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Downey, Calif., Moves to e-Permitting with Accela Automation

Los Angeles suburb of 110,000 makes leap from paper-based to Web-based permitting system for improved efficiency and public services

DOWNEY, Calif., Oct. 30, 2009 – The City of Downey, Calif., will use Accela Automation software from Accela, Inc. as the backbone of a multi-department electronic permit tracking system, the company announced today. Slated for deployment in May 2010, the new system will track the movement of city projects from submittal to completion – primarily by the departments of Planning, Building, Code Enforcement, Engineering, and Fire Prevention. Accela Automation will replace Downey’s current paper-based system, which has reduced staff efficiency, limited inter-department coordination, and made it harder to ensure that complete and accurate information is uniformly shared.

Using the Accela Land Management™ module of Accela Automation, Downey will be able provide a more streamlined approach to issuance of planning or zoning approvals; code enforcement violations; encroachment permits; and more. Accela Land Management automates the hundreds of steps involved in completing a permit – including initial application, plan reviews, fee calculation and collection, inspections/investigations, and sign-offs. Because Accela Automation operates from a centralized database, city departments can easily share information and also configure applications, business processes, fees, and reports to match their individual practices.

“Accela’s customers span federal, state, county and city agencies – and all of these organizations today are looking for better, faster ways to do their jobs and serve the public,” said Maury Blackman, CEO and President of Accela. “For example, allowing a Fire Department inspector to identify and immediately alert Code Enforcement of a zoning issue isn’t just desirable, it’s central to the future of effective government. Downey is a city with its eye on the future and is using innovative technology to get there.”

About Downey

Located about 20 miles south of Los Angeles, Downey is home to the world’s oldest McDonald's restaurant (1953) and the site of the first Taco Bell eatery. The pop recording artists "The Carpenters" began their careers in the city, which today boasts a strong retail and business base, as well as top medical facilities, and quality residential neighborhoods and schools. Downey has been rated in the top 25 percent of “100 Best Cities to Do Business in California” by California Business magazine. Additional information on Downey can be found at: www.downeyca.org.