Using SAHRIS a web-based application for creating heritage cases and permit applications
Keywords: Heritage Resources Managements, web-based, development applications, permits, SAHRIS
Abstract. Since the inception of the South African Heritage Resources Information System (SAHRIS) in 2012, creating heritage cases and permit applications has been streamlined, and interaction with South African Heritage Authorities has been simplified. SAHRIS facilitates applications for development cases and mining applications that trigger the South African National Heritage Resources Act (Act 25 of 1999) and is able to differentiate between cases that require comment only, where the heritage process is subsidiary to environmental or mining law (Section 38(8)), and those where the heritage authority is the deciding authority (Section 38(1)). The system further facilitates cases related to site and object management, as well as permit applications for excavation, invasive research techniques and export of materials for research abroad in the case of archaeological or palaeontological specimens, or for sale or exhibition in the case of heritage objects. The integrated, easy to use, online system has removed the need for applicants to print out forms, take documents from one government department to the next for approval and other time-consuming processes that accompany paper-based systems. SAHRIS is a user friendly application that makes it easy for applicants to make their submissions, but also allows applicants to track the progress of their cases with the relevant heritage authority, which allows for better response rates and turnaround times from the authorities, while also ensuring transparency and good governance practice.