Michigan promises faster review of erosion control permits

Associated Press

Traverse City – Michigan environmental regulators are promising faster reviews of applications to protect homes or structures threatened by rising Great Lakes levels.

The Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy said Wednesday it will expedite permits for actions such as placing rocks or building seawalls to prevent erosion.

Erosion along Lake Huron has left some homes, like this one in Port Sanilac, with no beach and lawn being eaten up by rising water levels

Director Liesl Clark said permit consideration requires a balance between protecting property and safeguarding environmental features such as dunes, shorelines and bluffs.

She said excessive or poorly designed shoreline protection structures can disrupt natural processes and damage neighboring properties.

It usually takes 60-90 days to process shoreline permits. EGLE says it will act much faster where homes or infrastructure are at risk.

The number of shoreline protection permits granted has risen sharply in recent years.

In many cases, permits from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers also are required for placing materials along the water.