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Protection of Waters: Application Procedures

Pre-Application Assistance

Most "first time ever" applicants will benefit from a pre-application conference, but it is particularly important if your project is:

  • complex
  • multi-residential
  • commercial, or
  • industrial

We strongly recommend pre-application conferences for complex, multi-residential, commercial and industrial projects.

The conference allows the applicant to explain the proposed project to DEC and to get preliminary answers to any questions concerning:

  • project plans,
  • application procedures, other permits, other determinations and other jurisdictions
  • stream classification, extent of banks, and
  • standards for permit issuance.

Schedule your pre-application conference: contact the appropriate DEC regional Division of Environmental Permits office.

Be Smart! - Contact DEC Early in Your Planning

Contact the appropriate DEC regional Environmental Permits office before beginning detailed design and engineering work. Keep initial plans flexible until involved regulatory program staff review your proposal and comment on its conformance with permit issuance standards. On occasion, minor changes in layout can avoid disagreements and delays, and in some cases, even eliminate the need for a permit.

Eliminate multiple mailings, multiple reviews, and misunderstandings - seek clarifications from DEC staff during the planning stages of the project. On submitting the application, provide accurate, complete information.

Application Requirements

Some requirements may be waived for small projects, but in general a complete application must include:

  1. Application Form: The Joint Application for Permit Form, Instructions for Completing it, and Permission to Inspect Property Form can be found on Application Forms for DEC Permits page. Please read ALL instructions carefully and be sure you have completed ALL necessary parts before submitting your application. Please provide 3 copies.
  2. Location Map: showing the precise location of the project by reference to known landmarks such as streets and public buildings. (A photocopy of a USGS topographic map or equivalent will usually be sufficient.) If the project site is a vacant lot, provide the number of the nearest utility pole, distance to the nearest intersection, or location of another identifying landmark (At least 3 copies).
  3. Project Plans: at a scale of 1" = 50' or larger, including topography at a contour interval prescribed by the region (At least 3 copies). The plan must show the existing conditions and the work to be performed. The extent of all fill or excavation and the dimensions of all proposed buildings or structures must be shown on the plans.

    See Sample Plans (PDF, 1.01MB) Note: you may have to click the "Reload" or "Refresh" button on your browser.

  4. Photographs: Recent clear photographs of the project site mounted on a separate sheet labeled with the view shown and the date of the photographs.
  5. Application Supplements: as required for dam projects and for docks, platforms, and mooring projects
    • Application Supplement D-1 for dam projects.
    • Application Supplement D-2 for docks, platforms or mooring projects.
  6. Satisfaction of SEQR requirements: Information necessary to satisfy the requirements of the State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQR) This will include:
    • a completed environmental assessment form (Part 1). (Go to the SEQR Web Pages - link above ) and
    • in certain cases, a Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS). as described under the SEQR section.
  7. Satisfaction of SHPA requirements: Information necessary to satisfy the requirements of the State Historic Preservation Act (SHPA).
    • a completed structural and archaeological assessment form. (If required.) In some cases this will include:
    • an archaeological study as described under the SHPA section.
  8. Landowner's Permission: If the applicant is not the owner of the land for which the application is submitted, written permission of the landowner for the applicant to file the application and undertake the proposed activity. If the application is for state-owned underwater lands, written notice that the applicant is seeking the appropriate grant, easement or lease of such lands from the N.Y.S. Office of General Services is sufficient.
  9. For projects located within the Adirondack Park: the DEC application for permit will not be complete until a complete application has been submitted to the Adirondack Park Agency and the New York State Department of Health, if required.
  10. Other information which the DEC staff may determine is necessary to adequately review and evaluate the application, such as engineering or supplemental reports, justifying this proposal over alternative sites and alternative layouts or designs which might avoid or minimize impacts to the protect watercourse. (See the checklist of necessary information which may be enclosed with the application packet.

Application forms and other required materials must be submitted to the DEC Regional Permit Administrator for the county in which the project is located.

Once an application is declared complete and review begins, it may become necessary to request additional information to complete the review and make a decision. The applicant will be notified of what information is necessary, and this must be submitted before a final decision can be reached on the project application.

Additional information on UPA time frames

Application Fees

There are no application fees for Protection of Waters permit applications.

Remember, Contact DEC Early in Your Planning and be flexible - Let us help you!

  • Contact for this Page
    Division of Environmental Permits
    4th Floor
    625 Broadway
    Albany, NY 12233-1750
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