Starting A Business
Orange County is a business-friendly community and an excellent place to start a business. Whether a small or large business, or an entrepreneur, Orange County has the knowledgeable staff and access to resources that can help a business prosper and grow.
Start-up phases may include (but are not limited to): identifying the concept; identifying the location; developing a business plan; obtaining a business license; meeting local, state and federal requirements; and gathering important resources. Many helpful resources are listed below.
For entrepreneurs seeking information on starting a business, visit the Virginia Business One Stop and the Central Virginia Small Business Development Center (CV SBDC). The CV SBDC is a great resource for start-ups and provides a useful checklist for new businesses.
Orange County takes great pride in its ability to fast-track new business development. Working with the Department of Economic Development, the Department of Planning and Zoning and the Building Inspection Department, a preconstruction plan can be designed and implemented that will keep your project on schedule. From initial permitting to ground breaking, Orange County will ensure that the preconstruction phase of the project is not delayed.
About Business Licenses in Orange County
Orange County and the Town of Orange do not have a Business, Professional and Occupational License (BPOL) tax requirement; therefore, they do not issue business licenses (BPOL) for Orange County businesses. However, the Town of Gordonsville does have a BPOL requirement; contact the Town of Gordonsville Treasurer’s Office for more information:
Town of Gordonsville Treasurer's Office
P.O. Box 276
Gordonsville, VA 22942
Office: (540) 832-2233
As a start-up business, you may need an assumed, fictitious name or "Doing Business As" (DBA) certificate filed with the Orange County Circuit Court. This certificate will also be needed to set up your business' bank account. Contact the Orange County Circuit Court for more information at (540) 672-4030. Also visit Central Virginia Small Business Development Center or Virginia Business One Stop for more information. You may also need to obtain a Federal Tax Identification Number or Employer Identification Number (EIN) for your business. This is a good resource on EINs.
Central Virginia Small Business Development Center (CV SBDC)
The CV SBDC provides professional business consulting, training and information resources to help grow and strengthen Virginia businesses.
Business One Stop
Business One Stop can guide you through steps to take whether starting a business, running a business or expanding one.
Center for Innovative Technology (CIT)
CIT focuses on new technologies, entrepreneurs and technology companies that make innovation happen, and through CIT Research & Development, CIT Entrepreneur, CIT Broadband, and CIT Connect, responses are quick and efficient to new opportunities with government and private sector clients.
Virginia Department of Business Assistance (DBA)
VDBA provides one-stop-service for technical assistance related to business formation, access to capital, and workforce development. VDBA works with existing businesses as they grow their workforce and mentors entrepreneurs from ideas to launching their first business venture.
Virginia Department of Health/Office of Environmental Health
The Office of Environmental Health’s mission is to work in partnership with other agencies to protect the environment, protect public health, prevent the transmission of disease through food, milk, shellfish, water and sewage; and they offer vital information on requirements and assistance for those opening a restaurant or selling foods.
Orange County Circuit Court
Assumed, Fictitious Name or Doing Business As certificates are filed with the Orange County Circuit Court. For more information regarding this requirement, visit Central Virginia Small Business Development Center or Business One Stop.
Virginia Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation (DPOR)
DPOR is an agency of the Commonwealth of Virginia that regulates non-medical professions to protect the health, safety and welfare of the public by licensing qualified individuals and businesses and enforcing standards of professional conduct for professions and occupations as designated by statute.
Thomas Jefferson Partnership for Economic Development (TJPED)
TJPED helps to create new jobs and investment in the Greater Charlottesville region in which Orange County belongs. TJPED has recently integrated staff and resources with the Central Virginia Small Business Development Center and the Piedmont Workforce Network to expand its services for existing businesses, entrepreneurs, job seekers and employers. It serves as regional liaison for the Virginia Economic Development Partnership and Virginia Department of Business Assistance for this region.
Virginia Economic Development Partnership Division of International Trade/"Export Virginia"
Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP) promotes international trade for companies throughout Virginia and assists both new and experienced exporters entering new international markets. Businesses interested in increasing international sales and growing market share can benefit from VEDP’s export development programs, publications, resources, and market research.
Nonprofit Learning Point
Nonprofit Learning Point provides high quality, affordable professional and leadership development for the nonprofit community. Nonprofit Learning Point ensures quality programming and assesses quality and effectiveness through continuous evaluation and community needs assessment.
SCORE (Senior Core of Retired Executives), a resource partner with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), is dedicated to educating entrepreneurs and helping small businesses start, grow, and succeed nationwide. SCORE offers confidential business counseling services at no charge and provides workshops and events.
Business Resources for Entrepreneurs with a Disability
ShoreTelSky offers a good article outlining government programs, nonprofits and organizations, scholarship and grant foundations that boost the likelihood of success for anyone with a disability.