Vt. lawmakers reach agreement on lake shoreland protection bill - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Vt. lawmakers reach agreement on lake shoreland protection bill

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MONTPELIER, Vt. - A series of tense negotiations resulted in a compromise bill designed to protect Vermont's lakes.

The shoreline protection bill merges differing versions passed by the House and Senate earlier this session. It creates development and land management restrictions for property owners living around lakes.

Communities that already have rules on the books can keep them, provided they are more stringent and not less.

"I'm very, very happy that we're doing this. I think this is a sign that we really care about what happens to Vermont and what happens for our water quality," said Sen. Bob Hartwell, D-Bennington County.

The bill ultimately received unanimous support from the members of the conference committee. If the full Senate and House sign off on the measure, the governor is expected to sign it into the law.

A bill protecting the state's rivers and streams will not pass this year, but committee members say they hope this agreement paves the way for that measure next year.

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