Michigan E-Portal Allows Permits Online

LANSING, MICH. - The Michigan Department of Consumer and Industry Services, Bureau of Construction Codes (BCC) and Accela Inc., a developer of government enterprise management software, in mid-March announced the commercial deployment of a new portal Web site for online permitting and status checking. The portal site provides Michigan contractors with streamlined access to mechanical, plumbing and

LANSING, MICH. - The Michigan Department of Consumer and Industry Services, Bureau of Construction Codes (BCC) and Accela Inc., a developer of government enterprise management software, in mid-March announced the commercial deployment of a new portal Web site for online permitting and status checking.

The portal site provides Michigan contractors with streamlined access to mechanical, plumbing and electrical permits. It is powered by Accela’s VelocityHall softrware.

The portal site, found at www.michigan.gov/bccpermits, enables licensed contractors to obtain new permits online in a matter of minutes. The previous process required contractors to mail in applications, providing a waiting period up to 15 working days to receive the required permit.

Further, the new Internet technology not only eliminates mailing time, but the system instantly detects errors such as incomplete forms, invalid addresses, and other potential inaccuracies.

“The Bureau of Codes Construction welcomes the opportunity to offer the public an online service that will process permits immediately, increasing the building community’s productivity,” said Henry L. Green, director of the Bureau of Construction Codes. “Eliminating the often lengthy turnaround time helps to complete projects on time, enabling new projects to quickly begin.”

The BCC conducts business with customers from the entire state of Michigan, making the online service convenient and efficient for contractors. The system has recently cleared a 90-day period during which more than 500 permits were issued to contractors across the state. In 2001, the BBC processed more than 41,000 paper plumbing, mechanical and electrical permits and expects as many as 60,000 to be processed in 2003.

“Accela’s end-to-end portal technology enables government agencies to communicate and coordinate more effectively with their customers, saving time and money for both the state of Michigan and the citizens,” stated Robert P. Lee, Accela president and CEO. “By processing permits online, the state not only provides a better service to their customers, but also enables staff to concentrate on more pressing issues.”

Michigan contractors are applauding the new service.

“This new service is a very useful tool that saves me an immense amount of logistical downtime resulting from previously going back and forth between my office, the State of Michigan, and the job site,” said Kevin Krula, owner of KTM Heating & Cooling. “I am now able to instantly receive a permit number and proceed with business. What was normally a two-week turnaround time for the inspection process now only takes one to three days.”

VelocityHall is fully integrated with Accela’s land management solution, PERMITS Plus, which has served the Michigan Bureau of Codes Construction since 1995. With VelocityHall all transactions are written to the agency database in real-time, ensuring that the staff and citizens are working with current information.

Other jurisdictions in Michigan using Accela products include Detroit, Grand Rapids, Lansing, Livingston County, Ferndale, Novi, Plymouth, Southfield, Sterling Heights, and Washtenaw County.

Accela develops enterprise systems for permitting, planning, licensing, public health, emergency response, and other processes for government agencies of all sizes. Accela’s software manages public sector applications for departments in major metro areas, cities, and counties such as the San Francisco Bay area, Washington, D.C., Miami-Dade County, Atlanta, Kansas City, and San Diego County. For more information, please visit www.accela.com.