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H.869

Introduced by Committee on Transportation

Date:

Subject:  Transportation; transportation program

Statement of purpose:  This bill proposes to approve, with modifications, the state’s transportation program for fiscal year 2007 and to make miscellaneous changes in statutes relating to transportation.

AN ACT RELATING TO THE STATE’S TRANSPORTATION PROGRAM

It is hereby enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Vermont:

Sec. 1.  TRANSPORTATION PROGRAM; ADVANCEMENTS,

             CANCELLATIONS, AND DELAYS

(a)  The state’s proposed fiscal year 2007 transportation program appended to the agency of transportation’s proposed fiscal year 2007 budget, as amended by this act, is adopted to the extent federal, state, and local funds are available. 

(b)  As used in this act, unless otherwise indicated, the term “agency” means the agency of transportation and the term “secretary” means the secretary of transportation.  As used in this act, the table heading “As Proposed” means the transportation program referenced in subsection (a) of this section; the table heading “As Amended” means the amendments as made by this act; the table heading “Change” means the difference obtained by subtracting the “As Proposed” figure from the “As Amended” figure; and the term “change” or “changes” in the text refers to the project- and

program-specific amendments, the aggregate sum of which equals the net “Change” in the applicable table heading.

* * * Program Development – Paving * * *

Sec. 2.  PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT PAVING

The following modifications are made to the program

development paving program: 

(1)  Authorized spending on the statewide district leveling program is amended to read:

FY07                           As Proposed    As Amended             Change

PE                                             0                      0                      0

ROW                                        0                      0                      0

Construction               1,483,000        1,983,000           500,000

Other                                        0                      0                      0

Total                           1,483,000        1,983,000           500,000

Source of Funds

State                           1,483,000        1,983,000           500,000

Federal                                     0                      0                      0

Local                                        0                      0                      0

Total                           1,483,000        1,983,000           500,000

* * * Program Development – Roadway * * *

Sec. 3.  PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT – ROADWAY

The following modifications are made to the program development – roadway program:

(1)  A project designated as Middlebury STP 5900( ), formerly known as Middlebury M 5900(2), also known as the Cross Street Bridge project, for the extension of Cross Street (TH 47) westerly over the Vermont Railway and the Otter Creek to connect US 7 to VT 30 and VT 125, is added to the roadway program.  Authorized spending for the project is added to read:

FY07                           As Proposed    As Amended             Change

PE                                            0           100,000           100,000

ROW                                       0                      0                      0

Construction                             0                      0                      0

Other                                        0                      0                      0

Total                                         0           100,000           100,000

Source of Funds

State                                         0             10,000             10,000

Federal                                     0             80,000             80,000

Local                                        0             10,000             10,000

Total                                         0           100,000           100,000

(2)  Authorized spending for the Waterbury Main Street project, FEGC F-013-4(13) is amended to read as follows.  The funds authorized for preliminary engineering shall be used to redesign the intersection of Park Row and Main Street.  The secretary’s authority under 19 V.S.A. §10g(h) shall not apply to any spending authorized for this project.

FY07                           As Proposed    As Amended             Change

PE                                    50,000             50,000                      0

ROW                                        0           250,000           250,000

Construction                             0                      0                      0

Other                                        0                      0                      0

Total                                50,000           300,000           250,000

Source of Funds

State                                  1,500               9,000               7,500

Federal                            47,500           285,000           237,500

Local                                 1,000               6,000               5,000

Total                                50,000           300,000           250,000

(3)  Authorized spending for the Ryegate-St. Johnsbury I-91 IM IR 091-2(8) project is amended to read:

FY07                           As Proposed    As Amended             Change

PE                                   50,000                      0            -50,000

ROW                                       0                      0                      0

Construction               1,000,000                      0       -1,000,000

Total                           1,050,000                      0       -1,050,000

Source of Funds

State                              105,000                      0          -105,000

Federal                          945,000                      0          -945,000

Local                                        0                      0                      0

Total                           1,050,000                      0       -1,050,000

(4)  Authorized spending within the program development roadway development and evaluation program for the Waterford IM IR 093-1(8) project is amended to read:

FY07                           As Proposed    As Amended             Change

PE                                   25,000                      0            -25,000

ROW                                       0                      0                      0

Construction                             0                      0                      0

Total                                25,000                      0            -25,000

Source of Funds

State                                  2,500                      0              -2,500

Federal                            22,500                      0            -22,500

Local                                        0                      0                      0

Total                                25,000                      0            -25,000

(5)  Authorized spending within the program development roadway development and evaluation program for the Lyndon-Derby IM IR 091-3(6) project is amended to read:

FY07                           As Proposed    As Amended             Change

PE                                   50,000                      0            -50,000

ROW                                        0                      0                      0

Construction                             0                      0                      0

Total                                50,000                      0            -50,000

Source of Funds

State                                  5,000                      0              -5,000

Federal                            45,000                      0            -45,000

Local                                        0                      0                      0

Total                                50,000                      0            -50,000

* * * Program Development – Safety and Traffic Operations * * *

Sec. 4.  PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT – SAFETY AND TRAFFIC

