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COVID-19 Updates: Get the latest public information related to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) at

The Department of Planning and Building Permit Center is open by appointment only for limited building permit intake, correction returns/pick-up and to schedule virtual meetings. To submit electronic Building Permit or Land Use Permit Applications please visit  our website.

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Planning & Building

County of San Luis Obispo

Environmental Investigations Program

Frequently Asked Questions

When do I need to obtain a grading permit?

Grading is complicated. It is always advisable to consult with a registered professional (architect or engineer) prior to grading. In general, 50 cubic yards of cut or/and fill, or 3 feet of fill or 2 feet of cut requires a grading permit. No grading or grubbing should be done within 50 feet of a creek or stream. No riparian vegetation (such as willow, cattails or other such vegetation) should be removed from a creek, stream or wetland. There are many other standards, so please consult with a registered professional or contact the Department of Planning & Building first.