Body shops repair, renovate and enhance automobile frames and chassis. Frequently, they also paint vehicles. Because of the many chemicals and solvents used in this work, some states and counties require body shops to hold HAZMAT permits. Additionally, state, county and city auto repair and body shop licenses are often required.
Being one of California and the nation’s major cities means San Diego is home to many businesses. However, the city’s licensing systems are fairly decentralized requiring business owners to apply to numerous departments including the city treasurer, planning and development and the police. Additionally, licenses from San Diego County, the state and sometimes the federal government are required in certain industries. San Diego's major industries include defense, international trade, shipping, tourism, manufacturing, research and real estate. The city's close proximity to Mexico and large natural harbor make it a gateway to commerce with Asia and Latin America.