NPDES Plan Reviews and Permits

State law requires that an erosion and sediment pollution control (E&SPC) plan be developed for all projects involving earth disturbance, regardless of size (PA Clean Streams Law, Chapter 102). Projects which impact high quality or exceptional value streams as defined by regulations promulgated under the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (“NPDES”) requirements need special care and have enhanced permit conditions.

The District reviews E&SPC plans under the terms of delegation agreements with the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection. In most cases, a General NPDES Permit – issued by the District – is required before the start of construction. When a high quality or exceptional value stream is located within the project area, an Individual NPDES Permit is required. Individual Permits are issued by DEP.

In either situation, E&SPC plan preparers should allow at least 90 days for review of project plans and associated documents. Although requirements vary depending on the nature and scope of the earth disturbance, a complete application consists of:

  • An erosion and sediment pollution control plan containing all checklist items
  • A project narrative describing in detail how the proposed controls will reduce stream pollution and runoff of sediment-laden water from the project site
  • A post-construction stormwater management plan prepared in accordance with Act 167 of 1978 (the Stormwater Management and Control Act)
  • A check in the amount required for the total project acreage, payable to Allegheny County Conservation District
  • A check payable to ACCD – Clean Water Fund in the amount of $500.00 for a General NPDES Permit or $1500.00 for an Individual NPDES Permit
  • A check payable to Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Clean Water Fund in the amount of a $100.00 fee per each disturbed acre (rounded to the nearest whole acre) is required for both Individual and General NPDES Permits.

Please submit applications and plans collated and folded! Submitting the application in binders will result in a processing delay and possible rejection of application.

Fees Associated with NPDES Reviews and Permits

Plan Review Fees
Total Project Acreage Regular Fees Expedited Fees (regular fee +)
00.0 – 02.0 $700.00 $1,400.00
02.1 – 04.0 $1,300.00 $2,600.00
04.1 – 10.0 $2,400.00 $4,800.00
10.1 – 25.0 $4,300.00 $8,600.00
25.1 – 40.0 $5,400.00 $10,800.00
40.1 – 55.0 $6,800.00 $13,600.00
55.1 – 70.0 $7,400.00 $14,800.00
70.1 & Over $7,400.00 (+ $100.00 per acre over 70.0) $14,800.00 (+ $200.00 per acre over 70.0)

Clean Water Fund Payments

Each NPDES plan review application must include the following Clean Water Fund payments:

  • ACCD – Clean Water Fund
    • $500.00 per General NPDES Permit
    • $1500.00 per Individual NPDES Permit
  • Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Clean Water Fund
    • $100.00 fee per each disturbed acre (rounded to the nearest acre) is also required for both General and Individual NPDES Permits

Review of Plan Revisions:

  • 1st Revision – included in the initial fee
  • 2nd Revision – 30% of initial fee or included with expedited fees
  • 3rd Revision – 100% of initial fee

Non-NPDES Plan Reviews and Approvals

Non-NPDES plan reviews are typically reserved for projects where less than one acre of land is being disturbed. If your project is disturbing more than one acre of land, it's likely that a NPDES permit will be required. The following are required items for Non-NPDES plan reviews:

  • An erosion and sediment pollution control plan
  • A project narrative describing in detail how the proposed controls will reduce stream pollution and runoff of sediment-laden water from the project site
  • A check in the amount required for the disturbed project acreage (less than one acre), payable to Allegheny County Conservation District
Please submit applications and plans collated and folded! Submitting the application in binders will result in a processing delay and possible rejection of application.

Fees Associated with Non-NPDES Reviews and Permits

Plan Review Fees
Total Disturbed Acreage Regular Fees Expedited Fees (regular fees +)
0.0 – 0.99 $700.00 $1,400.00

Review of Plan Revisions:

  • 1st Revision – included in initial fees
  • 2nd Revision – 30% of initial fee or included in expedited review fees
  • 3rd Revision – 100% of initial fee

Chapter 105 Plan Reviews and Permits

  • Carefully review the definitions, conditions, and requirements of the particular Chapter 105 General Permit to determine if the proposed project can qualify for authorization
  • Submit the following documents to the District:
    • One original permit application package
    • One copy of the permit registration package, including pertinent attachments
    • Note: to ensure prompt application processing and review, ensure all information required in sections A – H is completely and accurately provided
  • For non-exempt entities, submit the appropriate Chapter 105 General Permit fee payable to the Allegheny County Conservation District Clean Water Fund (see below fee schedule)

Chapter 105 Erosion and Sediment Pollution Control (E&S) Plan Requirements

  • All Chapter 105 General Permits will require a reviewed and approved E&S plan
  • If the Chapter 105 General Permit is associated with a Chapter 102 permit, include the appropriate erosion control measures within the narrative and drawings for the following instances:
    • Activities affecting streams
    • 100 year floodways
    • Wetlands
    • Note: In this scenario, no separate E&S plan or E&S plan review fee is required for the Chapter 105 permitting process, only the applicable Chapter 105 permit fees
  • If the Chapter 105 General Permit is not associated with a Chapter 102 permit, submit an E&S plan specific to the Chapter 105 activity along with an E&S review fee according to the chart below

Please submit applications and plans collated and folded! Submitting the application in binders will result in a processing delay and possible rejection of application.

