Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
For solid waste questions, please see the solid waste webpage.
Q: What permits do you offer, and do I need one?
A: The Benton County Road Department has permits for road approaches (driveways), oversized loads, and utilities. More information about these can be found here.
Q: Can I get a picture of my property?
A: If your property is located within a short plat (a subdivision of 4 or fewer lots), a plat (a subdivision of greater than 4 lots - streets are paved), or has a survey recorded with the County, the County Auditor’s Office can provide you with a copy of this information. You can also visit the County Assessor’s Office website and use their property search engine (a parcel number is required).
Q: What are the requirements on fences?
A: You may put a fence anywhere on your own property. You are responsible for ensuring that your fence is not built on adjacent property or within the County’s right-of-way. Benton County Road Department staff can stake the road right-of-way in front of your property; they will not stake your property frontage. Fences can be built up to six feet (6’) high without a building permit being required. Please consider how your fence may impact vehicular traffic and sight distances, particularly at intersections.
Q: Will you tell me where my property lines are?
A: We cannot provide this service. Please contact a private land surveying company to locate your property lines . Please bear in mind that a professional land surveyor is a licensed position in the State of Washington; only work completed by or under the direction of a professional land surveyor will be considered valid with respect to Washington state law.
Q: Where is the County classified as open range?
A: Small portions of northern and southern Benton County are classified as open range. For exact locations, please contact our office (786-5611 Prosser or 736-3084 Tri-Cities).
Q: How do I find out what a piece of property is zoned?
A: Please contact the County Assessor’s Office.
Q: What is a flood plain? Is my property in it?
A: A flood plain is any land surrounding a body of water (such as the Yakima River) that is likely to be flooded if flood stage is reached. To find out more, please contact the Benton County Planning Department at 786-5612 (Prosser) or 736-3086 (Tri-Cities).
Q: I want to build a house or short plat/long plat my property. Where do I start?
A: If your property is within the city limits of one of Benton County’s municipalities, please contact their respective Planning Department. If not, please contact the Benton County Planning Department.
Q: Why can't my gravel road be paved?
A: In the past, Benton County budgeted an amount each year to pave gravel roads. This program was contingent on funding and dedicated right-of-way from adjacent landowners. With budgets being reduced around the state, this program is no longer active.
However, you can ask about entering into a County Road Improvement District (CRID). A CRID allows for a section of road to be improved at the expense of those owning property adjacent. For more information, please contact our office (786-5611 Prosser or 736-3084 Tri-Cities).
Q: Can I buy gravel from the County?
A: No, Benton County purchases gravel and rock supplies with public funds, and we may not sell it to private parties or companies.
Q: Why doesn't my road get plowed (or plowed more often)?
A: The Benton County Road Department has, through its snow and ice policy, classified and prioritized the roads in the county road system in order to optimize resources to provide the greatest utility. The policy is updated on a regular basis. Input can be provided by contacting the Road Department office.
Q: Where do I get an addressing post (white signs with red numbers)?
A: Contact Benton County Building Department at 786-5612 (Prosser) or 735-3500 (Tri-Cities). The first installation of the sign is made by the County Building Department; replacements are the responsibility of the landowner.
Q: What is the difference between the green road name signs and the white road name signs?
A: The white road name signs designate a private road. To receive a name and a sign, a private road must serve five (5) or more residences. Green road name signs designate County roads. Both private and County road name signs are installed and maintained by the County Road Department.
Q: Where do I report a missing or damaged road sign?
A: A missing stop sign or warning sign should be reported immediately. Between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. call the County Road Department at 786-5611 (Prosser) or 736-3084 (Tri-Cities). Outside those hours, call non-emergency dispatch (509-628-0333). Missing or damaged street name signs or informational signs should be reported to the County Road Department at the numbers above - leave a message if after hours.
Q: Will you put up a stop sign on my private road?
A: Benton County does not install warning or informational signs, other than road name signs, on private roads. Please contact a private sign company (see the yellow pages under "Signs").