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Start Your Business

A Guide to Starting a Business in West Point, GA

We are glad you are considering the City of West Point as the location for your business. We strive to make the experience of starting your business as simple as possible while upholding our commitment to protect the aesthetic and economic well-being of West Point. This guide is designed to help you organize and streamline the important tasks and decisions required to start and run your own buisness. From "What is a business plan and why do I need one? to "I am ready, now how do I get my business license?" we hope you find the resources you need here.

Starting a business in West Point is as easy as "1-2-3."

This guide is a resource for business owners and entrepreneurs in the City of West Point. While it certainly does not answer all of the questions you are sure to have, it does provide information on who can answer those questions.

By following our step by step start up method, we hope you find the process simple and straight-forward.

If we can assist you in any other matters regarding location and operating your business, please Email or call (706) 645-3518.

1 - Appropriate Zoning

Once you identify a tentative location for your business, contact the Community Development department to determine the permitted uses of that location. Do not invest any money in a location until you know the location is properly zoned for your proposed use.

The Community Development department can help you determine if your location and type of business are in compliance with our Zoning ordinance. The Community Development Director can also answer any questions you may have regarding signage. 

If you have questions regarding the permitted use of a specific site or building please contact the Community Development department at 706-645-3534. Be sure to provide your location's address or tax map & parcel number.

2 - Building Permit & Inspections

Any structural changes to the exterior or interior of an existing building may require a permit. Permits are required before any work begins. Fees are based on the type and extent of work. The Central Business District - Downtown has specific color paletts that are suggested for exterior paint.

Items that require a permit include:
New Construction Plan Roofs
Interiors  Plumbing Plan 
Additions  HVAC Plan 
Structural Repairs  Electrical Plan 

Plans must be sealed by a licensed architect or engineer. The State of Georgia requires that all contractors be licensed in order to perform contracted work. An affidavit is required from the contractor in order for work to proceed.

Land Disturbance

If you are constructing a site from the ground up, you will need to submit Land Disturbance Site and/or construction plans. You need to submit six (6) sets of plans no larger than 36" x 42". All applicaiton fees are paid at the time of submittal. Your plans must inlcude the following:

- Plan Index
- Site Plan
- Grading and Drainage
- Erosion and Sedimentation plan (per current Georgia Stormwater Manual)
- Landscape Plan
- Tree Protection Plan
- Storm Drain Plan and Profiles
- Water Distribution Plan and Profiles
- Hydrology Study
- Depending on your work, other plans may also be required

Once you have a fully approved set of plans, you should obtain a Land Disturbance permit from the Planning Department prior to starting work. If you have any questions regarding Site Plans, building permits and inspections, please contact our Community Development department at 706-645-3534.

3 - Occupational Tax Certificate (Business License)

An Occupational Tax Certificate, more commonly referred to as a business license, is required to conduct business in West Point. A business operating without an Occupational Tax Certificate is subject to a legal penalty.

The minimum charge for an Occupational Tax Certificate is $80.00 and varies depending on the number of employees. All Occupational Tax Certificates must be paid and renewed by January 1st of each year. Occupational Tax Certificates are obatined and renewed at City Hall.

If you have more than one location, you will need a seperate Occupational Tax Certificate for each business location. If you are operating under various firm or trade names, you will need a seperate Occupational Tax Certificate for each trade name issued.

We require businesses to obtain an Occupational Tax Certificate before opening. If you have a City Occupational Tax Certificate, you will not need to obtain a County Occupational Tax Certificate.

Occupational Tax Certificates are transferable only if the certificate holder moves to a new location within West Point city limits.

If you have questions regarding the business licensing process, please contact Customer Service at 706-645-2226.


Matters to Consider Prior to Opening

- How is circulation and traffic flow in the area?
- Are there similar businesses in the area?
- Are there any tax incentives that you can take advantage of?
- How is waste disposal handled?
- When, where and how will you market and advertise?
- Can any of your supplies be purchased from a local vendor or producer?
- Tax types and paymenst required by the Georgia Department of Revenue.

Start Up Basics

Small Business Development Center

The Small Business Administration (SBA) and the University of Georgia (UGA) have teamed up to form the Small Business Development Center (SBDC). The SBDC program is designed to provide quality business and economic development assistance to businesses and prospective businesses in order to promote growth, expansion, innovation, increased productivity and improve management.

The SBDC offers classes, great step by step information, assistance with business plans, and insight into financing. Start UP Basics is a "must have" manual for anyone trying to start a business. Please visit and download your copy today. There is also a great tool on the "how to" of business financing. "Why you should seek financing?" and "What kind of financing is available?" are answered in a packet available from the SBDC.

Georgia Secretary of State

The First Stop Business Guide is provided by the Georgia Secretary of State. The guide includes frequently asked questions of small business entrepreneurs, financing information, information on the business licensign required in the State of Georgia as well as a helpful directory of business related organizations that you will need. The directory includes information on obtaining Employer Identification numbers, sales tax, and other taxes you should know about. Please visit for more information.

LaGrange-Troup County Chamber of Commerce

The Chamber's mission is to help businesses grow and advocate for businesses at the local, state, and federal level. Chambers offer wonderdul business to business networking opportunities, marketing opportunities, and access in many cases to your elected officials. Please visit for more information on benefits and membership.

Business Licensing Procedure

Is zoning approved for
the site or building?
 NO   Contact Planning and Zoning


Has the building or site
been inspected? 
 NO Contact Building Inspections


Does your business serve
food or cater? 
 YES  Contact Troup County
Environmental Health
For an Alcohol License
Call 706-645-2226

Are you installing a sign?  YES  Contact Planning and Zoning


Obtain an Occupational Tax
Certificate/Business License
Call 706-645-2226

Important Phone Numbers

City of West Point Main Line
West Point Fire Department

West Point Community Development

Planning and Zoning
West Point Police Department

West Point City Clerk


West Point Economic Development
West Point Main Street Program
Troup County Environmental Health

West Point Utilities


LaGrange-Troup County Chamber of Commerce