             OPERATIONS

The following modifications are made to the program development – safety and traffic operations program:

(1)  Authorized spending for the Manchester STP 0137(17) project is amended to read:

FY07                           As Proposed    As Amended             Change

PE                                            0                      0                      0

ROW                             300,000           300,000                      0

Construction               1,000,000        1,000,000                      0

Total                           1,300,000        1,300,000                      0

Source of Funds

State                              115,960             26,760            -89,200

Federal                       1,054,040        1,243,240           189,200

Local                             130,000             30,000          -100,000

Total                           1,300,000        1,300,000                      0

(2)  Project Colchester TCSP TCSE ( ) has received a transportation community system preservation (TCSP) earmark in the amount of $250,000 for a project identified as Route 15 streetscape and pedestrian crossing signal.  This project shall be added to program development safety and traffic operations development and evaluation as follows:  Colchester TCSP TCSE ( ) Route 15 Streetscape and Pedestrian Crossing Signal.

* * * Program Development – Bike and Pedestrian Facilities * * *

Sec. 5.  PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT – BIKE AND PEDESTRIAN

             FACILITIES

The following modifications are made to the program development – bike and pedestrian facilities program:

(1)  Project Winooski TCSP TCSE ( ) has received a transportation community system preservation (TCSP) earmark in the amount of $150,000 for a project identified as Winooski east bicycle and pedestrian path.  This project shall be added to program development bike and pedestrian facilities development and evaluation as follows:  Winooski TCSP TCSE ( ) Winooski East Bicycle and Pedestrian Path.

* * * Bridge Maintenance * * *

Sec. 6.  BRIDGE MAINTENANCE PROGRAM – STATE HIGHWAY

            BRIDGES

The following modifications are made to the bridge maintenance program: 

(1)  Authorized spending on state highway statewide maintenance activities is amended to read:

FY07                           As Proposed    As Amended             Change

PE                                             0                      0                      0

ROW                                       0                      0                      0

Construction                  526,150           526,150                      0

Other                          1,947,529        2,375,223           427,694

Total                           2,473,679        2,901,373           427,694

Source of Funds

State                           1,332,759        1,760,453           427,694

Federal                       1,140,920        1,140,920                      0

Local                                        0                      0                      0

Total                           2,473,679        2,901,373           427,694

* * * Maintenance * * *

Sec. 7.  MAINTENANCE

(a)  Total authorized spending in the maintenance program is modified as follows:

FY07                            As Proposed   As Amended             Change

Personal Services       32,216,294     32,216,294                      0

Operating Expenses    27,946,300     27,589,800          -356,500

Grants                             672,000          672,000                      0

Total                           60,834,594     60,478,094          -356,500

Source of Funds

State                          57,800,594     57,596,094          -204,500

Federal                         3,034,000       2,882,000          -152,000

Total                          60,834,594     60,478,094          -356,500

(b)  These changes are made to eliminate funding for the intelligent transportation statewide RWIS project.

* * * Public Transit * * *

Sec. 8.  PUBLIC TRANSIT

The following modifications are made to the public transit program:

(1)  Authorized spending for the three‑year demonstration – operating program is amended to read:

FY07                           As Proposed    As Amended             Change

Other                          1,250,000        1,450,000           200,000

Total                           1,250,000        1,450,000           200,000

Source of Funds

State                                         0                      0                      0

Federal                       1,250,000        1,450,000           200,000

Local                                        0                      0                      0

Total                           1,250,000        1,450,000           200,000

* * * Operations – Transportation Buildings * * *

Sec. 9.  OPERATIONS – TRANSPORTATION BUILDINGS

The following modifications are made to the operations – transportation buildings:

(1)  Authorized spending for the Ferrisburgh maintenance and DMV facility project is amended to read:

FY07                           As Proposed    As Amended             Change

Construction               1,562,879                      0       -1,562,879

Total                           1,562,879                      0       -1,562,879

Source of Funds

State                           1,562,879                      0       -1,562,879

Federal                                     0                      0                      0

Local                                        0                      0                      0

Total                           1,562,879                      0       -1,562,879

* * * Program Development – Town Highway Bridges * * *

Sec. 10.  PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT – TOWN HIGHWAY BRIDGES

The following modifications are made to the program development – town highway bridges program:

(1)  Authorized spending for the Hunt Street bridge project, BRF 1000(16), is amended to read:

FY07                           As Proposed    As Amended             Change

PE                                   20,000           100,000             80,000

ROW                                        0                      0                      0

Construction                             0                      0                      0

Total                                20,000           100,000             80,000

Source of Funds

State                                  2,000             10,000               8,000

Federal                            16,000             80,000             64,000

Local                                 2,000             10,000               8,000

Total                                20,000           100,000             80,000

(2)  In addition to other modifications made in this section, authorized spending in the town bridge program is increased by $527,950 consisting of $53,875 in transportation funds, $420,000 in federal funds and $53,875 in local funds.  The additional funds shall be allocated in the discretion of the secretary to advance projects in the state’s fiscal year 2007 town bridge program.

