As a follow-up to our recent communication about the permitting backlogs at Washington County, we have some new statistics to share that outline improvement, albeit marginal. Due to HBA’s engagement with the county, we were successful in advocating Land Use and Transportation Department to institute several administrative changes to ease the situation. This includes hiring 3 new permitting staff (2.5 FTE), closing in-person lobby hours on Wednesdays and Fridays to focus on processing backlogs, and triaging permit staff processing of certain tasks to improve workflow and increase productivity. According to LUT staff as of 8/31, permit delays in both intake and file check have been reduced by one week (totaling 6 weeks now, down from 7 in early August). This represents slight gains since our early engagement, though not nearly adequate given the housing crisis our region faces and the level of frustration members have faced. We are hoping these short-term actions will net more results going forward, though we will continue to monitor the current situation while advocating for long-term improvements to the way permits are processed. For more information, contact Preston Korst at firstname.lastname@example.org.