House lawmakers pass reforms to Vermont land use law

Published: Feb. 28, 2020 at 6:12 PM EST
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Fifty years after it was enacted, Vermont legislators are making changes to Act 250.

The goal was to update the land use law to address issues like climate change.

The bill passed in the House on Friday on a count of 88-52.

Changes included in the bill aim to focus development in urban centers while protecting Vermont's rural countryside.

"It's been a long road to get where we are. This bill strikes a great balance to protect our ecosystem and work on climate issues while also releasing lands for development where we wanted it to happen," said Rep. Amy Sheldon, D-Addison.

"It was in the committee for a year and a half and I still think it came out, I thought, as a bad bill," said Rep. Pattie McCoy, R-Rutland. "It did pass but we're hopeful that the Senate will get it and do even more work on it."

The House was pushing to get the bill approved ahead of the town meeting crossover deadline. It now goes to the Senate.

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