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Sediment Control Permit


Sediment Control is intended to prevent sediment from leaving a construction site during construction activity.  Sediment loss from such activities can cause property damage, environmental degradation, and in some cases public safety concerns.

Montgomery County Code, Chapter 19, Article I, Section 2, requires a permit for any land disturbing activity in Montgomery County that disturbs 5,000 sq. ft. or more of land, results in 100 cubic yards or more of earth movement, or is for the construction of a new residential or commercial building. An applicant must have approved erosion, sediment control and stormwater management plans before construction begins. Agricultural land management activities are exempt if the land has been farmed by the same owner within the last 5 years or a Declaration of Intent has been filed with the Department. Nursery operations and the cutting of trees are considered to be land disturbing activities and are not exempt.


There are two types of sediment control permit in Montgomery County.  They are:

  • Small Land Disturbance Agreement  (SLDA)
  • Engineered Sediment Control Permit

Small Land Disturbing Activities Agreement (SLDA)

SLDA permits are infrequently used in Montgomery County and are for very simple projects.  Applications for SLDA permits are reviewed on a case by case basis and must meet the following minimum criteria for consideration:

  • The project must not have stormwater management requirements;
  • The project may not result in movement of 1,000 cubic yards or more of earth;
  • The total disturbed area may not exceed 20,000 square feet for commercial or 30,000 square feet for residential development;
  • Projects that are near floodplains, wetlands, steep slopes or other environmentally sensitive or difficult areas may not qualify for the use of the SLDA permit.

Each application for an SLDA permit must include:

  • A completed sediment control permit application;
  • Applicable review fee;
  • Two copies of a simplified site plan clearly showing the property area.  Do not show proposed sediment controls on the simplified plan.  Once the SLDA permit is issued, a DPS sediment control inspector will instruct you as to what sediment controls must be installed prior to starting the project;
  • Cover letter explaining the nature and extent of the proposed project. If the permit application is the result of a Notice of Violation, a copy of the Notice must also be submitted.

Note that for properties that exceed 40,000 square feet in total area, DPS can not issue the sediment control permit until the permit has been released by MNCPPC for Forest Conservation review.  DPS will forward a copy of the application to MNCPPC as part of the DPS review process.  MNCPPC is the lead agency in enforcement of the Forest Conservation requirements and may require additional items as part of their review.  It is the responsibility of the applicant to contact MNCPPC to initiate the Forest Conservation review. 

Engineered Plan Sediment Control Permit

Engineered Plan Sediment Control Permits are the most commonly used permit type in Montgomery County, and in the majority of cases this is the permit that will be required when a sediment control permit is necessary.

At a minimum, each application for an Engineered Sediment Control permit must be accompanied by:

  • An Erosion and Sediment Control Plan, including Stormwater Management design. (One set of plans and computations)
  • Applicable filing fees
  • An estimate of Stormwater Management costs for the project.

Plans must be prepared and certified by a Professional Engineer, Land Surveyor or Landscape Architect  registered in the State of Maryland.

Forest Harvest Activity Permit

Although the Montgomery Soil Conservation District (MSCD) must approve the sediment control plan for a Forest Harvest application, the permit is issued by DPS.

  • For logging and timber removal operations
  • Sediment control plans are approved by the MSCD.
  • Forest harvest area must remain as woodland - No change in land use

To obtain a Forest Harvest Activity Permit from DPS, submit:

  • Appropriate application and fee
  • Proof of sediment control plan approval from MSCD

Builders Sediment Control Permit

The Builder Sediment Control Permit is a type of sediment control permit intended for residential developments where builders buy lots from the overall developer of the property/site. The purpose of the permit is to assure compliance with the intent of the approved Developer's Sediment Control Plan and the sediment control regulations as control over buildable lots shifts from the developer to the builders. This permit is allowed on a case by case basis as determined by DPS.

What is the Builders Sediment Control Permit application process?

First, the developer’s sediment control plan must be approved, issued, and in good standing. This plan shows how and where the major sediment control devices are located on lots and also lists any lots encumbered by sediment control devices.

The developer and builder complete one Property Transfer Certification/Residential Ownership Transfer Agreement (PTC/ROTA) for each builder constructing houses in the development.

  • The PTC/ROTA will list the lots within the developer’s sediment control permit and authorize the builder to use the developer’s sediment control devices.
  • The PTC/ROTA will be submitted by the builders with their initial Builder’s Sediment Control Permit application. The appropriate permit fee and performance bond are required at this time
  • The builder will make application for their Builder Sediment Control Permit(s) per their desired lot groups. Each application will be accompanied by a copy of the approved engineer plans highlighting the lots that are being included. Total square footage of the desired lot groups must also be included.
  • The builder must submit a copy of the PTC/ROTA with each subsequent Builder Sediment Control Permit Application.


