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Municipal Roads General Permit

This new general permit is intended to achieve significant reductions in stormwater-related erosion from municipal roads, both paved and unpaved. Municipalities will implement a customized, multi-year plan to stabilize their road drainage system. The plan will include activities for bringing road drainage systems up to basic maintenance standards and additional corrective measures to reduce erosion to meet water quality standards.

As a first step municipalities will identify the sections of their road networks that are connected to surface waters through ditches, culverts or other drainage structures. Connected roads present substantially greater risks to water quality. The second step will involve inventorying the connected portions of their road network to determine if the road and drainage systems meet the new standards. Standards will be consistent with Town Road and Bridge Standards, and will likely include measures such as:

  • Ditch Slopes greater than 5% to be stone-lined or have stone check-dams.
  • Ditches: “U-shaped” and disconnected from surface waters where possible.
  • Upgrading road drainage culverts and installing outlet stabilization and/or headers where erosion is present.
  • Soils exposed by maintenance would be seeded and mulched or otherwise stabilized.

Municipalities will then develop and implement a long-term plan to bring all sections of connected roads up to standards.

The process for developing and obtaining the permits is as follows:

  • Fall & Winter 2015: Begin outreach to municipalities, RPCs, NRCDs and VTrans districts.
  • Spring 2016: Begin stakeholder process to develop permit and standards.
  • Summer 2016: Continue stakeholder process.
  • Fall & Winter 2016: Develop draft General Permit.
  • Fall & Winter 2017: Issue Final General Permit.

For more information on the program, go to: DEC Municipal Roads Program or contact Jim Ryan at (802) 490-6140 or via email at jim.ryan@vermont.gov.