Reading Looks To Rewrite The Rules To Help Business

Contractors, developers and even city officials have complained for years that getting approvals and permits from City Hall is too complicated and takes too long.

Developer Alan Shuman, prodded recently by City Council, said it often takes him four weeks and longer to get permits in hand for many of his projects.

Mayor Vaughn D. Spencer had campaigned on building a more business-friendly City Hall and told a business group in April that it often takes four to six weeks to issue a permit.

“Businesses jump down my throat for that,” he said.

Read more:  http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=484891

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After Delay, Reading Combines Some Bills

Editor’s note:  We like this idea.  It takes these bills and makes them part of the average person’s normal monthly expenses.  I bet people will be more willing to pay them on a monthly basis rather than quarterly.

City trash and recycling customers will find their bills easier to pay in June.

They won’t be any cheaper, but they’ll be monthly instead of quarterly; they’ll be part of the water and sewer bills; and there will be more ways to pay them.

“The benefit to city customers is that it’s more affordable, and because it’s consistent it will be easier to budget for,” Matthew Bembenick, director of administrative services, said at a Wednesday event announcing the transfer of billing to the Reading Area Water Authority.

But the long-planned deal got delayed, and the authority’s first bills will come out in May, when the city needs to get caught up for January through April.

Read more:  http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=470572