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Alameda County opens online permit portal to ease permit applications

Spokesman says county is 'trying to demystify the process'

A new permit portal that opened online Wednesday should make it easier for Alameda County residents to apply for business licenses, permits, and undertake other regulated projects.

Alameda County Chief Information Officer Tim Dupuis said residents of unincorporated parts of the county can apply for required county permits and licenses while residents of the county's cities can learn what they need to do to undertake a project.

He said the portal points to what a city requires rather than replacing what the city does, Dupuis said.

"We're making it all available in one place," he said.

County officials worked with Google for six weeks during the summer to brainstorm ideas to improve government services and this was a product of a brainstorming session, Dupuis said.

If getting a business license or completing a project cannot be completed online, the portal will indicate exactly what needs to be done, he said.

For example, if someone wants to build a pool, a large number of permits may be needed and some may not be obvious, he said. The portal will discover which ones are needed so a resident can do everything required, he said.

"It's trying to demystify the process," Dupuis said.

The portal is also helpful to building inspectors, Dupuis said. An inspector can see what permits have been pulled rather than having to make a bunch of phone calls to find out.

"It saves even the county staff time," he said.

The portal is located at permit.acgov.org/

Keith Burbank, Bay City News

— Bay City News Service

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