I wrote recently about the bad habit of California candidates and officials of all types promising “one-stop shops” for various government services.

No effective one-stop shops ever get created, of course. The one-stop shop promise is a way of trying to reconcile the irreconcilable. As in: yes, we’ve created myriad regulations that don’t fit together—so we’ll just put them into a one-stop shop.

But that doesn’t mean there isn’t progress in online access to government services. California now has a pretty decent portal for the state.

It’s called ca.gov and you can check it out at www.ca.gov. It takes more than one-stop to get you where you want. But it’s organized around searching for the business you need to do with the government. And it can usually point you in the right direction.

Either search on the main page, or click on various bigger categories – Doing Business, Working, Learning or Visiting. There’s also a button for “Living,” which I thought I was doing already.

When you put your cursor on living, it gives you a half-dozen options, including finding a state park, child care or a hunting license. Hopefully not all at the same time. It also points you to the DMV, which isn’t exactly “living” in the epicurean sense.

Of course, if you click on “Living,” the first option is getting a Death Certificate, which I suppose is something that it is hard for the dead to obtain themselves.

There are also some fun stats that pop up on the site, like the mean time it takes Californians to get to work. That’s 27.2 minutes, by the way. Which I envy. Since I started riding transit, it’s taking me more than two hours.

Which gives me more time to try out ca.gov on my phone.