2015 ORS 701.015¹
Business license requirements in cities and metropolitan service districts
  • fees
  • distribution of fees

(1) A contractor shall pay directly to any city within the boundaries of a metropolitan service district any business license tax imposed by the city when:

(a) The principal place of business of the contractor is within the city; or

(b) The principal place of business of the contractor is not within the city but the contractor derives gross receipts of $250,000 or more from business conducted within the boundaries of the city during the calendar year for which the business license tax is owed.

(2) A contractor who conducts business during any year in any city within the boundaries of the metropolitan service district other than a city to which the contractor has paid a business license tax for that year may apply for a business license from the metropolitan service district.

(3) When a contractor obtains a business license from the metropolitan service district under subsection (2) of this section, if a city within the boundaries of the metropolitan service district other than a city to which the contractor is required to directly pay a business license tax under subsection (1) of this section demands payment of a business license tax by the contractor, the city shall waive such payment upon presentation of proof by the contractor that the contractor has a business license issued by the metropolitan service district. Possession by the contractor of a current business license issued by the metropolitan service district under subsection (2) of this section shall be proof sufficient to obtain the waiver described in this subsection.

(4) The metropolitan service district shall issue a business license to a contractor when:

(a) The contractor presents proof to the district that the contractor has paid the business license tax imposed by each city within the boundaries of the district to which the contractor must directly pay a business license tax under subsection (1) of this section; and

(b) The contractor pays a license fee to the district. The license fee charged under this paragraph shall be twice the average business license tax charged contractors by cities located within the metropolitan service district plus an amount that is sufficient to reimburse the district for the administrative expenses of the district incurred in carrying out its duties under this section.

(5) The metropolitan service district shall distribute the business license fees collected by the district under this section, less administrative expenses, to the cities that are located wholly or partly within the district and that collect a business license tax. In any year, each such city shall receive such share of the license fees as the number of residential building permits that it issued during that year bears to the total number of residential building permits that were issued during that year by all of the cities located wholly or partly within the district. Distribution of moneys under this subsection shall be made at least once in each year. The metropolitan service district shall determine the number of residential building permits issued by cities within the district from statistics.

(6) As used in this section:

(a) "Business license tax" means any fee paid by a person to a city or county for any form of license that is required by the city or county in order to conduct business in that city or county. The term does not include any franchise fee or privilege tax imposed by a city upon a public utility under ORS 221.420 (Municipal regulation of public utilities) or 221.450 (Privilege tax on public utilities operating without franchise) or any provision of a city charter.

(b) "Conducting business" means to engage in any activity in pursuit of gain including activities carried on by a person through officers, agents and employees as well as activities carried on by a person on that person’s own behalf.

(c) "Principal place of business" means the location in this state of the central administrative office of a person conducting business in this state. [1987 c.581 §2; 1989 c.1064 §§1,2; 1991 c.79 §2; 1999 c.176 §1; 2007 c.541 §44; 2015 c.180 §49]

Notes of Decisions

"Business license tax" includes any scheme that imposes assess­ment based on business net income. Proctor v. City of Portland, 245 Or App 378, 263 P3d 1099 (2011), Sup Ct review denied

Chapter 701

Notes of Decisions

This is a remedial statute made for the protec­tion of the building business and of people dealing with builders who might be irresponsible; it should be read as a whole and liberally construed to accomplish its purpose. Robinson v. Builders Bd., 20 Or App 340, 531 P2d 752 (1975)

Atty. Gen. Opinions

Lack of authority for director to appoint executive secretary for board, (1971) Vol 35, p 930; inap­pli­ca­bil­i­ty of this chapter to business of construc­tion or installa­tion of fences, sidewalks, septic tanks, wells and underground sprinkling systems, (1972) Vol 35, p 1278; mobile home as per­sonal or real prop­erty under this chapter, (1972) Vol 36, p 41; applica­tion of Homebuilders Law to mobile homes, (1978) Vol 38, p 693


1 Legislative Counsel Committee, CHAPTER 701—Construction Contractors and Contracts, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ors701.­html (2015) (last ac­cessed Jul. 16, 2016).
 
2 Legislative Counsel Committee, Annotations to the Oregon Revised Stat­utes, Cumulative Supplement - 2015, Chapter 701, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ano701.­html (2015) (last ac­cessed Jul. 16, 2016).
 
3 OregonLaws.org assembles these lists by analyzing references between Sections. Each listed item refers back to the current Section in its own text. The result reveals relationships in the code that may not have otherwise been apparent.