As our organization continues to look at new and better ways to provide services in a cost-effective manner, we have had some "aha" moments about how certain protocols have been traditionally set up.

As our organization continues to look at new and better ways to provide services in a cost-effective manner, we have had some "aha" moments about how certain protocols have been traditionally set up.

We're questioning the "we've always done it that way" thought process, and coming up with some results that sometimes have us asking, "why didn't we do it this way all along?"

A big "aha" moment for us has come from looking at how we take in and process a variety of application forms, permits and payments -- for anything from reserving a meeting room at the Municipal Services Center to filing a right-of-way permit or major site plan application for a new development. Each department has always been the point of contact for the applications for which they are responsible, which in some cases, requires the applicants to drive over to our Roberts Road facility.

When you step back and take a look at the big picture, it's confusing and time-consuming for our customers, and a better way was immediately clear to us.

Starting in June, we will begin the move toward a One Stop Permit Center, with the goal of completing the transition by the end of the year. The front desks of our Finance and Administrative Services and Community and Economic Development departments at the Municipal Services Center will be combined to establish the on-site One Stop Permit Center.

This will be the intake point for any and all requests and permits for walk-in customers.

Additionally, we are building an online One Stop Permit Center that will be easy to find at uaoh.net under "Living in UA-One Stop Permit Center." This page will then provide a breakdown of the online forms available with links to additional details, with different versions of the forms -- fillable PDF, printable, etc. -- so that you can choose whichever format best meets your needs. Plus, when fees are associated with specific permits, in most cases it will also be possible to make your payments online.

As mentioned before, we are rolling out the One Stop Permit Center in phases, starting with permits traditionally obtained through the city manager's office.

Beginning Monday, June 3, you will be able to obtain and complete the following applications at our One Stop Permit Center and at our online version of the center, at uaoh.net:

* Meeting room reservations

* Peddler/solicitor permits

* Block party permits

* Special event permits

* Street solicitation permits

* Curb-painting permits

Look for details on our homepage as the One Stop Permit Center rolls into service. And please give us your feedback when you make use of it, so that we can work to make it as simple and user-friendly as possible.

Theodore J. Staton is Upper Arlington's city manager.