Michigan property owners get help from state for high-water erosion

Nov 18, 2019

Lakeshore property owners fighting erosion due to high water levels are getting some help from the state. The Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy is expediting the permitting process for sandbag use. 

Sandbags aren’t a permanent answer to erosion, but they can provide some temporary relief.

“This is something that is going to try to stem some of the damage as you try to work out exactly what you want to do next to make sure you avoid any further damage from erosion,” says Nick Assendelft, the public information officer for EGLE.

Assendelft encourages property owners to work with a contractor to design a more long-term solution. He says the department is trying to quickly issue permits especially where there’s risk to structures, human health and safety. 

“We also have approved extra overtime for staff to be able to process these permits in a timely manner,” he says. “If it’s a situation where somebody’s home or public health is in jeopardy, we’re going to turn those around pretty quick.”

Assendelft says instead of a couple of months, they try to turn around those permit applications within a couple days. 

The sandbag permit fee costs $100.