The official website of the City of Semmes, Alabama.

Business Licenses

The Official Website of Semmes, AL

Business License

A business license is required to operate a business within the City of Semmes or its Police Jurisdiction. Generally speaking, the Police Jurisdiction is the one and a half to three mile area that extends past the City Limits of Semmes but not into the jurisdiction of another city.

The definition of business from the standard business license ordinance reads as follows:

[1] Business – Any commercial or industrial activity or any enterprise, trade, profession, occupation, or livelihood, including the lease or rental of residential or nonresidential real estate, whether or not carried on for gain or profit, and whether or not engaged in as a principal or as an independent contractor, which is engaged in, or caused to be engaged in, within a municipality.

General Information

All business licenses expire December 31st. Renewals are due in January and are delinquent after January 31st.

New Business License fees are based on your estimated Gross Receipts.

Renewals are based on the previous year’s actual gross receipts.

        Gross receipts. Any and all receipts of a business from whatever source derived, to the maximum extent permitted by applicable laws and constitutional provisions, to be used in calculating the amount due for a business license. Provided, however, that gross receipts shall not include any of the following taxes collected by the business on behalf of any taxing jurisdiction or the federal government: (1) All taxes which are imposed on the ultimate consumer, collected by the taxpayer and remitted by or on behalf of the taxpayer to the taxing authority, whether state, local or federal, including utility gross receipts taxes levied pursuant to Code of Ala. 1975, § 40-21-80 et seq.; (2) License taxes levied pursuant to Code of Ala. 1975, § 40-21-50 et seq.; or (3) Reimbursements to professional employer organizations of federal, state or local payroll taxes or unemployment insurance contributions; but no other deductions or exclusions from gross receipts shall be allowed except as expressly provided by state law. For a utility or other entity described in Code of Ala. 1975, § 11-51-129, gross receipts shall be limited to the gross receipts derived from the retail furnishing of utility services within a municipality during the preceding year that are taxed under Code of Ala. 1975, § 40-21-80 et seq., except that nothing herein shall affect any existing contract or agreement between the city and a utility or other entity. Gross receipts shall not include dividends or other distributions received by a corporation, or proceeds from borrowings, the sale of a capital asset, the repayment of the principal portion of a loan, the issuance of stock or other equity investments, or capital contributions, or the undistributed earnings of subsidiary entities. Gross receipts shall not be subject to any deductions, exclusions, exemptions, or reductions unless expressly provided herein or by state law.

Physical Application Process

    • Fill out and submit completed Business License application.
    • Make sure to provide all required documentation
      • Copy of Owner/President driver license
      • Alabama State License, Permit or Certificate (if applicable)
      • Certificate of Insurance or Bond (if applicable)
    • Submit the completed Business License and required documentation to either:

If in person –

Semmes Public Works
 3940 Illinois St.
Semmes, AL 36575

(251) 649-5752

If by mail –

City of Semmes
P.O. Box 1757
Semmes, AL 36575

Or on-line –

[email protected]

    • The review/approval process starts once the completed application and required documents are received.
    • Revenue will review application and required documentation for accuracy and completeness
    • Building Inspector performs Building Inspection (if applicable)
    • Fire Marshal performs Safety Inspection (if applicable)
    • Revenue will collect payment and issue license

Doing Business Without a License

          Criminal penalties for failure to obtain license. It shall be unlawful for any person described in subsection (a) to engage in the activity for which a business license is levied without first having procured a business license therefor. In addition to any applicable civil penalties, violations of this section shall be punishable by a fine of up to five hundred dollars ($500.00) for each offense, and if the violation is willful, by imprisonment, not to exceed six (6) months for each offense, or both such fine and imprisonment, all at the discretion of the court trying the same. Each day during which such violation occurs shall constitute a separate offense.

City of Semmes Liquor Licensure Requirements

          In order to obtain a liquor license, the application must be submitted to the State of Alabama as described below, then before the license is issued, the applicant will be required to bring their application to the City of Semmes City Hall to have it approved by the council by resolution. Once the application is approved by the City of Semmes, the State will release the license. The City of Semmes cannot issue a business license until the liquor license is released.

Getting A Liquor License in Alabama

          In Alabama liquor licenses are overseen by the Alabama Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Board.  In order to get a liquor license in Alabama you will need to follow the information outlined on

Easter Dunning

Business License Administrator

[email protected]

Phone: (251) 649-5752, Option 2                                                Physical Address:                    3940 Illinois Street         Semmes, Alabama 36575

Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 1757
Semmes, Alabama 36575

Office Hours:
Monday – Friday
9:00 am – 4:00 pm