(a)  Applications for selective vegetation cutting, thinning, pruning, or removal (exclusive of grasses) shall be made by the owner of an outdoor advertising sign permitted under G.S. 136-129(4) or (5) to the applicable county's Division Engineer of the North Carolina Department of Transportation, Division of Highways.  Applications shall be submitted in both printed and electronic form.  For sites within the corporate limits of a municipality that has previously advised the Department in writing that it seeks to review such applications, the applicant shall deliver the application to the municipality at least 30 days prior to submitting the application to the Department.  Applications for selective vegetation removal permits shall include the following information consistent with G.S. 136-133.1:

(1)           applicant contact information;

(2)           outdoor advertising permit tag number and location of the sign;

(3)           for a sign located on a ramp, indication of application being for a modified cut zone or normal cut zone;

(4)           for applications eligible for municipal review, an indication of the year the sign was erected;

(5)           indication of appropriate maximum cutting distance;

(6)           applicant's desire to remove existing trees, if present. If existing trees are to be removed, such trees require compensation by either monetary reimbursement or removal of two nonconforming outdoor advertising signs, or a beautification and replanting plan as set out in Rule .0611 of this Section by submitting the Existing Tree Compensation Agreement form found on the Department web site www.ncdot.gov;

(7)           site plan, if existing trees are to be cut, thinned, pruned, or removed;

(8)           if existing trees are to be cut, thinned, pruned, or removed, the additional required form includes applicant contact information, permit tag number, sign location, the number and caliper inches and monetary value of existing trees to be cut, thinned, pruned, or removed, and indication of  compensatory choice;

(9)           the additional form for existing tree removal, based on the compensatory choice made, also requires  submittal of either a payment check in the amount of the tree loss monetary value, or indication of the two nonconforming outdoor advertising signs to be surrendered, or agreement to submit a beautification replanting plan to the Department. Compliance with the compensatory choice shall be required before the selective vegetation removal permit can be approved;

(10)         municipal review indication, if applicable;

(11)         requested use of and site access for power-driven equipment in accordance with Rule .0610(24) of this Section;

(12)         performance bond or certified check or cashier's check pursuant to G.S. 136-93;

(13)         if using a contractor for vegetation removal work, identify the contractor and their qualifications if contractor is not listed on the Department's website directory of qualified transportation firms;

(14)         payment of non-refundable two hundred dollar ($200.00) permit fee, pursuant to G.S. 136-18.7;

(15)         certificate of liability and proof of worker's compensation and vehicle liability insurance coverage;

(16)         geographic information system document and property tax identification number to verify location of sign in relation to municipal limits and territorial jurisdiction boundary;

(17)         verification of on-site marking and tree-tagging requirements;

(18)         if cutting request is for a modified cut zone along a highway ramp, a diagram of the cut zone is required unless diagram is included on a site plan and calculations are required comparing the modified cut zone to the normal cut zone;

(19)         if the Department disputes the site plan, the Department may request additional information per G.S. 136-133.1(c);

(20)         certification that applicant has permission from the adjoining landowner(s) to access their private property for the purpose of conducting selective vegetation removal permit activities; and

(21)         applicant's notarized signature. 

(b)  For signs eligible for municipal review, the applicant shall include on the application and, as a prerequisite to applicable municipal review submittal, the year the outdoor advertising sign was originally erected.  Upon request, the Department shall furnish the year of sign erection to the applicant.  The Department may require additional proof if the year of the sign erection remains in question.

(c)  The selective vegetation removal request may be reviewed on site by Department personnel and a representative of the applicant.


History Note:        Authority G.S. 136-18(5); 136-18(7); 136-18(9); 136-18.7; 136-93; 136-129(4); 136-129(5); 136-130; 136-133.1; 136-133.2;

Temporary Adoption Eff. March 1, 2012;

Eff. November 1, 2012;

Amended Eff. January 1, 2015.