Tips to know when withdrawing an environmental resource permit application makes sense

District staff meeting with permit applicants

District staff regularly meet with permit applicants to determine how best to meet their needs while protecting water resources.

Some people may have been involved with an environmental resource permit (ERP) project that encounters an engineering speed bump or a wetland hurdle that may take awhile to resolve. When challenges arise, the district makes every attempt to coordinate with applicants and consultants on projects to process permit applications and issue permits quickly. However, sometimes a project’s technical challenges cannot be addressed within a short time frame.

When the district issues a request for additional information (RAI), an ERP applicant has up to 90 days to provide the requested additional information, and may request an additional 90 days if the technical issues will take longer to address.

When the district does not receive a timely response to an RAI, the district may initiate the administrative denial process. However, at any point after applying, an applicant has the option to withdraw the ERP application, work out the encountered problems, and then re-apply for a permit. During this time, district staff will continue to work with the applicant and consultants to help address the project’s challenges and ensure prompt review when the application is re-submitted. If an applicant reapplies within one year of application withdrawal, the district shall transfer any previously received ERP application fees to the new application if the conditions of rule 62-330.071(3), Florida Administrative Code (F.A.C.) are met. However, if an applicant does not withdraw the application and the application is administratively denied, then the application fee cannot be refunded or transferred. Thus, it makes sense and may benefit an applicant to withdraw an ERP application when a project encounters problems that cannot be overcome within the time frame to respond to an RAI.