Skip County Header
Alameda County, CA, acgov.org
ACGOV Quick Links
Goto ACGOV Search

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What types of work does the drilling permit cover?
  2. Do all projects require a drilling permit?
  3. How much lead time should I allow between submitting an application and my project start date?
  4. How long is my permit valid?
  5. What do I need to submit in order to obtain a drilling permit?
  6. What information is required on the permit application?
  7. Do I need to file site hazard information?
  8. What information is required on the site map?
  9. What are the permit fees?
  10. What type of payments do you accept?
  11. I have a State (or Federal) project. Is it exempt from permit fees?
  12. How do I schedule work or an inspection?
  13. How do I extend a permit, cancel a permit, or get a refund?
  14. When do I pay a service charge?
  1. What types of work does the drilling permit cover?

    • Water supply Wells—domestic, irrigation, public, industrial
    • All types of Monitoring Wells
    • All types of Piezometers/Inclinometers/Seismic Monitoring
    • Cathodic protection /Anode Wells
    • Heat exchange (also called geothermal heat exchange or ground source heat pump wells)
    • All types of sampling workAll types of Injection/Extraction Wells (also called recharge or remediation wells)
    • Borings for Vapor injection/extraction/sampling
    • Sparge Wells
    • Remediation Systems
    • Water wells converted from oil or gas wells
    • Geotechnical investigations
    • Contamination investigations
    • Environmental investigations

    For questions about whether a project requires a permit, please contact us at wells@acpwa.org or 510-670-6633.

    -- Back To Top --

  2. Do all projects require a drilling permit?

    The following are NOT required to have a drilling permit application from our office, but may require other permits from Federal, State, County or local governmental agencies:

    • Oil and gas wells
    • High-temperature geothermal wells
    • Dewatering wells for construction
    • Wells drilled to stabilize hillsides or earth embankments
    • Holes bored for hydraulic elevators, telephone poles, and piles
    • Mining exploration boreholes

    Though the bore holes listed above are not covered by the California Water Code, they could still provide a conduit for contaminating groundwater. The prudent water well drilling contractor, operator, or land-owner will ensure that such bore holes are built or destroyed properly so that they do not become conduits for contaminating groundwater.

    For questions about whether a project requires a permit, please contact us at wells@acpwa.org or 510-670-6633.

    -- Back To Top --

  3. How much lead time should I allow between submitting an application and my project start date?

    You must submit your Permit Application at least 10 business days (Monday – Friday) before the planned start of work date, if you apply by mail. Allow 7 business days if you apply online. Even if you do not have all the information (i.e. site map, payment, well data), submit your application to begin the process. Additional information may be submitted later, but no permits will be approved until payment is received in full.

    -- Back To Top --

  4. How long is my permit valid?

    Water Resources Well Permits are valid for 90 days from the original approval date. However, your permit will have a “permit valid” date range (project start date through completion date) that indicates when the actual work will occur. The permit must be on the job site to show proof of the approved permit application. If your work schedule changes, and the date range needs to be revised, you may do so at no charge as long as it is within 90 days of the original permit approval date.

    -- Back To Top --

  5. What do I need to submit in order to obtain a drilling permit?

    -- Back To Top --

  6. What information is required on the permit application?

    Wells specifications/Property owner information

    -- Back To Top --

  7. Do I need to file site hazard information?

    Site hazard information is required for all projects except geotechnical investigations of sites that are not known to be contaminated. Along with the permit application, please fill out the Site Hazard Information form (PDF - 42kb)* and/or include a letter describing the project. This form is automatically generated if you apply online.

    -- Back To Top --

  8. What information is required on the site map?

    A site map must be submitted with all drilling permit applications and be sized to fit 8 1/2" x 11" (or larger) paper. If faxing, use the highest resolution possible (no aerial photos). If submitting online, attach site map file in PDF format as requested through the online application system. The site map may also be emailed (wells@acpwa.org) or faxed (510-782-1939 Attn: Water Resources Section). Or mail the map to: Attn: Water Resources Section, 399 Elmhurst Street, Hayward, CA 94544.

    Site map sketch must include:

    1. Sufficient detail to identify location site for proposed boring(s).
    2. Distances to nearest street and intersection, and to existing structures, landmarks, or topographic features.
    3. Location of site features, including major buildings, landscaped areas, tank fields, existing wells, etc.
    4. North arrow and scale.
    5. Location of proposed well with dimensions in feet from well to nearest cross streets.
    6. Wells and bore hole location must be labeled with bore hole or well ID numbers.

    -- Back To Top --

  9. What are the permit fees?

    Fees Required for Permits:

    Work Type Cost
    A permit to construct, rehabilitate, or destroy wells including Water Supply Wells, Cathodic Protection/ Anode Wells, Water Monitoring Wells, Piezometer/ Inclinometer/ Seismic Monitoring Wells, Geothermal Heat Pump-Construction. $397.00 per well
    A permit to bore exploratory holes for Contamination Study $265 per site *
    A permit to bore exploratory holes for Environmental Study $265 per site *
    A permit to bore exploratory holes for Geotechnical Study $265 per site *
    A permit for construction and destruction of any types of remediation systems, including vapor probes/ vapor points for sampling, vapor injection/ extraction boreholes or remediation wells, sparge wells, recharge wells $265 per site *
    A permit for construction and destruction of vapor monitoring wells $265 per site *

    * A site includes the project parcel as well as any adjoining parcels as long as it is the same property owner.

