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Regulatory Handbook

The Regulatory Handbook contains information about local, state and federal permits, approvals, or licenses for Washington State. Although not a complete list, this list does provide in-depth information on most environmental permits.

    Question Mark Graphic Don't know what permits you'll need?

  • Complete ORIA's Project Questionnaire, it can help identify what permits, approvals, and licenses you may need based on an interview process.
  • Visit ORIA's Publications, several publications reference permits needed for specific projects, such as building docks or piers.
  • You can also contact ORIA at 1-800-917-0043 or if you don't know what permits are needed or are looking for a specific permit.

Regulations - By Category

Agent's License under Commission Merchant Act (Agricultural Products)

Individuals and businesses who are authorized to receive, contract for, or solicit or negotiate the consignment or purchases of agricultural products on behalf of a licensed commission merchant, dealer, broker, or cash buyer.

Commission Merchant's License (Agricultural Products)

Individuals and businesses who receive on consignment, take possession or control of, or act as brokers in the resale or processing of unprocessed agricultural products.

Fruit and Vegetable Shipping Permit (F&V Shipping Permit)

A shipping permit can be issued in lieu of a certificate of compliance. No person may ship, transport, accept for shipment or accept delivery of any commercial lot of apples, apricots, asparagus, Italian prunes, peaches, pears, and sweet cherries for which a certificate of compliance or shipping permit has not been issued. A shipping permit is required for shipping apples, apricots, asparagus, Italian prunes, peaches, pears, and sweet cherries to a processing plant outside the State of Washington. Apples, apricots, asparagus, Italian prunes, peaches, pears and sweet cherries being shipped to processors within Washington State do not require a shipping permit. Fruits or vegetables covered by a certificate of compliance do not require a shipping permit.

Nursery Dealer's License (Retail or Wholesale)

A nursery retailer/wholesaler license is required for businesses that:

  • Sell or hold live plants or turf for planting, breeding, or decoration.
  • Perform landscaping and lawn maintenance which provides planting or installing new plants or turf.
Here are some examples of businesses that are required to be licensed:
  • Wholesale and retail nurseries, growers, and garden centers.
  • Landscapers who buy plants to install.
  • Landscapers who hold or grow plants for later sale or installation.
  • Maintenance companies who install plants for customers.
  • Brokers located in Washington who buy and sell, but do not hold plants.
  • Grocery and warehouse stores that offer plants for sale.
  • Pet and aquarium stores that sell aquatic plants.

Seed Labeling Permit

A person labeling seed for distribution for sale in this state.

Air Operating Permit

The operation of a major source of air contaminants.

Air Quality Minor Source Registration Program (Air Quality Registration Program)

A source which is listed under the source classification list in Washington Administrative Code (WAC) 173-400-100 and operates within the following counties:     Central Region     Chelan, Douglas, Kittitas, Klickitat, and Okanogan     Eastern Region     Adams, Asotin, Columbia, Ferry, Franklin, Garfield, Grant, Lincoln, Pend Oreille, Stevens, Walla Walla, and Whitman     Northwest Region     San Juan. All other counties are under the jurisdiction of local clean air agencies.

Air Quality Notice of Construction (NOC) Permit

Releasing pollution to the air from a new or modified business or industrial source, unless the source or activity has been exempted.

Asbestos - Air Quality (Demolition / Renovation Notification Form)

You must submit an asbestos demolition/renovation notification form any time you:

  1. Want to demolish any structure, including for the purpose of fire training, or
  2. Remove or abate Regulated Asbestos Containing Material (RACM) in an existing structure with at least 260 linear feet of RACM on pipes, 160 square feet of RACM on other facility components, or 35 cubic feet of RACM off of facility components where length or area could not be measured previously.
Before beginning any work, you must:
  1. Fill out the form.
  2. Have the owner/operator of the structure/facility sign it.
  3. Mail it to the appropriate air quality agency.
Guidance is available on the EPA Region 10 asbestos web page and at the other links listed below.

Bale Burn Permit

Only commercial agricultural operations can apply for this permit to burn baled agricultural residue. The agricultural burning regulation (Chapter 173-430 WAC) defines a commercial agricultural operation as a farmer who is practicing agriculture for commercial purposes and has filed an IRS schedule F form or its corporate equivalent. Baled agricultural residue that may be permitted for burning include broken, mildewed, diseased or otherwise pest ridden bales.

Burn Permit (Silvicultural Burning)

A permit is required when you plan to burn piled forest material.

Burn Permit - Agricultural Field

Burning of vegetative agricultural field (not piled) wastes.

Burn Permit - Agricultural Pile

Burning of stacked vegetative agricultural wastes.

Burn Permit - Fire Training

Burning a structure for a fire training exercise.

Burn Permit - Land Clearing

Burning land clearing debris. NOTE: Land clearing burning is not allowed inside of urban growth areas (UGAs), within city limits of cities with a population of 10,000 or more, or within an area having a general population density of 1,000 or more persons per square mile.

Burn Permit - Special

This permit is for situations where burning does not fit into the categories of agricultural, residential, or land clearing.

Burn Permit - Spot Burn Permit

Burning in areas that are 1/2 acre or less in size, such as:

  • Small weed patches.
  • Spots of heavy residue.
  • Equipment plugs and dumps.

General Order of Approval for Asphalt Plants

Your facility must meet the approval conditions as stated in the General Order Permit. An asphalt plant that meets the approval conditions as determined by Ecology may apply for coverage under this General Order.

General Order of Approval for Auto Body Shops

Operating an Auto Body Shop that meets the approval conditions of this General Order as determined by Ecology may apply for the permit.

General Order of Approval for Concrete Batch Plants

Operating a concrete batch plant that meets the approval conditions of this General Order as determined by Ecology may apply for the permit.

General Order of Approval for Dairy Manure Anaerobic Digesters

Your facility must meet the approval conditions as stated in the General Order Permit. A dairy manure anaerobic digester that meets the approval conditions as determined by Ecology may apply for coverage under this General Order.

General Order of Approval for Gas Fired Emergency Electrical Generators

Using a Rich-Burn, Spark Ignition, Gaseous Fossil Fuel Powered Emergency Generator in the counties or facilities that are regulated by Ecology. Your engine must meet the General Order conditions determined by Ecology.

