Press Release Details

County Public Works Department Focuses on Customer Service and Cost Savings to Residents

For Immediate Release
April 27, 2009

Contact: Debbie Kroner
Public Information Officer
714-834-5373

SANTA ANA, CA--- The County’s Public Works Department is improving the way that their OC Planning Division is doing business. The new operational focus and goal to “Serve First” will provide better customer service; shorter processing times, and in many cases, save customers money.

To monitor the effectiveness of the new measures, customers are being surveyed and initial responses have reflected favorably on the service received.

On March 30, 2010, the County Board of Supervisors adopted the Building and Planning Fee Ordinance that establishes new fees, rates, and deposit schedules that include a hybrid of valuation-based fees, flat fees, and actual time and materials costs for building and planning services performed by OC Planning staff. The new method of calculating fees will go into effect May 1, 2010.

“I appreciate the Board’s support and direction as we move forward to implement our new fee ordinance. Our goals are to “Serve First” and provide our customers with the best service possible. Our team is extremely eager and very motivated to provide efficient service to customers and we look forward to working with them,” commented Jess Carbajal, Director of OC Public Works. New benefits to customers include:

  • Extended hours at the public counter from 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. These hours are among the most extensive offered by planning departments in Orange County.
  • Increased service hours without additional staffing due to the consolidation of services to one physical location.
  • Cost savings to clients, as plan review times for zoning, building and grading are consistently being met (over 90%).
  • Increased savings and shortened wait times resulting from more permits being checked over-the-counter to better serve customers.
  • Better collaboration between County departments and more efficient service to customers with the Orange County Fire Authority (OCFA) having a representative at the public counter on a regular basis at no additional cost to applicants.

The reduced fees, combined with the additional customer services efforts will change the way customers do business with OC Planning. For questions or further information on OC Planning, please contact 714-667-8888.