Fees Associated with NPDES Reviews and Permits

Plan Review Fees
Total Project Acreage Regular Fees Expedited Fees (regular fee +)
0.00 – 0.49 $200.00 $400.00
0.50 – 0.99 $400.00 $800.00

Review of Plan Revisions:

  • 1st Revision – included in initial fees
  • 2nd Revision – 30% of initial fee or included in expedited review fees
  • 3rd Revision – 100% of initial fee

Timber Harvesting Plan Reviews

Plan Review Fees
Total Disturbed Acreage Regular Fees Expedited Fees
00.0 – 24.99 $300.00 $600.00
25.0 – 49.99 $900.00 $1,800.00
50.0 – 249.99 $1,200.00 $2,400.00
250.0 & Over $1,200.00 (+ $10.00 per acre over 250.0) $2,400.00 (+ $20.00 per acre over 250.0)

Where total disturbed acreage equals or exceeds 25.0 acres, a NPDES General or Individual Permit is required.


Review of Plan Revisions:

  • 1st Revision – included in initial fees
  • 2nd Revision – 30% of initial fee or included in expedited review fees
  • 3rd Revision – 100% of initial fee
Please submit applications and plans collated and folded! Submitting the application in binders will result in a processing delay and possible rejection of application.

Expedited Plan Review Options

The following are to be submitted for the expedited review:

  • Two (2) checks payable to the “Allegheny County Conservation District”
    • The initial E&SC Plan review fee (based on project acreage)
    • The expedited E&SC Plan review fee equal to double the initial review fee
  • The NPDES Permit fee (if applicable)
    • A check payable to “ACCD – Clean Water Fund” in the amount of $500 for a General NPDES Permit or $1500 for an Individual NPDES Permit
    • A check payable to “Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Clean Water Fund” in the amount of a $100 fee per each disturbed acre (rounded to the nearest acre) is required for both Individual and General NPDES Permits.
  • The NPDES Notice of Intent & required documentation (if applicable)
  • One set of the E&SC Plan narrative and drawings
  • The Allegheny County Conservation District (ACCD) E&SC Plan Technical Review Application & Checklist
  • The Post Construction Stormwater Management (PCSM) narrative and drawings (if applicable)
Expedited Review Process:

  • The Conservation District will conduct an administrative review of the documents within five (5) working days of receipt of the scheduled expedited review submission.
  • If the administrative review determines that the submission is incomplete, both the applicant and the plan preparer(s) will be notified. The notification will identify the omissions and request that the documents be resubmitted.
  • Once the administrative review of the submission is determined to be complete, the technical review will be completed within 10 working days for projects disturbing up to fifty (50) acres and within an additional five (5) working days for each fifty (50) disturbed acre increment.
  • If technical deficiencies or inadequacies are detected during the technical review, a review letter with all of the comments will be mailed to both the applicant and the plan designer(s). The applicant will have to resubmit the documents and include a cover letter identifying all changes to the documents, along with highlighted changes within all the documents. No additional fee will be required for the first resubmission. Once all resubmittal materials have been received, the technical review will be completed within 10 working days for projects disturbing up to fifty (50) acres and within an additional five (5) working days for each fifty (50) disturbed acre increment. In the event the technical deficiencies or inadequacies are not properly addressed in the resubmission, both the applicant and the plan designer(s) will be notified and the project will not be eligible for the expedited review procedure.
State entities exempt from Erosion & Sediment Control plan review fees will not be eligible for an expedited review!.

NPDES Permit Renewals

PA Code - Section 102.8(a) indicates the following:

After November 19, 2010, a person conducting earth disturbance activities under a permit issued before November 19, 2010, and renewed prior to January 1, 2013, shall implement, operate and maintain the PCSM requirements in accordance with the terms and conditions of the existing permit. After January 1,2013, the renewal of a permit issued before November 19, 2010, requires that a PCSM Plan be developed, implemented, operated, and maintained in accordance with section 102.8.

Permit Renewal Requirements

An application for a permit renewal should be submitted 180 days before the expiration date on the active permit. A permit renewal application package includes:

