Monday, April 29, 2013

2013 Washington State Legislature Has Adjourned

As you may know, the 2013 Washington State Legislature has adjourned its 105-day session. The state’s Operating Budget and several policy issues remain unsettled.

Some proposals encouraging Washington cities to partner with state Business Licensing Service (BLS) or the so-called five city portal may still advance this year.

The Legislature will convene a special session on May 13 (Governor's Proclamation here). The session could last up to 30 days. BLS and the Department of Revenue will keep you updated about the outcome of these measures.

~BLS Partnership Services

Monday, April 15, 2013

Call the Tax and Licensing Experts

Get better access to our business licensing service and support.

Tax and licensing help are available online, by phone, and by email.

Here are some "go-to" numbers and email addresses for all your questions and inquiries.

Need some licensing account assistance?
The Specialty License Unit is the way to go!

Processing applications, renewals, and other miscellaneous correspondence from business owners

Specialty License Unit

For business licensing questions for the public, give our Operation Call Center folks a call!
Operations Call Center:

Need a BLS or SFT password reset? Our Service Desk folks are here to help!

360-596-3600, #2

For all tax account inquiries:

And let's not forget your friendly neighborhood Partnership Services Team!
  • Report and File problems
  • Contract requests
  • New partnership
  • Training - BLS and SFT systems
BLS Partnership Services

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Washington State Business Guide - 14,844 entrepreneurs can't be wrong

As the state's Business Licensing Service, we're very proud of the support we off to businesses online, by phone, and in-person at offices statewide.

And now we're even more proud that people are finding the information they need packaged in a useful way.

Several state agencies combined resources to build, a step-by-step online illustration for planning and starting your business.

In just the first three months of 2013, exactly 14,844 unique visitors found resources and support at the State Business guide website.

Of those, nearly 4,000 of the self-starters linked to the resource from the state Business Licensing Service web portal at

As always, send your suggestions to improve the information we provide. We're happy to hear your ideas and requests at BLS Partnership Services.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

FIXED! Business Licensing and Tax Information Phone Numbers Not Working

As of 10:30 am, the phone lines were working again.

Business Licensing Service Support - 800.451.7985

Taxpayer Information Support - 800.647.7706


Our toll-free telephone information lines are temporarily down this morning.

This includes both Business Licensing Service phone support and Department of Revenue tax information support.

We apologize for the inconvenience. We are working to fix this as quickly as possible today.

Your staff can still reach BLS Partnership Services at 360.705.6777.

Also, you can email general questions.

General Public: Individual business licensing questions -
Public employees: Licensing and renewal questions -

 We'll update you when this is fixed.

Thank you in advance for your patience.

Monday, April 8, 2013

E-Check Payment Option

Greetings Partners,

We've already showed you how E-Check can save you thousands. Now let's get the word out to your local businesses!

Add E-Check information to your city websites and encourage businesses to use it. It's the online payment option that doesn't have any added service fee for your city.

Using E-Check means no credit card processing costs passed on to you. Help spread the word!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Public Disclosure Pop Quiz Time!

Happy April, Partners!

Are you ready for a Monday pop quiz?

Check the boxes of business data that are “public information”:
◻ Mailing address
◻ Phone number
◻ Social Security Number

Ready for the answers?

Addresses are public, but phone numbers are considered private under state law.

And if you give out social security numbers to strangers, you should know the Brooklyn Bridge is *not* for sale and the Nigerian prince who emailed you is *not* going to share his inheritance.
Clear enough?  

Now, ready for some good news?

You don’t have to remember what is public information. Just go get the public file!

No fooling! We have a new public disclosure file for you with all the businesses registered in your city. In your SFT folder, there is a file called “CityPublic.csv” (for example, “BhamPublic.csv” for Bellingham).

It’s an Excel worksheet with a complete list of public information for your city businesses. It generates on the first business day of each month.

Lastly, if you want to know what’s OK to release publicly, here’s a list for you.
  • Unified Business Identifier (UBI)
  • Legal Entity
  • Firm Name
  • Mailing Address
  • Physical Address
  • Endorsement Expiration Date
  • Endorsement Start Date
  • Endorsement 1st Issue Date
All of those are in the public disclosure file for your city for free.
~BLS Partnership Services