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Introduced by   Representative Scheuermann of Stowe

Referred to Committee on


Subject:  Municipal government; municipal charters; town of Stowe

Statement of purpose:  This bill proposes to approve amendments to the charter of the town of Stowe which authorize the selectboard to employ a town manager.


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


The general assembly approves the amendments to the charter of the Town of Stowe as provided in this act.  Proposals of amendment were approved by the voters on November 7, 2006.

Sec. 2.  24 V.S.A. App. chapter 153, § 406(b) is amended to read:

(b)  The Selectboard shall appoint the following:

(1)  Members of the zoning board of adjustment or development review board;

(2)  Members of the planning commission;

(3)  Town administrator; and manager

(4)  Zoning administrator.

Sec. 3.  24 V.S.A. App. chapter 153, § 407 is amended to read:

§ 407.  Compensation of officers; appointees

* * *

(b)  The Selectboard shall fix the compensation of all other officers, appointees and employees the town manager, except as otherwise provided in this charter.

(c)  Except as hereinafter provided, all fees prescribed by state law, charter, ordinance, or otherwise shall be collected for the benefit of the town and paid to the town treasurer.  No fees shall be used directly by any receiving officer or enure inure directly to the benefit of the officer.  Insofar as this subsection applies to the town clerk and town treasurer, it shall not be of force and effect until the person(s) serving as such as of the effective date of this charter shall retire, resign, or otherwise cease to serve as town clerk and/or treasurer.

Sec. 4.  24 V.S.A. App. chapter 153, § 408(b) is amended to read:

(b)  Within the limitations of the foregoing, the Selectboard shall have the power to:

(1)  Authorize the expenditure of all town money.

(2)  Appoint and remove the town administrator manager or interim town manager and supervise, create, change. and abolish offices, commissions, or departments other than the offices, commissions, or departments established by this charter and by law.

(3)  Appoint the members of all boards, commissions, committees, or similar bodies unless specifically provided otherwise by this charter and by law.

* * *

Sec. 5.  24 V.S.A. App. chapter 153, § 701 is amended to read:

§ 701.  Town administrator MANAGER; appointment;


The town administrator shall be appointed by a majority of the Selectboard. He or she shall be appointed for a period of one (1) year and shall be removable at the discretion of the Selectboard Selectboard shall appoint a town manager for an indefinite term.  The town administrator manager shall be chosen on the basis of executive, administrative, and professional qualifications and not on the basis of political affiliation.  The town manager shall not:

(1)  be a candidate for or simultaneously hold any elective office within the town, nor shall he or she;

(2)  be employed by the town in any capacity except as town administrator manager; or

(3)  organize any political party or serve as a member of a political party committee.

Sec. 6.  24 V.S.A. App. chapter 153, § 702 is amended to read:

§ 702.  Powers and duties oath; bond

(a)  To organize, operate, continue or discontinue such departments as the Selectboard may determine.

(b)  To carry out the policies laid down by the Selectboard, to keep the Selectboard informed of the financial condition and future needs of the town, and to make such reports as may be required by law or requested by the Selectboard, together with any other reports and recommendations which he or she may deem advisable.

(c)  To be present at all meetings of the Selectboard, except when excused by the Selectboard.

(d)  To furnish to the Selectboard annually a detailed budget proposal for their review and recommendation to the town.

(e)  To supervise all special programs of the town not the responsibility of a department or appointed commission, committee or officer unless otherwise voted by the town.

(f)  To cause duties prescribed for towns and not committed to the care of any particular officer to be duly performed and executed.

(g)  To participate in the discussion of matters coming before the Selectboard and committees, commissions, or departments, but not the right to vote.

(h)  To act as collector of delinquent taxes if so designated by the Selectboard.

(i)  To perform such other duties which may be requested of him or her by vote of the Selectboard, by law or by ordinance, consistent with this charter.

Before entering upon his or her official duties, the town manager shall be sworn to the faithful performance of those duties by the town clerk and shall give a bond to the town in an amount and with sureties as the Selectboard may require.

Sec. 7.  24 V.S.A. App. chapter 153, §§ 703 – 705 are added to read:


(a)  The town manager shall be the chief executive officer and the head of the administrative branch of the town government, and shall be responsible to the Selectboard for the efficient administration of the municipal affairs of the town.

