Do You Need a State Permit? How Do You Find Out?

Posted on 10/13/2016 by Robin Scheu


If you’re starting a business or expanding your business, do you know what permits you need? You should always check with your own planning and zoning office for local permit requirements. However, you may also need one or more state permits.

The Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has Permit Specialists assigned to each region of the state. The goal of the Permit Specialist is to take the mystery, anxiety, and frustration out of the permit process. The Specialists give you advice about state permits required for your project and help you find the online resources and people who can help you obtain your permit.

For Addison County, Rick Oberkirch is our Permit Specialist. Based in Rutland, Rick will meet you by appointment at the ACEDC office or your place of business. (Contact info below.) You can also call Rick if you just have a question and don’t need a meeting. He will advise you about required state permits and will prepare a Project Review Sheet for you as a road map to other state permits you may need. Knowing all of the permits that are required before you being your project can prevent costly delays, saving you time and money.

In addition to a live person, the DEC also has a Permit Handbook. The Permit Handbook provides an in-depth compilation of information on most Department of Environmental Conservation permit programs and many other Vermont and federal regulatory programs that may be required for your project or business. Program information sheets include:

  • examples of regulated activities;
  • criteria for permitting jurisdiction;
  • statutory citations for authority and appeals; and
  • contacts for more information.

In addition, fact sheets have been developed for certain small business sectors that discuss the most common required permits and provide staff contacts for more information. If you have a home occupation, for example, or want to open a hair salon, a bakery or a brewery (as well as many other small businesses), it’s important to learn what permits and approvals are needed.

The Permit Specialists have a wealth of knowledge and resources available to help you make your project a success while ensuring environmental and public health protection. Don’t hesitate to contact yours!

You can reach Rick Oberkirch at:

Telephone: 802-282-6488

Fax: 802-786-5915


More information can also be found in this Permit Brochure. And on this state website.