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Office of Economic Development
Office of Economic Development

R&D Tax Waiver

In May 2019, the Berkeley Municipal Code (Section 9.04.165) was amended to provide tax waivers for Berkeley small businesses that have received governmental research and development (R&D) grants. If your business received a governmental research grant to support your 2019 business activities, you may be eligible to request a waiver on your City of Berkeley business license tax.

Eligible small businesses must earn less than $100,000 dollars in annual gross receipts (excluding grant awards) and are able to deduct grant awards (up to $1 million cumulative) from annual reported gross receipts.  Eligible governmental grants are those that were distributed with the intent to meet federal, state, or local research needs including: stimulating the local economy or technological innovation; fostering entrepreneurial participation by women, socially, or economically disadvantaged persons, other underrepresented groups, partnership and cooperative R&D opportunities between small businesses and research institutions; or increasing commercialization opportunities.  

How to Apply 

If you believe your business is eligible to receive a waiver on your business license tax, please complete the Grant Waiver Tax Form provided below and follow the below instructions.

Return the completed form to the City of Berkeley Office of Economic Development by January 15, 2020. Please email the completed Grant Waiver Tax Form to or mail a hard copy to:  

City of Berkeley Office of Economic Development
2180 Milvia Street, 5th Floor
Berkeley, CA 94704

Upon receiving notice of the status of your Grant Tax Waiver Form, submit your Business License Renewal Form to:

Finance Department
ATTN: Government Grant Tax Waivers
1947 Center Street, 1st Floor
Berkeley, CA 94704

a. If approved, complete your business license renewal form to correspond with your approved waiver form.

b. If denied, complete your business license renewal form without any deductions.

Note: All Berkeley businesses are responsible for the timely filing of their annual business license renewal and corresponding tax payments. These must be received or postmarked before March 1, 2020. Businesses failing to meet this deadline will incur late payment penalties and interest.

If you require additional information or want to check the status of your waiver request, please contact us at, (510) 981-7530, or TDD (510) 981-6903. 

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Office of Economic Development, 2180 Milvia Street, Berkeley, CA 94704
Questions or comments? Email: Phone: (510) 981-7530
(510) 981-CITY/2489 or 311 from any landline in Berkeley
TTY: (510) 981-6903