Norman County

In the Heart of the Red River Valley

Frequently Asked Environmental Questions


 Why do I need a building, sewer, variance or conditional use permit?

Norman County adopted county-wide zoning back in 1969 and since then has required permits.

 Do I need to have my individual sewage treatment system inspected when I get a building permit?

Only if you live within the Shoreland and floodplain areas as determined by the National Flood Insurance Program maps that are located in the Norman County Environmental Services Office or if you are adding a bedroom onto your house.

 Do I need to have my individual sewage treatment system inspected when I sell my property?

Norman County does not require a certificate of compliance for a property transfer.

 What is the cost of these permits?

The Norman County Environmental Services Office Fee Schedule for Permits:

Norman County Fee Schedule for Zoning Permits.

At the September 4, 2003, meeting of the Norman County Board of Commissioners, the Board approved a fee schedule for the Norman County Environmental Services Office.

This original fee schedule that went into effect on January 1, 2004 was revised and updated at the January 19, 2012, meeting of the Norman County Board of Commissioners.  The updated fee schedule went into effect on March 1, 2012.

These fees will need to be paid at the time of the application and are non-refundable.  These fees will be used to lower the amount of General Revenue funds that are being used to pay for the Planning and Zoning portion of the Norman County Environmental Services Office.

The following sections are from the Norman County Zoning Ordinance with information that pertains to building permits, sewer permits, conditional use permits, and variances, why you need them and how the County set the fees for them.

Section 3.0 Rules

3.1 Hereafter no person shall erect, alter, wreck, or move any building or part thereof without first securing a building permit.  Application for a building permit shall be made to the Administrator on blank forms furnished by the County Board. Each application for a permit to construct or alter a building shall be accompanied by a plan,drawn to scale, showing the dimensions of the lot to be built upon, the size and location of the building, and accessory buildings to be erected.

Application for any kind of building permit shall contain such other information as may be deemed necessary for the proper enforcement of this Ordinance.

8.8 Fees

8.8(1) The fees for a building permit, rezoning, variance, amendment, or conditional use permit shall be established by the County Board.  The County Board may review and revise the fee schedule periodically.  The administrator shall issue the building permit only after the fee has been paid and a determination has been made that the building plans, together with the application, comply with the terms of the Ordinance.

8.8(2) Any person filing a petition for an amendment to this Ordinance, requesting a variance or a change in regulations within any use district shall pay the prescribed fees according to the schedule established by the County Board before any work proposed may commence.  The fee is payable at the time of filing a petition and is not refundable.

8.8(3) Municipal corporations and governmental agencies shall be exempt from the fee requirements as prescribed by this Ordinance. 

If you have any questions on this, please feel free to contact the Norman County Environmental Services Office at 218-784-5493.

 Why do I have to pay a garbage assessment when I do not put any garbage into a dumpster?

The garbage assessment from your tax statement pays for the disposal of the garbage at the Fosston Incinerator.  It does not pay for the collection of the garbage, that is the responsibility of the homeowner, township or city that you live in.

 I own property in Norman County, but do not live there, and still have a garbage assessment on that property. Is there anyway to get it removed?

Yes, you need to fill out an abatement request and send it back to the Environmental Service Office and they will make a determination whether it can be removed or not.

 I have left over paint, how can I get rid of it?

Every May, the Norman County Environmental Services Offices, holds a household hazardous waste collection.  These collections are held in different locations throughout the county every year.

 I have a bunch of old magazines, how can I get rid of them?

They can be put in the recycling dumpsters along with the rest of your recyclables as of January 1, 2004.

 Ho do you determine if your property is located within a flood zone?

You can either call or stop in the County Environmental Services Office and look at the maps and we will make the determination for you.