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Zoning & Environmental Services
The mission of the Carlton County Zoning and Environmental Services Department is to protect and enhance Carlton County’s quality of life, environment, and growth by providing the citizens of Carlton County with comprehensive planning, efficient ordinance enforcement, courteous technical assistance and public forums.
Planning and Zoning: Carlton County Zoning and Environmental Services is the zoning authority for all areas of Carlton County except the following cities and townships: City of Barnum, City of Carlton, City of Cloquet, City of Cromwell, City of Kettle River, City of Moose Lake, City of Scanlon, Thomson Township, City of Wrenshall and City of Wright. Carlton County also has zoning authority in shoreland areas (property within 1,000 feet of a lake or 300 feet of a river or stream) in the City of Cromwell, City of Carlton and Thomson Township. Zoning permits are required for all structures, regardless of size.
Subsurface Sewage Treatment Systems: The Zoning and Environmental Services Office administers Carlton County Ordinance #30 Subsurface Sewage Treatment Systems county-wide. A permit shall be obtained whenever any subsurface sewage system is installed, replaced, altered, repaired or extended. Compliance inspections are required for subsurface sewage treatment systems at point-of-sale or permit application in shoreland areas.
Shoreland: Filling, grading, excavating and vegetation removal on shoreland property requires a land alteration permit if the activity that you are planning exceeds certain limits. Contact the Zoning and Environmental Services Office for permit thresholds.
Wetlands: Carlton County administers the Wetland Conservation Act in all of Carlton County, except for the City of Wright and the City of Cloquet. A permit may be required for work in wetlands. Contact the Zoning and Environmental Services Office for permit requirements.
Recycling and Solid Waste: The Carlton County Zoning and Environmental Services Office operates the Transfer Station, Household Hazardous Waste Facility and recycling sheds. We have programs for the collection and disposal or recycling of unwanted medication, textiles, Christmas lights and trees, medical sharps, used oil and oil filters, appliances, tires, electronics and mattresses and food waste.
Well Water Analysis: The Carlton County Zoning and Environmental Services Office analyzes for coliform bacteria, E. coli, nitrate, iron and hardness.
Aquatic Invasive Species: The Carlton County Zoning and Environmental Services Office manages an AIS Program including watercraft inspections, education, treatment, and early detection with funding provided by the State Department of Natural Resources.