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Grading Permits

When is a Grading Permit Required?

The Engineering and Surveying Division issues Grading Permits and investigates grading and drainage complaints. Grading is subject to Placer County Code, Chapter 15, "Grading, Erosion and Sediment Control Ordinance," which addresses when a permit is required, and when grading is exempt from permit requirements.

The most common activities requiring a Grading Permit include the following:

  • Fill or excavation greater than 250 cubic yards
  • Cuts or fills exceeding 4 feet in depth
  • Structural retaining walls exceeding 4 feet in total height, as measured from bottom of footing to the top of the wall and/or supporting a surcharge
  • Soil or vegetation disturbances exceeding 10,000 square feet
  • Grading within or adjacent to a drainage course or wetland
  • Grading within a floodplain

The preceding list is not exhaustive, so please refer to the full text of the ordinance language for further information. Also note that different ordinance requirements apply to grading activities east of Donner Summit, and more particularly within the Tahoe basin. Grading permits are required for fill or excavation of 3 cubic yards or more.