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Service Area Category Changes

Instructions and Application


To change a service area category for a particular piece of property, follow these steps:

  1. Fill out the Water/Sewer Category Change Request Form (.doc, 303KB). You may find that your County property tax bill and the Maryland Real Property database is useful for finding the information you'll need to complete the form. Click for instructions and information about the application.

  2. Calculate the fee from the information and instructions packet (see the last link under step 1).

  3. Take your payment and two (2) copies of the application fee receipt (in person) to the Treasury Department at 255 Rockville Pike, Suite L-15, Rockville, MD 20850 (the same building as the Department of Environmental Protection). Hours: 8:00-4:30 Monday-Friday. Be sure to get your copy of the application fee receipt stamped to show that the Treasury Department received your payment.

  4. Take the stamped receipt and the application upstairs to the DEP office.

Each application goes through the review process outlined below with comments from DEP, the Department of Permitting Services(DPS), the Montgomery County Department of Parks and Planning (M-NCPPC), and the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (WSSC). Agency comments are posted on the Web, and all interested parties are notified. Written public testimony is accepted at any time during the review period.

Current service area category change requests.


Application Review Process


All applications go through an administrative process review or a County Council process review. By default, category change requests—as amendments to the County's Water and Sewer Plan—are intended to be considered by the County Council, as provided for under state law. In the mid-1980s, however, the Council found itself having to address many requests of a fairly routine nature. In response, the Council developed and adopted the administrative delegation process for approving noncontroversial category change requests.

Under limited circumstances, the executive branch of the County (through the Director of DEP) acts on category change requests through the administrative process review. DEP may act to approve or conditionally approve an amendment or to defer an amendment to the Council for its process review. The authority is discretionary. The Director of DEP may also defer action on any potential administrative amendment to the County Council.

Learn more about the administrative process.

Learn more about the County Council process


Current Applications

New: FY 2016 Third Quarter Applications (PDF , 10.18MB)

FY 2016 First and Second Quarter Applications (PDF , 5.6MB)

FY 2015 - Third and Fourth Quarter Applications (PDF , 10.1MB)

FY 2015 - First and Second Quarter Applications (PDF , 12MB)


Use the Completed Actions tab at the upper right to find documentation of recently completed County Council and administrative actions.



Current Category Change Action Process   


Public Hearing and Worksession Schedule

Planning Board Discussion:

Date/Time: Thursday, June 18, 2015, at 2:00 p.m.
M-NCPPC Auditorium, 8787 Georgia Avenue, Silver Spring
Refer to Planning Board website ( for the board's June 18th agenda. Click here for the M-NCPPC staff packet for the Planning Board's consideration.

County Council Public Hearing:

Date/Time: Tuesday, June 23, 2015 at 1:30 p.m.
Location: Third Floor Hearing Room, Council Office Building, 100 Maryland Avenue, Rockville
Hearing record closes on (to be announced).
*The Council will continue this public hearing in the evening on June 23rd, if necessary.

T&E Committee Worksession:

Date/Time: Monday, June 29, 2015 at 9:00 a.m.
Location: Seventh Floor Hearing Room, Council Office Building, 100 Maryland Avenue, Rockville
The County Council staff packet for this meeting will be posted to:


Full Council Worksession:

Date/Time:Tuesday, July 14,2015, at approximately 9:30 a.m.  Please check the Council’s agenda additional information about this item, including the County Council staff packet.
Location: Third Floor Hearing Room, Council Office Building, 100 Maryland Avenue, Rockville

Full Council Action:

Tentative Date/Time:Tuesday, July 21, 2015 Please check the Council’s agenda for the time for this item.
Location: Third Floor Hearing Room, Council Office Building, 100 Maryland Avenue, Rockville

Select the "Completed Actions" link at the right to see recent Council resolutions for the Water and Sewer Plan.
Learn more about the public hearing process



Current Administrative Review Packet

AD 2015-2 Administrative Packet


Administrative Action AD 2015-2 approved by DEP on 3/30/16.

Public Hearing Schedule

DEP Public Hearing

PUBLIC HEARING RECSHEDULED due to weather-related closings on January 25, 2016.  Clink on the link provided for the updated hearing notice.

Date/Time: Monday, March 7, 2016, at 3:00 p.m.
Location: DEP, 255 Rockville Pike, Suite #120, Rockville, MD 20850

DEP expects to close the hearing record, with one exception, at 5:00 p.m. on Monday February 1 ,March 14, 2016.  The exception is WSCCR 15-DAM-01A, Armstrong Tire; the hearing record for this request will close at 5:00 p.m. on Monday, March 7, 2016, the date of the public hearing.  All written testimony must be received by DEP by that time the specified dates and times.  Submit written testimony to “Lisa Feldt, Director; DEP; 255 Rockville Pk., Suite 120; Rockville MD 20850-4166”.



Planning Board Hearing

Date/Time: Thursday, January 21, 2016 
Location: M-NCPPC, 8787 Georgia Ave., Silver Spring MD 20910
Planning Board recommendations













Learn more about the public hearing process

Application Hearing Schedule


Current public hearing dates (PDF, 155KB) are posted below for both Administrative Review packets and County Council Review packets.

