Contact the Water Resources Commissioner's Office for permits to work or connect to a county drain.

Water Resources Commissioner Permits For Working Within The Drain Right Of Way

Who Needs A Permit And Why:

Anyone working within the legal right-of-way of an established county drain under the Water Resources Commissioner's jurisdiction.

The Purpose:

The purpose of the permit process is to protect the drainage districts from activities that could be a detriment to the drain and add cost to that district in the future.

The Authority:

The Drain Code, Act 40 of 1956 of Michigan and the Calhoun County of Commissioners by resolution.

The Permit Procedures: 

  1. Anyone planning to work within the county drain right-of-way must request an application for a permit by notifying the Calhoun County Water Resources Commissioner either by telephone or letter. The information required by the Water Resources Commissioner at this time to start the permit process is:
    1. Township(s) working within
    2. Sections) number within that township(s)
    3. Name of county drain involved, if known
    4. What kind of activity you will be doing
    5. Name and address of where permit forms are to be mailed
    6. Telephone number of requester
  2. The Water Resources Commission will send the appropriate application form to the requesting party within five (5) working days.
  3. Upon receiving the application form, the requester will fill out the forms entirely, stating the location of activity, kind of work to be done, and when the work will be done(date). The requester will then sign form and mail back to the Calhoun County Water Resources Commissioner with the application fee. Any work being done in a Calhoun County Drain right-of-way must be done by a contractor with proper qualifications as stated in the "Calhoun County Water Resources Commissioner's General Specifications For Contractors".
  1. When requester has sent all application and permit fees, the application will be reviewed. If the activity will not adversely effect the drain a permit will be issued and sent to the requester. Work can then commence.
  2. If the Water Resources Commissioner rejects the application, a rejection statement will be sent to the requester stating the reason for rejection.
  3. In case of an emergency the Water Resources Commissioner shall be notified by telephone, If approved he will then give authorization for work within the drain right-of-way. The application process and permit will be issued at a later date. That date to be determined by each individual circumstance, but shall be within thirty (30) days.
  4. Failure to acquire a permit and execute the permit as required in these rules will result in a fine or double fees charged to violator. Also the cost of repair, removal, replacement, and inspection, along with all legal fees required to enforce the permit requirements will be charged to violator.
  1. In case of multiple crossings the fee may be adjusted as deemed appropriate by the Water Resources Commissioner.
  2. The permit fee covers one (1) or two (2) inspections by the Water Resources Commissioner and/or his inspector. If a consulting engineer is retained by the Water Resources Commissioner, the cost of his services will be paid by the requester within thirty (30) days of receipt of invoice. A permit will not be issued until all costs are paid.
  3. Crossing permits issued by the Water Resources Commissioner do not release the requester from acquiring other permits required by other municipalities.

Activities Not Requiring A Permit: 

  1. Cutting of trees and brush and the removal of dead trees and brush from the drain.
  2. Anyone working under contract with the Water Resources Commissioner.
Calhoun County, 315 West Green Street, Marshall, MI 49068 | Phone: (269) 781-0700
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