes online and for more A&P tax information, please visit the North Little Rock A&P Commission website at www.northlittlerockap.org.
If you have any questions about the A&P taxes or permit, call:
- North Little Rock Convention and Visitors Bureau
600 Main Street, Suite 100
North Little Rock, AR 72114
Health Inspection – To open a food service establishment in Arkansas, the owner has to go through a Plan Review (501-661-2171) with the Arkansas Department of Health. The only exception is when an establishment hasn’t been closed before another establishment is opened at same location. (When this happens, the owner will only have to call the Environmental Health Specialist to change ownership, name, etc.) The Plan Review guidelines and the Rules & Regulations Pertaining to Retail Food Establishments book are available at any local health unit. After the Plan Review department approves your plans, they send a letter to the local health unit. The food service establishment owner calls the local health department to make an appointment to open the establishment. The Environmental Health Specialist conducts a walk-through inspection to confirm design specifications and compliance with the regulations. You will receive your bill for your permit in the mail within a few months. Presently, the cost is $35.00. This fee does not include business licenses, etc. which can be obtained from the North Little Rock’s City Clerk’s office.
COTTAGE FOOD ACT
Individuals or businesses operating under the Cottage Food Act are required to obtain a North Little Rock City Business License. Act 399 of 2017 defines a “Cottage food production operation” as food items produced in a person’s home that are non-potentially hazardous foods such as bakery products, candy, fruit butter, jams, and jellies. Only these 5 products are covered in Act 399 and are the only products allowed to be sold under ACT 399 of 2017. Cottage food items can only be sold direct from the manufacturer to the consumer either from the site where the food is made, a farmer’s market, a county fair, or a special event. Before operating or handling these items, you must first check with the Arkansas Department of Health to verify you are legally operating within their guidelines.
Pulaski County Health Unit – North Little Rock, 2800 N. Willow Street, North Little Rock, AR 72114 or call 501-791-8551
COTTAGE FOOD ACT GUIDELINES
All businesses (hotels, restaurants, liquor stores, bars, and private clubs) must obtain a City Beer/Liquor/Mixed Drink license from the City Clerk’s Office to be able to sell alcohol in the City. You are first required to get an Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) license from the State before you may apply for your City license. A copy of the ABC license must be filed with us before you are issued a City license. Statements are mailed at the end of each June and will be due by July 31 of that year. Following is a fee schedule:
Beer and/or Wine: Restaurants, Liquor Store, and Private Clubs – Beer/wine license are based on sales from the previous year July-June.
- $15.00 for the first $1,000.00
- $5.00 for each additional $1,000.00 of sales
- Example: $20,000 amount of sales for the year
- $15.00 for first $1,000.00
- $5.00 x 19,000.00 = $95.00
- $95.00 + $15.00 = $110.00
- Total tax due = $110.00
Restaurant (Mixed Drink)
- 99 seats or less $500.00
- 100 seats or more $1000.00
- Private Clubs (Mixed Drink): $250.00
- Liquor Stores (Mixed Drink): $200.00
If you have any questions regarding beer/wine and liquor licenses, please call the City Clerk’s Office at 501-975-8617.
Food trucks operating in North Little Rock are subject to Ordinance No. 8736
Food trucks operating on City property, City rights-of-way, and areas in the City zoned as “residential” must have prior written approval from the Mayor of North Little Rock or his designee, Neighborhood Services located at 3427 North Magnolia Street, North Little Rock, AR 72116 or via email at NLRNeighborhoodServ@nlr.ar.gov.
Food trucks operating on private property in areas of the City zoned “commercial or industrial” must have express written permission from the property owner or his/her designee. Food trucks operating on property owned by schools must have express written permission from the school’s governing body or its designee. Any written permission must be provided to the City Clerk’s Office for each location the Mobile Food Vendor operates at before setting up and it must be present on the Mobile food truck and available for inspection at any time.
Concession operations and agreements managed by the North Little Rock Parks & Recreation Department are not subject to the above regulations.
All food trucks conducting business in the City of North Little Rock must have the following:
- A Current Year Fire Inspection – contact the North Little Rock Fire Department at 501-340-5377 to schedule an inspection by the Fire Marshal’s Office.They do not provide inspections/on-site inspections outside of normal business hours (e.g., at a local event) or provide food truck inspections via FaceTime.