* * * Town Highway * * *

Sec. 11.  TOWN HIGHWAY STATE AID

Authorized spending on the town highway state aid program is amended to read:

FY07                           As Proposed    As Amended             Change

Personal Services                      0                      0                      0

Operating Expenses                  0                      0                      0

Grants                       24,982,744      26,487,669        1,504,925

Total                         24,982,744      26,487,669        1,504,925

Source of Funds

State                         24,982,744      26,487,669        1,504,925

Federal                                     0                      0                      0

Total                         24,982,744      26,487,669        1,504,925

Sec. 12.  TOWN HIGHWAY STRUCTURES

Authorized spending on the town highway structures program is amended to read:

FY07                           As Proposed    As Amended             Change

Personal Services                      0                      0                      0

Operating Expenses                  0                      0                      0

Grants                         3,494,500        3,697,868           203,368

Total                           3,494,500        3,697,868           203,368

Source of Funds

State                           3,494,500        3,697,868           203,368

Federal                                     0                      0                      0

Total                           3,494,500        3,697,868           203,368

Sec. 13.  TOWN HIGHWAY CLASS 2 ROADWAY

Authorized spending on the town highway class 2 roadway program is amended to read:

FY07                           As Proposed    As Amended             Change

Personal Services                      0                      0                      0

Operating Expenses                  0                      0                      0

Grants                         4,748,750        5,053,802           305,052

Total                           4,748,750        5,053,802           305,052

Source of Funds

State                           4,748,750        5,053,802           305,052

Federal                                     0                      0                      0

Total                           4,748,750        5,053,802           305,052

Sec. 14.  TOWN HIGHWAY CLASS 1 SUPPLEMENTAL

Authorized spending on the town highway class 1 supplemental program is amended to read:

FY07                           As Proposed    As Amended             Change

Personal Services                      0                      0                      0

Operating Expenses                  0                      0                      0

Grants                           128,750           149,087             20,337

Total                              128,750           149,087             20,337

Source of Funds

State                              128,750           149,087             20,337

Federal                                     0                      0                      0

Total                              128,750           149,087             20,337

Sec. 15.  TOWN EMERGENCY FUND

Funding of the town emergency fund is modified to read:

FY07                           As Proposed    As Amended             Change

PE                                             0                      0                      0

ROW                                       0                      0                      0

Construction                             0                      0                      0

Other                             750,000        1,500,000           750,000

Total                              750,000        1,500,000           750,000

Source of Funds

State                              750,000        1,500,000           750,000

Federal                                     0                      0                      0

Local                                        0                      0                      0

Total                              750,000        1,500,000           750,000

* * * Department of Motor Vehicles * * *

Sec. 16.  DEPARTMENT OF MOTOR VEHICLES

Authorized spending by the department of motor vehicles is amended to read as follows.  The additional funds are authorized for expenditure in support of the department’s computer system upgrade project.

FY07                           As Proposed    As Amended             Change

Personal Services      16,580,740      16,580,740                      0

Operating Expenses    7,177,547        8,177,547        1,000,000

Grants                            311,300           311,300                      0

Total                         24,069,587      25,069,587        1,000,000

Source of Funds

State                         22,744,734      23,744,734        1,000,000

Federal                       1,324,853        1,324,853                      0

Total                         24,069,587      25,069,587        1,000,000

* * * U.S. Route 5; Hartford Utility Relocations * * *

Sec. 17.  U.S. ROUTE 5; HARTFORD UTILITY RELOCATIONS

(a)  Notwithstanding 19 V.S.A. chapter 16 or any other law or rule of law pertaining to relocation of utility facilities to accommodate highway construction, the agency of transportation, in connection with the Hartford RS 0113(40) (reconstruction of U.S. 5) project, is authorized to pay the cost of relocating municipal utilities located within the state highway right-of-way.

(b)  The town of Hartford shall be responsible for reimbursing the agency for:

(1)  nonfederal funds required to match the $1.2-million federal earmark provided in the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act:  A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU), Pub. L. 109-59;

(2)  municipal utility relocation costs which are in excess of the earmarked federal funds and any nonfederal funds required to match the earmarked federal funds; and

(3)  municipal utility relocation costs which are not eligible for federal participation. 

* * * Cancellation of Projects * * *

Sec. 18.  CANCELLATION OF PROJECTS

Pursuant to 19 V.S.A. § 10g(f) (legislative approval for cancellation of projects), the general assembly approves cancellation of the following projects:

(1)  Program development - roadway:

(A)  Wilmington NH 010-1(33) (VT 9 bypass of Wilmington village) (town vote rejected bypass recommendation contained in final environmental impact statement);

* * * Railroads * * *

Sec. 19.  APPROVAL OF TRANSACTIONS REGARDING

               STATE-OWNED RAILROAD PROPERTY

(a)  Subject to the rights of the Washington County Railroad Company under its June 4, 2003 operating agreement, the secretary of transportation, as agent for the state of Vermont, is authorized to sell, for fair market value, the following parcels of land along the state-owned railroad line between Hartford (White River Junction) and Newport City:

(1)  town of St. Johnsbury; valuation section V43/61; 2,035 square feet on the westerly side of railroad, currently under lease and used as parking lot for retail store, to be conveyed to ECH, LC;

(2)  town of Lyndon; valuation section V43/70; land on westerly side of Lyndonville railroad yard, to be conveyed to abutting landowner Hebert Properties, LLC;

(3)  town of Lyndon; valuation section V43/70; land on westerly side of Lyndonville railroad yard, to be conveyed to Estate of Donald B. Pearson;

(4)  town of Lyndon; valuation section V43/70; land on westerly side of Lyndonville railroad yard, between church and railroad and currently used for church parking, to be conveyed to Lyndonville United Methodist Church;

(5)  town of Lyndon; valuation section V43/70; land on westerly side of Lyndonville railroad yard, between parsonage and railroad and currently used for church parking, to be conveyed to Lyndonville United Methodist Church;

(6)  town of Lyndon; valuation section V43/70; land on westerly side of the railroad, to be conveyed to Wheeler Building Supply, Inc.;  

(7)  town of Barton; valuation section V43/90; approximately 7,430 square feet of land under and surrounding single-family dwelling house owned by Curtis E. Varney, to be conveyed to Curtis E. Varney;

(8)  town of Barton; valuation section V43/90; approximately 1,564 square feet of land between U.S. 5 and former Libby property (144 Lake Street), to be conveyed to abutting landowner Armand St. Martin;

(9)  town of Barton; valuation section V43/90; approximately 2,109 square feet of land between U.S. 5 and former Metcalf property (146 Lake Street), to be conveyed to abutting landowner Armand St. Martin; 

(10)  town of Barton; valuation section V43/90; approximately 0.11 acres of land located between U.S. 5 and property known as 112 Lake Street, to be conveyed to abutting landowner Jackaline J. Swett; and

(11)  town of Barton; valuation section V43/90; approximately 0.12 acres of land located between U.S. 5 and property known as 120 Lake Street, to be conveyed to abutting landowner Jackaline J. Swett.

(b)  The secretary of transportation, as agent for the state of Vermont, is authorized to sell, for fair market value, the following parcels of land along the state-owned railroad line between St. Johnsbury and Swanton:

(1)  town of Danville; valuation section V50/7; land between previous and current location of Town Highway #63, to be conveyed to abutting landowners Mark A. Palmieri and Carol J. Palmieri; 

(2)  town of Morristown; valuation section V50/51; approximately 3.7 acres adjacent to engine house and currently leased for batch plant, to be conveyed to lessee S. T. Griswold & Company, Inc.; however, if this conveyance is not consummated, the Lamoille Economic Development Corporation shall have the option to purchase; and

(3)  town of Morristown; valuation section V50/51; approximately 5.3 acres under and surrounding engine house, to be conveyed to the Lamoille Economic Development Corporation. 

(c)  The conveyances authorized by this section shall not include any lands within 33 feet of the centerline of any active railroad track (unless otherwise agreed by the railroad operator) or, in the case of the former Lamoille Valley Railroad, any land within 33 feet of the centerline of the former main line track.  The conveyances shall include appropriate covenants for the protection of continuing railroad operations or, in the case of the former Lamoille Valley Railroad, railbanking and interim trail use.  The prospective purchasers shall be required to bear the cost of any required surveys as well as the cost of obtaining any required subdivision or boundary adjustment approvals.

(d)  The authority granted by this section shall expire on June 30, 2008.

Sec. 20.  5 V.S.A. § 3587 is amended to read:

§ 3587.  OBSTRUCTING CROSSING MORE THAN FIVE MINUTES;

              PENALTY; EXEMPTION

(a)  When a railroad crosses a highway or road required for farm use at rail level, the company operating such railroad shall not, nor shall its officer, agent, or employees permit an engine or railroad car, or any portion thereof, to stand on any part of such highway or road for a longer period than five minutes at any one time, or in shunting, to obstruct public traffic for a longer period than five minutes at any one time.  A person or corporation violating the provisions of this section shall be fined not more than $50.00 nor less than $5.00.

(b)  The provisions of this section shall not apply to:

(1)  any grade crossings now existing or hereinafter established over the line of railroad extending through the city of Rutland between the River Street underpass and the Pine Street overpass; and

(2)  the grade crossing in the town of Norton between the St. Lawrence & Atlantic Railroad and the class 4 town highway known as Gagnon Road (town highway #12).

Sec. 21.  AGENCY OF TRANSPORTATION POLICY FOR SELLING

               RAILROAD PROPERTY

(a)  The agency of transportation is directed to establish a policy for selling state-owned railroad property.  The policy shall, at least, address the following issues and shall set forth the criteria by which:

(1)  A decision is made or not made to sell the property.

(2)  A selling price is derived.

(3)  All offers to sell are either in or out of a bidding process and the specifics of the bidding process.

(b)  Prior to any sale of railroad property, the agency shall notify all agencies and departments of state government to afford the option of acquiring the property.

(c)  The agency shall report to the members of the house and senate committees on transportation by January 15, 2007 on the policy required by subsection (a) of this section.

