Many landowners are interested in implementing projects on their land to benefit the natural resources. Unfortunately, the majority of these landowners avoid restoration projects because of the complicated and expensive permits that are sometimes required. Some conservation projects require permits from multiple agencies to ensure that environmental requirements are met. Permitting is complex and can take well over a year, and up to several thousand dollars in fees. Unfortunately, this means that private landowners are less likely to take on the conservation projects that require permits - and these are often the projects with the most environmental benefits.
The Alameda County Conservation Partnership has developed a coordinated permitting process aimed at assisting private landowners who would like to implement practices that will restore and enhance the natural resources on their property. This program is based on the Partners in Restoration (PIR) model developed by NRCS and Sustainable Conservation, a nonprofit environmental organization, in response to the need to alleviate permitting challenges faced by private landowners and operators. The Conservation Partnership negotiated with five regulatory agencies to simplify the complex regulatory process for landowners. Private landowners who want to install conservation practices can work with the Conservation Partnership to assist with their permitting needs.
Regulatory partners involved in the Alameda County Permit Coordination Program include:
- U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS)
- U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE)
- Regional Water Quality Control Board (RWQCB)
- Alameda County Grading Department
- National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS)
- California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) California Endangered Species Act (CESA)
If needed, we will also assist with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife Streambed Alteration Agreement. The Conservation Partnership works with participating regulatory agencies and landowners to ensure permit conditions are met and that projects meet NRCS standards and specifications. We can coordinate with landowners on completing the necessary paperwork and communications with the regulatory agencies.
To see if your project is eligible for the Permit Coordination Program, please contact Leslie Koenig at (925) 371-0154 ext. 115.
Example of a livestock pond in need of desedimenation to improve habitat for local wildlife.
After photo of restored pond through the permit coordination program.