Rate Schedules


Request Mitigation    |    Stream, Wetland & Buffer Process   |   Nutrient Offset Process

Statewide Stream, Wetland & Riparian Buffer Rates

DMS uses a rate schedule to determine the payment amount required for DMS to fulfill compensatory mitigation requirements. Fees are based on the amounts and types of compensatory mitigation specified in the approved certifications or permits issued by the N.C. Division of Water Resources, as well as permits or authorizations issued by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the N.C. Division of Coastal Management, as applicable.

Once DMS receives issued permits from an applicant or applicant’s agent, the invoice can be issued.  Invoices for stream, wetland and riparian buffer credits are based on the rate schedule in place on the date the invoice is issued,  and are valid for 60 days. Subsequent invoices will reflect the rate schedule in place on the date DMS issues a new invoice. Payments based on expired invoices cannot be accepted. Permits may require payment prior to the expiration date printed on an invoice. Contact kelly.williams@ncdenr.gov to request an invoice or update an existing one.  Note: rate schedules are subject to change due to recently adopted rules that take effect March 1, 2018.

Table: Current Statewide Stream & Wetland & Riparian Buffer Rates

Fee Category Credit Unit Rate per Unit
Click below for
(Higher Fee HUs)
Rate per Unit
Click below for
(Standard Fee HUs)
 Riparian Buffer  square foot  $1.20  $1.20
 Stream  linear foot $394 $300
 Riparian Wetland  acre $71,772 $40,580
 Non-Riparian Wetland  acre $51,782 $26,631
 Coastal Wetland  acre  $176,551*  $176,551*

*effective March 1, 2018, the rate for coastal wetlands will be $560,000 per credit.

Fees for wetlands under the rates in the table above are calculated in quarter-acre increments as required by current state rules. There is a flat fee for each increment of 0.25 acres; as such, amounts up to 0.25 acres are invoiced at the quarter-acre level; amounts between 0.25 and 0.50 acres are invoiced at the half-acre levelPlease note, not all wetland types are available in all hydrologic units.  In instances when out-of-kind mitigation is offered as a condition of the acceptance, the corresponding rate schedule applies. 

Annual Adjustment for Inflation

Pursuant to 15A NCAC 02R .0402(d) the fee schedule for the DMS Statewide Stream and Wetland In-Lieu Fee Program shall be adjusted annually for inflation using the Civil Works Construction Cost Index.  The current fee schedule became effective July 1, 2017 to reflect an increase of 0.70 percent over the previous year's fee schedule.  

Pursuant to 15A NCAC 02R .0601, the fee schedule for the DMS Riparian Buffer Mitigation ILF Program shall be adjusted annually for inflation. The above rate for riparian buffer mitigation credit became effective January 31, 2018. This rate will remain in effect until the next rate adjustment or when proposed rules are adopted. This fee reflects a 3.3-percent increase over the previous rate for buffer mitigation.

Nutrient Offset Rates

DMS uses the Actual Cost Method to calculate the rates for nutrient offset credits. The total payment is based on the amount of nitrogen and phosphorus buydown specified in the verification letter issued by local governments reviewing and approving the development project.  Nutrient Offset fees are evaluated quarterly and are subject to change as a result of rule-making activity. 

Table: Nutrient Offset Fees Per Pound

Service Area Nutrient

DMS Rate (per pound)

( January 1 to March 31, 2018)

Neuse basin 8-digit HUCs 03020202, 03020203 and 03020204  Nitrogen $13.22
Neuse – 03020201 outside the Falls Lake watershed  Nitrogen $21.34
Neuse - Falls Lake watershed  Nitrogen $12.78
Neuse - Falls Lake watershed  Phosphorus $200.00
Tar-Pamlico basin  Nitrogen $8.50
Tar-Pamlico basin  Phosphorus $212.61
Jordan Lake watershed  Nitrogen $127.26
Jordan Lake watershed  Phosphorus $389.87