Shoreland Permit Program
Effective July 1, 2014, the Vermont Legislature passed the Shoreland Protection Act (Chapter 49A of Title 10, §1441 et seq), which regulates shoreland development within 250 feet of a lake’s mean water level for all lakes greater than 10 acres in size. The intent of the Act is to prevent degradation of water quality in lakes, preserve habitat and natural stability of shorelines, and maintain the economic benefits of lakes and their shorelands. The Act seeks to balance good shoreland management and shoreland development.
This permit program is managed by the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), Watershed Management Division. Contact:
Dan Homeier or Misha Cetner
Shoreland Permit Analysts
Use the new Shoreland Project Worksheet (PDF, 218 KB) to determine if your residential project needs a permit or registration.
If you would like to schedule a site visit or have a question, click here!
We have also developed The Vermont Shoreland Protection Act: A Handbook for Shoreland Development (PDF, 2.3 MB) to help explain the Shoreland Protection Act and the permit or registration process.
Any new development, redevelopment, or clearing of a property, may require a permit or registration. A permit or registration is not required for a projects that qualify under the following transition language:
Section. 9 Transition (PDF, 81KB)
The following are examples of projects that do not need to be registered or permitted through the Shoreland Permit Program. Refer also to 10 V.S.A Chapter 49A, Section 9. TRANSITION.
It is strongly recommended that applications be submitted at least 30 days before the proposed beginning date of the project. The standard minimum review times is 15 days for registrations and 40 days for permit applications.
Use the following Handbook Appendices for guidance:
Fee schedule: The appropriate application fees, pursuant to 3 V.S.A. Section 2822(j) (32), are listed below.
To review and submit comments regarding Shoreland Permit Applications, please visit the Shoreland Permit Public Notice webpage.
Shoreland Registration Applications
Note that all administratively incomplete applications are not immediately available for review. Please contact the Shoreland Permit Program for information regarding permit or registration applications deemed administratively complete.
Decisions by DEC may be appealed to the Vermont Environmental Court - 2418 Airport Road, Suite 1, Barre VT 05641-8701; (802) 828-1660 - within thirty days of the date the decision is issued, pursuant to 10 V.S.A. Chapter 220. For additional information, visit the Vermont Rules for Environmental Court Proceedings, available on line at www.vermontjudiciary.org.
Municipal Delegation Summary (PDF, 111 KB)
The Shoreland Permit Program will delegate permit authority to municipalities, as long as the municipality seeking delegation has fulfilled the following requirements:
Landowners in delegated municipalities do not need a state shoreland permit for creation of cleared area or impervious surface within the Protected Shoreland Area. Contact the appropriate municipal office for information regarding permitting of projects in the shoreland. The following is a list of delegated municipalities:
For more information, contact Susan Warren, Lakes & Ponds Program Manager at (802) 490-6134, Susan.Warren@state.vt.us.
Updated October 24, 2014
VT DEC Watershed Management Division 1 National Life Drive, Main 2 Montpelier, VT 05620-3522 Tele: 802-828-1535 Fax: 802-828-1544
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