E COUNTY LINE

ETS Upgrade of Broward County Call Center Results in Energy Savings

ETS is helping Broward County’s Call Center stay up-to-date with the latest technology while improving its “green” efforts. Prior to Enterprise Technology Services (ETS) performing a recent upgrade on the Call Center’s phone system, its 21 servers provided voice communications including voicemail, paging and call recording. Upon the completion of the upgrade, ETS reduced the number of servers needed to 13, which resulted in a 38 percent reduction in energy usage. The smooth transition was made while ensuring Call Center service was uninterrupted. Congratulations to the ETS team members Walter Ocampo, Luis Socarras, Nana Kobayashi, Jhon Ocampo, Ivan Valdes and Wilson Baez for identifying new efficiencies and for providing “their best and nothing less.”

Broward County’s Permit Process Turns a New Leaf With ePermits

The Environmental Protection and Growth Management Department is making strides to enhance customer service with the new ePermits website, a centralized source of online information on permits, licenses and approvals. Contractors, businesses, design professionals and residents can visit broward.org/epermits to identify their project type and obtain information on required permits.

ePermits features a database of more than 100 online environmental, building, engineering and water and wastewater services permit applications. The Development and Environmental Review Approval is the first ePermit option available scheduled to be exclusively electronic as of January 2013. Customers are able to access their Development and Environmental Review application anytime, upload design plans and receive electronic approvals, ultimately saving time and money while helping the environment.

In December 2012, the department hosted three training workshops, which more than 400 building officials, permit expeditors, contractors and design professionals attended to learn more about the system.

In the future, website users will be able to apply for and obtain permits, licenses and approvals online. The site currently features five categories:

Permits A to Z - Useful for those with existing knowledge of permit names. Lists all activities in alphabetical order. Use the search function by entering a word related to your activity. For example, enter "addition" and a list of related permits will display.

Homeowner - Useful for homeowners unfamiliar with the permitting process. Categories include permits for "Single Family or Mobile Home" and "Condo Owner or Multi Family." Some permit applications are required to be submitted by a licensed contractor or a design professional.

Contractors - Permit categories include Environmental, Structural, Electrical, Plumbing, and Mechanical.

Design Professional - Permit categories include Environmental, Building Construction, and Site Preparation and Land Development.

Small Business - Categories include permits that small businesses often seek on their own. Some permits are required to be submitted by a licensed contractor or design professional.