Office for Regulatory Innovation and Assistance Logo
Information Center (800) 917-0043 or help@oria.wa.gov

Regulatory Handbook -> Water Quality Permits -> Sand & Gravel General Permit for Non-Portable Facilities - NPDES

Sand & Gravel General Permit for Non-Portable Facilities - NPDES

What is the Purpose of this Permit?
To ensure that sand and gravel mining operations prevent pollution within their process water, stormwater and mine dewatering water discharges to groundwater or surface water.

This permit is required under federal and state water quality law (Federal Clean Water Act and (State Water Pollution Control Act).
Who Issues this Permit?
Department of Ecology
What Activities Require this Permit?
Sand and gravel operations, rock quarries, and similar mining operations, as well as concrete batch plants and hot mix asphalt operations that have a discharge of process wastewater, stormwater, or mine dewatering water.
How Much Will this Permit Cost?
Permit fees are set by rule and are found in Chapter 173-224 WAC (see Aggregate Production—General Permit coverage A - C). Fee amounts can change, so please consult the WAC or call your Ecology Regional Office for the current amount.

The typical annual fee for operating sand and gravel mining sites is $2119 ($2,231 in 2017). The typical annual fees for concrete and asphalt batch plants range from $885 - $2,651 ($932 - $2,791 in 2017) and are based on production amounts. Fees are significantly reduced for non-operating facilities.

The fee rule also includes a provision for fee reduction based on economic hardship. Criteria for fee reduction and the amount of the reduction may change over time. We encourage you to consult the fee rule referenced above or call your Ecology Regional Office to determine if your operation is eligible for an economic hardship fee reduction.
Where Can I Get the Application for this Permit?
The application is online and can be accessed at https://ecology.wa.gov/Regulations-Permits/Permits-certifications/Sand-Gravel-General-Permit.
Do I Need to Include Anything with my Application?
Yes, on a separate sheet of paper include a site map that identifies:
  • Outfall points and outfall point identifier(s)
  • Monitoring / Sampling points identifier(s)
  • Drainage and discharge structures
  • Nearby and on-site surface water bodies
  • Outline of the drainage areas for each discharge point including discharges to ground water All areas associated with industrial activities
  • Lands adjacent to the site, where helpful in identifying discharge points or drainage routes
Note that a new facility wanting coverage under this permit must conduct a public notice announcement in the newspaper. The applicant must publish public notice once each week for two consecutive weeks (twice), at least seven days apart, in a newspaper of general circulation within the county in which the discharge is proposed. Coverage may be issued 30 days after the second public notice.
Is the Decision on my Permit Dependent on Anything Besides the Information in my Application?
Permit coverage cannot be issued to a new facility unless applicable State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) requirements have been satisfied. SEPA review, city permits, and county permits must include all the activities that the facility will be performing.

A complete application must also include certification that the public notice requirements have been met. If comments are received during the public comment period, Ecology must review and respond to the comments and take them into consideration when making the decision to issue or deny permit coverage.
How Long Will it Take to Review my Application?
See the Permit Timeliness Results above for average processing times.

WAC 173-226-200 and RCW 90.48.170: Application for permits shall be made at least 60 days prior to commencement of any proposed discharge or permit expiration date, whichever is applicable.
Where do I Submit my Application?
To the Department of Ecology, requires an electronic application using Ecology's eNOI system: https://ecology.wa.gov/Regulations-Permits/Permits-certifications/Sand-Gravel-General-Permit
Schematic:
View the schematic
How Long is my Permit Valid?
Ecology reissues all sand and gravel permits every 5 years. All facilities with permit coverage must reapply for coverage 180 days before the expiration date. The current permit expires on March 31, 2021.
What is the Appeal Process for the Permit?
You have a right to appeal this permit coverage to the Pollution Control Hearings Board (PCHB) within 30 days of issuance of this general permit. The appeal process is governed by Chapter 43.21B RCW, Chapter 173-226 WAC, and Chapter 371-08 WAC. “Date of receipt” is defined in RCW 43.21B.001(2). To appeal you must do both of the following within 30 days after the date of receipt of issuance of this general permit:
  • File your appeal and a copy of the permit cover page with the Pollution Control Hearings Board (PCHB) during regular business hours.
  • Serve a copy of your appeal and the permit cover page on Ecology in paper form, by mail or in person. E-mail is not accepted.
Consideration of an appeal of general permit coverage of an individual discharger is limited to the general permit’s applicability or inapplicability to that individual discharger.
Notes / Comments:
You are required to use the electronic application (eNOI) and submit it to Ecology over the internet. If you do not have internet access, please contact the Ecology office and they will assist you.
Permit Timeliness Results

Permit Timeliness data collection is in response to a State Auditor’s Performance Audit and RCW 43.42A. Each regulatory agency developed a plan to improve permit clarity, predictability, and timeliness. Each agency considers the customers experience to ensure permit assistance is simple to use, easy to access, and designed in a customer-friendly manner. Agencies report progress to the Governor’s Office for Regulatory Innovation and Assistance (ORIA). ORIA prepares and distributes reports, with participation from the State Auditor’s Office and Results Washington. See latest report here: https://www.oria.wa.gov/ORIA-2018-PermitTimelinessProgressReport.pdf.

All permits submitted for reporting were entered into this Regulatory Handbook. Here are the results of the performance data:

Estimated Time Required By the Agency to Process a Permit Application (Definition)
Average number of days from Receipt to Complete: 132.3
Maximum number of days from Receipt to Complete: 540

Estimated Time Required By the Agency to Issue a Permit Decision (Definition)
Average number of days from Complete Application to Decision: 17.9
Maximum number of days from Complete Application to Decision: 113

(Summary results based on 13 submittals in 2020)

Where can I get permitting assistance?
Statewide Contact:
Department of Ecology
Headquarters
300 Desmond Drive
PO Box 47600
Olympia, WA 98504-7600
Telephone: (360) 407-6000
Website: http://www.ecology.wa.gov/
* Permit information last updated 2/8/2018
[v2]
© 2021 Governor's Office for Regulatory Innovation and Assistance