General Order of Approval for Perchloroethylene Dry Cleaners

Operating a dry cleaning facility that uses less than 2,100 gallons per year of Perchloroethylene. Your facility must also meet the criteria in the General Order as determined by Ecology.

General Order of Approval for Small Boilers Using Natural Gas, Propane, or Diesel Fuel

Operating a small boiler using natural gas, propane, or diesel fuel that meets the approval conditions of this General Order as determined by Ecology may apply for the permit.

General Order of Approval for Stationary or Portable Rock Crushers

Operating a rock crusher facility that meets the approval conditions of this General Order as determined by Ecology may apply for the permit.

Permit Application to Burn Flood and Storm Debris

This permit is required to burn storm and flood debris resulting from a declared emergency and upon agreement with local fire jurisdictions.

Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) Air Quality Permit

A new major source with the potential to emit a pollutant regulated under the Federal Clean Air Act at 100 tons/year for 28 specific emission source types, or 250 tons/year or more for all other emission source types. A modification of an existing major source that increases emissions of a pollutant regulated under the Federal Clean Air Act at or above PSD Significant Emission Rates (SER).

Radioactive Air Emission License to Operate New Facility (or Modification of an Existing Source (New Construction or Abatement)

Any activity that emits, or has the potential to emit, radionuclides into the air.

Radioactive Air Emissions Facility Approval to Construct

Any activity that emits, or has the potential to emit, radionuclides into the air.

Aquatic Farm Registration

Culturing or transferring food fish, shellfish, and certain aquatic animals.

Aquatic Lands Right of Entry License

Activities that the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) commonly authorizes under this license are for recreational, scientific, or environmental purposes. The activity cannot interfere with the use and enjoyment of the state-owned aquatic lands by others.

Aquatic Use Authorization (Aquatic Lands Lease)

Most activities taking place on state-owned aquatic lands may require a lease. Contact your District Land Manager to determine if your proposal requires other forms of authorization.

Export Certificate (For Commercially Licensed Shellfish Companies)

An export certificate is a document issued to commercially licensed shellfish companies that ship product (clams, mussels, oysters, geoducks) to Asian countries.

Fish Habitat Enhancement Projects

The applicant must meet the specified requirements stated on the permit application form.

Fish Stocking Application Permit (FinFish)

Fish Transport Application Permit (FinFish)

Fish Transport Permit

An approved Fish Transport Permit from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) is required to transport fish into and through Washington State.

Harvest Site Certificate

This certificate is required for each parcel being harvested by a licensed shellfish company. It must be ready to display whenever you are in possession of commercial quantities of molluscan shellfish (clams, oysters, mussels, scallops) that you intend to sell for human consumption. DOH continually evaluates commercial shellfish growing areas and certified harvest sites to protect the public since shellfish can carry chemicals, bacteria, viruses, and marine biotoxins.

Hydraulic Project Approval (HPA)

Work that uses, diverts, obstructs, or changes the natural flow or bed of any of the salt or fresh waters of state. Includes bed reconfiguration, all construction or other work waterward, under and over the ordinary high water line, including dry channels, and may include projects landward of the ordinary high water line (e.g., activities outside the ordinary high water line that will directly impact fish life and habitat, falling trees into streams or lakes, bridge maintenance, dike construction, etc.)

Scientific Collection Permit (SCPS)

Any trapping, netting, catch and release and handling with the exception of transitory holding of reptiles, amphibians, or invertebrates for identification, and marking or tagging; collecting lethally or non-lethally; and salvage and possession of carcasses or parts with the exception of shed antlers.

Shellfish Import Application Permit (Shellfish - Import Permit)

Shellfish Operation License

Commercially harvesting and/or processing and shipping molluscan shellfish (clams, oysters, mussels, scallops).

Shellfish Transfer Application Permit (Shellfish)

Water Recreation Facility Operating Permit

Initial application for newly proposed facilities. Renewal application when annual or seasonal expire.

Water Type Modification

A WTMF is not required. It is a tool that can be used to make water type changes based on field verification. Prior to submittal of a forest practices application/notification, forest landowners are required to determine, in the field, the type of any regulated waters as identified in the forest practices rules (WAC 222) within proposed harvest boundaries, including the area within 200 feet of the proposal. In addition, field verified stream typing is required prior to placement or replacement of stream crossing structures for road construction or road maintenance.

05-05 Compliance

Any project that is funded by state capital construction funds.

Archaeological Site Alteration and Excavation Permit

Excavating, altering, defacing, or removing archaeological objects, resources or artifacts from archaeological sites or Native Indian graves, cairns or glyptic records, or non-Indian historic cemeteries or graves.

Section 106 Review

The application for federal funding, including funding passed through a state or local agency, a federal permit, license of use of federal lands.

Bridge Permit

Construction or modification of bridges over navigable waters. "Navigable" waters is a legal determination that is not contingent on the waterway actually being navigated. Contact the Coast Guard Bridge Program to determine if a waterway is "navigable" and if the project will require a bridge permit. No other agency has the authority or expertise to make this determination.

Coastal Zone Management (CZM) Federal Consistency

Federal activity, projects requiring a federal license or permit and Federal Assistance Programs proposed within any of Washington's 15 coastal counties. (See notes.)

Discharge of Dredge or Fill Material Into Water (Department of the Army Permit (Section 404)

If you plan to conduct ground-disturbing activities in waters of the United States, including wetlands, you may need authorization from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps). A variety of activities typically require Department of the Army authorization when they occur in waters of the United States. They include, but are not limited to, placement of fill material, grading, mechanized land clearing, and redeposit of excavated/dredged material. The Corps authorizes activities by issuing individual and general permits. Under Section 404, individual permits include Standard Individual Permits, and general permits include Nationwide Permits and Regional General Permits. The Corps determines which type of permit is needed. A Department of the Army permit can include authorization under Section 10 and/or Section 404. If you have any questions about the Corps permit process, contact the Corps project manager assigned to the county where the work is proposed. The Corps strongly recommends a pre-application meeting for major projects. During a pre-application meeting you can discuss your project with the Corps and other regulatory and natural resource agencies. If you would like to set up a pre-application meeting, contact the Corps.

