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Pre-application Meeting - Wetlands and Inland Lakes and Streams
Michigan's legislature amended Part 301, Inland Lakes and Streams and Part 303, Wetlands Protection, of the Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Act, 1994 PA 451, as amended, to establish a voluntary process for meeting with DEQ's Water Resources Division (WRD) staff prior to submitting a permit application under Parts 301 and 303. The purpose of a pre-application meeting is to obtain information about a proposed project that may impact wetlands or inland lakes and streams early in the planning process in order to minimize planning costs and delays. Any landowner, or person authorized by a landowner, may request a pre-application meeting with WRD staff.
How do I schedule a pre-application meeting?
Pre-application meetings must be requested in writing. The WRD has developed a short request form for this purpose. This form should be submitted to the WRD district office that includes your proposed project.
You may choose whether you wish to meet in the district office or on the project site.
If you need to cancel a pre-application meeting, you may do so up to 24 hours (not including weekends or holidays) prior to the scheduled meeting with a full refund. Or, you may reschedule the meeting if you provide at least 24 hours advance notice. In the event that WRD staff do not attend a scheduled meeting, the fee will be refunded and the meeting will be rescheduled within ten (10) days.
When should I request a meeting?
In order to make the best use of time at your pre-application meeting, you should have a clear idea of your overall project goal and the proposed location. This will allow staff to review existing information about the proposed site and to understand your project needs. However, you may want to meet with staff before you have decided on a particular design or layout. Some requestors may wish to prepare a draft permit application prior to meeting WRD staff for review during the meeting. While this may be helpful in completing an application, it is not required.
When your planning reaches the point where you need to know more about the potential limits of your site that may arise due to wetlands or inland lakes and streams - it is a good time to talk to WRD staff. This point will be different for each applicant.
What will happen at the meeting?
If you have additional information that was not submitted with your request, such as a draft permit application, preliminary plans or drawings of your project, or photographs of the site, bring it to the meeting. You may also bring a consultant or other representative (who may also attend the pre-application meeting alone on your behalf if you prefer).
WRD staff will ask you to explain what you want to do and where. They will provide any information that they have about the site based on existing maps and information stored in DEQ databases. If the meeting is held on site, they will walk the site with you to evaluate current conditions.
Staff will discuss what aquatic resources, including wetlands or inland lakes and streams, appear to be present on the site. If enough information is available for them to do so, they will provide you with a written statement regarding the need for a permit for your project. You will have an opportunity to ask questions regarding the regulatory process. If you have a draft permit application, staff will answer any questions with you and point out deficiencies that could delay processing. Staff may also point out issues relating to the aquatic resources that could be impacted as a result of your proposed project.
Staff may ask you about options you have considered so far to avoid impacts to aquatic resources, and may be able to suggest other ways of avoiding impacts. They may also point out sensitive resource issues associated with the site, if any exist, and may be able to discuss what mitigation would be required if the project were permitted.
What questions will not be answered at a pre-application meeting?
What will happen after the pre-application meeting?
What are the fees for a pre-application meeting? Information on the fees for pre-application meetings can be found on the request form below.
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