Download this document in MS Word format
BILL AS INTRODUCED 2007-2008

S-365

S.365

Introduced by Committee on Institutions

Date:

Subject:  Capital construction; capital appropriations; state bonding

Statement of purpose:  This bill proposes to authorize bonding, appropriate capital funds, and address miscellaneous related items.

AN ACT RELATING TO CAPITAL CONSTRUCTION AND STATE BONDING

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

* * * Capital Appropriations * * *

Sec. 1.  STATE BUILDINGS

The following is appropriated in total to the department of buildings and general services, and the commissioner is authorized to direct funds appropriated in this section to the projects contained in this section; however, no project shall be canceled unless the chairs of the senate and house committees on institutions are notified before that action is taken.  The individual allocations in this section are estimates only.

(1)  Statewide, Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) – for improvements at the Robert H. Wood, Jr. Criminal Justice and Fire Service Training Center of Vermont in Pittsford:                                                                               125,000

(2)  Statewide, building reuse:                                                                         100,000

(3)  Statewide, contingency fund:                                                 500,000

(4)  Statewide, major maintenance:                                            7,000,000

(5)  Statewide, planning:                                                               25,000

(6)  Montpelier, 120 State Street, elevator replacement:                   450,000

(7)  Montpelier, 120 State Street, window replacement:                  500,000

(8)  Springfield state office building, supplement:                           300,000

(9)  St. Albans, 20 Houghton Street, roof repairs:                           250,000

(10)  St.Albans, 20 Houghton Street, HVAC improvements:            450,000

(11)  St. Albans, correctional facility sewer upgrade:                      600,000

(12)  State Archives, relocation to Middlesex, design, and construction:

                                                                                             5,000,000

(Total appropriation – Section 1                                                     $15,300,000)

Sec. 2.  TAXES

The sum of $100,000 is appropriated to the department of taxes for an ongoing project to update statewide quadrangle maps through digital orthophotographic quadrangle mapping.

(Total appropriation – Section 2                                                          $100,000)

Sec. 3.  HEALTH AND PUBLIC SAFETY LABORATORIES/BUILDING

617 IN ESSEX

The following is appropriated in total to the department of buildings and general services for Building 617 in Essex, including co-location of the department of health and department of public safety forensics laboratories:

(1)  Building construction and renovation:                                   7,000,000

(2)  Purchase of DNA and fingerprint instrumentation for the forensics laboratory:                                        267,000

(Total appropriation - Section 3                                                       $7,267,000)

Sec. 4.  HUMAN SERVICES

The following is appropriated in total to the department of buildings and general services for the agency of human services for the projects described in this section.

(1)  Vermont state hospital, ongoing security and maintenance:        100,000

(2)  Vermont state hospital, to study the feasibility of converting the Dale correctional facility in Waterbury into a secure 15-bed state hospital facility, and for continued planning, design, and permitting associated with the certificate of need (CON) process for a new state hospital facility or facilities:                                            250,000

(3)  Corrections, continuation of suicide abatement project:             124,000

(4)  Corrections, renovations to St. Albans northwest regional correctional facility to become the state women’s correctional facility, closing the Dale facility in Waterbury as a correctional facility, and renovations to the Windsor southeast regional correctional facility to become a work camp. Program changes associated with the renovations shall be funded from the department of corrections budget and not from capital funds:                                1,450,000

(Total appropriation – Section 4                                                       $1,924,000)

Sec. 5.  JUDICIARY

The sum of $719,676 is appropriated to the department of buildings and general services for the judiciary for security improvements, renovations, and mechanical upgrades at the Windham district and family courthouse in Brattleboro.

(Total appropriation – Section 5                                                          $719,676)

Sec. 6.  BUILDING COMMUNITIES GRANTS

The following sums are appropriated for building communities grants:

(1)  To the agency of commerce and community development, division for historic preservation, for the historic preservation grant program established in

Sec. 4(a) of No. 90 of the Acts of 1987:                                               150,000

(2)  To the agency of commerce and community development, division for historic preservation, for the historic barns preservation grant program established in Sec. 4(b)(2) of No. 93 of the Acts of 1991.  However, funds shall not be granted to projects which propose to remove historic building features, even if they were added after the original construction of the building:             150,000