Sec. 22.  AMTRAK

The agency shall not purchase, contract for construction, or otherwise contract for the use of any railroad locomotion or rolling stock equipment intended for use in connection with Amtrak services without the approval of the joint fiscal committee and the joint transportation oversight committee.  The agency shall notify members of the house and senate committees on transportation of any such submission to the joint fiscal committee and joint transportation oversight committee.

Sec. 23.  REVIEW OF STATE RAIL PROGRAM; DIALOGUE WITH

              UNIVERSITY OF VERMONT REGARDING A RAIL

               AUTHORITY

(a)  The members of the rail authority study committee established pursuant to the provisions of Sec. 33(a) of No. 80 of the Acts of 2005, shall reconvene in August 2006 and January 2007 to review the state’s rail program.  Legislative members of the committee shall be entitled to per diem compensation and expense reimbursement as provided in 2 V.S.A. § 406(a).  Other members of the committee who are not state employees shall be entitled to per diem compensation and expense reimbursement as provided in 32 V.S.A. § 1010.

(b)  The agency of transportation should engage in a dialogue with the University of Vermont transportation center to assess further review of a rail authority in Vermont and other possible structures.

Sec. 24.  19 V.S.A. § 10e(c) is added to read:

(c)  The agency of transportation shall, by January 15 of each year, submit a rail report to the members of the house and senate committees on transportation.  The report shall include the status of projects programmed for delivery during the previous calendar year and a summary of any changes to the agency’s organizational structure which may affect project delivery.

* * * Federal Earmarks * * *

Sec. 25.  19 V.S.A. § 7(k) is amended to read:

(k)  Upon being apprised of the enactment of a federal law which makes provision for a federal earmark for a transportation project within the state of Vermont, the agency of transportation shall promptly notify the members of the House and Senate Transportation Committees house and senate committees on transportation and the joint fiscal office.  Such notification shall include all available summary information regarding the terms and conditions of the federal earmark.  For purposes of this section, federal earmark means a congressional designation of federal aid funds for a specific transportation project or program.  When the general assembly is not in session, upon obtaining the approval of the joint transportation oversight committee, the agency is authorized to add new projects to the transportation program in order to secure the benefits of federal earmarks.

* * * Transportation Funds for Support of Government Functions * * *

Sec. 26.  19 V.S.A. § 11a is amended to read:

§ 11a.  TRANSPORTATION FUNDS APPROPRIATED FOR SUPPORT OF

            GOVERNMENT

The maximum amount of transportation funds that may be appropriated for the support of government, other than for the agency of transportation, the transportation board, transportation pay act funds, the cost of maintaining and staffing rest areas, construction of transportation capital facilities used by the agency of transportation, and transportation debt service, for fiscal year 2006 shall not exceed 18.0 percent of the total of the prior fiscal year transportation fund appropriations and, for fiscal year 2007 shall not exceed $38,221,563 $38,349,046.00, and for fiscal year 2008 shall not exceed $37,000,000.00.

* * * Municipal Equipment Loan Fund * * *

Sec. 27.  29 V.S.A. § 1602(a) and (b) are amended to read:

(a)  Upon application of a municipality or two or more municipalities applying jointly, the state treasurer may loan money from the fund to that municipality or municipalities for the purchase of equipment.  Purchases of equipment eligible for loans from the fund shall have a useful life of at least three years and a purchase price of at least $20,000.00 but shall not be eligible for loans in excess of $90,000.00 $110,000.00 from this fund.

(b)  The treasurer is authorized to establish terms and conditions, including repayment schedules of up to three five years for loans from the fund to assure repayment of loans to the fund.  Before a municipality may receive a loan from the fund, it shall give to the treasurer security for the repayment of the funds.  The security shall be in such form and amount as the treasurer may determine and may include a lien on the equipment financed by the loan.

* * * Motor Vehicle and Highway User Fees * * *

Sec. 28.  32 V.S.A. § 602(2)(B) is amended to read:

For purposes of this chapter:

* * *

(2)  “Fee”:

* * *

(B)  The following charges are exempt from the provisions of this subchapter:

(i)  A charge established under the jurisdiction of the public service board as provided by sections 20, 21, and 218 of Title 30.

(ii)  A charge established by the liquor control board as provided by Title 7.

(iii)  A duly adopted charge concerning only inmates of a correctional or detention facility, students enrolled in an educational institution, or patients admitted to a hospital or rehabilitation facility.

(iv)  Monies paid into an enterprise or internal service fund.

(v)  A transfer between agencies of state government or between state government and a political subdivision, as compensation for a service, to support a regulatory activity, or to account for surplus property.

(vi)  Monies from interest and premium payments, rent or lease payments, proceeds of fair market or negotiated sales, or sales of commercially available items.

(vii)  Motor vehicle and other highway user fees authorized by the general assembly for the support of the transportation fund.

(viii)  Any other charge exempt by law.