(b)  The town manager shall attend all meetings of the Selectboard, except when the town manager’s removal or discipline is being considered, shall keep the Selectboard informed of the financial condition and future needs of the town, and shall make reports as may be required by law, this charter, or ordinance, or which may be requested by the Selectboard.  The town manager shall make other reports and recommendations as he or she may deem advisable.  The town manager shall perform other duties as may be prescribed by this charter, or required of the town manager by law, ordinance, or resolution of the Selectboard not inconsistent with this charter.

(c)  The town manager shall be an ex-officio member of all standing committees of the town but shall not have or cast a vote.

(d)  The town manager shall prepare and submit a recommended annual budget to the Selectboard and be responsible for the administration of the budget after adoption.

(e)  The town manager shall be the general purchasing agent of the town and purchase all supplies for every department of the town.

(f)  The town manager shall perform any other duties assigned by state law not in conflict with this charter.

(g)  The town manager shall be responsible for the operation of all departments of the town, not otherwise provided for in this charter.

(h)  The town manager shall have authority to hire, appoint, fix the salary of, discipline, suspend, and remove all employees of the town not hired or appointed by the Selectboard, subject to the provisions of this charter or personnel rules adopted pursuant to this charter.  The town manager may authorize any department head subject to the town manager’s direction and supervision to exercise these powers with respect to that department head’s subordinates.  Prior to hiring a department head, the town manager shall notify the Selectboard of the intent to hire a department head, and the selectboard may take action within seven days of receipt of that notice that overrides the town manager’s authority to hire that department head.  Thereafter, the town manager shall select and submit notification to the Selectboard of an alternate choice for that department head.

(i)  The town manager may, when advisable or proper, delegate to subordinate officers and employees of the town, any duties conferred upon the town manager by this charter or by action of the Selectboard.

(j)  The town manager shall be responsible for the enforcement of all town ordinances.

(k)  Where final authority for policy formulation and adoption rests with the Selectboard, the town manager shall play an integral role in developing and analyzing policies and alternatives for the Selectboard’s consideration and be responsible for implementation of policies approved by the Selectboard.


The town manager shall receive compensation as may be determined by the Selectboard, subject to the provisions of this charter.


The selectboard may remove the town manager by a vote of at least three of its members to be effective not less than 60 days after the vote.  The town manager may be suspended during the period from initial action to remove the town manager by the Selectboard to the end of the removal date, but the town manager shall continue to be paid throughout the suspension.

Sec. 8.  24 V.S.A. App. chapter 153, § 802(a) is amended to read:

(a)  The town administrator manager, at least fifty (50) days before the annual town meeting, or at such previous time as may be directed by the Selectboard, shall submit to the Selectboard a financial report containing:

* * *

Sec. 8.  24 V.S.A. App. chapter 153, § 1001 is amended to read:

§ 1001.  Appointment and removal

All town employees not elected by the voters shall be appointed, supervised and removed by the Selectboard unless otherwise specified by this charter. There shall be no discrimination in employment on account of race, religion, sex or political opinions. Appointments, lay-offs, suspensions, promotions, demotions, and removals shall be made primarily on the basis of training, experience, fitness and performance of duties.

(a)  Subject to the provisions of this charter, all employees other than elected officials and appointees of the Selectboard shall be appointed, suspended, or removed by the town manager without interference of the Selectboard.  The town and its employees shall comply with Vermont’s Fair Employment Practices Act and shall not discriminate in their employment practices on account of political opinions or affiliations.  Appointments, layoffs, promotions, and discipline, including suspensions, demotions, and removals, shall be determined on the basis of training, experience, fitness and performance of the individual and be undertaken to ensure that the responsible administrative officer will secure efficient and competent service.

(b)  Each newly hired employee shall be hired, disciplined, suspended, demoted, removed, or laid off consistent with the personnel rules adopted by the Selectboard.

(c)  The town manager may remove a department head from his or her position, provided notification that the town manager intends to remove a department head is given in advance to the selectboard.

Sec. 9.  24 V.S.A. App. chapter 153, § 1002(a) is amended to read:

(a)  The town administrator manager or his or her designee shall be the personnel director.  He or she may prepare personnel rules and regulations protecting the interests of the town and of the employees.  These rules and regulations must be approved by the Selectboard and shall include the procedure for amending them and for placing them into practice.  Each employee shall receive a copy of the rules and regulations when he the employee is hired.


This act shall take effect upon passage.

Published by:

The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street
Montpelier, Vermont