Ahhh… the bureaucracy of state and local permits. We are trying to build a net zero energy building (ZEB) with LEED certification (leadership in energy and environmental design) but we can’t start until we get all the right permits through all the right bureaucracies.
I thought it would be relatively easy to get a building permit from our town (Enfield) to build a back deck, detached garage and driveway… but when I finally got around to starting the application I saw this little note at the end that said I need to get a permit from the NH Department of Environmental Services, Shoreland Protection Group. My house is within 250′ of the Mascoma River, so this rule applies to me.
Unfortunately, this is a relatively new permitting requirement for NH residents, so I’m sure the applications are coming in at a far greater rate than the number of people hired to approve them. It may be the case that all the rules and exceptions have not been flushed out yet either.
At this point I’ve completed the application (or I *thought* I had completed it), and sent it in… then I found some small print listed in one of the two checklists and worksheets that I was supposed have completed… so now I need a report from the NH Natural Heritage Bureau indicating that my property has been screened for “species of concern”. I have no idea what that will turn up, but I had to send them most of the same information and now I just wait.
So I’m trying to remain hopeful, but this could take many weeks.
I had the excavator all set to start digging for the garage and solar thermal storage system… and now I don’t know when we can start.
A little bit frustrating… and no one is answering my email requests for status/info. I’ll have to start calling around this week and see if anyone knows how to get permits through the process.
If anyone else has done this and has suggestions… please send them my way!