23.02.04.04

.04 License Requirement.

A. A person may not conduct the following activities over, on, in, or under State tidal wetlands without a license except as provided for in §E of this regulation:

(1) Dredging;

(2) Filling;

(3) Constructing, reconstructing, repairing, or altering structures, trestles, conduits, cables, pipelines, intake or discharge pipes, or similar devices or apparatuses;

(4) Constructing a shore erosion control project, including a living shoreline; or

(5) Otherwise altering State tidal wetlands.

B. The Board may issue a State tidal wetlands license to:

(1) The owner of the riparian rights associated with an upland parcel;

(2) The State, any unit of the State, or the federal government;

(3) A political subdivision;

(4) A public service company; or

(5) An individual who seeks to obtain soil borings, sediment borings, or samples for research purposes.

C. Agents.

(1) Any person eligible to apply for a license under §B of this regulation may do so through the use of an agent.

(2) Any reference to “applicant” or “licensee” in this chapter includes an agent of the eligible person.

D. The issuance of a State tidal wetlands license does not relieve the licensee from obtaining other approvals and permits that may be required, including a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers permit, water quality certification, coastal zone consistency certification, buffer management plan, and other State and local approvals and permits.

E. Activities Not Requiring a License. A person may conduct the following activities over, on, in, or under State tidal wetlands without a license issued by the Board:

(1) Constructing, repairing, or removing private noncommercial piers when the property owner provides 10-day notice to the Department on a Department-approved form and meets the following criteria:

(a) Only one pier per property;

(b) Pier is not wider than 6 feet;

(c) Piers over vegetated tidal wetlands are at least 3 feet above the wetlands;

(d) Fixed or floating platforms, including Ts, Ls, and step-down platforms that:

(i) Do not exceed 200 square feet, excluding the segment of the main pier section to which the platform is attached;

(ii) Are not located over vegetated tidal wetlands or submerged aquatic vegetation; and

(iii) Are located in at least 2 feet at mean low water;

(e) No more than two 3-foot wide finger piers may be constructed on the landward side of the end of a private pier;

(f) Pier does not extend within 100 feet of a Department-approved water-ski course;

(g) Pier does not extend beyond the lesser of 100 feet channelward of the mean high water line or a distance of 25 percent of the waterway width;

(h) Meets property line setback requirements established by the political subdivision;

(i) Pier does not impede navigation or block adjoining properties from ingress and egress;

(j) Pier does not obstruct the tidal flow;

(k) Pier does not include more than four slips, lifts, or hoists; and

(l) Pier does not extend within 500 feet of an approved aquaculture lease site.

(2) Maintaining, repairing, or replacing an existing functional structure by a licensed marine contractor or property owner when there is only a de minimis increase in the original length, width, height, or channelward encroachment.

(3) Dredging seafood products by a licensed aquaculture operator, harvesting submerged aquatic vegetation if the root system is not affected, and harvesting of seaweed.

(4) Trapping, hunting, fishing, cultivating or harvesting shellfish when legally permitted.

(5) Aquaculture activities occurring under a Department of Natural Resources lease.

(6) Mosquito control and abatement projects approved by the Department of Agriculture.

(7) Improving wildlife habitat or agricultural drainage ditches if approved by the appropriate State agency.

(8) Marking channels and harbors and establishing navigation aids approved by the U.S. Coast Guard and the Department of Natural Resources.

(9) Controlling invasive plant species through the application of pesticides when authorized by a toxic materials permit under COMAR 26.08.03.02.

(10) Installing bass spawning boxes outside of marked navigation channels.