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Permit Database Information

Permit Sonoma uses a database system to track the many types of permits and activities processed at Permit Sonoma. The public can view Permit Sonoma activities and permits through the Permits Online permitting tool. When looking at Permit Sonoma records, it is helpful to be familiar with certain codes used in this system. This page provides links to documents that are helpful in interpreting Permit Sonoma's records both historical and current.

Area ID

The county is divided into geographic areas for the purposes of various types of inspections that PRMD staff performs. These areas are named for communities, but are not necessarily contiguous with any individual community boundary due to aggregation of several communities into the larger area. These areas are called Area IDs and are appended to the address attached to a permit. Three character IDs indicate unincorporated areas and two character IDs are incorporated cities. A more detailed definition can be found on our PRMD Area ID map (PDF).

FileTypes (aka Permit Types)

Permit Sonoma processes many types of applications and permits. As of July 1, 1999, the first three characters of the file number indicate FileType (aka Permit Type). A variety of number schemes were used on historical files which can be found in Permit Sonoma.

Parcel Report

Find out important information about your parcel including:

  • Jurisdiction (unincorporated Sonoma County or incorporated city)
  • Zoning and Land Use
  • Groundwater Availability
  • Supervisorial District
  • Williamson Act Land Contract
  • and more

Search for Your Parcel Report

Status Definitions

Permit Sonoma files track a wide variety of land development activities. Status Definitions (PDF: 91 kB) have been modified through time, to better identify milestones during the life span of a specific FileType. Many historical files reflect statuses which are no longer in use.


Each permit or activity type processed by PRMD has a subtype code (PDF: 55 kB) attached that specifies what type of project the permit or activity represents. These subtypes are unique to the different types of permits or activities.

Need Help?

Do you have questions or need help with the Permits Online tool?

Email us here. Please be specific and thorough with your questions.

Questions/Need Help

Online Permitting Tools

Experienced users can go directly to the applicable online tools below. (New users: Learn more.)

Apply for Permits Online
Apply for certain residential Building permits online. (Registration/log in required.)

Permit History Lookup
Check a property's permit history.

Permit Status & Pay Fees
Check the current status of a Permit, Inspection, or Plan Check. (Search for your permit number.)

Zoning Information
Search for a property's Zoning (by address or parcel number). Find out what the Zoning Codes mean.