Types of Permits

Types of CAMA Permits

Currently, there are three types of development permits: major permits, general permits and minor permits. Some development may be authorized by exemption certificate. Single-family homes require minor permits.

The Division of Coastal Management makes permit decisions after considering agency and public comments, and after determining whether a proposed project meets CRC rules and the local government's land-use plan.

The CAMA permit system is divided into major and minor permits, based on the size and possible impacts of a project.

Major permits are necessary for activities that require other state or federal permits, for projects that cover more than 20 acres or for construction covering more than 60,000 square feet. Applications for major permits are reviewed by 10 state and four federal agencies before a decision is made. 

The DCM online system will serve as the platform for major permits, general permits, and enforcement and compliance actions issued under the N.C. Coastal Area Management Act.

To start the online permitting process, click here.

General permits are used for routine projects that usually pose little or no threat to the environment. General permits are issued on-site by DCM staff

Minor permits are required for projects, such as single-family houses, that don't require major permits or general permits. They are reviewed, issued and administered to CRC standards by local governments under contract with the Division of Coastal Management. The minor permit program is part of the CRC's efforts to minimize the burden on permit applicants. Under CAMA regulations, a minor permit is to be issued within 25 days once a complete application is in hand. If the project is simple, the review process often is shorter. Applications and instructions for minor permits.

Find a Field Rep Locator Tool

Find a Field Rep logo

The Division of Coastal Management has launched a new interactive mapping tool to assist the public in identifying the appropriate field representative in the 20 coastal counties to start the CAMA permit application process in your area. The tool provides this information in a simple map format. The location query will generate a pop-up box with contact information to “Find a Field Rep”.

Landowners, contractors, and others can use the tool to identify the Division of Coastal Management field staff serving as the first point of contact for permitting inquiries and processes.

Click here to Find a Field Rep in your CAMA region.