June 12, 2009
You've probably heard me say, "We need to cut through red tape." Working in an agency that is responsible for licensing and regulating more than one million of Florida's professionals, the service we provide has a direct impact on the economy. Simply put, the faster we issue licenses, the sooner professionals can begin or maintain their careers. Recently, we reached a milestone we'd been working toward for a long time. We reduced the number of pages contained in an application to become a licensed landscape architect.
When DBPR was under the leadership of former Secretary Holly Benson, she recognized the need to eliminate unnecessary, and oftentimes confusing, language and requirements in applications for licensure. After she moved to head the Agency for Health Care Administration, we continued the goal of making applications more user-friendly and condensing them.
We began with a staff review of every item on the application to determine what requirements are mandated by statute or rule and which are discretionary. If the information requested is discretionary, we eliminate it. At the same time, we review applications for Plain Language, keeping in sync with Governor Charlie Crist's Plain Language Initiative. Recently, with the concurrence of the Board of Landscape Architects, we completed overhaul for landscape architecture applications; applications were reduced by 20 to 30 percent each.
I thank former DBPR Secretary Holly Benson for her leadership, and I applaud the employees who worked so hard on making this project a success. This application was only the first, and others will follow.
As always, we welcome feedback or ideas for other improvements. Our customers are a great source for telling us where and how we might we can enhance business processes.
The next "Quality on the Line" virtual office hours will be held this Wednesday, June 17, from 12 to 3 p.m. I invite residents of Desoto, Sarasota, Highlands, Polk, Lake, Sumter, Hillsborough, Pinellas, Pasco, Hernando and Citrus counties to visit MyFloridaLicense.com and share their experiences and suggest ways we can continue to cut through red tape.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Charles W. Drago
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