Permitting FAQ: What is a permit and how do I get one?
Permits range from the simple to the complex, but they all have one thing in common: a permit is permission from the government to do an otherwise illegal action. For the government, permits help regulate the actions of private individuals by requiring the applicant to prove compliance with approval criteria and conditions of approval. Conditions of approval are generally actions that the permittee must either avoid or perform, assuming the government grants them a permit.
Thus for the would-be permittee, there are three important things to do:
1. Before beginning any project thoroughly understand what permits will be required.
2. After figuring out which permits are required, analyze whether it is feasible to martial evidence and the law in a way that will satisfy all of the approval criteria for the permits; and
3. Assuming the permits are approved, project what conditions are likely and decide whether the project will continue to be viable under those conditions.
A potential applicant must prepare thoroughly before entering the permitting process. That will expedite the process and allow the applicant to respond to inevitable surprises along the way.