Economic Development is a top priority of our Board of County Commissioners.
St. Johns County, in Northeast Florida, is a highly desirable, amenity-rich location of choice for starting, relocating or expanding your business. Bordered by the scenic Atlantic Ocean and St. Johns River, St. Johns County embraces its historic heritage and uniquely diverse communities such as the City of St. Augustine — the Nation’s Oldest City; St. Augustine Beach, Ponte Vedra, and Hastings — the Potato Capital of Florida; which have attracted visitors for centuries. Capitalizing on its global appeal, St. Johns County is poised for economic growth through its strategic location, favorable climate, local economic development incentives, and outstanding community services.
Why Choose St. Johns County?
St. Johns County offers businesses and residents alike:
- Top-ranked Florida Public School System
- Lowest Overall Tax Structure in Northeast Florida
- Florida’s Healthiest County
- Comprehensive Transportation Network
- Highly Educated Workforce
- Growing Population
- Expanding Regional Airport
- Beautiful Natural Amenities
- Partnership with the Business Community
- Unwavering Commitment to Economic Development
Our Business-Friendly Environment
Economic development is a top priority of our Board of County Commissioners. The Board shares a unified commitment to attract new business development, to expand and diversify the tax base, and to create jobs for our local residents.
St. Johns County Economic Development Office is the designated primary partner with Florida Commerce’s Select Florida, the state’s economic development organization. Our office provides assistance to businesses interested in locating and expanding into the County including site selection, incentive negotiation, and other due-diligence requests. We are here to help with any questions that you might have about starting, relocating or expanding your business.
Coordinated efforts through the County, the St. Johns County Chamber of Commerce, the Industrial Development Authority (IDA), and other resource partners bring a team approach to positioning St. Johns County as a highly desirable location of choice for business expansion and relocation.
Do I need a license to do business in St. Johns County?
St. Johns County requires all businesses to have a business tax receipt through the St. Johns County Tax Collector Office.
The first step to obtaining a business tax receipt is to get zoning approval for your business location. If your business is located within St. Johns County and not within the City of St. Augustine or City of St. Augustine Beach, then you will need to get zoning approval through the St. Johns County Planning and Zoning Division. Information and the application can be found by clicking the following button. If your business is a home office, then only page one of the application will need to be completed.
For the zoning approval, there is a $22 application fee. You will need to have your signature on the application notarized if not signed in front of County staff. If you're submitting the application electronically, then you will need to send a copy of your driver’s license for verification. If you are operating your business out of a home office and live within a homeowners association, then you will need to include a signed affidavit for certificate for a home-based business with the zoning application. See below for additional information if your business is located within the City of St. Augustine or City of St. Augustine Beach. To submit the application in person, the Planning and Zoning Office is located at 4040 Lewis Speedway in St. Augustine. To submit the application electronically, email email@example.com.
Once the application has been submitted and approved through St. Johns County Planning and Zoning, then the approved zoning application will need to be taken to the St. Johns County Tax Collector Office along with the completed business tax receipt application, which can be found by clicking the following button.
To submit the business tax receipt application in person, visit a Tax Collector Office location, which can be found by clicking the following button.
Business tax receipts through St. Johns County range in cost, depending on the business service, from $18 to $30. Also, state licensed professionals will need to provide a copy of their current State of Florida license when obtaining a business tax receipt. Businesses in sales will have to provide a sales tax number.
If your business is located within the City of St. Augustine or City of St. Augustine Beach, then zoning approval and a business tax receipt will need to be obtained from those offices. For more information, call 904-825-1065 for the City of St. Augustine or 904-471-2122 for the City of St. Augustine Beach. Once you have received zoning approval and a business tax receipt through either city, then the business tax receipt can be taken to the St. Johns County Tax Collector’s Office to also obtain a business tax receipt through the county.
For additional information about business tax receipts, call the St. Johns County Tax Collector Office at 904-209-2250 or click on the following button.
How can I determine the zoning and future land use of a property I am considering for a project?
This information can be found on iMap. Visit iMap at https://www.gis.sjcfl.us/Html5Viewer/index.html?viewer=iMap. Once on iMap, type in the parcel number or address at the top right corner. The information about the property will appear on the left – click on the information and it will show up on the map. Next, click on the layers tab (to the right of the printer icon) and select zoning. To determine the future land use of a parcel, follow the same steps except select future land use in the layers tab.
Where can I find information about current economic conditions and economic trends in St. Johns County?
The St. Johns County Department of Economic Development produces a monthly economic indicator report that provides such information and can be found at the following link. - https://www.sjcfl.us/monthly-economic-indicator-reports
Where can I find information about the latest projects and developments in St. Johns County?
St. Johns County has a Development Tracker map that can be found at the following link. - https://www.sjcfl.us/development-tracker Once on the map, zoom into the area and click on the circle or highlighted area. Information will then display about the project.
Where can I find information about the Planned Unit Developments (PUDs) in St. Johns County and the entitlements within the PUDs?
St. Johns County has a PUD Development Activity map that provides such information and can be found at the following link. - https://www.gis.sjcfl.us/entitlements/ You can either select an area on the map or type in the name of the project on the right. Information about the PUD will display on the left. To see the entitlements for that PUD, click on the project number button on the left. On the next screen, click on the entitlements button on the right. Scroll down and you will see a list of the entitlements and square footage for those entitlements.
Where can I find information about a particular property within St. Johns County, such as parcel ID, acreage, ownership, etc.?
Such information can be found at the St. Johns County Property Appraiser office at www.sjcpa.gov. Once on the website, select search in the top navigation bar, and it will take you to a page where you can search for a particular property through multiple options.
Where can I find all available maps for St. Johns County?
St. Johns County has a Map Mart, which provides 90+ maps in PDF, including proposed transportation improvements, zoning, community redevelopment areas, education facilities, boat ramps, parks and much more. The Map Mart can be found at the following link. - https://sjcfl.maps.arcgis.com/apps/MinimalGallery/index.html?appid=b3a3949584524e61b6f920786e8bcd99
As I start my small business, what resources are available to me?
The Small Business Development Center at the University of North Florida in partnership with St. Johns County offers a full-service location for small businesses in St. Johns County with an office located in the Growth Management Permit Center, 4040 Lewis Speedway, at the main County complex in St. Augustine. The SBDC consultant, Marge Cirillo, also travels regularly to serve business owners in other areas of the county. Marge is a certified business analyst who works exclusively with small business owners in St. Johns County to provide management advice and technical assistance with little to no cost. Appointments are available by calling 904-209-1295.
Where can I download demographic reports for St. Johns County?
ESRI demographic reports such as business summary, community profile, housing profile, traffic county profile and more for St. Johns County can be found at the following link. - https://bit.ly/49LGjmN
Where can I find if a property is within one of St. Johns County’s two opportunity zones?
St. Johns County has two opportunity zones. Visit the following link to view the opportunity zones in St. Johns County on an interactive map to determine if a property is within one of the two opportunity zones. The opportunity zones are outlined in blue on the map. - https://bit.ly/3UXOYye
How can I determine if my project is eligible for economic development incentives?
The St. Johns County Business Incentive Program has an established point system for determining a base value an applicant could receive for each of these categories: locating a new industry, expanding an existing business, or developing speculative space within the county. Visit the Business Incentive Program page for the category overviews and point systems. - https://www.sjcfl.us/business-incentive-programs