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Public comments sought on re-issuance of wetland and waterway general permit for utility projects

Published by Central Office May 1, 2018

Contact(s): Ben Callan, 608-266-3524

MADISON -- The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources seeks public comment on a proposed update of a previously issued general permit for utility projects impacting wetlands and waterways. The department will hold an informational public hearing on May 10, 2018 from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in Room G09 at the Natural Resources State Office Building located at 101 S. Webster Street in Madison.

The proposed updated general permit provides a streamlined process for those routine utility projects that result in minor impacts to waterways and wetlands. The updates to the permit address specific activities that utilities must perform when constructing and maintaining their facilities.

"Over the last five-year permit period, the DNR has made note of improvements that could be incorporated into the permitting process that will allow straightforward utility projects to proceed while continuing to minimize environmental impacts.," says Ben Callan, chief of the Integration Services Section of the DNR Environmental Analysis and Sustainability Program.

The general permit includes eligibility criteria and conditions that must be met to qualify for the permit, ensuring minimal environmental impacts. Once re-issued, the permit is valid for 5 years. Projects that do not meet the general permit standards and conditions will continue to require an individual permit, which requires a more comprehensive environmental review.

The department does not anticipate this general permit re-issuance to result in significant effects on the environment. Interested stakeholders were involved in the development and revision of this permit.

To view a copy of the draft general permit, visit the DNR website,, and click on the link for "Public input and meetings," and then "Energy and utility regulations and policies." The DNR will accept public comments through May 29, 2018 via email to or via U. S. mail to Ben Callan, DNR-ES/7, P.O. Box 7921, Madison, WI 53707-7921. For more information, please contact Callan at 608-266-3524 or

Last Revised: Tuesday, May 01, 2018

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