Karla Petriccione, Huntington building permit examiner, demonstrates Friday how to use the...

Karla Petriccione, Huntington building permit examiner, demonstrates Friday how to use the new software in self-serve kiosks set up at Town Hall. With her are Councilman Sal Ferro, left, and Town Supervisor Ed Smyth. Credit: Morgan Campbell

Town of Huntington residents and businesses can now apply for a building permit using a software they can access at their convenience.

The town recently announced the launch of a new software that will help streamline and speed up the application process, officials said. 

The Permit Portal utilizing OpenGov software, which is fully automated, allows residents to file, review and get approval for plumbing and building department permits. Applications can now be approved on the same day and its status can be tracked throughout the permitting process. 

“This is a game changer; this is customer service,” said town board member Sal Ferro, who was instrumental in the town's purchase of the software last year. “This moves the town to the next level to service our residents and businesses.” 

Town Supervisor Ed Smyth told Newsday the new software eliminates the time-consuming process for applicants shuttling back and forth to the building department to provide missing documents. 

“What OpenGov does is essentially act as a gatekeeper,” Smyth said. “If you don’t have all of the necessary documents uploaded it will not allow the application to be submitted.”

Once paperwork is successfully submitted, the application goes through a review process, and fees are calculated depending on the project. After that the application is reviewed by the building department staff, inspections are scheduled and permits are issued in as little as two weeks.

Town residents can also use the software in self-serve kiosks at Town Hall, Smyth said. Residents can also continue to use the current system.

In 2021, the building department faced heavy criticism for delays of up to 24 weeks in issuing permits. Town officials said the delays were due to the COVID-19 pandemic and a staffing shortage.

In May, the town board approved spending $660,742 on a three-year contract for the OpenGov software.

The contract is a service subscription software costing $320,542 for the first year, $170,100 for the second year and $170,100 for the third year. There is an option to extend the contract for two additional years at the same rate for each year.

Smyth said other permitting departments such as maritime and the town clerk’s office will eventually use the software.

There will also be an in person option but, “the goal is to have all town permitting completed online," he said.

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