Online Right-of-Way Utility Permitting

2023 NACo Achievement Award Winner

Howard County, Md., MD

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About the Program

Category: Information Technology (Best in Category)

Year: 2023

Typically, 900 Right-of-Way Utility Permits (RUP) Applications are processed annually. A RUP Permit Portal facilitates permit application via an online form that allows a single attachment of construction drawings. The RUP application and attachment are reviewed online, a dashboard relays real-time review status. Customers greatly appreciate the transparency, accessibility and seeing status of reviews. Permit applications are generated by any of 14 dry utility companies that have executed Right-of-Way Agreements allowing installation and maintenance of power and communication cables, pipes, wires, conduit, etc. in the County’s Right-of-Way. The most recent upgrade to the RUP Portal used Power BI Report Server Database to produce detailed monthly billings. The upgrade saves the Regulation Supervisor several hours each month. Contact information is documented in a single location by the DPW Engineering Bureau to create monthly billing letters distributed by the Finance Department. The Portal and billing upgrade serve our utility customers very effectively and efficiently. The entire portal is created and maintained in house by the Department of Technology & Communication Services. The time required by staff to intake, review, respond, issue permits, and generate monthly billing is greatly reduced; freeing engineering & financial staff to focus on reviews and field inspection.