* * * Special Purpose Vehicle Registration * * *

Sec. 29.  23 V.S.A. § 4(74) is added to read:

(74)  “Special purpose vehicle” means a vehicle that is used exclusively for a specific purpose and shall include, but not be limited to, all truck cranes, truck shovels, trucks carrying a permanently mounted water well drilling machine, well drilling tender trucks, road oilers, calcium chloride distributors, bituminous distributors, concrete form trucks, street sweepers, full or semi‑flotation applicator vehicles, graders, rubber-tired loaders, loader backhoe combinations, concrete pump trucks, and trucks used to transport buildings by the use of “transportation dollies.”

Sec. 30.  23 V.S.A. § 367(b)–(j) are amended to read:

(b)  The annual fee for registration of a truck crane or truck shovel special purpose vehicle shall be $105.00 $147.00.

(c)  The annual fee for registration of the so-called fork lift truck, without load, shall be $65.00.

(d)  The annual fee of a truck carrying a permanently mounted water well drilling machine is $65.00, and the annual fee for a well drilling tender truck is $105.00.

(e)  The annual fee for registration of each road oiler, calcium chloride distributor or bituminous distributor shall be $105.00.

(f)(1)  The annual fee for registration of a farm truck of a total weight, determined as provided in subsection (a) of this section, used only for the transportation of agricultural products produced on, and material to be used in connection with the operation of, a farm or farms owned, operated, or occupied by the registrant, or motor trucks which are agricultural custom service vehicles as defined in subdivision 4(70) of this title, shall be $40.00 if the total weight is less than 18,000 pounds.  If the gross weight is at least 18,000 pounds but is less than 35,000 pounds, the fee shall be $61.00.  If the gross weight is at least 35,000 pounds but does not exceed 60,000 pounds, the fee shall be $115.00.  If the gross weight exceeds 60,000 pounds but does not exceed 80,000 pounds, the fee shall be $182.50.

(2)  In the event that a farm truck or agricultural custom service vehicle so registered is thereafter registered for general use during the same registration year, the fee or a pro rata portion thereof shall be applied toward the fee for general registration.  The provisions of this subdivision shall not apply to licensed cattle and poultry dealers.

(g)  The annual fee for registration of a truck utilized for the single purpose of carrying concrete forms shall be $105.00.

(h)  The annual fee for registration of each street sweeper, full or semi-flotation applicator vehicles, grader, rubber-tired loader and loader backhoe combination shall be $105.00.

(e)  Loader backhoes used primarily for agricultural related purposes are exempt from the provisions of this subsection section.

(i)(f)  The annual fee for registration of a truck used for logging shall be determined pursuant to the provisions of subsection (a) of this section.  Trucks used for logging shall be those motor vehicles used exclusively for the transportation of harvested forest products from a forested site.

(j)  The annual registration fee for registration of a truck used exclusively to transport a building by the use of a “transportation dolly” as defined in subdivision (54) of section 4 of this title shall be $105.00.

* * * Elders and Persons with Disabilities Funding Formula * * *

Sec. 31.  PUBLIC TRANSIT; ELDERS AND PERSONS WITH

               DISABILITIES FUNDING FORMULA

The agency of transportation shall, in concert with the elders and persons with disabilities advisory committee, review the elders and persons with disabilities funding formula for the effectiveness of the mileage component.  The agency shall adjust the funding formula, if appropriate, before the state fiscal year 2007 allocations are announced.

* * * Closed Season for Snowmobile Operation * * *

Sec. 32.  23 V.S.A. § 3201(12) is amended to read:

For the purposes of this chapter:

* * *

(12)  “Closed season” shall be defined as the time from April 16 to the Sunday in December preceding the third Monday December 14.

* * * Transportation Program * * *

Sec. 33.  19 V.S.A. § 10g(d) and (e)(1) are amended to read:

(d)(1)  In addition to the multiyear transportation program described in subsection (a) of this section, the agency shall annually present to the general assembly an analysis of the balance between the state’s commitments to transportation projects and total available resources for projects over the ten‑year period commencing with the fiscal year of the transportation program.  The analysis shall include, on a current dollar basis, an estimate of the total remaining cost of all projects in construction, development, and evaluation or candidate status in the agency’s proposed multiyear transportation program, including individual estimates and projected schedules for all projects with a total project cost estimate in excess of $10 million, and an estimate, on a current dollar basis, of the total resources projected to be available to cover project expenses during the ten-year period.

(2)  The projection of available resources called for in subdivision (1) of this subsection shall be determined in the following manner.  Total appropriations to the agency exclusive of internal service funds for each of the five previous fiscal years shall be determined.  From that total for each fiscal year shall be deducted appropriations for annual programs and other noncapital project agency activities.  Appropriations for administration, overhead, and other ongoing agency functions required for the support of capital project activities shall be apportioned on a reasonable basis and added back to the total which shall represent the total of appropriations for and in support of the agency’s capital project activities for that fiscal year.  The resulting appropriations totals of capital project-related appropriations shall be adjusted for inflation in a procedure approved by the joint fiscal committee.  The resulting inflation adjusted figures for the five previous fiscal years shall be averaged, and the average multiplied by ten shall be used as the estimate of the total resources projected to be available to cover project expenses during the ten-year period.

