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ACT NO. 61


Capital Appropriations; Bonding and Other Enactments; Corrections

This act appropriates capital funds and authorizes their financing with state bonding. The acts also adds or amends state law on a variety of subjects, including issues related to the Department of Corrections, and requires the preparation of several legislative reports.

Monetary Provisions

Appropriations in this Act

Total spending authorized by the act is $52,783,412. Of this amount, $13,778,442 is financed with General Fund School Construction Reserve funds and $4,970 is supported with proceeds from unspent capital appropriations from previous years. The balance of $39,000,000 requires the issuance of new long-term General Obligation Bonds.

The Capital Debt Affordability Advisory Committee recommended $39 million as the prudent amount of debt to be authorized for fiscal year 2002.

Of the total amount appropriated:

- 66 percent finances individual capital projects in support of agencies of state government and institutions of higher learning.

- 34 percent finances capital projects undertaken by municipalities, public school districts, and nonprofit organizations.

Eight individual appropriations in the act are of $1,000,000 or more each, and together constitute 73 percent of the total amount appropriated. The items and amounts are as follows:

· School Construction $11,582,912

· Water Pollution & Public Drinking Supply Program 7,517,500

· Southern Correctional Facility 5,000,000

· Barre McFarland House Renovations 4,500,000

· Statewide Major Maintenance 4,000,000

· Vermont State Colleges 3,000,000

· Bennington State Office Building 1,700,000

· Waterbury-Brooks Detention Facility 1,150,000


Statutory Additions and Amendments

The 2001 Capital Construction Act adds or amends state law on the following subjects. For details, see the act section identified.

· Administration of state-owned property (Sec. 2(a)(1), (a)(5), and (h))

· Management and use of capital funds (Secs. 2(e) and 25 - 32)

· Real estate transactions concerning state property (Secs. 2(a)(7), (d), (f) and (g), 2a, 9(d), 55, and 77)

· Amendments to previous capital construction acts (Secs. 2a, 9(e), 19, 21, 63, and 69)

· Parking in state lots (Secs. 34-35)

· State House security services (Sec. 65)

· School construction aid for North Bennington Graded School (Sec. 6(e))

· School construction aid for heating by renewable energy (Secs. 6(f) and 60)

· School construction aid in excess of statutory amounts (Sec. 60)

· Simplification of licensing for schools providing child care for schoolage children (Sec. 74)

· North Country Career and Technical Center (Secs. 68-69)

· Miscellaneous education provisions (Secs. 75-76)

· Drinking Water Revolving Fund (Secs. 36-42)

· Stormwater management plan (Secs. 43-44)

· Phosphorus reduction (Secs. 45-48)

· Mosquito control permitting (Secs. 51-52)

· Lands and Facilities Trust Fund (Secs. 53-54)

· Miscellaneous natural resources issues (Secs. 9(g), 49, and 50)

· Miscellaneous public safety issues (Secs. 13(b) and 64(b))

· University of Vermont and state colleges (Secs. 7(b) and 33)

· Vermont Veterans’ Home (Sec. 11)

· Vermont Granite Museum (Sec. 18(b))

· Naming of Chester A. Arthur Memorial Highway (Sec. 59)

· Granting of authority to acquire land in Irasburg by eminent domain (Sec. 61)

· Preapproval of intention to occur debt by any entity receiving a majority of operating expenses by state appropriation (Sec. 67)

· Sport shooting ranges and civil liabilty (Sec. 71)

· Corrections: inmate telephone access (Secs. 79-81)

· Corrections: solitary confinement (Sec. 82)

· Southern State Correctional Facility (Secs. 2a and 84)

· Corrections: parole; parole board; furlough (Secs. 85-88)

· Offender Reintegration – addition of new subchapter 1A to Title 28 (Sec. 89)

Legislative Reports

The 2001 Capital Construction Act also requires the following reports to the legislature and establishes the following committees. For details, see the act section identified.

· Reports to the House and Senate Committees on Institutions; due January 15, 2002:

* From the Department of Buildings and General Services; location for state employee child care in greater capitol area (Sec. 2(a)(7))

* From the Department of Buildings and General Services and Legislative Council; digital audio streaming of house and senate floor proceedings onto the world wide web (Sec. 2(c))

* From the director of the Patricia A. Hannaford Career Center in Middlebury; progress on development of workforce development center in agriculture (Sec. 6(b)(2))

* From the Agency of Natural Resources; phosphorus reduction in Lake Champlain (Sec. 45)

* From the Capitol Complex Commission; viewsheds or transition zones for the capitol complex district (Sec. 62)

* From the Department of Buildings and General Services; relocation of Brattleboro sub-troop barracks to Putney (Sec. 64(a))

* From the Departments of Fish and Wildlife and Forests, Parks and Recreation; public access to John Hancock Easement lands in Norton (Sec. 70)

· Report from the Department of Fish and Wildlife to the House and Senate Committees on Institutions, the House Committee on Fish, Wildlife and Water Resources, and the Senate Committee on Natural Resources and Energy; impact of establishing a reciprocal fishing license with New York on Lake Champlain; due January 15, 2002 (Sec. 9(f))

· Report from a special committee established to consider issues concerning leaseholders of land within the West Mountain Wildlife Management Area to the House Committees on Institutions and on Natural Resources and Energy; due January 15, 2002 (Sec. 57)

· Report from the Departments of Education and Social and Rehabilitation Services to the State Board of Education and the House and Senate Committees on Education; playground safety; due January 15, 2002 (Sec. 74)

· Report from a special committee established concerning vocational training and distance learning for inmates to the House and Senate Committees on Institutions, on Education, and on General Affairs and Housing; proposed legislation due January 15, 2002 (Sec. 83)

Special Committees and Taskforces

The 2001 Capital Construction Act also establishes the following committees and taskforces. For details, see the act section identified.

· Department of Buildings and General Services and chairs and vice-chairs of House and Senate Committees on Institutions; oversee and direct planning and design of State House addition (Sec. 2(b))

· Agency of Natural Resources; convene taskforce to develop stormwater management plan consisting of representatives of municipalities, state agencies, conservation groups, business, and industry; at least six meetings between July 1, 2001 and January 1, 2002 (Sec. 44)

Effective Date: All sections take effect on June 16, 2001 except for the following: Sec. 32 (relating to issuance of bonds) applies rectroactively to July 1, 2000; Sec. 80 (inmate records fund) takes effect July 1, 2002; and Sec. 81 (inmate records fund revision) takes effect July 1, 2005.