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) License or Exemption

Construction and operation of non-federal hydropower projects may need a license or exemption. See FERC regulations at 18 CFR Parts 4 and 5. Unless a project has a valid pre-1920 federal permit, non-federal hydroelectric projects are subject to the Commission's jurisdiction if the project:

  • Is located on navigable waters of the United States;
  • Occupies public lands or reservations of the United States;
  • Utilizes surplus water or waterpower from a federal dam; or
  • Is located on a body of water over which Congress has Commerce Clause jurisdiction, project construction occurred on or after August 26, 1935, and the project affects the interests of interstate or foreign commerce.
If you are not sure whether a potential hydropower project would require a FERC license, you may contact FERC staff or request a formal determination by filing a Declaration of Intention under Part 24 of FERC regulations (18 CFR Part 24). Projects less than 10 megawatts that would use the power potential of an existing dam may qualify for an exemption from certain parts of the FPA. Information on exemptions can be found at For more information on the FERC licensing and exemption processes, call or write the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission as identified in the links below.

National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)

NEPA applies to all major federal actions: federal projects or any project requiring a federal permit, receiving federal funding, or located on federal land. The list of NEPA categorical exclusions is determined in rules specific to each federal agency.

Private Aids to Navigation (PATON) (Non-Bridge Projects)

Installation of a fixed structure or floating object within the waters of the United States.

Section 401 Water Quality Certification

Applying for a federal permit or license to conduct any activity that might result in any discharge into waters or non-isolated wetlands or excavation in water or non-isolated wetlands (including dredge or fill material).

Work in Navigable Waters (Department of the Army (Section 10)

If you plan to conduct work in, over, or under navigable waters of the United States you must apply for authorization from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps). The Corps authorizes activities by issuing individual and general permits. Individual permits include Standard Individual Permits and Letters of Permission, and general permits include Nationwide Permits and Regional General Permits. The Corps determines which type of permit is needed. A Department of the Army permit can include authorization under Section 10 and/or Section 404. If you have questions about the Corps permit process, contact the Corps project manager assigned to the county where the work is proposed.

Cottage Food Operation Permit

Activities including the making of baked goods, some fried foods, standardized jams, jellies, preserves & fruit butters, stovetop or microwave candies that are not potentially hazardous, vinegars, and dry mixes.

Egg Handler/Dealer License

Producing, handling, contracting for, obtaining possession, controlling, or processing eggs for sale.

Export Sanitary Certificate (For Transporting Processed Foods)

Transporting processed foods into domestic and international markets.

Food Processing Plant License

Facilities that handle or process any food in any manner for sale or distribution and consumption by another party. A full list of processes and exceptions is listed at

Organic Food Processor Certification

Processing facilities that are selling, labeling, or representing processed products as "organic".

Organic Food Producer Certification - Crop and/or Livestock

Selling, labeling, or representing crops or livestock products as "organic".

Tribal Bait Harvest Site Certificate and Bait Harvest Permit

Boiler/Pressure Vessel Installation or Reinstallation Permit

Installation or reinstallation of any new or existing boiler and/or unfired pressure vessel in the state of Washington.

Commercial Weighing and Measuring Device Registration

Any business using a weighing or measuring device for commercial purposes is required to register the device(s) annually.

Construction Elevator Installation (Hoist) Permit

Installation of a temporary elevator used for construction or demolition on job sites.

Cremated Remains Disposition

Scattering, burying or otherwise disposing of cremated human remains as a business; or as an individual who is not a direct family member (see RCW 68.50.160)


Cremating human remains if your business is not associated with a licensed funeral establishment.

Electrical Class B Permit

For Class B eligible work- see WAC 296-46B-908(10). This is a less expensive alternative permit, but may only be used by licensed electrical contractors for work that is specifically allowed as Class B eligible.

Electrical Work Permit

Any electrical installation or alteration described in RCW 19.28.101 and WAC 296-46B-901.

Elevator Installation Permit (New, Renewal, and Alterations)

All new installations, renewals and alterations

Elevator Installation Variance Permit

Property owners or elevator companies may apply for a variance for items that are allowable deviation(s) from specific requirements of the Washington Administrative Code (WAC) 296-96 and other codes adopted by the elevator department where the proposed alternative method(s) maintain equivalent safety.

Equine Certificate Of Veterinary Inspection and Interstate Movement Permit

This permit is valid for multiple passages between participating states (CA, OR, ID, MT, WA) of the individual horse identified on the permit. This allows individuals to travel with their horses to rodeos, shows, trail riding, and lessons to these states over a six month period.

Equine Semen/Embryo Import Permit

Persons who want to obtain semen or embryos from out of the state to artificially inseminate their mares.

Factory Assembled Structure Permit

Alterations to Factory Assembled Structures for: Commercial Coaches, Factory Built Temporary Worker Housing Structures, Manufactured / Mobile Homes, Recreational Park Trailers, Recreational Vehicles, and Vendor / Medical Units

Feeding and Grazing Permit (Pasture to Pasture)

Any person, business or entity that moves cattle in and out of Washington to an adjoining state to graze without obtaining a health certificate or certificate of veterinary inspection must obtain a Feeding and Grazing Permit.

Household Goods Carrier Permit

Manufacturer of Gambling Equipment/Paraphernalia Special Sales Permit

Minor Work Permit

Permit for Nonprofit Organizations to Conduct Bingo at Agricultural Fair

Permit for Persons to Operate Bingo Games Only During and Upon the Site of Bona Fide Agr (Commercial Business)

Permit to Import

Any person, business or entity that imports animals or animal reproductive products, rams over 6 months of age, wild and exotic animals and stallions or semen that test positive to Equine Viral Arteritis (EVA)

Permit to Operate Radio Signal System in Designated Area

Logging activities which operate any cable logging machines.

Plant Sale Permit

It allows nonprofit organizations, conservation districts, and clubs to conduct plant sales without obtaining a license. Educational Organizations are also allowed to obtain this permit but are not subject to the same limitations.

