The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District authorizes work in waters of the United States under four types of permits: State Programmatic General Permits, Nationwide Permits, Letters of Permission, and Individual Permits.
Regional General Permits
In the Baltimore District we use two types of Regional General Permits, State Programmatic General Permits or Nationwide Permits, which are reserved for only the most minor impacts to waters of the United States regulated by the Corps. For projects with potential for substantial environmental impacts, we use either Letters of Permission or Individual Permits.
The level of review increases substantially from Regional General Permit review to Individual Permit Review. Within the Baltimore District, project managers will try to work with applicants to make sure that any impacts to waters or wetlands are avoided to the most practicable extent to best preserve our aquatic resources and to help enable applicants to qualify for the most expeditious review.
State Programmatic General Permits
Maryland State Programmatic General Permit-4 (MDSPGP-4)
The MDSPGP-4 authorizes work in waters of the United States within the state of Maryland for activities that would cause no more than minimal adverse environmental effects, individually and cumulatively, subject to the permit’s specific terms and conditions. This programmatic general permit has been developed in a cooperative effort with the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE), which has regulatory authority over waters of the State of Maryland. The MDSPGP-4 will expire on September 30, 2016. To read more about the MDSPGP-4, please visit the Sourcebook.
Pennsylvania State Programmatic General Permit-4 (PASPGP-4)
The PASPGP-4 (revised September 2015) authorizes work in waters of the United States within the state of Pennsylvania for activities that would cause no more than minimal adverse environmental effects, individually and cumulatively, subject to the permit’s specific terms and conditions. This programmatic general permit operates in conjunction with Pennsylvania’s Department of the Environment’s (PADEP) state regulatory program that protects the aquatic environment in a manner equivalent to the Department of the Army regulatory program. The PASPGP-4 will expire on June 30, 2016. To read more about the PASPGP-4, please visit the Sourcebook.
PASPGP-4 Monitoring Report
In accordance with the PASPGP-4, the Corps, with recommendations from the resource agencies evaluated the PASPGP-4, including its terms and conditions, to determine if:
a. The PASPGP-4 has met its intended goal of reducing duplication;
b. Authorizations/verifications comply with applicable laws and regulations;
c. Only projects with minimal adverse environmental effects were verified; and
d. If reissuance, modification, suspension, or revocation of the PASPGP is appropriate
Based on the information evaluated for the time period July 1, 2011 through June 30, 2013, the Corps has determined that the work authorized by the PASPGP-4 is in compliance with the Clean water Act (CWA) 404(b)(1) Guidelines and the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act (ESA), and Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA). Therefore, continuation of the PASPGP-4 and reissuance of a SPGP in Pennsylvania is justified. Please click here to view the PASPGP-4 Monitoring Report dated July 25, 2014.
Pennsylvania State Programmatic General Permit-5 (PASPGP-5)
View the May 2, 2016 public notice regarding the issuance of PASPGP-5.
PASPGP-5 (click to access full permit) authorizes work in waters of the United States within portions of the state of Pennsylvania for activities that would cause no more than minimal adverse environmental effects, individually and cumulatively, subject to the permit’s specific terms and conditions. This programmatic general permit operates in conjunction with Pennsylvania’s Department of the Environment’s (PADEP) state regulatory program that protects the aquatic environment in a manner equivalent to the Department of the Army regulatory program. PASPGP-5 will replace PASPGP-4 and become effective July 1, 2016, and expire June 30, 2021.
Nationwide Permits (NWPs) are general permits issued on a nationwide basis to authorize minor activities with minimal evaluation time. NWPs have been established to reduce the regulatory reporting burden for specific activities that have no more than minimal impacts to the aquatic environment.
Please NOTE, most NWPs have been suspended in Maryland and Pennsylvania since there are State Programmatic General Permits already in place. On March 19, 2012, the Baltimore District issued a Special Public Notice #12-32 announcing the Final Regional Conditions and Suspension for the 2012 Nationwide Permits in the State of Maryland, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania within the Baltimore and Philadelphia District’s regulatory geographic boundaries, the District of Columbia, and certain military installations of northern Virginia (i.e., Cameron Station, Fort Belvoir, Fort Myer, and the Pentagon).
Individual permits (IPs - also known as a standard permits - SPs) are generally reserved for projects with potential for substantial environmental impacts. An IP requires a full public interest review, including public notices and coordination with involved agencies, interested parties and the general public.
To learn more about each type of permitting process, please visit the Sourcebook.
For our Step-by-Step Application Review Process.
The Corps of Engineers has an administrative appeal process whereby applicants and landowners may appeal denied permits, issued permits that contain requirements that are unacceptable to the applicant, or approved jurisdictional determinations. Although these decisions are made by Corps District offices, requests for appeals of such decisions are appealed to the Corps Division offices. Requests for appeal must be furnished to the Division office within 60 days of the date of the appealable decision. A site visit or an appeal conference or meeting may be conducted during the appeal process. A decision on the merits of the appeal based on the administrative record is normally made in 90 days. The Division will either uphold the District decision or send the case back to the District, with direction to make a new decision.
Procedures for appealing Corps permitting decisions are found at 33 CFR Part 331.