Comment 85508

By AndreaC (anonymous) | Posted January 25, 2013 at 11:13:25

My husband recently opened a business on King William. There was a seemingly user-friendly front-office process to get our application submitted, and promises that it was a straightforward application and there should be no issue with our desired opening date. However, in practice the process was flawed and we couldn't get adequate responses to our questions. What saved us was awesome effort by Maureen in Councillor Farr's office. She got on the phone two different times for us, and we had the answer in a day. We were very thankful to her and to our councillor.

However, the fact remains that it is a broken process. It shouldn't take heroic effort. There should be process steps, with service level agreements, and consequences for when deadlines are breached.

I came out of the process certain that there is huge opportunity for process improvement and cost savings at city hall. And also certain that this sort of thing is costing the city business investment. We were told by the BIA that there is a backlog of 400 business license applications.

In conclusion, we looked into the Lister Block as well, although we never got as far as Cafe Oranje. We were discourage long before we considered putting in an offer.

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