Grading Plan Check

Projects requiring grading construction, as defined in Monterey County Grading Ordinance No. 2535, will require the submittal of grading plans and issuance of a grading permit prior to the beginning of such operation   To submit grading and erosion control plans for plan check you will need to complete a grading permit application and pay permit, plan review and administrative fees. The application will request such information as the project's street address, assessor's parcel number, and phone numbers of the owner, engineer, architect, contact person, and contractor.

Grading plans should be blue lined or photo-copied on substantial paper a minimum of 18" X 24" to a maximum 24" x 36".  Grading plans should be fully dimensioned and drawn to a scale of ¼"-1'0" size and reduced to 18" X 24" size.  Plans should be folded to 9" X 12" size and bound together by rubber band or other holder. Plans which are incomplete, defaced, illegible, or faded will not be accepted.  

Grading plans should state the project's street address, assessor's parcel number and include a general note section, plan and cross section profiles section showing cut and fill contact lines, (cut and fill lines should be shaded for clarity), identify volume of cut and fill quantities and locations, elevations, site drainage, driveway access, erosion control (BMPs), setbacks, bench marks, property lines, and scenic easements.  Refer to the grading plan checklists for required plan details and information.

In general, six (6) sets of grading plans, to include site and erosion controls plans, are required per grading permit submittal.  Additional submittal requirements may be required such as two (2) copies of site-specific soils report prepared by an approved geotechnical engineering firm and a written review of the most recent grading plan, all wet-signed by a soils engineer and an Engineering Geologist registered in the State of California. Contact the Permit Centers for more information.

Grading Plan Distribution
Once your grading plans have entered the reviewing process, the Permit Coordinating Team will route a set of plans to the Grading Inspection Division for review, comments, or conditions.  It is important to incorporate sufficient lead time within the project schedule to allow review, for this process may take several weeks. 

Grading Plan Correction
If corrections are required after the first grading plan review has been completed, comments may be marked on the plans including correction lists.  The Grading Inspection Division will either mail out plan corrections or require the applicant to pick up the plans and corrections.

After picking up the corrections, review each correction item carefully.  Follow the requirements for re-submittal. Often, you will be asked to make the corrections on the original vellums and resubmit both the old and the corrected plans. It is a good idea to include a cover letter or indicate on the side of the plan check list the location in the plans where each correction was made.

Resubmission of Corrected Grading Plans
When all corrections have been made, you will probably be asked to resubmit the same number of copies of plans and calculations as required earlier (including both original and revised plans). Plans should be returned to the Permit Coordinating Team for intake and processing. Plans that comply with all applicable local, state codes and ordinances will be stamped approved by the Grading Inspection Division.

Revisions to Approved Grading Plans
Revisions to approved grading plans are submitted for approval to the Permit Coordinating Team and are then re-routed to the Grading Inspection Division.  Any revision which pertains to a planning issue such as a change to the height of house, landscaping may need to be approved by the planning department.  Proposed changes to grading construction, such as cut and fill quantities, will need to be approved by the Grading Inspection Division.

Revisions usually include two (2) sets of revised grading plans and a letter of transmittal on a formal letterhead with the following information: Date, Job No., Revision No., Drawing Reference number, and a detailed description of the revision including area locations.  If the revision applies to a correction notice issued by the grading Inspector, note the correction notice on the transmittal.

Revisions should have a wet stamp & signature from the architect or engineer of record, if there is no design professional involved in the project it is usually wise to obtain an approval from the project owner.

All revisions are to include a location plan with all revisions numbered and clouded. Cut and fill quantities revisions require submittal of calculations.

Turn-Around Time to Review Revision
The turn around time for revisions is dependent on the extent of the work.  Allow 5 to 10 working days.  If all the required documents are not submitted with the revision, additional time may be required to complete the plan review.

After the plans have been stamped and approved by the Grading Inspection Division, and all other approvals are met, the Permit Coordinating Team will notify the applicant that the plans are ready to be issued.  A fee is usually charged for review of plan changes, including, revisions and alterations.

Grading Permit Issuance
Upon issuance of the permit, usually one set of approved drawings will be stamped, dated, and returned to the applicant or applicant's agent along with an inspection card. The plans and inspection card should be kept at the job site at all times.

A second set of approved drawings, calculations, and inspection card will be maintained with the Grading Inspection Division.