Private Non-Profit Bus Certificate

Rental Boiler Operating Permit

Operating rental boilers in the state of Washington

Reseller Permit

See purpose of permit.

Solid Waste Carrier Certificate

Special Poultry Permit

Activities include slaughter, preparation or sale of whole, raw poultry (1000 or fewer poultry per calendar year).

Special Sale Permit

Any individual, farmer's cooperative association, livestock market, association of livestock breeders, or youth livestock organizations such as 4-H, FFA, or other junior livestock group who desires to conduct a special sale must first obtain a permit.

State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA)

Any proposal that requires a public agency action (decision) to license, fund, or undertake a project, or the proposed adoption of a policy, plan, or program can trigger environmental review under SEPA. However, there are numerous categories of projects that are exempt from SEPA. The lead agency determines if an exemption applies.

Tow Truck

You must have a registered tow truck operator (RTTO) license if your business:

  • Transports, impounds, or stores unauthorized vehicles
  • Disposes of abandoned vehicles

Exploration Reclamation Permit

Mineral exploration programs that disturb greater than 1 acre in 8 acres are required to obtain an exploration permit under the authority of RCW 78.44.

Forest Practices Approval/Notification - Eastern Washington, Class II

Forest Practices Approval/Notification - Eastern Washington, Class III

Forest Practices Approval/Notification - Eastern Washington, Class IV-General

Forest Practices Approval/Notification - Eastern Washington, Class IV-Special

Forest Practices Approval/Notification - Western Washington, Class II

Forest Practices Approval/Notification - Western Washington, Class III

Forest Practices Approval/Notification - Western Washington, Class IV-General

Forest Practices Approval/Notification - Western Washington, Class IV-Special

Forest Practices Permit

Forest Practices that may require a permit include: harvesting timber, salvaging standing and down wood, constructing forest roads, opening or expanding a rock pit on forest land for forestry use, operating in or over any typed water and applying forest chemicals with an aircraft.

Geothermal Drilling Permit

Drilling, redrilling or deepening of a geothermal well requires a permit, "Any person proposing to drill a well or redrill an abandoned well for geothermal resources shall file with the department a written application for a permit to commence such drilling or redrilling" RCW 78.60.070(1).

Oil and Gas Drilling Permit

All oil and gas drilling, re-drilling, deepening, or operations in the search and/or production of oil and gas in the state require an Oil and Gas Drilling Permit.

Surface Mining Reclamation Permit

Surface mining. A reclamation permit is required by DNR for each surface mine that:

  1. Results in more than 3 acres of disturbed ground, or
  2. Has a high-wall that is both higher than 30 feet and steeper than 45 degrees, or more than one acre of disturbance in an eight acre area that results from mineral prospecting or exploration activities.

Building Permit

Construction of permanent buildings or additions to existing facilities.

Floodplain Development Permit

Any development (see definition below) within the 100-year floodplain. Development is defined as: any man-made change to improved or unimproved real estate, including but not limited to buildings or other structures, mining, dredging, filling, grading, paving, excavation or drilling operations or storage of equipment or materials located within the area of special flood hazard.

Noise Ordinance

Local governments set maximum intruding sound level limits or adopt statewide statute.

Shoreline Conditional Use Permit

These are determined by local government and specified in their Shoreline Master Program.

Shoreline Exemption

This is determined by the local government. Substantial Development Permit Exemption: Most activities exempt from the requirement for a substantial development permit are in the SMA, RCW 90.58.030(3). Other exemptions are scattered throughout RCW 90.58, and are listed by section order below:

Shoreline Substantial Development Permit

All non-exempt developments and uses exceeding $6,416 fair market value. For private residential docks in salt water - $2,500; in fresh water - $10,000. See RCW 90.58.030(3). Fair market value is defined in WAC 173-27-030(8).

Shoreline Variance Permit

These are determined by local government and specified in their Shoreline Master Program.

Solid Waste (Handling) Permit

Operation of a solid waste facility (landfill, transfer station, recycling facility, some composting operations, etc.)

Subdivision Approval

Local governments, through ordinances, have primary authority to regulate the dividing of land for residential or other purposes.

Collective Experimental Pesticide Use Permit

This permit allows recognized research institutions, organizations, pesticide registrants, or persons licensed to conduct certain types of small-plot demonstrations and research activities on land they own or control to experiment with pesticides without having to obtain an individual permit for each experiment.

Commercial Applicator License

Applying pesticides to the lands/property of another requires the Commercial Applicator License. This is a joint company - person license. The person who makes the pesticide application decisions for the company must obtain the license.

Commercial Fertilizer Registration

No person may distribute in this state a commercial fertilizer until it has been registered with the Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA) by the producer, importer or packager of that product. An additional registration requirement for waste-derived fertilizers was added to the fertilizer law in 1998. Waste-derived and micronutrient fertilizers must go through a Department of Ecology review before being registered by WSDA.

Commercial Operator License

Applying pesticides to the land or property of another while employed by a Commercial Applicator company.

Experimental Pesticides Use Permit - Aquatic Sites

This permit is required for all experimental projects involving the application of pesticides that are not registered for use in aquatic environments, and for all experiments involving uses not allowed by the pesticide label.

Experimental Pesticides Use Permit - Terrestrial Sites

This permit is required for all experimental projects involving the application of pesticides on terrestrial sites that are not registered and for all experiments involving uses not allowed by the pesticide label.

Private Applicator License

Applying or supervising the use of restricted use pesticides on your own or your employer's property for the purpose of producing an agricultural commodity.

Private Commercial Applicator License

Application of restricted use pesticides for a purpose other than the production of an agricultural commodity.

Public Operator License

Applying restricted use pesticides or any pesticide through power equipment as part of one's employment with a governmental agency. This license is not required of governmental research personnel unless applying restricted use pesticides.

Amusement Ride or Structure Operating Permit

Any amusement ride as defined in RCW 67.42.010 and WAC 296-403A-100.

Banquet Permit

For events at a public place, but closed to the general public, where alcohol is given away free of charge.

Class 1 - Alcohol Permit

Required for staff in the medical field to prescribe and use alcohol for uses up to but not limited to prescribing to patients.