(3)  To the agency of commerce and community development, division for historic preservation, for the cultural facilities competitive grant program, to be administered by the Vermont Arts Council and made available on a one‑for-one matching basis with funds raised from nonstate sources.  No grant shall be available for a project receiving funding from any other appropriation of this act.  No portion of this appropriation shall be used to pay salaries.  Grants shall be awarded on a competitive basis.  In recommending grant awards, a review panel shall give priority consideration to applicants who demonstrate greater financial need or are in underserved areas of the state.  As a condition of this appropriation, the Vermont Arts Council shall administer the cultural facilities grant program for ease of use by grant applicants.  To accomplish this, the Vermont Arts Council shall:

(A)  work in conjunction with the other grant programs included in this section to accommodate the needs of grant applicants;

(B)  ensure that the cultural facilities grant application deadlines are consistent with other grant programs included in this section;

(C)  provide a simplified application form to ensure the following:

(i)  easy completion of the form by grant applicants;

(ii)  demonstration of a community’s commitment and ability to generate required matching funds from local fundraising or other efforts;

(iii)  equitable selection of grant recipients; and

(iv)  accountability by grant recipients. 

(D)  Before it notifies an applicant that it will be awarded a grant, the Vermont Arts Council shall provide notice of the award and the time and location of any award presentation to the chairs of the senate and house committees on institutions and to those members of the general assembly who represent the area in which a successful applicant resides:                                 150,000

(4)  To the department of buildings and general services for the recreational facilities grant program established in Sec. 33 of this act:          150,000

(5)  To the department of buildings and general services for the human services and educational facilities competitive grant program established in Sec. 34 of this act:                                                                                                                   150,000

(6)  To the department of information and innovation for the Vermont Telecommunications Authority for the broadband development grant program established in Sec. 3 of No. 79 of the Acts of 2007:          150,000

(Total appropriation – Section 6                                                          $900,000)

Sec. 7.  COMMERCE AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT

(a)  The following sums are appropriated to the department of buildings and general services for the agency of commerce and community development for the following projects:

(1)  Major maintenance at historic sites statewide; provided such maintenance shall be under the supervision of the department of buildings and general services:

                                                                                                200,000

(2)  Continued planning and design to expand the visitors’ center at the Calvin Coolidge state historic site in Plymouth Notch:     200,000

(b)  The following sums are appropriated to the agency of commerce and community development for the following projects:

(1)  Protecting, preserving, moving, or reinterring human remains discovered in unmarked burial sites:                                            25,000

(2)  Underwater preserves:                                                            25,000

(3)  Placement and replacement of roadside historic site markers:      10,000

(Total appropriation – Section 7                                                          $460,000)

Sec. 8.  EDUCATION

The following is appropriated in total to the department of education for the purposes described in this section:

(1)  State aid for school construction projects pursuant to section 3448 of Title 16, to be expended on projects prioritized for funding by the state board of education on December 18, 2007:                                                                9,943,250

(2)  For the Walden School District, for 25 percent of the eligible costs of roof repairs at the Walden School:                              6,750

(3)  Establishment of a school energy grant program to pay the costs of conducting comprehensive energy engineering analyses of school buildings by qualified engineers.  Under this pilot program, the department of education shall award grants to Vermont public schools for an amount equal to 100 percent of the cost to conduct an energy engineering analysis.  Grant awards shall not exceed $10,000 per application; however, school districts retain the right to spend more than $10,000 on the energy engineering analysis, but shall in this instance be solely responsible for the additional costs incurred.  The commissioner of education shall develop guidelines and selection criteria necessary to implement the pilot program, and shall report to the senate and house committees on institutions on or before January 15, 2009 and again on or before January 15, 2010 on the status of the pilot project, including the total number of grants awarded, the dollar amount of each grant awarded, and the outcome of each grant recipient’s energy engineering analysis:                                                                                                             50,000

(Total appropriation – Section 8                                                     $10,000,000)

Sec. 9.  AUSTINE SCHOOL

The sum of $50,000 is appropriated to the department of buildings and general services for renovation of Holton Hall at the Austine School.

(Total appropriation – Section 9                                                           $50,000)

Sec. 10.  UNIVERSITY OF VERMONT

The sum of $1,750,000 is appropriated to the University of Vermont for construction, renovation, or maintenance projects.  The university shall file with the general assembly on or before January 15 an annual report that details the status of capital projects funded in whole or in part by state capital appropriations, including an explanation of the process for bidding for contractors or subcontractors where the amount of the contract or subcontract exceeds $50,000.

