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Herbert Harding, 58, Customer Service Representative, city of Richmond Permits Office

I get questions about a wide range of things — everything from personal sewer connections or waterlines to building permits. We have ChesBay now; that was brought on us by the state. The city is divided up into different watersheds and every watershed has a different impervious rate. If you build anything within 600 feet of a creek or a stream, you have to fill out one of these ChesBay worksheets. I take them in and do my part and look at them.

I’ve been working with the city for 32 years. It’ll be 33 in August. In all this time, I don’t think there have been many changes actually. People tend to look and see the new equipment, computers, lights, the aesthetics around us. The actual work and the problems and the difficulties have remained the same over the years. There hasn’t been that much change in the things we do, what we need.

When I deal with each individual person, their problems are unique unto themselves and this is how every one of these permits are — separate and unto themselves. You look at them on a permit-by-permit basis and each one of them has troubles and problems. — As told to Brandon Walters; Photographed by Stephen Salpukas

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