Guide to Opening a Business

Business Resources/Utilities

Before Opening For Business - Items to Consider:

1. Secure a copy of "Application for Employers Identification Number" (Form SS-4) from the Internal Revenue Service. 
Internal Revenue Service

2. If a business is to be operated under an assumed name, the name under which it proposes to operate should be filed with the Tarrant County Clerk.  Prior to filing the assumed name, contact the office of County Clerk to see if any other business is presently operating under the name. 
Tarrant County Clerk's Office

3. For corporate certificates and all information pertaining to filing of articles of incorporation or authority of foreign  corporations to do business in Texas, contact the Secretary of State. 
Secretary of State

4. Owners and managers of new businesses in Grapevine, Texas should contact the Comptroller Office of the State of Texas for information on Sales Taxes, Store Taxes and other laws administered by this office. 
Texas State Comptroller's Office

Check with the State to determine if any statewide permits or licenses are required. 
Texas Department of Economic Development

5. Information about licenses and fees pertaining to the sale, transportation or storage of alcoholic beverages can be obtained from the Liquor Control Board. Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission,

6. Firms involved in the handling, processing, packaging and warehousing of foods must have Health Permits, which are issued for Grapevine by the Tarrant County Health Department. 
Tarrant County Health Department

7. The Fair Labor Standards Act requires employers to maintain records on wages, hours and other items.  Employers having workers subject to minimum wage provisions must display certain posters where employees can readily see them. 
Wage and Hour Division
U.S. Department of Labor

8. Obtain information from the Texas Employment Commission regarding the collection of unemployment insurance, tax, and benefits to qualifying employees. 
Texas Workforce Commission

9. Obtain information from Bureau of Labor Statistics on laws that relate to employers and safety. 
Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation
512.463.6599 or 800.803.9202

10. Obtain a Certificate of Occupancy.  Section 307 of the Uniform Building Code specifies that no building shall be occupied or used, and no change in the existing occupancy classification of a building shall be made until a Certificate of Occupancy is issued City of Grapevine
Department of Development Services
200 S. Main Street
Grapevine, Texas 76051

11. Information concerning import and export procedures can be obtained form the International Trade Division of the Department of Commerce or the Small Business Development Center (SBDC). 
U.S. Export Assistance Program

12. Information about various management, procurement and loan programs to assist small businesses may be obtained by contacting the Small Business Administration 
Small Business Administration
13. Utility hook-up.  Information about utility connection, fees, and services can be obtained from the individual agencies. See Following Section on Utilities

14. Area Wage Survey Information is available from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. 
Bureau of Labor Statistics

15. Information concerning requirements to be complied with on the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 can be obtained from the Texas Department of Health or the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). 
Compliance Officer
Occupational Safety and Health Administration

16. Information concerning environmental control requirements can be obtained from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality
or the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). 

Environmental Protection Agency

Source: Starting a Business in Tarrant County, Small Business Administration and Tarrant County Junior College Small Business Development Center.

Small Business Resources

Tarrant Small Business Development Center
James E. Guinn Complex
1150 South Freeway, Suite 229
Fort Worth, Texas 76104
fax 817.575.2603
North Texas Small Business Development Center
1402 Corinth
Dallas, Texas 75215

International SBDC
1402 Corinth  Ste. 142
Dallas, Texas 75215
fax 214.748.7937 

Technology Assistance Center SBDC
1402 Cornith Ste. 1520
Dallas, Texas 75215
fax 214.860.5882

Risk Management SBDC
1402 Cornith Ste. 1536
Dallas, Texas 75212
fax  214.860.5867 

Center for Government Contracting
1402 Cornith Ste. 1535
Dallas, Texas 75212
fax  214.860.5867


For a powerful electric company
search tool, visit

Other Texas Providers List – 
Public Utility Commission of Texas
1701 N. Congress Avenue
PO Box 13326
Austin, TX 78711-3326
Phone: 512.936.7000 Email:

Natural Gas - Atmos Energy
Customer Service – 800.460.3030
Emergency Hotline – 800.817.8090

Telephone -
Residential & Business – 800.483.1000

Residential & Business – 800.331.0500

Water and Sewer
Contact Information:
City Hall
200 S. Main
Grapevine, TX 76051

Service - 817.410.3173

Water/Sewer Emergency (after 5 PM – 817.410.3599)