Critical Area Permitting - General Permits

General Permits were established to expedite the permit review process for permit applications that meet regulatory requirements, with minimal environmental impact. The general permit allows for individuals requesting an activity that meets all the regulatory requirements for such construction, without any additional considerations, an expedited review and thus a more rapid turn-around for construction.

General Permits for activities in the tideland critical areas:

  • GP-94-001: Special Events
  • GP-96-001: Directional boring for utilities
  • GP-00-02: Mariculture
  • GP-84-264: Soil Borings
  • GP-03-001: Docks - authorizes the following additions to existing, grandfathered, or previously permitted private docks, both single and joint use: catwalks 3’ wide to existing boatlifts, roofs on existing pierheads, handrails, utilities, benches, storage boxes, sinks, and mooring piles. 
  • GP-2022-SWI (Available to State Agencies, County Governments and Local Municipalities only): authorizes activities for the re-establishment, improvement or maintenance of existing maintained and non-maintained public stormwater conveyance systems

How to Apply

  1. Please visit ePermitting to apply online.
  2. You must pay a non-refundable administrative application fee. The fee is $100 for the dock GP.  This fee can be paid through ePermitting or should be paid by check made payable to DHEC OCRM and submitted with the application.
  3. You must notify adjacent property owners within 100 feet of the subject property and the local governing body by certified mail of the proposed project (For the dock general permit, the applicant must notify all adjacent property owners as described in the critical area regulations). The original certified mail receipts must be submitted to OCRM with the General Permit application package.
  4. You must run a public notice in a newspaper published in the county where the proposed activity is taking place. Proof of publication (notarized affidavit from the newspaper with notice attached) must be forwarded to OCRM before processing can be completed on the application. It is advised that both notice periods on the certified mailing and the newspaper notice be run at the time the application is submitted to OCRM to ensure an efficient review. The permit cannot be issued until the comment period has expired.
  5. Computer-generated drawings depicting the location and activity of any of the activities under any general permit must be submitted. Drawings must depict all relevant information needed for OCRM to act accordingly as directed by current regulations. 
  6. The applicant must receive a Construction Placard from OCRM upon issuance of the General Permit before work can commence. 
  7. The work must be performed within one year of permit issuance or authorization is void. 
  8. All special conditions of the individual authorization for General Permit(s) must be complied with. The applicant should ensure all required information has been furnished. The permit will not be issued until all provisions have been fulfilled. The applicant’s signature on the information page denotes acceptance and compliance with all permit provisions. 


Ocean & Coastal Resource Management