Fill & Grading Permits

Fill and grading permits are applied for through the Engineering Department.  Please contact the City Engineer with any questions.

Fill & Grading Permit Application

Stormwater Plan Review Inspection Form

South St. Paul City Code Requirements:

Sec. 110-19. - Definitions.

The following words, terms and phrases, when used in this article, shall have the meanings ascribed to them in this section, except where the context clearly indicates a different meaning:

  • Grading means the movement of sand, dirt, gravel, rock, clay or similar earth material within a given site.
  • Land excavation means the removal of sand, dirt, gravel, rock, clay or similar earth material or unsuitable foundation material from the land.
  • Land filling means the deposit of sand, dirt, gravel, rock, clay or similar earth material so as to raise existing surface grades.

Sec. 110-20. - Permit required.

Except as provided in section 110-21, it is unlawful for any person to engage in land excavation, land filling or grading within the city without first obtaining a permit as provided in this article.

Sec. 110-21. - Permit exceptions.

A land excavation, land filling or grading permit granted by the council or the city engineer is not required for any of the following activities:

  1. Any land excavation, land filling, or grading for the purpose of foundation, cellar or basement of some immediately pending superstructure to be erected, built or placed thereon contemporaneously with or immediately following such excavation, removal or storage, provided that a building permit has been issued for the superstructure.
  2. Land excavation, land filling or grading by the state, county or city authorities in connection with the construction, maintenance or repair of roads, highways, streets, or alleys, or the installation, repair or maintenance of storm sewer, sanitary sewer or water facilities within the right-of-way of the road, highway, street or alley, or the installation, repair or maintenance of gas or electric facilities by a public utility entity within the right-of-way of the road, highway, street or alley.
  3. Curb-cuts, utility hookups, or street openings for which another permit is required from the city. Where another permit is not required or obtained, an excavation permit shall be required.
  4. Excavation or installation of public utilities upon platted property within two years after an approved plat has been filed with the county recorder or registrar of titles of the county. Where a plat is pending or more than two years have elapsed since the filing of a plat, an excavation permit shall be required.
  5. Land excavation, land filling or grading when all of the following conditions are met:
    1. a.The total amount of material does not exceed 100 cubic yards and no demolition debris is used;
    2. b.The material is for finished grade or finished landscaping purposes or for gardening;
    3. c.Existing drainage and ponding patterns are not significantly altered so as to adversely affect adjoining land; and
    4. d.The resultant grade and slopes at the property line are in substantial conformity to the surrounding natural topography, are set so as to minimize erosion, and provide for sufficient drainage so that both natural water and stormwater enter and leave the property at the original or natural drainage points.
  6. Land excavating, land filling, or grading for agricultural purposes.
  7. Land excavation, land filling or grading for any development for which a conditional use permit has been approved and granted by the city council and a final grading plan approved as a part thereof.

Sec. 110-22. - Permit application.

Application for land excavation, land filling, and grading permits shall be made in writing on forms supplied by the city and shall be submitted to the city engineer for processing. The following information and exhibits shall be submitted with the completed application:

  1. A map or plan of the proposed excavation or fill area and an area 50 feet around the fill area showing existing and proposed elevations at two-foot contours, and showing any existing buildings within such area;
  2. The correct legal description of the premises;
  3. The name and address of the applicant and owner of the land;
  4. The purpose of the removal, storage, excavation or filling;
  5. The estimated time required to complete the work;
  6. The highways, streets or other public roadways within the city upon or along which the material shall be transported;
  7. The method and schedule for restoration and measures to control erosion and measures to control material tracking on public streets during and after the work;
  8. The method of controlling dust; and
  9. The hours of operation.

Sec. 110-23. - Permits issued by city engineer.

The city engineer is authorized to approve and issue a land excavation, land filling or grading permit when all of the following conditions exist:

  1. The total amount of material exceeds 100 cubic yards but does not exceed 1,000 cubic yards;
  2. The total scope of work is to be completed within one year; and
  3. The applicant meets the standards and requirements set forth in sections 110-22 and 110-28.

Sec. 110-24. - Permits issued by city council.

All land excavation, land filling and grading permit applications that do not meet the criteria set forth in section 110-23 must be granted by the city council.

Sec. 110-25. - Expiration of permits.

All permits, including renewals, shall expire on December 31 of the year in which issued.

Sec. 110-26. - Renewal of permits.

A permit issued by the city engineer shall only be allowed to be renewed once. City council issued permits may be renewed by the city council upon request of the applicant. All renewals will be subject to the conditions and plans of the initial application unless amendments are specifically requested by the applicant and approved by the city council. A permit is not automatically renewed by the city. The applicant must make a formal request in writing for the renewal of a permit.

Sec. 110-27. - Permit fees.

The applicant shall pay to the city the annual permit fee established by the council.

Sec. 110-28. - Special conditions for all permits.

All land excavation, land filling and grading permits shall be subject to the following conditions, in addition to any other conditions that may be made as part of the permit at time of issuance or renewal:

  1. No fill, excavation, or grading materials shall be placed so as to be detrimental to public facilities such as water mains, sewer mains, and public streets or alleys.
  2. The permittee shall protect all public facilities, such as water mains, storm sewers, sanitary sewers, and streets. Damage to these facilities by the permittee or the permittee’s agent will be repaired at the expense of the permittee.
  3. The final lift of cover material, unless area is to be used for parking or building, shall be capable of sustaining vegetation, and shall be graded and seeded. The seeding and topsoil shall proceed in stages with the completion of the fill.
  4. All haul roads and entry roads shall be maintained dust-free during operations.
  5. The permittee shall be responsible for removal of any mud, dirt, or debris deposited on public streets or alleys as a result of permitted operations. Should the permittee not comply with this provision, the city will provide necessary cleaning services without notice to the permittee. The costs of such services will be the obligation of the permittee.
  6. The fill material shall be leveled on a periodic basis, and at no time shall it be left for a period exceeding 60 days in the unleveled condition.
  7. All banks shall be left with a slope not greater than one foot vertical to three feet horizontal, except that greater slope shall be permitted if it is in substantial conformity to the immediately surrounding area and, in the judgment of the city engineer, it is not expected to adversely affect future development of the site. All excavated areas shall be finally graded in substantial conformity to the surrounding natural topography.
  8. The property shall be so graded that stagnant water will not collect thereon.
  9. When any open excavation has a depth of 20 feet or more or a slope of one foot vertical to two feet horizontal or steeper, a fence effectively controlling access to the area shall be erected. Said fence may be a "snow fence" or similar temporary type of fence unless otherwise required by the city engineer.
  10. The maximum hours of operation shall be 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., Monday through Saturday unless otherwise authorized by the city council.

Where a violation of the conditions of this permit exists, the city is authorized to immediately terminate all operations at the site, and resumption of operation at the site will not be permitted until such violation is cured.

Sec. 110-29. - Noncompliance with permit.

Any person who fails to obtain a permit as herein required, who fails to comply with any of the conditions upon which a permit is issued, or who fails to complete the work within the time prescribed by the permit is guilty of a misdemeanor.

Sec. 110-30. - Bonding.

For any city council issued permits, the city council may require a surety bond in such form and sum as the council may determine, in favor of the city, as obligee, or other surety to cover the cost of corrective measures taken by the city, such as repairing streets and highways used as haul road.