Request for Determination of Applicability

A Request for Determination of Applicability (RDA) is for minor projects entirely in the Buffer Zones that will have little or no impact on the Wetland Resource Area. It is the simplest and least expensive permit application procedure, one most homeowners can fill out on their own. It can take about one to two months from submitting a complete RDA filing to receiving a Determination of Applicability permit. The permit is good for three years. The filing fee for a RDA is $100.

Starting the Process

Get the Request for Determination of Applicability-WPA Form 1 and RDA Checklist (PDF). Call 508-532-5460 to make an appointment and receive other forms that are needed. Create a plan showing all proposed work, erosion controls, and jurisdictional areas.


Make 3 copies of the forms (no binding) and plans (folded) and deliver 2 of them to the Conservation Office. Submit the remaining copy to the state. You will then receive your the hearing time and date. Hearings are usually on the 1st or 3rd Wednesday evening of every month. Please note that hearing times are not assigned until all the necessary paperwork is delivered to the office. Filing deadlines are 2 weeks prior to the hearing, but we recommend submitting 3 weeks in advance to ensure your paperwork has been properly filed. Click here to view 2022 Meeting Dates and Deadlines.

Site Visit

A pre-hearing site visit will be scheduled and attended by an agent of the commission. Commissioners that are available may attend.

At your hearing time, the commission will determine whether the project will affect the resource area. They may ask questions about your project. They will vote a decision as to whether or not the project will have an impact on a resource area.


At the next meeting the commissioners will sign a Determination of Applicability which has on it their decision and any conditions which were agreed upon. The determination can either be mailed to you via certified mail with return receipt, or you may arrange to pick it up at the Conservation Office.