Class 10 - International Trade Show Permit (Trade Show Permit)

For specific trade shows held by a government entity that want to include alcohol. Call if unsure please.

Class 11 - Bed & Breakfast Permit (B&B Permit)

Supplying alcohol for guests at a lodging location considered a Bed and Breakfast facility.

Class 15 - Allowing students between 18-20 to taste but not consume alcohol ("Sip and Spit Permit")

For any accredited culinary course dealing with alcohol that has students under 21, but at least 18 years of age tasting but not swallowing alcohol.

Class 16 - Spa/Salon Permit

Serving alcohol at a salon or spa

Class 17 - Nonprofit private wine auction permit

To auction wine privately

Class 18 (Special Permit for Wineries)

Winery events not open to the general public or advertised that take place away from the winery.

Class 19 (Special Permit for Distilleries)

Distillery events not open to the general public or advertised that take place away from the distillery.

Class 2 - Alcohol Permit

Manufacturing or mechanical businesses. Making your own tinctures, soaps and shampoos.

Class 20 - Permit for Breweries (Special Permit for Distilleries)

Brewery events not open to the general public or advertised that take place away from the brewery.

Class 4 - Serve Employee & Guest

To allow alcohol on premises of businesses not licensed under RCW 66.24. Not all businesses qualify, must not be open to the public.

Class 5 - Alcohol Permit

Used to manufacture liquor and other food products containing alcohol.

Class 6 - Alcohol Permit

Drug store or physician to purchase alcohol for a patient on the prescription of a doctor.

Class 8 - Trade Show permits

A manufacturer donating liquor for a trade show made up of licensees of the board for the purpose of potential buyers.

Class 9 - Trade Show Permit/Donation for Delegates

A manufacturer donating liquor for a reception or meal at a trade show made up of licensees of the board.

Commercial Use Permit

Generally, a permit is required for any activity on state park land where a private business charges for their service. Examples are: Guided hikes, boat tours, bicycle races, day camps, charter bus stops, paddle board lessons, river rafting, rock climbing, photography instruction, or kayak adventures.

Filming and Photography Permit

Commercial filming, professional still photography, and educational filming and photography.

Punch Board / Pull-Tab Service Business Permit

Raffle Permit

For a nonprofit to raffle alcohol to its members.

Recreational Gaming Activity Permit (Commercial Business)

Recreational Gaming Activity Permit (Nonprofit)

Recreational Water Contact Facility Construction Permit

Recreational Water Contact Facility Operating Permit

Water Recreation Facility Construction Permit

For construction or remodel projects on water recreation facilities.

Access Connection Permit

It is required to have an approved permit prior to constructing an access connection to a state highway.

Auto Transportation and Bus Certificate

Building Move Permit

This permit allows a carrier a one time movement of a building a distance of less than 5 miles.

Canadian Weights for SR 9 Heavy Haul Corridor

This permit allows drivers to haul reducible loads with Canadian weights from the Canadian border to Sumas, Washington. Carriers applying for this permit must be licensed to their maximum in Washington State.

Canadian Weights US 97 Heavy Haul Corridor

This permit allows drivers to haul reducible loads with Canadian weights from the Canadian border to Oroville, Washington. Carriers applying for this permit must be licensed to their maximum in Washington State.

Cell Tower Permit - Type F Access - Wireless Communication Site Access Permit

It is required to have an approved permit prior to constructing an access connection to a state highway for the purpose of serving a wireless communication site.

Charter and Excursion Bus Certificate

Commercial Ferry Certificate

Common Carrier Permit

Double Trailer Monthly or Annual

Double trailer legal length is 61 feet. This permit allows up to 68 feet measured from front of the first trailer or load to the end of the last trailer or load whichever is longer. The load may be divisible or non-divisible.

Empty Apple Bins and Hay Bales Permit

The permit allows the hauling of empty apple bins up to 15 feet high. This permit can be used in conjunction with the double trailer permit. These permits are not exempt from restrictions. Oversize signs are required. Routes do not guarantee height clearance.

Farm Implement Permit

The permit allows a farmer or farm implement dealer to obtain a permit (per quarter or annual) for implements (any device that directly affects the production of agricultural products) over 16 feet to under 20 feet wide, less than 16 feet high, less than 65,000 pounds, and having a combined length not to exceed 70 feet. The permit requires a letter of approval by Commercial Vehicle Services from the farmer or implement dealer, which allows the permit to be issued for specific counties from any WSDOT permit office. For-hire carriers transporting farm implements do not qualify for this permit type. It is highly recommended that the referenced administrative code be reviewed due to the number of unique aspects to this permit type.

Freight Broker Certificate

Log Tolerance Permit

The purpose of the permit is to allow the combination to haul short logs and receive a variance from the legal weight chart. Is only valid for 3 axle trucks and 2 axle pole trailer combinations and is for hauling of unprocessed logs only.

Manufactured Housing Permit Monthly or Annual

Maximum dimensions allowed: 15 feet wide (14 foot box with 12 inch eaves); 15 feet high; and trailer length of 75 feet including tongue

Monthly Annual Fixed Load (3 or 4 axle)

This permit is an overweight permit for a vehicle with a weight that does not change, such as cranes, cement pumping trucks, and well drilling trucks. Fixed loads with 3 axles may be permitted up to 65,000 lbs. and fixed loads with 4 axles may be permitted up to 86,000 lbs. with the appropriate wheelbase and tire size. An axle spacing report is required to issue a fixed load permit.

Monthly or Annual Non-Divisible Permit

This permit allows a vehicle to haul a non-divisible load up to 14 feet wide, 15 feet high, and 125 feet in load length.

Oversize Overweight Load Permit

This permit is an overweight permit for a vehicle with an oversize and or overweight non-divisible load. To produce the Axle Spacing Report for Overweight Permits use:, or call 360-704-6340 for assistance.

Oversize Overweight Super Load Permit

As the title implies, this is a overweight or oversized permit for superloads, loads that exceed 200,000 pounds or exceed 16 feet in height or width. In order to ensure safety to the public, the highways systems and carriers, these permits require application at least 30 days prior to the movement date for overweight superloads and at least 7 days prior for overheight superloads.