(3)  To the extent the estimate of remaining costs exceeds the estimate of available resources, the agency shall submit to the general assembly a plan to bring costs and resources into balance.  The plan shall include recommendations regarding the scheduling, suspension, or cancellation of projects, cost saving initiatives, revenue raising initiatives, and other organizational, project design, project execution, or financial measures or initiatives which shall ensure that the state’s commitments will be adequately and realistically funded.

(e)  In addition to the multiyear transportation program described in subsection (a) of this section, the agency shall annually present to the general assembly a description of all projects with respect to which:

(1)  the total project cost estimate exceeds $5,000,000.00 $10,000,000.00;

* * * Prioritization Schedule for all Transportation Projects * * *

Sec. 34.  19 V.S.A. § 10b(c) is added to read:

(c)  The agency of transportation, in developing each of the program prioritization systems schedules for all modes of transportation, shall include the following throughout the process:

(1)  The agency shall annually solicit input from each of the regional planning commissions on regional priorities within each schedule, and those inputs shall be factored into the prioritizations for each program area.  The agency shall work with the regional planning commissions in developing a standardized method for all of the regional inputs, and the weight assigned for regional inputs to each category shall be conspicuously noted in each schedule.  The commissions shall be afforded the opportunity of adding new projects to the schedules.

(2)  Each year the agency shall provide in the front of the transportation program book a detailed explanation describing the factors in the prioritization system that creates each project list.

(3)  The noninterstate primary state system shall have the same importance factor attached to it as the interstate primary system.

* * * Highway Improvement Projects – Pavement Condition * * *

Sec. 35.  19 V.S.A. § 10c(k) is added to read:

(k)  The agency of transportation, in establishing the priority for highway improvement projects, shall provide that not more than 20 percent of highways in the pavement condition index be rated in the category of very poor.

* * * Enhancement Grant Program * * *

Sec. 36.  19 V.S.A. § 38(b), (g), and (h) are amended to read:

(b)  The Vermont transportation enhancement grant program is created.  The grant program shall be funded as provided in subsection (c) of this section and shall be administered by the agency.  The grant program shall be limited to enhancement activities as defined in 23 U.S.C. § 101(a)(35) which are sponsored by municipalities, nonprofit organizations, or political subdivisions of the state other than the agency.  Notwithstanding subsection 38(c) of this title, in fiscal year 2008 and thereafter, the agency may use federal-aid funding available under the enhancement grant program to acquire and construct one new salt and sand shed which shall not exceed a project cost of $300,000.00.  Eligible applicants must provide all funds required to match federal funds awarded for an enhancement project.  All grant awards shall be decided and awarded by the transportation enhancement grant committee.

(g)  In Ten percent of the grant program each year or such lesser sum if all eligible applications amount to less then 10 percent shall be reserved for municipalities for eligible salt and sand shed projects.  Regarding the balance of grant program funds, in evaluating applications for enhancement grants, the transportation enhancement grant committee shall give preferential weighting to projects involving as a primary feature a bicycle or pedestrian facility.  The degree of preferential weighting and the circumstantial factors sufficient to overcome the weighting shall be in the complete discretion of the transportation enhancement grant committee. 

(h)  The agency shall develop an outreach and marketing effort designed to provide information to communities with respect to the benefits of participating in the enhancement program.  This effort The outreach and marketing activities shall include apprising municipalities of the availability of grants for salt and sand sheds.  The outreach effort should be directed to areas of the state historically underserved by this program.

* * * Town Highway Bridge and Culvert Inventory * * *

Sec. 37.  TOWN HIGHWAY BRIDGE AND CULVERT INVENTORY

The agency of transportation is directed to complete and deploy an integrated software product by November 1, 2006 to handle data entry, access and status reporting of town bridge and culvert inventories currently collected by regional planning commissions (RPCs), the metropolitan planning organization, and towns and their contractors.  The software product shall conform to the specifications defined in the VGIS Bridge and Culvert Data Exchange Standard (VGIS Handbook:  Part 2 - Standards - Section H).  All town bridge and culvert inventory data which have been collected and which hereafter are collected by regional planning commissions in a data format conforming to the specifications of the VGIS Bridge and Culvert Data Exchange Standard shall be made available by the regional planning commissions to the Vermont center for geographic information which shall make such data available to the agency and to the general public on its website.  The agency of transportation shall encourage the RPCs and the metropolitan planning organization to complete the inventories for their region, and shall annually update the house and senate committees on transportation on the status of the data collection by regional planning commissions.

* * * Fiscal Year 2006 Reversion * * *

Sec. 38.  FISCAL YEAR 2006 REVERSION

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, in fiscal year 2006, the sum of $200,000 of the fiscal year 2006 rail program appropriation as approved in Sec. 232 of No. 71 of the Acts of 2005 shall revert to the transportation fund.

* * * Diesel Fuel Tax * * *

Sec. 39.  23 V.S.A. § 3003(a) is amended to read:

(a)  A tax of 25 31 cents per gallon and a fee of one cent per gallon is imposed on each gallon of fuel established pursuant to the provisions of 10 V.S.A. § 1942:

(1)  sold or delivered by a distributor; or

(2)  used by a user.

