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Environmental Health Permits

Under the authority of Boston Board of Health and state regulations, the Boston Public Health Commission regulates a variety of industries operating in the city to ensure the safety and well being of residents. Yearly licenses and individual project permits are issued for a fee to businesses and individuals by the Board of Health and inspectors may perform routine and complaint-based health inspections of businesses and facilities to ensure that they remain in compliance with applicable laws and regulations. Learn more about our permitting services here.  ​​​​​

Asbestos Abatement Project Permits
All asbestos removal or repair projects in Boston require a permit issued by the Environmental Health Office. While it is not against the law to have asbestos in good condition present in a building, defective or damaged asbestos materials must be either repaired or removed by a licensed contractor working under a permit.  
Businesses, residential property owners, or asbestos contractors can download the following documents for their use and submittal to the Environmental Health Office.

Asbestos Regulations
Asbestos Abatement Project Permit

Biosafety Regulations and Permits

Certain types of biological research laboratories operating in Boston require oversight and/or permitting through the Environmental Health Office of the Boston Public Health Commission. The Biological and Laboratory Safety Program oversees these activities.  

Body Art Establishment Permits and Practitioner Licenses

For the protection of the health of artists and clients, places for the practice of tattooing, piercing, and other body art require a permit from the Environmental Health Office. Persons performing Body Art in Boston, whether as a permanent or temporary artist, or through a convention, require an individual practition​er’s license from the Environmental Health Office.  ​​

Indoor Skating Rink Permits 
The Environmental Health Office enforces the MA Department of Public Health Indoor Ice Skating Rink Regulations in Boston.  Every operator of an ice skating rink in Boston using ice surfacing equipment (Zamboni​, etc.) that utilizes fossil fuels must apply for and receive a permit from the Environmental Health Office.

Ice Rink​ Regulations

Junkyards/Solid Waste/Recycling/Container Storage Lot
Solid Waste facilities (transfer stations, Incinerators, and Landfills) are regulated through site assignments from the Boston Public Health Commission. Application for Site Assignment is made through the MA Department of Environmental Protection and the Environmental Health Office.  Junk Yards, Container Storage Lots, and Recycling Facilities require a site specific installation permit and an operating permit from the Boston Public Health Commission. Application should be made through the Environmental Health Office.  

Medical Marijuana Permits​

All registered  Medical Marijuana Dispensaries in Boston must receive a permit from the Environmental Health Office before opening and must renew the permit annually. RMD agents must also register annually with the Environmental Health Office.

Medical Marijuana Regulations
Medical Marijuana Guidelines
RMD Permit Application Form
Dispensary Agent Permit Application Form

Nail Salon Permits
To protect the health and safety of clients and staff, all nail salons (any business offering nail services such as manicures and pedicures) located in the city of Boston are regulated and licensed by the Boston Public Health Commission and require an annual permit to operate their business in the City of Boston.  

Nail Salon Regulations​

Tanning Facility Permits
The Environmental Health Office implements and enforces the Massachusetts Department of Public Health Regulations governing the operation of facilities that provide tanning services. These regulations set requirements for safety procedures, warning signs, and restrictions on who can use or operate tanning equipment. In order to provide tanning services in the city of Boston, a business must have an annual tanning facility permit from the Environmental Health Office.  

Tobacco Products
The sale of tobacco and nicotine delivery products in the City of Boston is controlled and regulated by the Boston Public Health Commission.  If you intend to sell tobacco and/or nicotine delivery products you must first obtain a City of Boston Permit for Location and Sales of Tobacco and/or Nicotine Delivery Products. ​

Industrial, irrigation, geothermal, and human consumption water wells in the City of Boston are regulated by the Boston Public Health Commission’s Environmental Health Office.  A permit is required prior to the construction of a well and an annual use permit is required to operate the well.  Certain well types such as monitoring wells are exempt from the permit requirements.  

For more information on our permitting services, please contact the Environmental Health Office at (617) 534-5965.      



Boston Public Health Commission
1010 Massachusetts Ave, 6th Floor, Boston, MA 02118.
Phone:(617) 534-5395 Email: