Shapiro Administration Claims DEP Permit Backlog Reduced by 41%

The Shapiro Administration is lauding its efforts to improve sate permitting and is pointing to the state Department of Environmental Protection’s improvements to its online permitting, online payment, and delivery of on-time permit decisions as a demonstration of success. 

DEP points to implementation of its online money-back guarantee system and success in speeding up processing deadlines to reduce the permit backlog by 41% as of March 1, 2024. DEP has also implemented a Public Upload service to allow documents to be electronically uploaded. DEP claims that it has not had to refund a single application fee since the programs inception. 

New initiatives underway include a pilot program to evaluate new procedures to improve the quality of submissions and review efficiency of Chapter 102 Individual National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit applications. These changes are expected to reduce the review timeframe by 73 days and improve the quality of applications received. 

DEP is also using a new pre-application meeting process to better-inform potential applicants of the permitting process and the specific permits they need with the Permit Application Consultation Tool.  

How are these changes impacting your township? PSATS wants to hear from township officials that have either received a long-awaited DEP permit in the last few months or (in the alternative) have had a permit application returned as incomplete (to reset the clock) or with comments before DEP will approve the permit. Please reach out to Brian Rengert, PSATS Deputy Director of Government Relations with stories of approved permits or returned applications at or call him at 717-763-0930 ext. 127. 

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