(Total appropriation – Section 10                                                     $1,750,000)


Sec. 11.  VERMONT STATE COLLEGES

The sum of $1,750,000 is appropriated to the Vermont State Colleges for major facility maintenance.  The state colleges shall file with the general assembly on or before January 15 an annual report that details the status of capital projects funded in whole or in part by state capital appropriations, including an explanation of the process for bidding for contractors or subcontractors where the amount of the contract or subcontract exceeds $50,000.

(Total appropriation – Section 11                                                     $1,750,000)

Sec. 12.  NATURAL RESOURCES

(a)  The following is appropriated in total to the agency of natural resources for water pollution control projects:

(1)  State matching funds for the pollution control and clean water state revolving fund administered in accordance with chapter 55 of Title 10 and chapter 120 of Title 24:                                                                                             2,100,000

(2)  Pollution control projects in Springfield and Newport City:     2,000,000

(3)  Wastewater facilities project in Pownal:                              1,000,000

(4)  Interest on short‑term borrowing associated with delayed grant funding for the Pownal project:                                           120,000

(b)  The following is appropriated in total to the agency of natural resources for the drinking water state revolving fund:                       1,900,000

(c)  The following is appropriated in total to the agency of natural resources for the clean and clear program to accelerate the reduction of phosphorus discharges into Lake Champlain and other waters of the state:

(1)  Ecosystem restoration and protection:                                  1,200,000

(2)  Unregulated stormwater management:                                    150,000

(3)  Wastewater phosphorus removal at municipal wastewater treatment plants:                                                                            550,000

(d)  The following sum is appropriated to the agency of natural resources for the state’s year-one share of the federal match to conduct a three-year study of spring flooding in the city of Montpelier:                                                      100,000

(e)  The following is appropriated in total to the agency of natural resources for the department of forests, parks and recreation for the purposes described in this subsection:

(1)  Rehabilitation of aging state park infrastructure:                       800,000

(2)  For the Green Mountain Club, Inc. for the procurement in fee simple or by easement of properties along the Long Trail; provided that any easement acquired shall be recorded in a deed from the landowner to the state of Vermont and may not be assigned or changed without the agreement of both parties:                       25,000

(3)  For the Lake Champlain Walleye Association, Inc. to upgrade and repair the walleye rearing, restoration, and stocking infrastructure:     25,000

(f)  The following is appropriated in total to the agency of natural resources for the department of fish and wildlife for projects described in this subsection:

(1)  Filter building at the Bald Hill Fish Culture Station:                    125,000

(2)  Purchase and installation of an autonomous pump at the Ed Weed Fish Culture Station in Grand Isle:                                    90,000

(3)  Road resurfacing and dismantling of a degraded building and shooting range modifications at Buck Lake conservation camp:        50,000

(Total appropriation – Section 12                                                   $10,235,000)

Sec. 13.  MILITARY

The following is appropriated in total to the department of the military for the projects described in this section.  If the state’s share of site acquisition costs in subdivision (1) of this section exceeds $150,000, the department of the military may use funds appropriated in subdivision (2) of this section as needed for the state’s share:

(1)  Site acquisition for the combined northern field maintenance shop and Morrisville armory: 150,000

(2)  Design and implementation of energy conservation projects at up to ten armories:                                   200,000

(Total appropriation – Section 13                                                        $350,000)

Sec. 14.  PUBLIC SAFETY

The sum of $15,000 is appropriated to the department of buildings and general services for the department of public safety for removal of the pump island and underground storage tank in Waterbury.

(Total appropriation – Section 14                                                          $15,000)

Sec. 15.  FIRE SERVICE TRAINING

The following sums are appropriated for fire service training:

(1)  To the department of buildings and general services for the Vermont fire service training council for construction of a fire training facility at the Robert H. Wood, Jr. Criminal Justice and Fire Service Training Center of Vermont in Pittsford.  Capital funds appropriated for construction of this project shall not exceed the sum of $2,000,000:                                            2,000,000

(2)  To the department of public safety for the Vermont fire service training council to purchase Candidate Physical Ability Test (CPAT) equipment for use by volunteer or professional firefighters at the Robert H. Wood, Jr. Criminal Justice and Fire Service Training Center of Vermont in Pittsford, at Vermont Technical College, or at any other location around the state, if feasible:    60,000

