The process outlined below is generalized to give you an idea what it takes to locate a business in Wasco County. For more details and contact information for the appropriate agencies please view the business siting guides!

Step 1:  Contact the planning department responsible for land use in your location to determine if the use is permitted in that zone and to get a permit for any additions or changes in use.  This office is also likely your stop for any floodplain, sanitation and historical building permits.  Additionally, businesses moving into a new space may be required by the relevant planning department to file a change of use permit to ensure requirements for your type of business are met.  If you will be making building modifications or if your use is more intense than the previous use, the planning department will set up a Pre-Application Meeting with you to discuss the project and next steps to receive the appropriate permits.

Some additional tips: 

  • You can find initial information on your property through the Wasco County Web Map and with your relevant planning department's website as well. 
  • If you are using a contractor to remodel or build your space, don't forget to check the Oregon Construction Contractor's Board to ensure they are licensed and bonded. Searches can be conducted at

Step 2: Sanitation Permit. If your property is not connected to a public sewer system, contact the North Central Public Health District to determine if a sanitation permit is required. A permit is likely required if your business will be generating byproducts or waste above what is typical of a residence.  Some food related businesses are also required to get a permit from the Health Department.  For questions, contact North Central Public Health District at  541-506-2603 or visit their website

Step 3:  Wasco County operates the building codes program for all jurisdictions within the County.  Reach out to find out if permits are required and discuss any fire, life, or safety upgrades required. Generally, a permit is required to construct, enlarge, alter, repair, move or change the occupancy of a building or structure, or to erect, install, enlarge, alter, repair, convert or replace any electrical, gas, mechanical or plumbing system. For quesions, call  541-506-2650 or visit their office at 2705 East 2nd St, The Dalles, OR  97058. More information on their process can be found at their website.  

Step 4:
  Contact the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality if you are remodeling an existing building and suspect there might be hazardous materials. The proper removal of hazardous materials is essential. Potential hazardous materials include asbestos, underground fuel tanks, hazardous waste, water quality, used woodstoves, or dust problems.