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Soil Erosion and Sedimentation Control

The Van Buren County Drain Commissioners office is the State of Michigan designated agency for the “Soil Erosion and Sedimentation Control Act”, Part 91, Public Act 451, 1994 (as amended by 2000 PA 504). The primary objective is to protect the watercourses within the county from sediment loads caused by unchecked soil erosion.

Soil erosion caused by moving wind and water is an important factor in Van Buren County. Approximately 74,100 cropland acres are eroding faster than the land can tolerate and be expected to remain productive. These areas lose 15,819,400 bushels of soil each year – amounting to some 213 bushels of topsoil washed or blown from each acre. Soil erosion occurs throughout the county wherever soil is exposed to the effects of wind and moving water. Wind erosion has been described as severe in the Southwest quarter of the county. (USDA, Soil Conservation Service).

The Soil Erosion County Enforcement Agent (CEA) is responsible for the administration, management and enforcement of the provisions of the Act. The CEA has the responsibility of overseeing all non-agricultural earth change activities within Van Buren County, that are one or more acres in area and/or within 500 feet of a watercourse or lake. The CEA administers more than two hundred permit applications annually with permit fees accounting for the primary source of funding for the program. Private single family residences and outbuildings comprise the majority of permit applications followed by plat developments and commercial/industrial projects.

Holiday Schedule

 The following holidays will be observed through 2014.  On these dates the following offices/facilities will be closed: Courthouse and Annex Offices, County Offices located in the Administration/Land Services Building.  Animal Control, District Court in South Haven, and MSU Extension.


New Year’s Day – Monday, January 1
Martin Luther King Day – Monday, January 15
President’s Day – Monday, February 19
Memorial Day – Monday, May 28
Independence Day – Wednesday, July 4
Labor Day, Monday, September 3
Veteran’s Day – Monday, November 12
Thanksgiving Day – Thursday, November 22
Day after Thanksgiving – Friday, November 23
Christmas Eve – Monday, December 24
Christmas Day – Tuesday, December 25
New Year’s Eve – Monday, December 31

County Drain Commissioner

Van Buren County Drain Commissioner

Administration & Land Services Building, 3rd Floor

219 E. Paw Paw Street, Suite 301
Paw Paw , MI 49079

(269) 657-8241
(269) 657-8286 FAX

Hours M - F 8:30 A.M. - 5:00 P.M.


Joe Parman
Drain Commissioner

Peter Van Dop, P.E., P.S.
Engineer/Chief Deputy

Georgia Genis
Deputy Drain Commissioner

Randy Counterman

Soil Erosion & Sedimentation Control & Drain Maint. Supervisor