There are two types of individual permits, standard permits and letters of permission. To apply for an individual permit it generally involves the evaluation of project-specific applications in three different phases including the pre-application consultation (Major projects), the formal project review, and the permit decision
Pre-application consultation usually involves one or more meetings between an applicant, Corps of Engineers Regulatory staff members, interested resource agencies (federal, state and/or local), and sometimes the interested public. The basic purpose of these meetings is to provide a forum for informal discussions about the pros and cons of a proposal before an applicant makes irreversible commitments of resources. The process is designed to provide the applicant with an assessment of the viability of some of the more obvious alternatives available to accomplish the project purpose, to discuss measures for reducing the impacts of the project, and to inform the applicant of the factors the Corps must consider in making a decision on whether or not to issue a permit.
Formal Project Review
The next step in the process to apply for an individual permit is to submit your application packet. A few helpful hints for submitting a permit application include always providing clear drawings, do not clutter drawings with extraneous information and provide complete information and details for the project proposal. In addition to these tips you must always provide the information listed below for your application to be reviewed.
The following information is required for a permit application to be reviewed:
- Name, address, and phone number of applicant.
- Complete description of the proposed project, including the purpose, type and quantity of material to be discharged.
- All related activities. Is this a multiphase project? Have additional permits been applied for or received?
- A list of all adjacent property owners and their addresses.
- The project location. This should be clearly marked on a road map and a description of the directions should be included. In addition to the map and directions, you should submit the section, township, range, and the latitude and longitude of the site.
- Has the application been signed?
- Be sure to include a full set of drawings on 8.5 inch by 11 inch format. These should include plan view, section view, elevation view, profile and grade drawings. Please use match lines where necessary.
After the application is received by the Corps, it will be assigned an identification number and reviewed for completeness. A request for additional information may be sent to notify you of any additional information, which may be necessary for the Corps to review your proposed project. Within 15 days of receiving all the required information, a public notice will be issued with a 15 to 30-day comment period. The proposal is then reviewed by the Corps, local, state and federal agencies, special interest groups and the general public.
After the comment period, the Corps reviews all of the comments and consults with other agencies where appropriate. The Corps may ask for additional information at this time, and a public hearing may be conducted if one has been specifically requested and a decision is made that there is a need.
The project manager evaluates the impacts of the project and all comments received, negotiates necessary modifications of the project, if required, and drafts appropriate documentation to support a recommended permit decision. The permit decision document includes a discussion of the environmental impacts of the project, the findings of the public interest review process, and any special evaluation required by the type of activity such as compliance determinations with the Section 404(b)(1) guidelines or the ocean dumping criteria.
When all considerations are satisfied, the District Engineer makes a decision to issue or deny the permit application. If a denial is warranted, you will receive a written explanation of the reason for denial. Fees are required for any issued individual permit and consist of $10.00 for individual, non-commercial projects, and $100.00 for commercial projects. The Corps makes every effort to process Individual Permit applications within 120 days of the date a complete application is submitted. In some cases, involving controversial projects, or projects dealing with endangered species, the processing time may take greater than 120 days.