With water levels rising, EGLE expedites shoreline protection permits to prevent damage | Michigan Radio

With water levels rising, EGLE expedites shoreline protection permits to prevent damage

Oct 30, 2019

A woman walks on a Lake Michigan beach. A portion of the beach is gone due to high water and wave erosion.
Credit soupstock / Adobe Stock

High Great Lakes water levels are threatening some homes and other structures. On Tuesday, Governor Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) announced a new plan to aid Michigan shoreline property owners affected by land erosion by those high lake levels.

EGLE plans on expediting permits for shoreline protection.

“High water levels will be with us for a while and we know this can cause stressful situations for shorefront property owners,” said Liesl Clark, EGLE director. “The steps we are announcing today will help property owners navigate the permitting process more efficiently and quickly. We cannot control lake levels, but we can offer tools to help Michiganders protect their property while safeguarding our freshwater dunes and other shoreline resources.”

The agency says permits could be issued in days. Typically, getting a permit takes two to three months. This will give homeowners a chance to protect their property while the state will work to protect fragile ecosystems along the lakes.

According to a statement from EGLE, the permit process "ensures a balance between protecting property and freshwater dunes and shorelines." It helps to prevent damage to neighboring properties and disruption to Michigan's coastal dunes, shorelines, and bluffs.

A new website allows property owners to begin the permit process and find other information.

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