Policy Analysis

Permit Freedom: Reducing Regulation in Everyday Life

Authored by Aerin Christensen, Policy Analyst, Local Government

You can’t make it far in life without the government insisting you apply for a permit. Because these processes are so common, they should be governed by consistent and reasonable guidelines.

Unfortunately, many local and state governments have permit granting processes that are unclear and unreasonable. When this is the case, those applying for permits can find it nearly impossible to attain the permissions and approvals they need.

The departments and governments that issue permits are numerous and diverse. Consequently, the respective permitting processes and policies will vary. However, there are a few basic guidelines and standards that should apply to each process.

The approval or denial of a permit should be determined based on clear requirements and criteria. After a complete application is submitted, a decision should be made subject to a specific timeline set forth in advance. In the case that an applicant feels their permit was wrongfully denied, an appeal process should be in place to allow for an independent judicial review.

Read More in our Public Policy Brief