    Permit Fees are exempt for State & Federal Projects.

    Applicants shall submit a letter from the agency requesting the fee exemption.

    -- Back To Top --

  10. What type of payments do you accept?

    Checks payable to:

    • Treasurer, County of Alameda

    Mail to:

    • Attn: Water Resources Section
      Alameda County Public Works Agency
      399 Elmhurst Street, Hayward, CA 94544

    Note: If you are applying online and paying by check, please include your online application ID number on the check. If a check is returned for lack of funds, a service charge of $25.00 will be added; each subsequent check returned will incur a $35.00 service charge.

    Visa or MasterCard: Apply online. Or to use Visa or MasterCard by fax or mail, please indicate your preference to pay with a credit card on your drilling application or cover letter. Include a phone number to contact authorized personnel, and we will call to obtain the credit card number/information.

    Do not write your credit card number on your application or Site Hazard Information forms. These forms will become public documents.

    -- Back To Top --

  11. I have a State (or Federal) project. Is it exempt from permit fees?

    Yes. All land owned by the Federal government and State government agencies are exempt. The applicant must submit a letter from the agency requesting the fee exemption. The State or Federal agency can request a fee exemption by email or mail for the subject site or project on behalf of one or all the consultants who apply the drilling permits to the site or project work ordered by that government agency (cites). If you have any questions, please contact James Yoo at 510-670-6633.

    -- Back To Top --

  12. How do I schedule work or an inspection?

    The ACPWA Water Resources Section requires scheduling and inspection of permitted work. Once the permit has been issued, you must coordinate inspection with your assigned inspector. Availability of inspections will vary, and are scheduled on a first come, first served basis. To ensure inspection availability on the date you desire, or on your driller’s scheduled date, follow these required procedures:

    • Check your approved permit for your assigned inspector. Contact information will be included on your permit.
    • Schedule the inspection with your assigned inspector no later than 5 days before the Project Start Date listed on your permit. (Monday – Friday). Except for special circumstances, inspections must be conducted between 8:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m., Monday – Friday, excluding holidays. Confirm the scheduled drilling date(s) at least 24 hours before drilling.
    • Inspection is REQUIRED.

    A copy of the approved permit must be onsite at all times. Failure to show the permit or proof of the approved permit application onsite will result in a fine of $500.00.

    -- Back To Top --

  13. How do I extend a permit, cancel a permit, or get a refund?

    Request for Permit Extension

    Permits are only valid from the start date to the completion date as stated on the drilling permit application and Conditions of Approval. To request an extension of a drilling permit application, submit a written request before the completion date set forth in the Conditions of Approval found on the drilling permit application. Please fax (510-782-1939) or email (wells@acpwa.org) the Water Resources Section. There are no additional fees for permit extensions or for re-scheduling inspection dates. You may not extend your drilling permit dates beyond 90 days from the approval date of the permit application. After 90 days, no refunds are given, and the permit will be voided.

    You can also contact your assigned inspector to make this request.

    Cancel a Drilling Permit

    Applicants must cancel a drilling permit by writing to the ACPWA Water Resources Section. Written requests can be faxed, emailed, or mailed (Fax: 510-782-1939 or wells@acpwa.org). If you do not cancel your drilling permit application before the drilling completion date or notify the ACPWA Water Resources Section in writing within 90 days, the permit may be voided, and no refunds may be issued.

    You can also contact your assigned inspector to make this request.

    Refunds

    Contact your assigned inspector to make this request.

    All refund requests must be accompanied by two forms (fill in highlighted areas only):

    1. Request to Add/Modify ALCOLINK Vendor (PDF - 39kb)*
    2. County of Alameda Refund of Fees (PDF - 39kb)*

    Applicants who cancel a drilling permit application before the approved permit(s) is issued, will receive a full refund, which will be mailed from the ACPWA within 2 weeks of receiving refund request forms.

    Applicants who cancel a drilling permit application after a permit has been issued will be charged a service fee of $50.00. Collection of remaining funds will be determined by the amount to be refunded.

    The Board of Supervisors Minute Order, File No. 9763, dated January 9, 1996, gives blanket authority to the Auditor–Controller to process claims from all County departments for the refund of fees which do not exceed $500.00, with the exception of the County Clerk whose limit is $1,500.00. Refunds over those amounts must be authorized by the Board of Supervisors Minute Order, File No. 9763 requiring specific approval by the Board of Supervisors.

    Forms for refund requests under $500.00 are available at the ACPWA office via fax (510-782-1939) or email (wells@acpwa.org) or at any County office. If the requested refund amount exceeds $500.00, a Board letter and Minute Order must accompany the claim. The applicant must fill out the request form, and the County fiscal department will process the request.

    -- Back To Top --

  14. When do I pay a service charge?

    If a check is returned for lack of funds, a service charge of $25.00 will be added; each subsequent check returned will incur a $35.00 service charge.

    -- Back To Top --

* Portable Document Format (PDF) file requires the free Adobe Reader.

Alameda County sealAlameda County © 2012 • All Rights Reserved • Legal / DisclaimersAccessibility