(3)  To Vermont State Colleges as the state’s financial contribution to the construction of a steel burn building at the Vermont Technical College campus in Randolph.  The state’s appropriation is contingent upon receipt by Vermont Technical College of a $406,000 federal appropriation earmarked for construction of the steel burn building.  As a condition of the state’s appropriation, Vermont Technical College shall provide use of classrooms and dormitories for firefighter training during times when they are not otherwise needed for Vermont Technical College programs or services.  In the event the federal funds earmarked for this project are not received by January 1, 2009, the state’s appropriation of $340,000 shall revert to the department of buildings and general services for future capital expenditures:                                                                                                  340,000

(Total appropriation – Section 15                                                     $2,400,000)

Sec. 16.  AGRICULTURE, FOOD AND MARKETS

The following is appropriated in total to the agency of agriculture, food and markets for the purposes described in this section:

(1)  For the best management practice implementation cost share program, to continue to develop best management practices on Vermont farms.  Farmers participating in this program are eligible for cost share funds not to exceed $75,000 or 80 percent of a project:                                        1,800,000

(2)  For the agricultural buffer program, to install water quality conservation buffers, and for the northern Lake Champlain manure injection project.  Up to $250,000 of this amount shall be for the northern Lake Champlain initiative provided that the state’s share shall not exceed $50,000 or 50 percent of a project:

                                                                                                        500,000

(3)  For the competitive grants program for agricultural fair capital projects. No single entity shall be awarded more than ten percent of this appropriation:

                                                                                                        180,000

        (4)  For the Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund for the implementation phase of the food-to-waste-to-energy biodigester project at the Vermont Technical College campus in Randolph:                                                                            20,000

(Total appropriation – Section 16                                                     $2,500,000)

Sec. 17.  VERMONT PUBLIC TELEVISION

The sum of $300,000 is appropriated to Vermont Public Television as the state match for the federally mandated conversion of Vermont Public Television’s transmission sites to digital broadcasting format.

(Total appropriation – Section 17                                                        $300,000)

Sec. 18.  VERMONT INTERACTIVE TELEVISION

The sum of $214,770 is appropriated to Vermont Interactive Television for video upgrades, codec upgrades, monitor replacement, or any combination thereof, at Vermont Interactive Television sites.

(Total appropriation – Section 18                                                        $214,770)

Sec. 19.  VERMONT RURAL FIRE PROTECTION

The sum of $75,000 is appropriated to the department of public safety division of fire safety for the Vermont rural fire protection task force to continue the dry hydrant program.

(Total appropriation – Section 19                                                          $75,000)

Sec. 20.  VERMONT VETERANS HOME

The sum of $1,700,000 is appropriated to the department of buildings and general services for the Vermont Veterans Home for the final phase of geothermal HVAC renovations.

(Total appropriation – Section 20                                                     $1,700,000)

Sec. 21.  VERMONT CENTER FOR CRIME VICTIM SERVICES

The sum of $50,000 is appropriated to the Vermont Center for Crime Victim Services for Americans with Disabilities Act improvements at domestic violence shelters.  The Vermont Center for Crime Victim Services shall file with the commissioner of buildings and general services an annual report, on or before December 1, 2008, which details the status of the improvements funded in whole or in part by state capital appropriations.

(Total appropriation – Section 21                                                          $50,000)

* * * Financing this Act * * *

Sec. 22.  REALLOCATION OF FUNDS; TRANSFER OF FUNDS

(a)  The following sums are reallocated to the department of buildings and general services to defray expenditures authorized in Sec. 1 of this act, unless otherwise specified:

(1)  of the amount appropriated in Sec. 2(c) of No. 185 of the Acts of the 1995 Adj. Sess. (1996) (GOVNET for schools):               2,695.47

(2)  of the amount appropriated in Sec. 8(a)(6) of No. 62 of the Acts of 1997 (information technology):                                          14,440.22

(3)  of the amount appropriated by Sec. 2(d) of No. 62 of the Acts of 1995 (EWIMS):                                                                  11,500.50

(4)  of the amount appropriated by Sec. 2(b) of No. 62  of the Acts of 1995 (satellite video recording equipment):                        4,211.50

(5)  of the amount appropriated by Sec. 2a(b)(1) of No. 62 of the Acts of 1995 (VALS to GOVNET conversion):                            5,381.29

(6)  of the amount appropriated by Sec. 5(p) of No. 121 of the Acts of the 2003 Adj. Sess. (2004) (Vermont hydroelectric):     152,675.59

