Fish and Game Code Section 1602 requires any entity (defined as any person, State or local governmental agency, or public utility) to notify the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) before beginning any activity that will do one or more of the following:
- substantially divert or obstruct the natural flow of and river, stream, or lake, or
- substantially change or use any material from the bed, channel, or bank of, any river, stream, or lake*, or
- deposit or dispose of debris, waste, or other material containing crumbled, flaked, or ground pavement where it may pass into any river, stream, or lake.
*Please note that “any river, stream, or lake” includes those that are episodic (they are dry for periods of time) as well as those that are perennial (they flow year round). This includes ephemeral streams, desert washes, and watercourses with a subsurface flow. It may also apply to work undertaken within the flood plain of a body of water.
Lake and Streambed Alteration (LSA) Notification
To notify the CDFW of any of the activities described above, you must complete the following permitting process:
Step 1: Fill out the Notification of Lake or Streambed Alteration (LSA) form.
- Click here to download the LSA Notification form
- Click here to download the Instructions for the LSA Notification Form
Step 2: Determine the notification fee that will be submitted with the completed notification form.
Step 3: Submit the completed notification form with all required enclosures in hard copy and with the correct notification fee to the CDFW regional or field office that serves the area where the project will occur.
- Click here to see a list of CDFW Regional Offices and addresses
- Click here to download the supplemental forms for specific operation (timber harvest, gravel/rock extraction, etc.)
The permit application is ruled on in one of 4 ways:
- CDFW provides the applicant a response, in writing, that the activity will not substantially adversely affect an existing fish or wildlife resource, and that the applicant may commence the activity without a Lake and Streambed Alteration Agreement (LSAA), if the applicant conducts the activity as described in the notification, including any measures in the notification that are intended to protect fish and wildlife resources.
- The CDFW determines that the activity may substantially adversely affect an existing fish or wildlife resource and issues a final LSAA to the applicant that includes reasonable measures necessary to protect the resource, and the applicant conducts the activity in accordance with the agreement.
- A panel of arbitrators issues a final LSAA to the applicant in accordance with subdivision (b) of Section 1603, and the entity conducts the applicant in accordance with the agreement.
- The CDFW does not issue a draft LSAA to the applicant within 60 days from the date notification is complete, and the applicant conducts the activity as described in the notification, including any measures in the notification that are intended to protect fish and wildlife resources.