Superior-Douglas County, Wisconsin offers residents a delightful combination of rugged natural beauty, quality education, and business opportunities. People come to the area for the pristine lakes, dense forests, and outdoor recreation, but they stay because of the good-natured neighbors and pro-business climate.
Douglas County offers a number of economic development incentives including low interest financing from the Douglas County Revolving Loan Fund, tax credits provided by the State of Wisconsin, and tax increment financing incentives and land grants provided by municipalities within the county. Below you will find information to assist you in relocating a business or start-up a new business.
Learn more about the quality environment that Superior-Douglas County can offer should you decide to make it the place to "LIVE WORK & PLAY". If you find we don't have the information you're looking for, please contact us, we'll be happy to assist you in any way we can. 715-394-7716.
City of Superior Building Inspection
1316 North 14th Street, Superior, WI 54880—715-395-7288
The Building Inspection Division would need to be contacted for the following:
- Change in the use of a building
- Building construction (including, but not limited to new construction, renovation/alterations of existing structures)
- Building modifications which include electrical, plumbing, mechanical, and/or signage
- Demolition of buildings or the demolition (gutting) of the interior of buildings
- Additions to buildings where drainage of surface water would be affected.
City of Superior Planning & Development
1316 North 14th Street, Superior, WI 5488—715-395-7335
The following items are handled by the Planning & Development Office:
- Zoning Issues
- Land Use
- Land Sales
- Vacations including streets and alleys
- Design issues including setback requirements and restrictions
- Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Funds
City of Superior—City Clerk
1316 North 14th Street, Superior, WI 54880—715-395-7200
Licensing requirement to conduct business in the City of Superior:
- Seller’s permits, licensing of hotel/motel, mobile home parks, Class A & B beer and liquor license.
- Doing business in Superior—you must contact the City Clerk’s office for licensing requirements and fees.
Department of Commerce
P.O. Box 7970, Madison, WI 53707—1-608-250-4606
The Permit Information Center does not issue any permits, but it acts as a clearinghouse for businesses, answering any array of regulatory questions. State agencies issue hundreds of different permits and occupational licenses to businesses and individuals throughout Wisconsin. The Permit Information Center help coordinate and expedite the often complex permitting process. New, expanding and existing businesses can quickly get the permitting information they need.
Wisconsin Department of Revenue
- Retail Sales or provide taxable services—Wisconsin seller’s permit required—715-836-2811
- Wisconsin Taxpayer Identification Number—If you hire employees, a Wisconsin tax ID number is required—715-836-2811
- Federal Taxpayer Identification Number—If you hire employees, you are also required to obtain a federal ID number. www.irs.gov 1-800-829-1040—IRS (Contact these agencies for information on reporting business income for income tax purposes)
- If you make taxable sales or provide taxable services in Minnesota--Minnesota Department of Revenue —1-800-657-3777
- If you hire Minnesota employees--Minnesota Department of Revenue —1-800-657-3594
The Development Association, Inc.,
205 Belknap Street, Superior, WI 54880
The Development Associations mission is to retain, expand and create new business and industry in Douglas County. The organization administers the Douglas County Revolving Loan Fund on behalf of Douglas County. General information about other financing through the Department of Commerce can also be obtained from The Development Association.
Superior Business Center, Inc.,
1423 North 8th Street, Superior, WI 54880
The Superior Business Centers mission is to “foster economic development in Superior/Douglas County through the provision of leased space and/or other resources to both existing and start-up businesses”. In addition, the Center encourages the creation of new, viable business enterprises; the generation and retention of long-term, self-sustaining job opportunities; and the diversification of our economic base.
The SBC is a multi-tenant facility for small businesses. Target markets include, but is not limited to, start-up businesses and expansion/relocation of local businesses that could not otherwise survive in the area. They also act as temporary housing of businesses in transition.
The SBC has developed a working relationship with a number of organizations throughout the Twin Ports who are willing to work more closely with the “incubator” tenants.
