Tuesday, May 14, 2013

My DEQ portal ready to bring environmental compliance into 21st century

As I’ve written about before, one of the reasons Arizona is moving up the business-friendliness rankings nationwide is because of the state’s commitment to a streamlined regulatory process. The Arizona Department of Environmental Quality and its director, Henry Darwin, are embracing that ideal with their innovative My DEQ concept.

Gov. Brewer last January made the case for a modernized regulatory environment when she said,

“The next step in the transformation of State Government will be in leveraging E-technology…I will point to ADEQ in this case for its initiative in transitioning from the needless inefficiency and waste of paper transactions…When complete, the portal will allow…paying fees and submitting permits applications and reports. The portal will also provide customers with important information, including permit conditions, upcoming compliance and reporting deadlines, inspection results, permit expiration dates, and upcoming changes in environmental requirements. The completion of this project, with its cost savings, convenience, and compliance assistance, will be a boon to business regulated by ADEQ and help attract new business to Arizona.”

Moving DEQ permitting online will save taxpayers and business time and money. Only three permit types are currently available online. But with the establishment of the My DEQ portal, transaction times can go at light speed. For example, a Hazardous Waste Facility Registration can go from 82 days to one day.

And convenience will mean compliance. Ohio saw a 90 percent drop in violations when that state put its self-monitoring report online.

My DEQ is good government. It’s good for taxpayers, good for business and it just makes sense. It deserves support in the fiscal year 2014 budget.

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