North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources
NC Division of Coastal Management
coastal hazards

Coastal Hazards & Storm Information :: Using the CAMA Emergency General Permit

Coastal Management Offers Emergency CAMA Permit for Hurricane Recovery, Tips for Helping Speed up Permit Process

Coastal property owners who need to replace docks, piers, bulkheads, houses or other structures damaged by Hurricane Irene along sounds, rivers and creeks may be able to do so quickly by using an emergency general permit offered by the state Division of Coastal Management.

The permit regulations speed up the authorization process for rebuilding structures that meet state standards. The rules also waive permit fees for those projects, as well as beach bulldozing and maintenance dredging of existing channels related to hurricane recovery.

Dee Freeman, secretary of the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources, activated the general permit today. It may be used in the following counties: Beaufort, Bertie, Brunswick, Camden, Carteret, Chowan, Craven, Currituck, Dare, Gates, Herford, Hyde, New Hanover, Onslow, Pamlico, Pasquotank, Pender, Perquimans, Tyrrell and Washington. The permit does not eliminate the need to obtain any other required state, local or federal authorization.

Work authorized under the permit must be completed by Aug. 29, 2012.

The general permit does not apply to the replacement of oceanfront structures.  Replacement of oceanfront houses requires a CAMA minor permit.

“Property owners should contact staff with the state Division of Coastal Management before beginning repairs or replacement work,” said Ted Tyndall, the division’s assistant director for permitting and enforcement. “If DCM staff determines that your project does not meet the requirements of the emergency general permit, you may be eligible for another type of CAMA permit.”

If you want to apply for the emergency general permit, here’s how you can help staff with the Division of Coastal Management review your request as quickly as possible:

  1. Please make your request in person at the N.C. Division of Coastal Management office that covers your county: 1367 U.S. 17 South, Elizabeth City (Camden, Chowan, Currituck, Dare, Gates, Pasquotank and Perquimans counties); 400 Commerce Ave., Morehead City (Carteret, Craven and Pamlico counties, and the White Oak River bank in Onslow County); 943 Washington Square Mall, Washington (Beaufort, Bertie, Hertford, Hyde, Tyrrell and Washington counties); 127 Cardinal Drive Ext., Wilmington (Brunswick, New Hanover and Pender counties, Onslow County south of the New River, and Topsail Island).

  2. Bring with you a description of the extent of the repair, replacement, dune reconstruction or maintenance dredging you need to do, including dimensions and shoreline length. Pre- and post-storm pictures of the project are helpful.

  3. Give your name, address, phone number and the project location. Include any detailed information that will be helpful, such as the state road number, the name of the water body and the name of the development.

  4. For projects involving the dredging or filling of estuarine waters, please provide confirmation that the adjacent riparian property owners have been notified by certified mail of the proposed work. The notice should instruct neighbors to provide any comments about the proposed work to Coastal Management within 10 days of receiving the notice, and that a lack of response by them will be interpreted as no objection.

  5. If you have had any other CAMA permit on your property, please tell the division. Those permits may contain information that will help staff with the N.C. Division of Coastal Management review your repair or replacement request.

Property owners with questions should call their local N.C. Division of Coastal Management office: Elizabeth City, (252) 264-3901; Morehead City, (252) 808-2808 or 1-888-4RCOAST (1-888-472-6278); Washington, (252) 946-6481; Wilmington, (910) 796-7215.

For more information on CAMA emergency permits, please visit


Last Modified: October 03, 2003

N.C. Division of Coastal Management . 400 Commerce Ave . Morehead City, NC 28557
1-888-4RCOAST . Email Us