Do I need a permit to work in the Right-of-Way?

A permit is required when work is done in the public right-of-way or when there is an obstruction in the public right-of-way. The public right-of-way includes streets, sidewalks, alleys, driveway aprons, and other rights-of-way dedicated for public use. For more information please refer to the permits page.

Do I need a permit to construct a sidewalk, curb and gutter, driveway, or perform a curb cut?

A permit is required for this type of work and can be obtained on the permits page.

What number do I call to get underground utilities located?

Gopher State One Call 1-800-252-1166

How do I find my property irons?

It is the responsibility of the property owner to determine where the property lines are located. Property iron stakes are placed at the corners of the lot usually at or below grade, and sometimes can be found using a metal detector. The City does not provide surveying servces. Approximate property lines and dimensions can be found on Steele County's interactive mapping site.

How does the City choose which roads receive maintenance?

The City routinely inspects all the pavements within Owatonna before deciding what to do and when to do maintenance. The staff looks for common distresses such as loss of aggregates, cracks, and distortions to help determine what is going on beneath the pavement as well as the surface of the roadway. The distresses are recorded in a database that considers the road conditions, prior maintenance history, and other factors to help determine the most cost-effective treatment and appropriate time to apply the treatment. The City also reviews available funding and other projects in the area that might influence the selection of the roads.

How does the City determine special assessments?

Information regarding special assessments can be found here.

Do I need a permit to perform land disturbing activities (grading, excavation, fillings, grubbing, etc.) ?

If the project disturbance is equal to or greater than 5,000 square feet or involves the construction of a new single family residence then a Grading/ESC Permit is required. You are also required to provide erosion and sediment control/ stormwater pollution prevention BMP's during the land disturbing activities.


How do I report a pothole?

To report a serious pothole on business days between 8:00AM and 5:00PM, call 507-444-4350 or by submitting the report here. When calling please be ready to provide the location by listing the street or avenue the pothole is located and the house number or cross street nearest the pothole.

Can I deposit or store a dumpster in the street?

You must submit an application to the Public Works Department and a Certificate of Insurance is required. You can find the Dumpster-Container-Trailer Permit Application here.

Can I rake my leaves, grass clippings, or other yard waste in the street for the City to pick-up?

The City of Owatonna does NOT provide leaf or yard waste pick-up service. It is a violation of City Code to rake leaves and grass clippings into the street. This debris will plug the storm system and degrade the water quality in our nearby waterways.

Can I store landscape materials in the street?

Landscape materials cannot be stored in the roadway. The City of Owatonna does not issue permits for the storage of such materials.

When will the snowplow arrive?

City snow and ice control operations begin whenever a response is needed to protect residents/motorists from the hazards of winter driving. Full mainline and cul-de-sac plowing operations begin at various times, depending on the start time and duration of the storm event. Routes and operations are designed to maintain access of emergency vehicles to all areas as a first priority.

The plowing of high volume roadways generally occurs first, followed by residential plowing. In general, city roadways are cleared of snow within 8 to 12 hours of the end of the storm events.

How do I report mailbox damage?

You may request an investigation of mailbox damage with the Public Works Department by contacting 507-444-4350. Find more information regarding mailbox damage issues.

Who do I contact to request a temporary street closure?

Contact the Public Works Department at 507-444-4350. You are required to obtain a permit. Permits can be obtained from the permits page.


Can I plant a tree in the Right-of-Way and which trees are permitted to be planted in the boulevard?

Planting trees in the right-of-way (boulevard) is allowed by permit only. The permit can be obtained from the Public Works Department or here. The City of Owatonna has an list of boulevard trees that are approved, temporarily prohbited, and prohibited. Click here to view the list.

Who do I contact with concerns about the City trimming boulevard trees?

The City has the responsibility to verify that trees and landscape amentities in the Right-of-Way do not present a hazard to the public. City maintenance crews commonly perform tree trimming maintenance for trees located in the Right-of-Way. Please direct any questions or concerns to Public Works at (507) 444-4350.

Are there restrictions about cutting down trees on my own property?

Residents are encouraged to help keep all trees in the community alive and healthy. The City of Owatonna does not have restrictions about cutting down trees on private property unless:

  • The trees were required by the Zoning Ordinance
  • The trees were required by the Stormwater Management Ordinance

How do I prevent my tree from being infested with Emerald Ash Borer (EAB)?

The only way to prevent your ash tree from becoming infested with EAB is to have it treated with an appropriate pesticide. However, this will need to be applied regularily every 1-3 years depending on the pesticide used. A better long term solution is to remove the tree and replace with an alternative species. Visit the EAB page for more information.

What should I do if I see EAB?

If you suspect you have found EAB please contact the Arrest the Pest Hotline at arrest.the.pest@state.mn.us or (888) 545-6684.

Does the City still enforce removal of Dutch Elm Disease?

Yes, however the Forestry Division manages the occurence of Dutch Elm Disease on a limited as needed basis.


When do I need a Grading/ESC Permit?

Grading/ESC Permits are required for projects disturbing 5,000 square feet or more and for all new single family residential construction. Prior to beginning any of these activities, residents should contact the Stormwater Division at (507) 774-7300 or (507) 444-4350. For more information visit the construction stormwater page.

How do I report pollution, illicit discharge, or illegal dumping?

To report pollution or illegal dumping call (507) 774-7300 or submit a report via the stormwater page here. If calling after normal office hours or if reporting a spill call 911.

How do I report an obstruction or issue with a stormwater treatment practice (pond, basin, rain garden, etc.), stormwater drain or catch basin, or ditch?

To report obstruction or drainge issues please contact (507) 444-4350 or (507) 774-7300.

Why is the sanitary and storm sewer utlity fee necessary?

The purpose of the utlity fee is to raise revenue needed to fund continued investment to repair, replace, and upgrade aging infrastructure and to maintain compliance with Federal, State, and Local permit requirements.