Tag Archives: Development Services Department

Thursday, June 6, 2019 by Chad Swiatecki

City releases road map for ‘agent of change,’ sound compatibility issues

The city’s Economic Development and Development Services departments will spend much of the next 12 months implementing a variety of measures to reduce noise complaints and other issues that arise between residents and nearby entertainment businesses.On Wednesday, EDD released a…

Tuesday, April 9, 2019 by Jo Clifton

Audit says employee misused city computer

Investigators in the Office of the City Auditor have released a report showing that a staff member in the Development Services Department used his city computer to operate his personal online business.Auditors released a report Monday stating they had found…

Friday, January 11, 2019 by Jack Craver

City proposes new demolition rules

In response to an audit last year that identified a number of problems in the city’s demolition permitting process, the Development Services Department has recommended a number of changes aimed at streamlining the process and ensuring safety.The recommendations were included…

Wednesday, October 10, 2018 by Jessi Devenyns

BoA fee adjustments cause high tempers

On Oct. 1 of this year, the Development Services Department enacted a new set of fees for those looking to come before the Board of Adjustment to have the board hear their applications for a code variance.Although increases are to…

Tuesday, September 18, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Many, but not all, development fees to climb

Last year, Rodney Gonzales, director of Austin’s Development Services Department, asked Council to fund an additional 50 employees to increase his department’s efficiency in dealing with a multitude of permits, reviews and inspections. Council killed the plan by postponing it.However,…

Friday, September 7, 2018 by Jessi Devenyns

Development Services preliminary budget asks for 50 new employees

According to the 2017 customer satisfaction poll by the Development Services Department, the time it takes to complete the inspection process was ranked as the most important component but had the lowest satisfaction rating.In an effort to change that perception,…

Tuesday, August 21, 2018 by Jack Craver

Despite progress, builders complain of long waits for permits

Among the many factors blamed for Austin’s affordability crisis are the city’s notoriously complicated development regulations.The development review process is so cumbersome, critics say, that builders have to hire agents to get their permits approved, creating a cost that is…

Monday, July 23, 2018 by Austin Monitor

Reporter’s Notebook: Communication

They don’t want to talk to you… Staff from the Development Services Department repeatedly told members of the Zoning and Platting Commission at their Tuesday meeting that they were legally obligated to approve a site plan for the controversial Champion…

Tuesday, April 10, 2018 by Jack Craver

City proposes ways to reduce permitting costs for homeowners

In November of last year, City Council approved a resolution aimed at making it easier and cheaper for homeowners to repair or renovate their houses.The resolution asked the Development Services Department to consider setting up a separate, simpler permitting process…

Wednesday, March 7, 2018 by Syeda Hasan

Austin could change the way it issues demolition permits

As the number of demolitions soars in Austin, the city is considering changing the way it issues permits to make sure teardowns are done safely and people affected are properly notified.Since 2010, the number of demolition permits issued in Austin…

Thursday, October 5, 2017 by Jo Clifton

City to lease Ben White space for DSD, AE

Last week, City Council authorized negotiation and execution of a seven-year lease for a little less than 60,000 square feet at 5202 E. Ben White Blvd. The building will house about 100 employees from Austin Energy and 93 employees from…

Wednesday, September 13, 2017 by Jo Clifton

Plan for new development services staff on hold

Along the way to passing a budget for the upcoming fiscal year, City Council voted Tuesday to derail the Development Services Department’s plan to hire 51 new employees beginning in either January or March. The department has said it needed…

Friday, September 8, 2017 by Jack Craver

Council members concerned about fees for ADUs

Council Member Delia Garza is worried that proposed increases in building fees are going to hit middle-income homeowners who are seeking to build accessory dwelling units the hardest.At a Thursday City Council meeting over the proposed budget for the upcoming…

Wednesday, August 23, 2017 by Jo Clifton

Audit shows big problems with demo permitting

The Office of the City Auditor has found that the city’s demolition permitting process is not designed efficiently and contains gaps that allow unsafe practices during demolition.According to an audit approved by the City Council Audit and Finance Committee Tuesday,…

Monday, August 21, 2017 by Austin Monitor

Reporter’s Notebook: Lessons learned

A parking pittance… Members of City Council listening to a lengthy presentation on the Development Services Department budget Wednesday didn’t suggest any major changes to the way the department is running or spending its money. But a number of Council…

Friday, March 3, 2017 by Jo Clifton

Council OKs rules for expedited permitting

Working with advocates for developers and construction workers, City Council Member Greg Casar carefully negotiated the details of an ordinance requiring developers of large commercial projects to pay a living wage and follow other rules set forth in the Better…

Wednesday, February 15, 2017 by Jo Clifton

Poll shows progress at Development Services

When Rodney Gonzales took over the Development Services Department in April 2015, the Zucker Report had reported customer survey results showing that 82 percent of respondents felt that the city’s development review and plan check processes were unnecessarily cumbersome or…

Wednesday, February 8, 2017 by Jo Clifton

Plan for new city facility faces questions

City Council members Ann Kitchen and Alison Alter along with Mayor Pro Tem Kathie Tovo expressed skepticism at Tuesday’s work session about a staff plan to move the Development Services Department, the Planning and Zoning Department and some staff from…

Monday, December 5, 2016 by Joseph Caterine

Slow response to flood report frustrates some commissioners

The city does not have many options for supporting individuals who suffer loss or damages from flooding caused by a development upstream, based on an exchange at the Nov. 29 joint meeting of the Planning and the Zoning and Platting…

Tuesday, November 29, 2016 by Elizabeth Pagano

Historic zoning debate reaches new heights at BoA

Are brand-new houses just as eligible for historic zoning as older homes? The answer may not surprise you: No, they are not.The fact that this question was the subject of a half-hour discussion at the Board of Adjustment, however, is…

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