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Introduced by Senator White of Windham District and Senator Shumlin of Windham District

Referred to Committee on


Subject:  Public service; nuclear facility; extension of operator’s license; safety assessment

Statement of purpose:  This bill proposes to require the owners of a nuclear plant that is requesting an extension of an operator’s license to provide an independent safety assessment of the plant.  The bill provides that this requirement shall be deemed to be met if the public service board determines that other studies have been crafted to address adequately the safety issues.  The bill proposes that if a court determines that the state lacks the authority to require this assessment, this language will be construed to be a request to the plant owners to fund an independent safety assessment.


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

Sec. 1.  30 V.S.A. § 254(d) is added to read:

(d)  Independent safety assessment.  In order to enable the assessment under this section of the long-term economic and environmental benefits, risks, and costs related to the operation of a nuclear facility in the state, and to enable the assessment of related long-term accountability and financial responsibility issues, the owners of a nuclear energy generating plant petitioning for extended operation for the plant shall finance and make public an independent safety assessment of the plant in question.  This assessment shall be completed within the five years immediately preceding the date of the proposed commencement of extended operations and shall be performed by an individual or entity approved by the public service board, and in a manner that shall be overseen as provided by the public service board.  This requirement shall be deemed to be met if the public service board determines that other studies required under this section have been crafted in a manner that assures that all issues pertinent to an independent safety assessment will be adequately addressed without such an assessment.  If a court of competent jurisdiction determines that the state of Vermont lacks authority to require an independent safety assessment, this subsection shall be construed as a request to the plant owners to finance an independent safety assessment; a request intended to facilitate the process established under this section and to enable the timely and comprehensive determination of the economic, environmental, financial, and accountability issues considered under this section. 

Published by:

The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street
Montpelier, Vermont