The Montgomery County Department of Permitting Services (DPS) has introduced a new podcast series to help residents and businesses become more familiar with the permitting process. The first episode is now available.
The DPS podcast will connect listeners to permitting department staff including permit technicians, building inspectors, plan reviewers, the fire marshal, field supervisors and code compliance staff. All who will be featured on the podcasts are experts in their various fields. Collectively, they are known as “first preventers.” These code officials who will provide the latest information from the department, as well as resources and tips.
“DPS continues to streamline its processes to make the permitting process more efficient for customers and sharing information about these improvements is important,” said County Executive Marc Elrich. “We are always looking for ways to enhance our communication methods and this new podcast is an innovative way to reach customers on the platforms that they use to keep them informed about DPS programs and services.”
The Permitting Services podcast is posted on the DPS website at montgomerycountymd.gov/dps and is available on several podcast platforms including Amazon, Apple and Spotify. Subscribe to the podcast by selecting the follow or plus button on your provider’s podcast platform.
“We are striving to be a world-class permitting department,” said DPS Director Rabbiah Sabbakhan. “We are launching this podcast to help our DPS customers better understand the permitting process and get to know our code officials. We want our customers to truly see that we are their partners, and to know that we are here to help them with their commercial and residential projects. As part of that process, we will show our stakeholder partners that providing excellent customer service is a top priority at DPS.”
The Department of Permitting Services Podcast is hosted by Customer Support and Outreach (CSO) Division Chief Gail Lucas, who recently celebrated her 20th anniversary at DPS.
CSO Division Chief Lucas leads a team of more than 30 permit technicians who interact directly with customers, and she is an expert at navigating the permitting process.
“On this first podcast, we cover a variety of topics from our new director’s vision for the department to how to know when you need a building permit in Montgomery County,” Division Chief Lucas said. “We highlight the useful information available on the DPS website, tout the department’s free Design Consultation service, as well as our Design for Life Property Tax Credit Program, and look ahead to Building Safety Month in May. Our goal is to help our customers better understand the permitting process, and how DPS staff can assist from start to finish.”
CSO Division Chief Lucas said future podcasts will cover topics such as decks, fences and pools. There also will be podcasts dedicated to electric vehicle charging stations and solar panels. Other podcasts will focus on special events, use and occupancy certificates for new businesses and vendor licenses.
Listeners are encouraged to email ideas and questions for future podcasts to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Office of Broadband Programs in the County’s Department of Technology and Enterprise Business Services (TEBS) is providing technical support for the DPS podcast.
The Department of Permitting Services customer service lobby is located in Wheaton at 2425 Reedie Drive, seventh floor. Office hours are Monday-Friday, 7:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Customers do not need an appointment to visit the office. If you have permitting questions, you also can call MC 311 or 240-777-0311.