Sealed Container for SR 509 Heavy Haul Corridor

The special permit allows vehicles to operate in the heavy haul industrial corridor at the Port of Tacoma to carry weight in excess of weight established in RCW 46.44.041. However the excess weight on a single axle (22,000), tandem axle (43,000) or any axle group must not exceed that allowed by RCW 46.44.091 (1) and (2), weight per tire must not exceed 600 pounds per inch weight of tire, and gross vehicle weight must not exceed 105,500 pounds. The Heavy Haul Corridor extends on SR 509 between milepost .25 in the vicinity of East "D" Street and milepost 5.7 in the vicinity of Norpoint Way NE.

Single Trailer Permit Monthly or Annual

This permit allows for semi-trailer/divisible loads up to 56 ft. (3 ft. longer then the legal single semi-trailer/load length of 53 ft.), measured from front of trailer or load to the rear of the trailer or load whichever is longer.

Taxi (Vehicle for Hire)

Any business that transports passengers for a fee must have a For Hire License, including:

  • Taxicabs, which are motor vehicles that transport people for a fee and don’t have a fixed route or fixed starting and ending points.
  • Cabulances that transport riders who are confined to a wheelchair or otherwise physically restricted so they can’t be safely transported by public mass transportation, taxicabs, or automobiles.
  • Any other vehicles used for transporting passengers for payment.

Temporary Additional Tonnage

The permit is used to temporarily increase the licensed weight of a vehicle, but not more than legal capacity. Before purchasing temporary addition tonnage the vehicle must be licensed to at least 40,000 pounds for solo units and 80,000 pounds for combinations. A Temporary License Permit (Trip Permit) may be used to increase licensed weight to the required 40,000 or 80,000 pounds to qualify for the temporary Additional Tonnage Permit (additional tonnage may not be sold for periods greater than the period covered by the Trip Permits). Minimum permit duration 5 days.

Temporary Fuel Use Permit

If you don't pay fuel tax under the International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA) and need to travel in Washington and are driving a diesel or propane powered commercial vehicle with; 2 axles and a gross vehicle weight (GVW) over 26,000 lbs., 3 or more axles regardless of weight, or a combination of vehicles with a combined GVW over 26,000, you must purchase a Special Fuel Permit to allow operation of your vehicle in Washington.

Temporary License Permit

Temporary License Permits (also known as Trip Permits) allow vehicle owners to operate their unlicensed vehicles on public roadways. A vehicle is considered unlicensed if: the vehicle tabs are expired or the current gross weight isn't enough for the load being carried. These permits cannot be used in lieu of tonnage for a vehicle currently licensed in Washington but can be used to increase current tonnage. Permits are valid 3 consecutive days and no more than 3 permits can be issued for any 1 vehicle within a 30-day period.

Tow Truck Class B and C

The special permit issued specifically to tow trucks is an annual permit from the date of purchase. The permit is valid for emergent and non-emergent moves. Annual Tow Truck permits may be issued to Class B and Class C tow trucks, including Class E tow trucks with either a Class B or Class C rating. Class A or D tow trucks are not eligible for Annual Tow Truck permits.

Certification of Inspectors of Solid Waste Incinerators and Landfill Facilities

Working for a public agency as a solid waste incinerator or landfill facility inspector.

Certification of Operators of Solid Waste Incinerators and Landfill Facilities

Working as the operator in charge of a solid waste incinerator or landfill facility.

Cleaning up a contaminated site under the model toxics control act (Contaminated Site Cleanup)

If a person decides to investigate or clean up a site, they must comply with the site testing and cleanup actions requirements in the MTCA Cleanup Regulation (WAC 173-340). No permit is required under MTCA to investigate or cleanup a site. However, people may need to obtain other state or local permits for these activities.

Dangerous Waste Treatment Storage and Disposal Facility - Permit Modification

Any modification or change to your existing Dangerous Waste Permit. Examples are:

  • A change in facility ownership.
  • Facility expansion or alteration.
  • A change in procedures, process or contact information.
  • Change in information.
  • New regulation.
  • Compliance schedule.

Dangerous Waste Treatment Storage Disposal Facility - New Permit

The storing, treating and/or disposing of dangerous wastes in certain types of facilities.

Dangerous Waste Treatment Storage Disposal Facility - Permit Renewal

The storing, treating and/or disposing of dangerous wastes in certain types of facilities.

General Permit for Biosolids Management

This permit covers land application of biosolids and other related processes and aspects of operations related to biosolids.

Reporting Requirement for a Spill or Release of a Hazardous Substance

Spilling or releasing oil or a hazardous substance.

Reporting Requirements for Contaminated Sites and Releases under MTCA

In general, all activities that release hazardous substances to the environment must comply with the MTCA reporting requirement. However, the MTCA Cleanup Regulation (Chapter 173-340 WAC) includes several exemptions from the notification requirement (See WAC 173-340-300(2). If a person decides to investigate or clean up a site, they must comply with the site testing and cleanup actions requirements in the MTCA Cleanup Regulation. No permit is required under MTCA to investigate or cleanup a site. However, people may need to obtain other state or local permits for these activities.

Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) Site Identification Number (RCRA Site ID)

You need a RCRA Site ID Number if you generate, transport, transfer, recycle, treat, store, or dispose of regulated amounts of dangerous waste.

Solid Waste Handling Permit Exemption for Anaerobic Digesters

ADs that accept up to 30% (by volume) of off-farm pre-consumer food waste as digester feedstock (to be mixed with dairy manure) must apply for this permit exemption unless they are applying for the solid waste handling permit. ADs in compliance with the exempt conditions are limited in how they may use digestate solids and liquids. Use is allowed on the dairy as described in their updated nutrient management plan. The updated nutrient management plan must account for the added nutrients from the off-farm pre-consumer food waste. Solids may be transferred to a composting operation or other uses if compost testing standards are met. The exemption conditions are detailed in the law RCW 70.95.330 and WAC 173-350-250.

Underground Storage Tank Facility Compliance Tag/Permit

Owning and/or operating an underground storage tank (UST).

