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Are you doing a project in the OLWS service area? OLWS has the authority to issue three main types of permits:

  1. Erosion Control/Surface Water Management Permits
  2. Wastewater Connection Permits
  3. Water Connection Permits

To get started OLWS uses Accela for all permit applications.

  • Click here to start, continue, or complete your permit.
  • Click here to learn how to pay fees online through Accela.
  • Click here to visit Clackamas County to check the status of your county permit.

OLWS reviews building, construction, and development–related permits, performs inspections and collects fees. These activities protect the public infrastructure by preventing degradation or damage to the conveyance system (pipes), wastewater reclamation facility, water delivery system, and the water quality of local streams and wetlands.

Review Time 

Normally, the OLWS review time is approximately two (2) weeks, unless extenuating circumstances apply. OLWS highly suggests to apply for permit(s) the same week as Clackamas County or other building or development-related permits. OLWS also highly suggests to assure the initial permit application contains all the items listed on the respective permit page(s). If the application is incomplete, additional review time is needed.

The following is a guide to the type(s) of permit(s) you may need in addition to any Clackamas County permits:

  • Any grading, grubbing, clearing, installing or expanding a foundation, slab or basement needs an Erosion Control Permit.
  • Are you installing a new water meter, service (tap), changing meter size, changing occupancy or doing a tenant improvement? If so, you likely need a Utility Connection Permit.
  • Are you replacing or building a new home, adding onto an existing home, adding an ADU or building a shop/garage or installing a new sewer service (tap)? You likely need a Utility Connection Permit.
  • Are you performing a commercial or industrial property Tenant Improvement? Submit a drainage fixture schedule and floor plan with fixtures for a “Virtual” Sewer Utility Connection Permit. See Design Standard 1.0031 Permit Types).
  • Are you developing land, partitioning land or constructing a multi-family or non-residential structure(s)? You likely need a Site Development Permit.


Your Next Steps 

1. Visit the Permit Triggers page to review and decide which type of permit you need.

2. Visit the Permits: What to Submit pages to get organized for an online application process.

3. OLWS now uses Accela for all permit applications. You will need to create an Accela account to apply for a permit. Accela is a cloud-based software platform that allows permit applicants to login and manage their permit process efficiently and effectively. 

4. View the instruction packet to set up an Accela account and complete an online application:

  • Go to the Accela login page and set up an account, then begin the application process.
    • Be prepared to complete the online application form;
    • Submit an electronic site plan with utilities;
    • Include a separate site plan with erosion control;
    • Obtain invoice through Accela;

5. Visit the Process page to learn the details of how OLWS approves permits.


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