Grading Bonds

This information is provided to help the applicant understand the County of Monterey bonding requirements for grading construction.

The County's Grading Ordinance No 2535, Section 16.08.290 states "The building official shall require bonds in such form and amounts as may be deemed necessary to assure that the work, if not completed in accordance with the approved plans and specifications, will be corrected to eliminate hazardous conditions."

Monterey County accepts the following as meeting the intent of Section 16.08.290:

  • Surety Bonds
  • Grading In-Lieu Letter
  • Cash Deposits
  • Certificates of Deposits
  • Final building and grading inspections of a residential or commercial structure in which a building permit is associated with a grading permit

Amount of Bond
The following calculations are used to determine grading bond amounts.  The Chief Building Official may, at times, adopt another calculation table to assess fees depending upon construction estimates and specific site conditions.  

Amount  (Cut or Fill) Grading Bond Fees
500 cubic yards or less $500.00
501 to 1,500 cubic yards $2,000.00
1,501 or more cubic yards $2,000.00 for the first 1,500 cuyds plus $1.00 for every cubic yard over 1,500 cuyds

Surety Bond
A surety bond shall be executed by the owner and a corporate surety authorized to do business in this state as surety in an amount sufficient to cover the cost of the project, including corrective work necessary to remove and eliminate geological hazards.

If the applicant chooses to use a surety bond, request a surety bond form from a land use technician at the Planning and Building Inspection Department, complete the form and return it along with the surety bond to the department. 

Cash Deposits and Certificates of Deposit
Bond amounts may be paid with cash deposits or certificates of deposit made out to the County of Monterey upon the same terms and conditions and in an amount equal to that which would be required in the surety bond.  Applicants must reference their grading permit number on certificates of deposit and on personal checks. These bond deposits must be submitted to a land use technician at the Planning and Building Inspection Department.

Credit cards payments are not accepted for bond deposits.

Final Inspections on Structures
For the construction of a new house or commercial building, the County may hold final occupancy of these structures until all grading construction is completed and final in lieu of a surety or cash bond.  If the applicant requests final occupancy before the final grading is completed, the applicant is required to submit another type of bond payment.  Applicants are advice to speak with a land use technician about what additional bonds may be required for their projects.

Bond Release
When the grading construction is completed and been final approved and signed off, the grading inspector will give the approval for release. The owner, owners, or corporation listed on the bond will then be notified.  Approximately four weeks are required to process the owner's claim for refund after the work is completed.