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Solid Waste Disposal Facility Operating License

The Materials Management Division (MMD) within the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) has responsibility for reviewing solid waste disposal area operating license applications under the authority of Part 115 of the Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Act, 1994 PA 451, as amended. The purpose of this license is to regulate the operation and maintenance of solid waste disposal areas to protect public health, welfare, and the environment.

NAME OF PERMIT OR APPROVAL: Solid Waste Disposal Area Operating License

STATUTORY AUTHORITYPart 115, Solid Waste Management, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Act, Public Act 451 of 1994, as amended.

APPLICABLE REGULATIONPart 115, Section 11512a, and the Part 115 Rules R 299.4101 - R 299.4922.

Operation of a solid waste disposal area (landfill, processing plant, transfer facility, etc.) that has been constructed in Michigan requires a license, which expires five years from the date of issuance.

Certain disposal areas or activities are exempt from the licensing requirement as follows:

  • Transfer facilities that are not designed to accept waste from vehicles with mechanical compaction devices or that receive less than 200 non-compacted cubic yards of waste per day, as provided in Section 11529(1).
  • Municipal solid waste incinerators that are permitted under Part 55 of Act 451, as provided in Section 11529(3).
  • Low-hazard waste piles, construction and demolition waste piles, and contained waste piles, as provided in R 299.4129 and R 299.4130.
  • Activities that do not constitute solid waste processing, as provided in R 299.4104(r).
  • Composting and other management of yard clippings as provided in Section 11521.
  • Beneficial use materials as defined under Section 11502 when managed as provided in Sections 11551 - 11553.


Applicability: Operation of a solid waste disposal area (landfill, processing plant, transfer facility, etc.) requires an operating license.

Pre-Application Requirements: Licensed facilities must be included in the approved county solid waste management plan for the county in which the facility is located. A facility must have an approved construction permit or have been grandfathered into Part 115, in order to obtain a license. The applicant must submit a complete application package to the Materials Management Division. In Wayne County, applications can be submitted to the Wayne County Department of Public Services, Land Resource Management Division.

Application Submission Requirements

  1. Name and residence of the applicant
  2. Location of the proposed or existing disposal area
  3. Type or types of disposal area(s) proposed
  4. Evidence of bonding: Type III landfills and preexisting Type II landfills are required to have a bond of $20,000 per acre of licensed landfill, up to $1 million. Existing and new Type II landfill financial assurance must equal the cost, in current dollars, of hiring a third party to conduct closure and post closure maintenance and monitoring for 30 years after landfill closure, and, if needed, corrective action. Municipal solid waste incinerator ash landfill financial assurance requirements are the same as for new Type II landfills. Transfer facilities, incinerators, processing plants, or other disposal facilities are required to have financial assurance in the amount of one quarter of one percent of the facility construction costs, and not less than $4,000. Types of bonds that can be used are:
    • Surety Bond
    • Certificate of Deposit
    • Irrevocable Letter of Credit
    • Cash Bond
    • Trust Fund or Escrow Account
    • Insurance
    • Financial Test
    • Perpetual Care Fund (required of and limited to landfills)
  5. Other information required by rule.

Procedures and Time-Frame for Obtaining Permit or Approval: Applicant submits application (EQP 5507) to the EGLE MMD District Office or, in Wayne County, to the Wayne County Department of Public Services, Land Resource Management Division. The application fee must be submitted directly to EGLE's Cashier per the instructions on the application form. The applicant must be notified within 30 days of any items necessary to make the application administratively complete, and if the application is determined to be administratively incomplete, it is not processed further until after the applicant submits the required information. A site inspection must be made by a certified health department and/or EGLE. A final decision must be made on the application within 90 days after the application has been determined to be administratively complete, or the operating license is automatically approved.

Operational Requirements: Applicant must comply with all applicable rules and regulations and stipulations set forth in the license and construction permit.

Fees: License Application Fee: Type II landfill application fees range from $250 to $30,000 depending on the amount of solid waste received at the facility. Type III application fees are $2,500. Processing plants, transfer facilities, and other disposal area application fees are $500.

Appeal Process: If an application is for a new license and not a renewal, there is no appeal provision. For renewal of existing licenses, if a sufficient application is submitted prior to the expiration of the existing license, an applicant may request a hearing. The hearing is provided for by the Administrative Procedures Act, 1969 PA 306, as amended.

Public Input Opportunities: The decision maker in this process is the Solid Waste Section. The decision is based upon recommendations from District Supervisors. Complaints or comments related to a facility may be filed with EGLE at any time. The complaints are investigated and if they were validated through a finding of a violation then this would be considered in the decision-making process for approval. Solid waste disposal facilities in Michigan can be found on the program web page.

  • When a coal ash landfill or surface impoundment operating license is requested, public notification is sent to the local newspaper with major circulation in the area. Notice is also sent to the clerk of the municipality where the site is located. The local unit of government or the facility can request a public hearing. When a public hearing is scheduled, it is noted on the EGLE Calendar. EGLE accepts comments at the hearing and during the public comment period, which is the best timing for public input.

ADMINISTERING AGENCY: Materials Management Division, Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy, 525 West Allegan Street, PO Box 30241, Lansing, MI 48909-7741.

Wayne County Department of Public Services, Land Resource Management Division, 3600 Commerce Court, Building E, Wayne, Michigan 48184-2803.

Waste Management and Radiological Protection Division District Offices

?Revision Date:
August 2019