Secretary of State
New Business Registration Process Helps Businesses Thrive, Launch a Success
(Frankfort, KY) Businesses can be up and running faster in the Commonwealth due to a new service called FastTrack, according to new data provided today by Secretary of State Trey Grayson. FastTrack is designed to reduce the amount of time it takes to start a business in Kentucky. By simply allowing documents to be filed online, a company can start several days faster than before. Since its launch, less than 45 business days ago, over 1,000 companies have been registered online.
“The initial success of this program has exceeded our expectations,” remarked Secretary Grayson. “FastTrack clearly saves companies time and money. By tearing down the bureaucratic red tape of state government, this should encourage other entrepreneurs to start their businesses in Kentucky.”
FastTrack, launched on January 22nd of this year, allows a business entity to file its formation papers with the Secretary of State via the internet. Upon its initial launch, FastTrack allows Domestic Corporations and Limited Liability Companies to file online. Over 20,000 new domestic corporations and LLC’s were filed in 2008.
Since its launch, FastTrack has comprised over 20% of all Domestic Corporations and LLC formations in Kentucky. The average process time of a FastTrack filing is two minutes. Currently, it takes a paper filing 11 minutes to be fully processed once it reaches the Office of the Secretary of State. The nine minute time savings for each filing means that the Office of the Secretary of State has saved 150 staff hours since the launch of FastTrack. Over the next several months, the service will be expanded to include the majority of domestic and foreign business entity filings so that even further staff time saving can be achieved.
In addition to saving the Commonwealth time and money, businesses benefit from using FastTrack. Currently, a FastTrack filing remains in a “processing queue” no longer than one hour from the moment it is received during business hours. There is no additional cost to the business outside of the normal filing fees. With a paper mailing, it will take a minimum of three days for the business to be registered, mainly due to the transport time via the postal service or other carrier. Also, a business pay for the cost of printing the filing and mailing the filing to Frankfort. In essence, the Office of the Secretary of State has cut a minimum of three days off of the time it takes to start a business in Kentucky and reduced the ancillary costs associated with submitting a paper filing.
A user can visit the Office of the Secretary of State website where he/she will be directed to the FastTrack application. The user will securely log in, and he/she will be asked for all required information to complete a business entity filing, to include a business name, registered agent, principal office, and officers. The system will automatically reject names that have already been selected by another business entity.
Because the system is intuitive to Kentucky law, it prevents filers from making common mistakes that are currently reasons for most paper-based filing rejections. For instance, for a registered office address, state law prohibits the use of a PO Box address. For paper-based filings, the current error rate is 30%, while FastTrack’s error rate is 8%. FastTrack will prevent hundreds of companies from wasting valuable start-up time by significantly reducing the number of rejected filings.
The launch of FastTrack is one of the most significant online services to be launched by the Kentucky Office of the Secretary of State, since it first put its business database online ten years ago. The new service is part of the Office of the Secretary of State’s focus to become more economically and environmentally friendly, while providing greater accessibility and customer service to constituents. Since Grayson took office five years ago, the Office has launched over 25 new online services or upgrades to further those missions. Now, a vast majority of services that the Office provides can be found online. Currently, three million documents are available on the Secretary of State’s website. Every document that is received by the office is scanned and made available almost immediately.
As a result, the Office of the Secretary of State is much more efficient. During Grayson’s tenure in office, he has progressively reduced the size and cost of the office. Since Grayson assumed office in 2004, the office has reduced its number of full-time employees by 12.20%, eliminated nearly all part-time employees, reduced its operating budget by 9.79%, and consolidated the number of physical offices from two to one.
“It is our responsibility to provide the most efficient and accessible service, in the most environmentally friendly way possible,” said Secretary Grayson. “The changes we have made to this office are the kind of transformations that government should be making in the 21st Century, where we do more with less, all the while saving taxpayer dollars.”
To access FastTrack, visit www.sos.ky.gov.
FastTrack was built through a partnership with Kentucky.gov, which also maintains many state government website’s including the Commonwealth’s official website at www.kentucky.gov. Kentucky.gov was built and is marketed, operated, and maintained by Kentucky Interactive, LLC, a Frankfort-based subsidiary of eGovernment firm NIC (Nasdaq:EGOV). NIC manages more eGovernment services than any provider in the world. The company helps government communicate more effectively with citizens and businesses by putting essential services online. NIC provides eGovernment solutions for 2,600 state and local agencies that serve more than 71 million people in the United States. Through this partnership, the cost of building the website was essentially free except for staff time used to seamlessly apply the application into the Office of the Secretary of State Business Database.
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