Underground Storage Tank Notification Requirements (UST Notification)

Installing or removing an underground storage tank. Certain tanks are exempt from the 30-Day Notice form; to verify whether your tank is exempt please check the 30-Day Notice form.

Voluntary Cleanup Program (VCP)

Requesting consultative services from Ecology on independent remedial actions planned or completed at a hazardous waste site.

Waste Tire Carrier License

Hauling waste tires and/or owning or operating a waste tire storage site.

Waste Tire Storage Site Owner License

Owning or operating a waste tire storage site.

Aquatic Mosquito Control Permit - NPDES General Permit

Mosquito control activities that result in a discharge of larvicides or indirect discharge of adulticides to waters of the state of Washington require coverage under this permit. Government entities and Mosquito Control Districts may hold one permit coverage that covers their entire jurisdiction. Commercial applicators must get a separate coverage for each waterbody or group that they are hired by. The permit is a combined National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) and State Waste Discharge General Permit. It covers the control of mosquitoes and conditions the use of a specific list of adulticides and larvicides permitted for discharge to surface waters of the state of Washington. To find out the specific activities that trigger this permit, go to the Aquatic Mosquito Control General Permit website at

Aquatic Plant and Algae Management Permit - NPDES

Businesses that apply herbicides, algaecides, dyes, biological water clarifiers, adjuvants, and nutrient inactivation products into and around fresh water for the following purposes must have coverage under this permit:

  • Controlling or eradicating state listed noxious or quarantine weeds.
  • Controlling native nuisance plants and algae.
  • Nutrient inactivation (e.g. phosphorus).
This permit covers in-water application (lakes, ponds, rivers, streams, etc) of pesticides in addition to incidental discharge of pesticides to water resulting from treatment of emergent plants, wetlands, roadsides, and ditchbanks. To find out the specific activities that trigger this permit, go to the Aquatic Plant and Algae Management Permit website and click on "Fact Sheet"

Boatyard General Permit - NPDES

Operating a boatyard with a discharge of pressure wash water to a sanitary sewer or discharge of stormwater to surface or ground waters require coverage under this permit. A boatyard is a commercial business engaged in the construction, repair and maintenance of small vessels, 85% of which are 65 feet or less in length, or revenues from which constitute more than 85% of gross receipts.
Services typically provided by boatyards include, but are not limited to:

  • Repair and replacement of engine and propulsion systems, e.g., shafts, propellers, and rudders
  • Repair and replacement of the fuel and lubrication systems
  • Repair and replacement of marine sanitation devices (MSDs)
  • Hull repair, joinery, welding, and grinding
  • Bottom and topside painting and coating
  • Topside cleaning
  • Pressure washing
  • Buffing and waxing
  • Bilge cleaning
  • Other activities necessary to maintain a vessel

For more information about what activities do and do not require a permit, visit the Boatyard General Permit More Information webpage:

Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation General Permit - Expired: See comments/notes

Operating a concentrated animal feeding operation that discharges or proposes to discharge to State or Federal Waters (surface or ground).

Construction Stormwater General Permit - NPDES

Construction site operators are required to be covered by a Construction Stormwater General Permit if they are engaged in clearing, grading, and excavating activities that disturb one or more acres and discharge stormwater to surface waters of the state. The permit is also required if clearing, grading or excavating activities disturb an area smaller than 1 acre if it is part of a "larger common plan of development or sale" that will disturb 1 acre or more and discharge stormwater to surface waters of the state or a conveyance system that drains to surface waters of the state. "Surface waters of the state" are broadly defined by state law and includes storm drains, ditches, wetlands, creeks, rivers, ponds, lakes and marine waters to obtain permit coverage. In addition to these permit triggers, Ecology reserves the right to require permit coverage at a construction site of any size, if Ecology believes that the site may be a significant contributor of pollutants to waters of the State of Washington or reasonably expects the site to cause a violation of water quality standards. For more information, please go to the construction stormwater homepage.

Drinking Water Operating Permit

Operating a public water system that has 15 or more services or serves more than 25 people a day for more than 60 days a year.

Fresh Fruit Packing General Permit - NPDES

Every new or existing fresh fruit packing facility which receives, packs, stores and/or ships either hard or soft fruit and discharges wastewater, including non-contact cooling water, needs coverage under either this general permit or an individual permit. Facilities that only discharge domestic wastewater or process water to a delegated pretreatment Publicly Owned Treatment Works (POTW) do not need coverage under this general permit. Any fruit packing facility which is located on the Colville Reservation may apply for coverage for only non-surface water discharges under this general permit. Discharges to surface water on the Colville Reservation are under EPA jurisdiction. The general permit does not excuse the permittee from complying with any applicable Federal, State, or local statutes, ordinances, regulations or permits.

General Permit Coverage - NPDES

Ecology issues general permits for point source discharges of pollutants into surface waters that belong to a category of discharger for which Ecology has developed a general NPDES permit.

Individual Permit - NPDES

Any discharge of wastewater and/or stormwater into surface waters through a conveyance system for which Ecology has not developed a general permit requires an individual NPDES permit.

Industrial Stormwater General Permit Coverage - NPDES

Industrial Facilities: Public or private operation of an industrial facility with a stormwater discharge to surface waters or a storm sewer.

Irrigation System Aquatic Weed Control General Permit - NPDES

Irrigation systems that use aquatic herbicides in irrigation canals where water flows to a point of compliance are required to have coverage under this general permit. To find out the specific activities that trigger this permit, go to the Irrigation System Aquatic Weed Control General Permit website and click on "Fact Sheet."

Laboratory Accreditation (Lab Accreditation)

Submittal of data from analysis of environmental, wastewater or drinking water samples.

Municipal Stormwater General Permit - NPDES

Generally this permit is required of all municipalities within U.S. Census Bureau-defined urban areas and for designated cities with a population over 10,000 located outside of urban areas. Urbanized areas are population centers with greater than 50,000 people and densities of at least 1,000 people per square mile, with surrounding areas having densities of at least 500 people per square mile. The urbanized areas in this permit are based on the 2000 population census. The Washington State Department of Transportation is also required to have coverage within permitted municipalities. Other public entities (such as ports, prison complexes, parks and drainage districts, and universities) that own or operate a storm sewer system and are located within a permitted municipality may require coverage. Ecology uses the term Secondary Permittees to refer to these entities. The MS4s of Secondary Permittees are publicly owned or operated and serve more than 1,000 people on an average day. For ports, schools, colleges and universities the population figures include commuters as well as residents.