- A Current Year Health Inspection – contact the North Little Rock Health Department at 501-791-8551 to schedule an inspection to receive the approved to open papers.
- Current Year Written Permission from Property Owner for each location the Mobile Food Vendor operates at (if applicable)
- A Valid Driver’s License of the Owner/Representative of the Food Truck
- A Current North Little Rock Business License – application is made at the North Little Rock City Clerk & Treasurer’s Office, 300 Main Street (City Hall) 501-975-8617. The City Clerk’s Office will honor business licenses issued by any City in the State of Arkansas for the same classification. A copy of the current out-of-city business license must be submitted with:
(1) the fire inspection, (2) health inspection, (3) driver’s license and (4) business license application in order to obtain a “no fee” North Little Rock business license.
If the mobile food truck does not have an out-of-city business license, please contact our office for fees.
- A Current North Little Rock Advertising & Promotion Permit – application is made at the North Little Rock Advertising & Promotion Commission, 600 Main Street, 501-404-0143. If the food truck does not obtain an Advertising & Promotion permit upon receiving a North Little Rock business license, the business license is subject to being revoked.
To host an event with food trucks in North Little Rock, the sponsor of the event is required to contact North Little Rock Neighborhood Services for an application. Call Neighborhood Services at 501-791-8500 to obtain details regarding the application. Completed applications are submitted to Neighborhood Services at 3427 North Magnolia Street, North Little Rock, AR 72116 or via e-mail at NLRNeighborhoodServ@nlr.ar.gov.
REGULATIONS FOR FOOD TRUCKS
Each food truck may only operate at the specific location listed on the written approval. No dining area is permitted without prior approval. Each food truck must offer a waste container(s) for public use. Food Truck operators must remove all trash at their expense and shall not use dumpsters of existing businesses without the permission of those businesses. No food truck shall make or cause to make any unreasonable or excessive noise in violation of City ordinances. Food trucks cannot be parked on the street overnight unless part of an ongoing event. Food trucks must be secured any time food is kept in the truck. Unless otherwise specified, permits are valid for the current calendar year.
General Sales & Use Tax Collection – The Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration (DFA) is responsible for the collection of all sales and use taxes, including local, county and state sales taxes. Their phone number is (501) 682-7104. If you have vending machines or video game machines, you must also speak with the miscellaneous tax section about tax decals for your machines.
DFA offers an online taxpayer portal called ATAP (Arkansas Taxpayer Access Point). It is a free web-based service where you can electronically manage your state tax accounts. New users must register on the site with their Tax ID number.
North Little Rock City sales tax is collected through DFA. Our city sales tax is currently 2%. City sales tax funds Police, Fire, and other essential city services. Click here for a pie chart showing the distribution of your tax dollars from the city’s General Fund.
Monthly Mixed Drink Tax: All businesses selling mixed alcohol beverages are required to collect Mixed drink tax. Section 3. Ordinance No. 3743: A supplemental tax upon the gross receipts of the sale of alcoholic beverages pursuant to Act 132 of 1969 is hereby levied. Full remittance of collected taxes is due in the City Clerk’s office by the first of the month, reported on a Mixed Drink and/or Private Club Monthly Declaration of Sales Report Form.
Hotels and Restaurants – 10%
Private Clubs – 5%
Current Tax Rates
|State Addl Supp||4.00%||4.00%|
|City Mixed Drink Tax||10.00%||5.00%|
|State Excise Tax on Beer||(Package Sales Only)||(Package Sales Only)||(Package Sales Only)||3.00%|
Federal Tax Identification Number – To obtain your Federal Tax ID Number, contact the Internal Revenue Service’s local office at 700 W. Capitol Avenue, Room 2503 in the Federal Building or call 1-(800) 829-1040.
State Sales Tax Number – To obtain your Arkansas Sales Tax Number, contact the State of Arkansas at (501) 682-7104 or visit their office at 7th and Wolfe Streets, Room 211.
State Unemployment Insurance – Any business hiring one or more employees on a full or part-time basis must notify the Employment Security Department, 501-682-2127.
State Quarterly Withholding Report – Any business hiring employees on a full or part-time basis must notify the State of Arkansas Withholding Office, 501-682-7290.
Property Taxes – Personal property and businessperson’s property taxes are handled by the Pulaski County Assessor and/or Collector. They are located at 201 S. Broadway in Little Rock and can be reached by phone at 501-340-6170 or 501-340-6040.