The SBC also has a 2,600 sq. ft. USDA certified commercial kitchen.
Superior Business Improvement District
Superior, WI 54880 (restricted to boundaries within the downtown)
The Superior Business Improvement District can assist an entrepreneur in locating business sites and/or connect them with property owners within the BID. Through the property owners, there are grants available for signs, awnings and façade renovation. While we do not provide one-on-one counseling, we welcome the opportunity to discuss the entrepreneurs’ project and can act as a referral source.
202 W. Superior St., Duluth MN 55802
218-623-5747 or 1-800-422-0374
The mission of the Entrepreneur Fund, is to create economic opportunity through entrepreneurship. They help men and women start and grow small businesses in northeastern Minnesota and northwestern Wisconsin. They provide training, technical assistance and financing, with a special focus on low-income, unemployed, and underemployed individuals.
The Northeast Entrepreneur Fund offers one-on-one counseling, education and have a loan fund which can loan up to $100,000 to existing businesses that wish to stabilize or expand. They offer a free Introduction Workshop twice a month in the Superior/Duluth area, and Core Four classes are offered 8 times a year in the Superior/Duluth area.
The Core Four class is $244 per person, and $100 if the spouse of someone enrolled wishes to attend also. No one will be turned away because they cannot afford to pay; they use a sliding fee scale to determine what they can afford and they also have other options as far as scholarships for the Core Four class.
After a person receives a loan through NEEF, for $100 (which is added to their loan amount), they provide a consultant for one year to help the customer with financial reports, questions, etc.
Entrepreneur Fund assisted businesses, mostly start-ups, have a high survival rate; 85% are still operating 2 years after receiving assistance.
UW-Superior Small Business Development Center
Erlanson Hall, Room 108
Superior, WI 54880
Small Business Development Center serves 8 counties in Northwestern Wisconsin: Ashland, Bayfield, Burnett, Douglas, Iron, Price, Sawyer and Washburn.
Primary services include one-on-one, confidential business management counseling for existing and new businesses, and those interested in starting a business. Counseling is free of charge and funded through the U.S. Small Business Administration. Topics can include business planning, account and cash flow, financing and loan requests, inventory, human resources, marketing and advertising, and e-commerce.
In cooperation with the Wisconsin Department of Commerce, the SBDC offers an 8-session Entrepreneurial Training Certificate program which includes lectures, materials, individual counseling and a 75% tuition grant program for eligible participants who complete a written business plan.
Additional services include free group classes on First Steps to Owning a Business, usually as arranged and scheduled in advance in specific communities.
Lake Superior Region SCORE
(various representatives depending on the particular need of the entrepreneur)
SCORE is a nonprofit corporation organized for charitable and educational purposes. SCORE also is a business development resource of the Small Business Administration, which sponsors and financially supports SCORE operations.
The purpose of SCORE is to strengthen the U.S. small business community through its experienced volunteer SCORE members, who provide high quality technical and managerial counseling and guidance to prospective and existing small business owners and nonprofit organizations on the handling of business
Personnel Solutions (CEP)
1805 North 14th Street, Ste. 1
Superior, WI 54880
Provides employment and training services to businesses and citizens.
Northwest CEP is a private, non-profit agency that has spent more than 30 years providing employment and training services to the businesses and citizens of the ten counties of Northwest Wisconsin. CEP is constantly evolving to maintain its leadership role in employment and training by offering timely services that improve local economies, through the guidance of employer-led boards.
Northwest Wisconsin Community Services Agency
1118 Tower Avenue
Superior, WI 54880
Their Business Development Program provides the technical assistance, business planning guidance and management skills training necessary for success. Its services are provided at no cost to individuals who are income eligible. The program operates within the agency’s entire service area, which includes Douglas, Ashland, Bayfield, Iron and Price Counties.
Services Offered: Business Plan Development; Marketing; Profit/Loss Analysis; Cash Flow Analysis; Bookkeeping; Credit/Collections; Employee Skills; Inventory Control; Business Mentors; Ongoing Business Support.