On Site Sewage System, Large, Operating Permit (From 3,500 to 100,000 gallons per day)

An operating permit is needed for installation and operation of LOSS to treat residential-strength sewage through septic tanks or other treatment processes and dispersal through drainfields when there is a peak daily flow, at any common point, between 3,500 and 100,000 gallons per day.

On-Site Sewage Disposal Permit (More than 100,000 gallons per day)

Large On-site Sewage Systems with any of the following characteristics require coverage under this permit:

  • A design flow exceeding 100,000 gallons per day;
  • Systems whose discharge includes industrial/commercial process wastewater or stormwater;
  • Systems that discharge to the land surface (such as wetlands or infiltration lagoons without a drainfield); or
  • Systems that discharge to surface water (including those that discharge to ground, where groundwater is in hydraulic continuity with surface water).

On-Site Sewage System Permit (Less than 3,500 gallons per day)

A permit or approval is needed before the installation, repair, modification, connection to, or expansion of an on-site sewage system with a peak daily flow of less than 3,500 gallons of residential-strength sewage.

Reclaimed Water Permit

Reclaimed Water Permits regulate the production, distribution, and use of reclaimed water generated according to provisions of the State Reclaimed Water Use Act. Proposed generators of reclaimed water must obtain a Permit prior to the distribution and use of the water.

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

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.

Sand & Gravel General Permit for Portable Facilities - NPDES

Portable rock crushing operations, concrete batch plants, and asphalt batch plants that have a discharge of process wastewater, stormwater, or mine dewatering water. The Department of Ecology (Ecology) requires a permit whenever a portable facility:

  • Operates at a location that does not have permit coverage for the activity the portable will be performing.
  • Operates at a location that does not have active operating status.
  • Produces crushed rock or washed gravel for forest management if a discernable, confined, and discrete conveyance discharges pollutants to surface waters of the state.

State Wastewater Discharge Permit

State Wastewater Discharge Permit – Industrial to Ground Water

State Wastewater Discharge Permit – Industrial to Publicly-Owned Works (POTW)

Industrial facilities that discharge wastewater to privately or publicly-owned wastewater treatment plants must obtain a state waste discharge permit unless it has obtained a pretreatment discharge permit issued by a delegated municipality.

Underground Injection Control Well Registration

Applicants who have installed or are planning to install an Underground Injection Control (UIC) well are required to register and the well receive rule authorization before the well is used. New wells need to be registered before use. Existing UIC wells that have not been registered with Ecology need to register as well (if on Tribal land register with EPA Region 10).

Upland Fin-Fish Hatching and Rearing General Permit - NPDES

Wastewater Treatment Plant Operator Certification

Wastewater operator certification is required for (1) the operator in responsible charge of a domestic wastewater treatment plant and (2) the lead operator of each shift at a domestic wastewater treatment plant.

Water System Construction and Operation Approval

Providing water through pipes or other conveyances to one or more commercial connections or two or more residential service connections where people have access to use the water.

Water Treatment Plants General Permit - NPDES Waste Discharge

All WTPs that discharge backwash effluent to surface water and that meet all of the following conditions must obtain coverage:

  • Produce potable water or "industrial" water (primary treatment/settled water) where the treatment and distribution of water is the primary function of the facility.

  • Have an actual production rate equal to or greater than 35,000 gallons per day of treated product water (finished water) as determined on an average monthly basis. "Actual production rate" is the amount of finished water that a treatment facility actually produces on any given day. To calculate the value of the actual production rate on an average monthly basis, add the value of each daily production rate during a calendar month, and divide the sum by the total number of days in the month. The Washington State Department of Ecology reserves the right to determine that permit coverage is needed for facilities with actual production rates less than 35,000 gallons per day in order to protect water quality.

  • The wastewater discharge is from water treatment filtration processes (filter backwash, sedimentation/pre-sedimentation basin washdown, sedimentation/clarification, or filter-to-waste).

  • The water treatment works are not part of a larger, permitted facility, such as a pulp and paper mill.

Waterworks Operator Certification

Operating a waterworks, or a portion of waterworks, including any treatment facilities or distribution systems.

Dam Construction Permit

Constructing, modifying, or repairing any dam or controlling works for storage of 10 or more acre-feet of water, waste, or mine tailings.

Notice of Intent to Construct or Decommission a Well

Drilling activities that include:

  • Deepening.
  • Alteration.
  • Reconstruction.
  • Decommissioning of wells.

Reservoir Permit

Constructing a barrier across a stream, channel, or water course if the barrier will create a reservoir and construction of an off-stream impoundment exceeding the size limits given above. If the impoundment is to be constructed in the stream channel, a Hydraulic Project Approval may be required by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife. If the impoundment is to be constructed off- stream and filled from a stream, then a permit for water diversion to fill the impoundment will be required.

Water Right Change

To change the place of use, point of diversion or withdrawal, add additional points of diversions or withdrawals, or change the purpose of use of an existing water right.

Water Right, New

To withdraw water and put it to beneficial use except those uses exempted from permitting under RCW 90.44.050 (as listed above).

Well Construction and Operator's License

A drilling license is required for all drilling activities for all types of wells including:

  • Water wells.
  • Monitoring wells.
  • Geotech soil borings.
  • Environmental investigations wells.
  • Geothermal heat pump borings.
  • Dewatering systems.

Wetland Mitigation Bank Certification

Establishment and operation of a wetland mitigation bank. A wetland mitigation bank is a site where wetlands are restored, created, enhanced, or preserved.


Working in or near wetlands, areas that are transitional between open water and uplands or that may be periodically inundated or saturated.

Please take time to read the site disclaimer.   If you are new to Washington State regulations, we suggest you start at the Project Questionnaire which will guide you to permits you may need based on an interview process.

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