The City issues permits as a way to keep people, buildings, and resources (like the River) safe and to make sure the town maintains its charm and vitality. Permit and permission come from the same root word, so you can think of a permit as the City’s permission to do something–at your house, in your business, or in the public right-of-way.
The permit process typically requires applicants to describe what they intend to do (in writing and/or with plans) and pay a fee. Staff from many different departments/division review the application to make sure all the various state and federal laws and City requirements are met. The permit is issued when the application meets all the requirements and the fee is paid. At that point, the applicant can start the work on his/her project.
Once the work is complete, the applicant needs to contact the City to request an inspection. The inspection ensures that the approved plan was followed and that the project does, indeed, meet all the requirements..