Permits

BCDC has regulatory responsibility over development in San Francisco Bay and along the Bay's nine-county shoreline. BCDC is guided in its decisions by the McAteer-Petris Act, the San Francisco Bay Plan, and other plans for specific areas around the Bay.

BCDC’s permit team includes analysts with a background in planning, law, geography, engineering, landscape design, biology and support staff.

Activities Requiring Permit Approval

It is necessary to obtain a BCDC permit prior to undertaking work in the Bay or within 100 feet of the shoreline, including filling, dredging, dredged sediment disposal, shoreline development and other work. There are several different types of permit applications, depending on the type, size, location, and impacts of a project.

Processing Permit Applications

BCDC staff are available to answer questions regarding the permitting process and applicants are strongly encouraged to consult with the staff to determine whether a BCDC permit is needed for a project and to get advice regarding project review.

The Commission has approved a bill of rights that describes the Commission's obligations to the public in providing a timely and equitable regulatory process.

Applying the Environmental Justice Policies in BCDC's Permitting

The following information is intended to provide guidance to applicants or others involved with BCDC permitting on the provisions set forth in the Bay Plan environmental justice and social equity policies. This information is provided  to assist applicants, but is not binding on the Commission’s discretion or determinative of the issues addressed in this document. When the Commission is evaluating a permit application for a specific project, the Commission retains full and ultimate discretion in interpreting and applying the Bay Plan environmental justice policies, as well as other policies in the Bay Plan, in a manner consistent with the Bay Plan, the Commission’s regulations, and statutory authority.

Recently received permit applications

This report lists the applications and federal consistency determinations, including amendment requests, which have been received by the Commission.

Emergency Permits

In the event of an emergency (a situation that poses an immediate danger to life, health, property, or essential public services), the Executive Director, after consulting with the Commission’s Chair, may issue verbal authorization for work within BCDC’s jurisdiction that is necessary to handle the emergency.

Ex Parte Communications

Ex parte communications raise due process and fair hearing concerns because Commission decisions must be based on information that has been provided to all parties and the public, and also must be based on material contained only in the administrative record.