City of Sarasota adds new online options for building permits and plans

Integrated voice response system also helps contractors and property owners with scheduling of inspections

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The City of Sarasota’s Development Services Department this week launched a new online portal for people to use to submit plans and permit applications, “the latest in a series of improvements that have made doing business with the city even safer and more efficient,” the city has announced.

Contractors and homeowners may submit plans, permit applications and supplementary documents online using the ePlans permitting portal, which is found by clicking on the “Permits & Licenses” button on www.SarasotaFL.gov, a news release explains.

“Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic last spring,” the release continues, the department’s Building Division has been accepting credit card payments for permits online, and it installed a drop box in the City Hall Annex lobby “to allow for contact-free document pickups and drop-offs.”

The city also launched an integrated voice response (IVR) system that allows contractors and property owners to schedule, reschedule and cancel inspections and check the results through an automated phone line and text service, the release points out. Next-day inspections may be scheduled up until 9 p.m., depending on availability, by calling 941-263-6998 or by texting “schedule” to 844-394-2702, the release notes.

The city’s live inspections phone line (941-263-6418) and email (inspection@sarasotaFL.gov) are still available for customers who prefer to communicate directly with a representative, the release adds.

“While we continue to adapt to the challenges of this ongoing public health emergency, we’re excited to be offering these new options that will improve the customer experience and streamline how we do business,” said Development Services Director Lucia Panica in the release.

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