  • Notice of Intent (NOI) original plus two copies Completeness Review Checklist: Complete only the “General” section on the first page Check the “included” block on page 19 in the “Checklist for NPDES Permit Renewals” section PNDI results that are less than one year old $500 permit fee (general permit) or $1500 permit fee (individual permit) made out to the ACCD Clean Water Fund
  • A check payable to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Clean Water Fund in the amount of $100 per each disturbed acre (rounded to the nearest whole acre). If the original permit application was submitted prior to November 19, 2010 (when the fee went into effect), then an additional disturbed acreage fee of $100/acre (rounded to the nearest whole acre) must be paid. The disturbed acreage fee is based on the number of acres that are not permanently stabilized at the time of permit renewal and the acres that will be disturbed in the future. Any acres where work has been completed and stabilized should be subtracted from the total number of disturbed acres for the project.
    • For example, a 50.7 acre project submitted on or after November 19, 2010 would have paid a disturbed acreage fee of $5,100 with the initial submission and would pay no disturbed acreage fee at the time of permit renewal.
    • By second example, an initial permit application submission for 50.7 acres was made before November 19, 2010. 10 acres are now complete and stabilized. No disturbed acreage fee was paid at the time of submission, so a disturbed acreage fee must be paid at the time of permit renewal. The fee is based on the number of acres that are currently disturbed and not permanently stabilized. Any acres where work is now complete and stabilized can be subtracted from the amount of disturbed acres for the project. So, as 10 acres of the project are complete, the fee would be $4,100 (for 50.7 minus 10 acres or 40.7 acres).

Please submit applications and plans collated and folded! Submitting the application in binders will result in a processing delay and possible rejection of application.

Permit Renewal Fees

Permit Type Regular Fees Expedited Fees (regular fee +)
NPDES $200.00 $400.00

Clean Water Fund Payments

Each NPDES Permit Renewal application must also include the following Clean Water Fund payments:

  • ACCD – Clean Water Fund
    • $500.00 per General NPDES Permit
    • $1500.00 per Individual NPDES Permit
  • Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Clean Water Fund
    • $100.00 fee per each disturbed acre (rounded to the nearest acre) is also required for both General and Individual NPDES Permits

Major Modification Plan Reviews

Why a Major Modification?

An application for a major modification of an existing permit is required if the modification results in one of the following:

  • Increase in the number of disturbed acres
  • Addition of area outside the original permit boundaries
  • Addition of or change to a receiving surface water
  • Addition of a point source discharge.

Requirements for Submission

An application for a major modification includes:

  • A complete permit application, including NOI, drawings, narrative, etc.
  • $500 permit fee (general permit) or $1500 permit fee (individual permit) made out to the ACCD Clean Water Fund
  • A check for the review fee (see the Review Fee Schedule) based on the additional acreage to be disturbed under the modification.
    • In the event of no change in acreage, the fee for 0-2 acres is assessed.
  • A check payable to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Clean Water Fund in the amount of $100 per each acre that will be newly disturbed under the modification (rounded to the nearest whole acre).

Please submit applications and plans collated and folded! Submitting the application in binders will result in a processing delay and possible rejection of application.
For NPDES plans submitted prior to 11/19/2010

If the original permit application was submitted prior to November 19, 2010 (when the fee went into effect), then an additional disturbed acreage fee of $100/acre (rounded to the nearest whole acre) must be paid. The disturbed acreage fee is then based on the number of acres that are not permanently stabilized at the time of permit modification and the acres that will be disturbed in the future. Any acres where work has been completed and stabilized should be subtracted from the total number of disturbed acres for the project.

  • For example, a 50.7 acre project submitted on or after November 19, 2010 would have paid a disturbed acreage fee of $5,100 with the initial submission. A major modification that expands the permitted area by 5 acres would result in a $500 disturbed acreage fee.
  • By second example, an initial permit application submission for 50.7 acres was made before November 19, 2010. The permitted area would expand by 5 acres under the major modification. 10 acres are now complete and stabilized. No disturbed acreage fee was paid at the time of submission, so a disturbed acreage fee must be paid at the time of permit modification. The fee is based on the number of acres that are currently disturbed and not permanently stabilized. Any acres where work is now complete and stabilized can be subtracted from the amount of disturbed acres for the project. A fee is also assessed on each new acre that will be disturbed under the permit modification. So, as 10 acres of the project are complete, the fee would be $4,100 (for 50.7 minus 10 acres or 40.7 acres) PLUS $500 for the expanded area ($100 times 5 new acres).
  • By third example, an initial permit application submission for 10 acres was made and a permit granted. A new point source discharge was added to the project, but no change in acreage resulted. No fee is due to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Clean Water Fund.

Minor Modification Plan Reviews

​Changes to an approved, active plan within the total disturbed area of the project which includes adjustments to best management practices and the addition or deletion of best management practices. A proposed new earth disturbance that expands or increase the total disturbed area of the project within the original project boundaries as long as the existing planned or implemented best management practices are adequate to minimize accelerated erosion and sedimentation from the planned disturbance.

An application for a minor modification includes the documents or calculations that are being modified, such as the Notice of Intent, stormwater calculations and worksheets, drawings, the post-construction stormwater management plan, etc.

Please submit applications and plans collated and folded! Submitting the application in binders will result in a processing delay and possible rejection of application.
Minor Modification Fees

  • The application for a minor modification plan review must include a $400 review fee.

Returns and Refunds

Returned Checks:

  • A $20.00 fee will be assessed for each returned check

Review Fee Refunds:

  • Permit fees and disturbed acreage fees are not refundable
  • Allegheny County Conservation District review fees are not refundable except in the event of an early permit application withdrawal
  • If a permit application is withdrawn prior to the review process starting, then the review fee is refunded minus a $100 administrative fee
  • Once the review process is started, no fees are refunded