Business Licensing

Business License Ordinance

The City of Ramsey has established a uniform system for the issuance, revocation, suspension, and renewal of licenses for all activities for which the City Code requires licenses. It is unlawful to engage in a trade, profession, business, or privilege in the city for which a license is required without first obtaining a license from the City in the manner provided in this section.

A licensee must carry or display the city-issued license certificate or ID badge at all times while engaged in the activity for which the license was granted. Where the licensed activity is conducted at a fixed place of business or establishment, the certificate must be exhibited at all times in some conspicuous place on the licensed premises. The licensee must present the license certificate upon request to any police officer or authorized representative of the city. Licenses are not transferable. Refer to City Code Chapter 26 - Licenses, Permits & Misc Business Regulations.

Apply for a Business License

Business licenses and/or ID badges are issued upon application approval by the City Council and completion of a background check. The review and approval process may take up to 15 days (120 days for therapeutic massage licenses). 

All renewal and select new business license applications can now be submitted online via eLicenses. Renewals require a code that was emailed to the licensee. Click on Apply Here to submit your eLicense application. Scroll down to download a PDF application.

ALL license applications must be approved by City Council, which meets on the 2nd & 4th Tuesday of the month. Application deadline is ONE WEEK before the City Council meeting.

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Cannabis/Hemp/THC - Update 

Effective January 1, 2024, all Ramsey businesses selling Lower-Potency Hemp Edibles (hemp-derived cannabinoid products containing THC, CBD or both) are required to submit a retailer registration and $125 fee to the city, renewable annually. Businesses with multiple locations must register each one separately. This is in addition to the State of Minnesota registration per MN Statute 151.72. Failure to register with the state could result in fines up to $10,000.

All businesses registered with the city are listed online. A letter was emailed to Ramsey businesses on December 18, 2023.

On May 24, 2023, a one-year moratorium was put in place for the City of Ramsey prohibiting the establishment of new or expansion of existing uses of real tetrahydrocannibinol (THC) products. View the ordinance for details. 

Questions may be directed to City of Ramsey Business Licensing or the Office of Cannabis Management. Hemp related inquiries can visit the MN Department of Agriculture website.
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Mobile Food Units

Mobile Food Unit (MFU) licenses are required for food trucks/vendors operating in the city when selling to the public. Mobile food units operating on private property for private events not open to the public are not required to obtain a license. The two license options are: 90 Day license ($80) or a Full-year license ($100) expiring December 31st. To apply, select Apply Here.
Mobile Food Unit License Ordinance
MFU Operating Requirements
List of Current Licensed Food Trucks (MFU) in Ramsey

Anoka County Mobile Food Unit Requirements -->


Solicitors (including ice cream trucks) traveling door-to-door must wear their City-issued badge at all times and carry their license certificate. Soliciting is allowed from 9:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m. per city ordinance. Solicitation is NOT ALLOWED until approved by City Council and ID badges are issued and may risk up to a $250 fine and/or immediate denial of future applications. Allow up to 3 weeks to process and approve the license application.  Please contact us at 763-433-9828 or email us with any questions. Ordinance information can be found in City Code Chapter 26, Article XIII

Residents can view these guidelines from the MN Attorney General's Office regarding door-to-door sales. 

To report unlicensed solicitors, contact the non-emergency police dispatch line at 763-427-1212 or 911.

Transient Merchants & Game Fair

Vendors who engage temporarily (60 days or less) in the business of selling goods within the city and who occupies any structure, vacant lot or property must obtain a license to do so. Documented permission from the property owner is required. All licenses must be approved by City Council prior to issuing a license. 

NOTE: 2024 Game Fair Transient Merchant application DEADLINE  is JULY 16, 2024.

Liquor License Applications

Temporary On-Sale Intoxicating License

Temporary on-sale intoxicating licenses are available for non-profits holding community events or breweries at social events sponsored by the brewer. To apply, complete the MN Alcohol & Gambling (AGE) Temporary On-Sale Intoxicating form and return to City of Ramsey at least 30 business days before event along with a copy of a certificate of liability insurance (with "City of Ramsey" listed as certificate holder). Once City Council approves it will be submitted to the State on behalf of applicant. 

NOTE: Per state statute, the temporary on-sale intoxicating license is limited to 12 days per year within a 12 month period. Each event must be at least 30 days apart. Refer to MN Statute 340A.404 Subd. 10 for requirements. 

New On-Sale, Off-Sale, 3.2 Liquor, Wine Intoxicating Licenses

Applicants need to complete a City of Ramsey Liquor License Application. A $500 non-refundable investigation fee and license fee must accompany submitted application. Brand new businesses should always verify zoning regulations with the Planning department first.

City of Ramsey Liquor License Application

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All MN AGED Application Forms
MN AGE Application for Off-Sale Intoxicating Liquor License Application
MN AGE Certification of On Sale, 3.2% Liquor, or Sunday Liquor License Application
Optional 2AM Closing License Application

Caterer's Permit

Licensed restaurants with an On-Sale intoxicating liquor license may serve alcohol off premises with an Alcohol Caterer's Permit obtained from the Minnesota Department of Public Safety (DPS).

City of Ramsey Liquor License Ordinance

Other Licenses

Business Registration Certificates

The City of Ramsey requires that every business obtain a Business Registration Certificate (BRC) annually in order to operate in the City. Visit the Business Registration page for details & application form. The BRC is processed and maintained by the Ramsey Police department and renewed annually in January. Contact Jennifer Johnson at 763-433-9889 with any questions.

Contractor Licenses

To apply for a contractor's license in the City of Ramsey, visit the Contractor License page.

Fire or Tent Permits

To view or apply for fire related permits, visit the Ramsey Fire Department permit page.

Food Based Businesses

For questions regarding licensing a new food-based business, contact MN Department of Agriculture or Anoka County Environmental Services. Anoka County licenses and inspects food service establishments. MDA regulates areas such as grocery stores, convenience stores, bakeries, meat processing, and candy-making businesses.


For questions regarding lawful gambling (raffle, pull tabs, etc), view City Code Article V or contact Diana Lund at 763-433-9847.

Home Based Businesses

Ramsey residents with a home-based business may require a home occupation permit. More information and the application can be found here: Home Occupation Permit Application (PDF)
Questions may be directed to the Planning Department at or 763-433-9824.

Rental Licenses

Ramsey has a new rental licensing program effective January 1, 2024. Please visit the Rental Licensing page for more information. Questions may be directed to Dana Verbeek at 763-433-9824. 

For a list of apartment rentals, see the Current Business List (search "apartments").

County License Requirements

Please check with Anoka County Environmental Services for additional licensing requirements.