Business Services

How to Start and Grow a Business

Small Business Resource GuideSmall Business Resource Guide

Business growth is crucial to the success of the City. We’ve made it a goal in the City’s Strategic Plan to empower upward economic mobility by encouraging and assisting local business retention and expansion. When your small business is a success, we celebrate that with you! As you are turning your small business dream into reality, we are proud to have you in our community. You are the heartbeat of Paducah!

Small business owners are expected to navigate all the twists and turns of moving a dream into reality with funding, permitting, licensing, and so much more. The City of Paducah is revolutionizing the way we help small business owners get started on the right foot by connecting you with the people and resources you need to navigate the art of starting, owning, and growing your business with this Small Business Resource Guide (35 pages).

Digital Presence Readiness Checklist

Curated by the Paducah Convention & Visitors Bureau, the Digital Presence Readiness Checklist aims to equip visitor industry partners with free tools and helpful resources to prioritize their business' digital presence. Suggestions for completing a digital presence health check, maximizing owned media channels and platforms including Google MyBusiness are relevant to many local businesses.


Get Your Project Started with a Kick-Start Meeting

The goal of the Kick-Start Meeting is to provide a pre-application review of your potential project.  Our team is here to provide helpful information, feedback, and guidance as you prepare to launch your contemplated project.  A Kick-Start Meeting is an opportunity to meet with key City staff members from various departments prior to the preparation and submittal of a formal application to the City.  At a Kick-Start Meeting, you will be introduced to a Customer Experience Representative who will act as your liaison and point of contact throughout your journey.  Email  or call 270-444-8800.

Quick Guide to Permitting and Kick-Start Meetings (2 pages)


scope my project logoScope My Project Online Portals

Paducah has launched Scope My Project, online tools centered around business development and project scoping.  The portals will help guide citizens, entrepreneurs, developers, contractors, and business owners who are embarking on complex projects, such a starting a new business or a renovation project, through the City’s permitting requirements.  These tools are designed to increase communication, enhance availability, and eliminate confusion.

Zoning Portal:  The Zoning Portal allows users to explore where different business types are permitted throughout Paducah. 

Business Permitting Portal:  The Business Permitting Portal, a project scoping tool, guides the user to specific license, permits, and requirements for constructing, renovating, and developing a business in Paducah.  After answering the questions, a summary specific to the project can be downloaded.  This summary will include zoning information, permits needed, and a preliminary estimate of permit fees.

The portals also include links to contact City staff, set up a kick-start meeting, and an opportunity to create a free account to save project information and start the application process.

Scope My Project - Paducah's Online Business Development Tool

These portals will eliminate surprises and increase efficiencies by improving communications between community investors and the City government.  Our goal is to turn business dreams into realities.


Meet Paducah’s Business Development SpecialistKathryn Byers

The City of Paducah has geared up to partner with local residents and businesses to make their entrepreneurial goals happen. A part of the team of Small Business Resource Leaders (see below), Kathryn Byers serves as Business Development Specialist for the City. In that role, she provides ongoing encouragement and assistance for local business retention, expansion, and start-ups.

Her ongoing work with professionals in the community is improving the business climate here in Paducah. One of the things she hears often is that it’s difficult for business owners to find the resources they need to succeed. The Small Business Resource Guide is intended to bridge this gap by connecting people and businesses with resources and opportunities. Specifically, this Resource Guide provides connections to local banks, commercial insurance agencies, accountants, local grants, and so much more. Kathryn is happy to sit down with you to discuss how to best utilize this resource guide. Let us help you make your dreams come true! 

Meet Business Development Specialist Kathryn Byers

Email Business Development Specialist Kathryn Byers or visit her in the Planning Department at City Hall (270-444-8690).


Downtown Development Programs - Paducah Main Street

The City of Paducah has created an effective and exciting toolbox of programs through the PlaPaducah Main Street Director Katie Axtnning Department to encourage development, beautification, rehabilitation, and stabilization of the Historic Downtown Commercial District.  Our goal is to encourage vibrant streets, increased residential density, and thriving businesses.

The Downtown Development Programs are as follows:

  • Artist Setup Area Application
  • Downtown & Market House District Assessment and Reassessment Tax Moratorium
  • Historic Downtown New Business Grant Program
  • Micro-Grants: Facade and Beautification
  • Roof Stabilization Assistance Program
  • Upper Story Residential Grant Program
  • Assistance also is provided in completing state and federal applications for historic tax credits.

If you are interested in obtaining assistance in the Downtown district, email Principal Planner/Paducah Main Street Director Katie Axt or call 270-444-8690.


Make Connections with Small Business Resource Leaders

We have identified 11 Small Business Resource Leaders within our community and region. This team was compiled to assist you in getting your small business off the ground as well as expanding business along the way. These leaders are ready and willing to get you started on the right foot.

Small Business Resource Connections Brochure

connections with small business resources