TEMPERANCE - Bedford Township plans to roll out a new online offering next month: Internet-based tracking of building applications and permits.
"With this new program, builders and contractors will be able to access their permit information online," explained Dennis Kohler, Bedford Township's building official.
The new system will allow general contractors to determine, for example, whether their subcontractors have received the building permits required to legally do their work.
Currently, the builders either wait in line at township hall to verify the information, or call the township, forcing a township employee to search for the required permit application.
The township's award-winning Web site, www.bedfordmi.org, already has a link that allows visitors to apply for building permits online. But it never before had a method to determine whether a permit had been pulled for a specific job.
The new software could be useful for homeowners as a method to determine whether contractors hired to do home improvement tasks have applied for the permits necessary to do the work.
"We really think this is going to assit us in maximizing our efficiency here in the office," Mr. Kohler said
The township's Web site already offers other applications and information for local residents, including updated agendas and minutes for board meetings, an online zoning and parcel map, and real estate information such as home specifications, tax and utility billing information, and assessing information.