As Woodinville attracts new businesses and developments, the city’s permitting process can be a crucial factor in any project’s timeline.
To ensure the process is working efficiently, the city of Woodinville approved a contract with an outside consulting firm to study the current procedure being used for both development and building permits.
On Sept. 21, Woodinville City Council unanimously passed a budget of $132,720 for a professional service agreement with Strategica to conduct the analysis. Kevin O’Neill, assistant to the city manager, said the goal of the project is to increase both the speed of processing permits and the level of service provided.
According to the service agreement, Strategica will first identify any shortfalls within the city’s policies, procedures, technology, communication and teamwork. Then, the contractor will make recommendations on additional resources and funding needed to resolve the issues addressed in the report.
“It’ll be a good roadmap on how to get there," O’Neill said.
According to the staff report, Strategica demonstrated a strong understanding of the permitting process through its proposal and interview. The firm also has a history of successfully conducting similar analysis.
Council members will voice their opinion on the analysis in February and March 2022. Then, as per the agreement, the contractor must submit a final report no later than April 30, 2022.
City staff would then use the findings from the analysis to make recommendations for the 2023-24 biennial budget, O’Neill said.
Woodinville received 12 applications for the project, O’Neill said. Strategica is a local firm in Lynnwood, Washington. The two consultants for the company possess more than 30 years in the field.
“This will help us figure out how well we are coordinating internally and externally, and where we can find some room to improve,” O’Neill said.
The city also contracts with outside consultants for several other services such as the court system, animal control, police, jail operations and maintenance. Additionally, separate and distinct agencies provide energy, water, solid waste and fire services.
Ready the staff report and agreement documents here.