$202M to develop hassle-free system for approval of building permits by June 2023
Guyanese and foreign investors were Wednesday assured of a hassle-free system to come on stream by June 2023 when applying for needed planning and building permits.
Led by the Ministry of Housing and Water, the $202.9 million contract for the development and implementation of the information technology solution for a single window system has finally been signed between the Central Housing and Planning Authority and Global Services – a consortium including a local company and companies from the United States and the United Arab Emirates.
It promises a range of new benefits and is expected to come on stream in the next six months.
Global Services successfully won the contract in a national competitive bidding where six companies were shortlisted and three submitted bids.
Through a single window, the CH&PA will be empowered to act as a single-entry point for planning and development permits.
The system will feature a dashboard to allow staff at the CH&PA to monitor the status of applications and generate reports as needed. It will also allow for application tracking so users can make submissions and track progress, impose deadlines on agencies for efficiency and allow for scalability in keeping with changing workflows.
Minister within the Ministry of Housing and Water, Susan Rodrigues, assured that no longer will people have to go to several agencies and make several applications to be granted permits.
Previously, applications would have to physically visit the City Council to apply for permits and make separate applications at other agencies, including the Environmental Protection Agency, the Ministry of Public Works and the Guyana Fire Service.
Rodrigues believes the new system is good for accountability and transparency.
“We are removing all subjectivity from the system. No Guyanese or investor will have to fear that any public official will deny their application,” she said.
Meanwhile, subject minister Collin Croal said Wednesday that the work towards the completion of the system has begun.
To support its functioning, Croal said a Bill will be debated and passed at the next sitting of the National Assembly.
He vouched for the credibility of the companies selected, saying they have done excellent work in the Middle East, across North America, and in other parts of the Caribbean.
The contracts were signed by the Chief Executive Officer of the Central Housing and Planning Authority, Sherwyn Greaves and George Melville from Global Services.