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The Process of Protecting Inland Wetlands & Watercourses

Before You Act

Wetland regulations apply to everyone.  The existence of a wetland is not always obvious; for example wetlands can exist in lawns, on the sides of steep slopes, or on top of ridges.  Wetlands are determined based on soils and may not always appear wet.  If a wetland permit is required the process can take a month or more, so be sure to plan accordingly.

Before you start a project/activity:

  • Find out if there are any wetlands or watercourses located either on the property or close enough that activities will require a permit
  • Make sure there aren't any deed restrictions or conservation easements
    • If there are, contact the appropriate parties about whether your proposed activities are allowed
  • Obtain an Inland Wetland permit for any Regulated Activities that you would like to conduct
    • If a permit has already been granted, make sure you understand the conditions of the permit and that you know when the expiration date is
    • If you are not sure whether a wetland and watercourses permit is required, you may submit this questionnaire to the Inland Wetland and Natural Resources office or contact the office directly

Application for Inland Wetlands & Watercourses Permit

Applications must be submitted to Inland Wetlands the same day or before they are submitted to Planning & Zoning or the Building Department.

Applications typically need to be reviewed and acted upon by the Inland Wetlands Commission at their public meetings which are scheduled for the 2ndThursday of every month.

If the Agency and/or its Duly Authorized Agent determines that the activity proposed in an application would result in no greater than a minimal impact on any wetland or watercourse, then the application may be approved administratively by the Duly Authorized Agent.

Applications that must go before the Commission:

  • Must be submitted no later than the day before a regularly scheduled meeting to be received at that meeting; this meeting date is known as the receipt date
  • Lawfully the Commission must wait 14 days after the receipt date to allow opportunity for the public to petition for a public hearing; this means that it will take at least two meetings for the Commission to make a decision on an application

For more information on what materials are required for a permit application, reference Section 7 of the Inland Wetlands and Watercourses Regulations of the Town of Branford. Please contact the Inland Wetlands and Natural Resources Department if you have any questions.

Click here to access the application form or the questionnaire to request a determination as to whether a permit is required.


The Connecticut General Statutes (§22a-44)Section 14 of the Inland Wetland and Watercourses Regulations of the Town of Branford, and Chapter 196 of the Town Code all provide a means for the Agency to take enforcement action when Regulated Activities are being conducted or maintained without a permit. Anyone found to be conducting Regulated Activities without a permit or violating conditions of an issued permit can face enforcement action in the form of a Notice of Violation, Cease and Correct Order (which may be filed on the land records) and/or fines of up to $1,000 per day.


Last Updated: Mon, 06/17/2019 - 11:07am