LANSING - Michigan businesses can now file critical tax and unemployment insurance registrations online, a process that can cut weeks off the processing time.
At a press conference Thursday, Labor and Economic Growth Director Bob Swanson said the state now has about 50 percent of all the various forms businesses and others can file available online and plans to boost that total to 80 percent within the next year.
Environmental Quality Director Steve Chester said 60 percent of the department's permit applications, represented through 13 permit applications, most critically among those the air quality permit. At the press conference, Chester released letters from a number of major state companies, including Dow Corning and DTE Energy, thanking the department for its quick action on permits.
The new forms that businesses can submit online include an application for a sales and use tax license. Some 30,000 of those are filed annually with the state and with online filing they will be processed in fewer than seven days instead of the current 30-days plus, Swanson said.
Also, businesses can file a "UIA Schedule A" to establish an employer account number with the state's unemployment insurance agency. Those applications will now be processed in three-business days instead of the current 30 days.
Chester also said the DEQ is far exceeding its goal of issuing air quality permits in less than six months, processing 750 applications in an average of 55 days.
Air quality permits are the most important environmental permits manufacturing companies can obtain, Chester said.
And Information Technology Director Terri Takai said other states are working to catch up with Michigan's online government services. Gov. Jennifer Granholm talks about the state's online abilities when she meets with corporations, Takai said.
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