San Jose building permits online

Residents of San Jose, Calif., can now complete building permit applications online, including paying with a credit card and printing permits from the Internet.

It's the first program in the state to use digital signatures to verify documents since the process became legal in California at the start of the year. Contractors and homeowners can log on to www.sjpermits.com to complete 22 building permits that do not need a technical review.

By allowing the permits to be submitted online, the city saves on administrative costs, and the process is made easier for citizens, said Scott Troyer, the permit center manager for the Building Division.

The site, launched May 12, requires that applicants have an e-mail address, a major credit card, a Web browser, an Internet form viewer plug-in, a digital signature and a printer.

Once an application is completed, the applicant sends it to the city, which verifies information such as the address, whether the contractor has a business license and whether the property is in the historic database.

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