* * * Gasoline Tax * * *

Sec. 40.  23 V.S.A. § 3106(a) is amended to read:

(a)  Except for sales of motor fuels between distributors licensed in this state, which sales shall be exempt from the tax, in all cases not exempt from the tax under the laws of the United States at the time of filing the report required by section 3108 of this title, each distributor shall pay to the commissioner a tax of 19 25 cents per gallon upon each gallon of motor fuel sold by the distributor.  The distributor shall also pay to the commissioner a tax in the same amount upon each gallon of motor fuel used within the state by him or her.

* * * Town Highway Fund * * *

Sec. 41.  19 V.S.A. § 306b is added to read:

§ 306b.  TOWN HIGHWAY SPECIAL FUND

(a)  The town highway special fund is established in the treasury as a special fund to be a source of financing for town highway programs.

(b)  Into the fund shall be deposited:

(1)  8/31sts of the diesel fuel tax revenue collected pursuant to 23 V.S.A. § 3003;

(2)  8/25ths of the gasoline tax revenue collected pursuant to 23 V.S.A. § 3106; and

(3)  the proceeds from any other sources of revenue as may be provided by act of the general assembly.

(c)  The fund shall be administered pursuant to subchapter 5 of chapter 7 of Title 32, except that interest earned on the fund and any remaining balance shall be retained in the fund.  The agency of transportation shall maintain records indicating the amount of money in the fund at any time.

(d)  All monies received by or generated to the fund shall be used as appropriated by the general assembly for the town highway state aid, town highway structures, town highway class 2 roadway, and town highway class 1 supplemental aid programs.

* * * Town Highway Structures and Class 2 Roadway Programs * * *

Sec. 42.  19 V.S.A. § 306(e) and (h) are amended to read:

(e)  State aid for town highway structures.  There shall be an annual appropriation for grants to municipalities for maintenance, including actions to extend life expectancy, and construction of bridges, culverts, and other structures, including causeways and retaining walls, intended to preserve the integrity of the traveled portion of class 1, 2, and 3 town highways.  Each fiscal year, the agency shall approve qualifying projects with a total estimated state share cost of $3,490,000.00 at a minimum equal to ten percent of the consensus forecast revenue of the town highway fund for the fiscal year as new grants.  The agency’s proposed appropriation for the program shall take into account the estimated amount of qualifying invoices submitted to the agency with respect to project grants approved in prior years but not yet completed as well as with respect to new project grants to be approved in the fiscal year.  In a given fiscal year, should expenditures in the town highway structures program exceed the amount appropriated, the agency shall advise the governor of the need to request a supplemental appropriation from the general assembly to fund the additional project cost, provided that the agency has previously committed to completing those projects.

(h)  Class 2 town highway roadway program.  There shall be an annual appropriation for grants to municipalities for resurfacing, rehabilitation, or reconstruction of paved or unpaved class 2 town highways.  Each fiscal year, the agency shall approve qualifying projects with a total estimated state share cost of $4,240,000.00 at a minimum equal to 15 percent of the consensus forecast revenue of the town highway fund for the fiscal year as new grants.  The agency’s proposed appropriation for the program shall take into account the estimated amount of qualifying invoices submitted to the agency with respect to project grants approved in prior years but not yet completed as well as with respect to new project grants to be approved in the fiscal year.  In a given fiscal year, should expenditures in the town highway class 2 roadway program exceed the amount appropriated, the agency shall advise the governor of the need to request a supplemental appropriation from the general assembly to fund the additional project cost, provided that the agency has previously committed to completing those projects.

* ** Discretionary Spending Authority * * *

Sec. 43.  DISCRETIONARY SPENDING AUTHORITY

Spending authority in the amount of $500,000 in transportation funds shall be allocated in the discretion of the secretary to advance the Bellows Falls rail tunnel project and projects in the state’s fiscal year 2007 transportation program in program development.

* * * Central Garage Fund * * *

Sec. 44.  19 V.S.A. §13(c) is amended to read:

(c)  There shall be established and maintained within the central garage fund, a separate transportation equipment replacement account for the purposes stated in subsection (b) of this section.  In fiscal year 2006, $1,400,000.00 and, in fiscal year 2007 and thereafter, an amount equal to two-thirds of one percent of the prior year transportation fund appropriation, and in fiscal year 2008, an amount equal to eight-tenths of one percent, but not less than $1,400,000.00, shall be transferred prior to August 1 from the transportation fund to the central garage fund and allocated to the transportation equipment replacement account, and beginning in fiscal year 2001, and thereafter, an amount not less than the sum of equipment depreciation expense and net equipment sales from the prior fiscal year, shall be allocated prior to August 1 from within the central garage fund to the transportation equipment replacement account.  All expenditures from this account shall be appropriated by the general assembly and used exclusively for the purchase of equipment as authorized in subsection (b) of this section.



Published by:

The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street
Montpelier, Vermont


www.leg.state.vt.us