Submit a completed Sediment Control Permit Application and plan. Permit fees are required at this time. For the Engineered Sediment Control Permit, one set of plans and computations is required. For the SLDA application, two copies of a site plan are required. For Forest Harvest Activities, one copy of all pertinent information is required.


A permit will be issued when all appropriate fees have been paid, necessary bonds posted, and plans have been approved by the Department. In granting the permit, the Department may attach conditions that the Department deems reasonably necessary to prevent offsite sedimentation and the degradation of streams and other waterways. These conditions must be identified on the approved plans. The permittee must certify that all land disturbing activities will be performed pursuant to the approved plans.

Sediment Control permits must not conflict with conditions shown on approved subdivision plans, development plans, forest conservation plans, or site plans.



  • Each review of an engineered sediment control plan takes on average two to four weeks. It is subject to workload and complexity of the project involved.
  • Forest Harvest Permits are issued within a week of application. However, they are mailed to the Montgomery Soil Conservation District for final plan approval.
  • Small Land Disturbance Permits are issued in a timely manner.   DPS has no control over the timeliness of MNCPPC Forest Conservation review for SLDA permits.

Actual processing time may vary due to workload and the complexity of the site.



Under certain conditions Sediment Control Permits may be transferred.  Please see Sediment Control Permit Transfer Form for additional information and requirements.  The fee to transfer a Sediment Control permit is the minimum fee charged for engineered Sediment Control permits - Please see the Schedule of Fees for Permits Licenses and Inspections - Method 3


The permittee must notify their DPS Sediment Control Inspector 48 hours before commencing any land disturbing activities to schedule a pre-construction meeting.  Regular inspections are performed as needed as construction proceeds (see Sediment Control Inspections). 

A final site inspection is required prior to closure of the sediment control permit and release of the bond.


Sediment control permits are valid for two years from the date of issuance, and must be either closed or extended prior to expiration. Work may not continue under an expired sediment control permit.  Each Sediment Control permit extension is valid for one year. Extension requests must be made in writing to the Land Development Permit Processing Section. Refer to fees section for fees associated with extensions. Forest Harvest permits cannot be extended.


Any activity involving properties that are over 40,000 square feet in size requires application to Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC) for Forest Conservation review.

Any activity within the public rights-of-way will require a roadway grading permit from the subdivision development section of the department. The Montgomery Soil Conservation District must approve all SC plans for Forest Harvest Activities.

Disturbance in or near streams or wetlands may require permits from the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) and the Army Corps of Engineers.

Any proposed disturbance of one acre or more requires submission of a Notice of Intent to the Maryland Department of the Environment.


Appeals of the issuance of any sediment control permit must be directed to Director of DPS within five working days from the date of permit issuance.

Application Package
Sediment Control Permit Application Sediment Control Permit Application
Stormwater Concept Application Stormwater Concept Application
Fees and Taxes
Fees for Sediment Control Permit  Executive Regulation 26-16
Automation Enhancement Fee Regulation Executive regulation 15-16
Credit Card Authorization Form Credit Card Authorization Form
General Bond Information Bond Information
Performance Bond Performance Bond Sample
Letter of Credit Letter of Credit Sample
Codes, Standards, Executive Regulations
Montgomery County Code - Chapter 19 Montgomery County Code
Guidelines, Memorandum of Understandings, Interpretations
Water Resource Section Standards, Guidelines and Helpful Information DPS Water Resources Section Guidelines
Stormwater Management Concept Information Stormwater Concept
Inspection Requirements
Sediment Control and Stormwater Management Inspections Sediment Control Inspections
Frequently Asked Questions
311 Web Portal: Enter key word "Sediment Control"
Online Permitting Status Information and Inspections
Online Permit Status Search DPS
Applicants with Contact ID Sign In Sign In
Call for More Information
In Montgomery County 311
Outside of Montgomery County 240-777-0311
Other Agencies to Contact
Other Agencies and Utilities to Contact Allegheny Power
  Baltimore Gas & Electric Co. (BG&E)
  Board of Appeals
  Maryland Department of the Environment
  Miss Utility
  Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection (MCDEP)
  MNCPPC: MC Atlas
  MNCPPC: Zoning
  Montgomery Soil Conservation District
  Potomac Electric Power Company (PEPCO)
  Washington Gas Light Co.