See Projected hearing dates for Administrative and County Council packets for a planned schedule for category change requests filed during the current fiscal year. (Word, 95Kb)

Note: This calendar is tentative and intended only as a guide to help project the timing of your application review process.


Current Application Status


Recent Updates

  • July 31, 2014 – Posted to the “Service Area Category Changes page: the packet sent for interagency review with twelve new category change applications from the third and fourth quarters of FY 2014. (Corrected version posted August 1, 2014.)

  • July 2, 2014 – Updated the “Completed Actions” page.

  • February 5, 2014 - Posted the packet sent for interagency review with six new category change applications from the first and second quarters of FY 2014.

  • November 13, 2013 - Added the Planning Board recommendation and Council hearing record closing date for the September 2013 amendment packet. 

  • October 28, 2013 - Posted the packet sent for interagency review with 10 new category change applications from the fourth quarter of FY 2013.

  • October 16, 2013 - Posted information concerning the September 2013 County Council category change packet

  • May 30, 2013 – Posted a category change correction amendment for WSCCR 05A-OLN-02, Parker Memorial Baptist Church. (See the Administrative Actions table under the “Completed Actions” link at right)

  • May 20, 2013 - Posted the first, second, and third quarters FY 2013 new category change review packet

Links to DEP's category change application interagency review packets are provided below.

Completed Actions

The following table includes category change actions completed within the past two years.  For information on prior actions not shown, please contact DEP-WWPG staff (240-777-7716 or

Administrative Delegation Actions

AD 2015-2 (3/30/16) (PDF, 3MB)

AD 2015-1 (12/2/15) (PDF, 6.7MB)

DEP posted a corrected version of this document on 12/22/15.

AD 2015-1 Advance Action: WSCCR 15-CLO-02A (10/23/15) (PDF, 3.62MB)

AD 2014-2  (2/17/15) (PDF, 12.14MB)

AD 2014-1 (6/27/14) (PDF, 1.22MB)

AD 2013-1 (5/22/14) (PDF, 11MB)


County Council Actions

April 2015 Co. Exec. Transmittal Packet:

Resolution 18-217(7/21/15) (PDF, 2.15MB)

September 2013 Co. Exec. Transmittal Packet:

Resolution 17-956 (12/3/13) (PDF, 214KB)

March 2012 Co. Exec. Transmittal Packet: 

Resolution 17-504 (7/24/12) (PDF, 1.14MB)


Final Approval & Other Actions

WSCCR 16-OLN-01C/correction , Akbari Property (11/3/15)  (PDF, 8.27MB)

WSCCR 15-CLO-04C/correction, Derrick Brothers LLC (7/1/15)  (PDF, 1.33 MB)

WSCCR 15-POT-07C/correction, Maryland Catering Co. (7/1/15)  (PDF, 1.11 MB)

WSCCR 99A-URC-03/final, Beth Messiah Congregation (3/5/15) (PDF, .74MB)

WSSCR 11A-OLN-01, Dashes/Final (1/7/15)  (PDF, 1.33 MB)

WSCCR 09A-CKB-01/final (12/12/14), Orchard Run (PDF, 599 KB)

WSCCR 06A-OLN-01/final, Hyde (6/26/14) (PDF, MB)

WSCCR 12-OLN-01A/final, Polinger (6/5/14) (PDF, 606KB)

Frequently Asked Questions


Why would I apply for a category change?

If your property is currently served by well and/or septic and you'd like to request public water and sewer, but your property is not in the correct category for public water and/or sewer, you must fill out a water and sewer category change application.


How do I determine the category for my property?

The property's category is available as a data layer on a map. Follow these step-by-step directions to use the County's interactive MapViewer to locate your property address and check its water and sewer category.


What do the different categories mean?

The definitions of the water and sewer categories are spelled out in the category designations and definitons table.


How do I find all the property information that is asked for on the category change request form?

You can search the Maryland Real Property database and display your property records at the Maryland Department of Assessments and Taxation site.


How will my category change request be reviewed and how will a response be made?

Refer to the detailed Application Review Process in the right hand navigation.


How do I prepare for a public hearing about my category change application?

First, determine whether your application will go through the Administrative Review Process or the County Council review process. Then, follow the instructions found on the administrative review process page or the County Council review process page.


How long does the review take?

The length of time it takes for the application to be processed depends on both the date the application is submitted and the nature and details of the application. If your category change request is going through the administrative process review, your application is handled by a Planning Board that meets four times a year to adjudicate applications for category changes. If your property is going through a County Council process review, hearings on category change applications are handled twice a year, once in the spring and once in the fall.


What do I do after my category change has been approved?

If the category change connects your property to an existing utility line, contact WSSC's Permitting Services. If you need a utility line extension, contact WSSC's Development Services Group.


What if my category change request has been denied?

You may usually reapply 1 year after the date of your application denial. Before reapplying, it's useful to see if anything has changed since your initial application, such as the proximity of water and sewer lines, the zoning, or the intended sewer service envelope for the County. Also contact DEP at for an explanation of why your request was denied or if there have been significant changes in the area of interest.


What if conditional approvals have been put on my category change request?

After you've met the conditions, you must notify DEP and provide documentation proving that the conditions have been met. A final approval memo for the category change will be sent to you.


Who do I contact for more information?

For further assistance, contact the Department of Environmental Protection at or call 240.777.7700.