(7)  of the amount appropriated by Sec. 4(e) of No. 149 of the Acts of the 2001 Adj. Sess (2002) (illumination plan for Bennington Battle Monument):        528.99

(8)  of the amount appropriated by Sec. 11(b) of No. 121 of the Acts of the 2003 Adj. Sess. (2004) (creation of Civil War monument):    1,296.61

(9)  of the amount appropriated by Sec. 3(f)(2) of No. 43 of the Acts of 2005 (fit-up of a VCI building at the southern state correctional facility):          44,912.60

(10)  of the amount appropriated by Sec. 4 of No. 43 of the Acts of 2005 (Rutland courthouse renovations):                               39,249.25

(11)  of the amount appropriated by Sec. 20 of No. 43 of the Acts of 2005 (Vermont Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery expansion design): 50,000.00

(12)  of the amount appropriated by Sec. 5(c) of No. 147 of the Acts of the 2005 Adj Sess (2006) (renovations to Bennington courthouse to enhance security and litigant services):                                                                               198,844.00

(13)  of the amount appropriated by Sec. 12(d) of No. 147 of the Acts of the 2005 Adj. Sess. (2006) (public safety outpost at the Williston rest area):       3,912.00

(14)  of the amount appropriated by Sec. 1(1) of No. 52 of the Acts of 2007 (design and construction of state archives at the triangle site in Montpelier) for the purpose of relocating the state archives to Middlesex pursuant to Sec. 1(12) of this act:                                                                         1,695,547.50

(15)  of the amount appropriated by Sec. 16(a)(1) of No. 43 of the Acts of 2005 (historic preservation grants):                               394.41

(16)  of the amount appropriated by Sec. 16(a)(1) of No. 147 of the Acts of the 2005 Adj. Sess. (2006) (historic preservation grants):      23,016.00

(17)  for the purpose of closing and renovating correctional facilities pursuant to Sec. 4(4) of this act:

(A)  of the amount appropriated by Sec. 3 of No. 43 of the Acts of 2005 (corrections work camp):                                        78,587.41

(B)  of the amount appropriated by Sec. 4(c) of No. 147 of the Acts of the 2005 Adj. Sess. (2006) (corrections work camp):       676,167.00

(C)  of the amount appropriated by Sec. 4 of No. 52 of the Acts of 2007 (corrections work camp site acquisition):                      99,367.00

(18)  of the amount appropriated by Sec. 5(b)(1) of No. 121 of the Acts of 2004 (historic barn grants):                                          241.93

(19)  of the amount appropriated by Sec. 16(a)(2) of No. 43 of the Acts of 2005 (historic barn grants):                                          9,728.70

(20)  of the amount appropriated by Sec. 16(a)(2) of No. 147 of the Acts of the 2005 Adj. Sess. (2006) (historic barn grants):             30,748.00

(b)  The sum of $267,000 is transferred from the crime victim’s special restitution fund established in section 5363 of Title 13 to the department of buildings and general services for the purchase of DNA and fingerprint instrumentation referenced in Sec. 3(2) of this act, which shall be sited in a DNA laboratory to be named in honor of Patricia Scoville.               267,000

(Total reallocations and transfers – Section 22                                                          $3,410,445.97)

Sec. 23.  GENERAL OBLIGATION BONDS

The state treasurer is authorized to issue general obligation bonds in the amount of $54,650,000 for the purpose of funding the appropriations of this act.  The state treasurer, with the approval of the governor, shall determine the appropriate form and maturity of the bonds authorized by this section consistent with the underlying nature of the appropriation to be funded.  The state treasurer shall allocate the estimated cost of bond issuance, or issuances, to the entities to which funds are appropriated pursuant to this section and for which bonding is required as the source of funds, pursuant to 32 V.S.A. § 954.

(Total bonding – Section 23                                                           $54,650,000)

* * * Managing this Act * * *

Sec. 24.  AUTHORITY TO TRANSFER FUNDS

The secretary of natural resources, with the approval of the secretary of administration, may transfer any unexpended project balances among projects authorized in Sec. 12 of this act.

Sec. 25.  ACCEPTANCE OF GRANTS AND OTHER FUNDS

(a)  Notwithstanding section 5 of Title 32 (acceptance of grants):

(1)  The commissioner of environmental conservation, with the approval of the secretary of natural resources, may accept federal grants made available through the federal Clean Water Act and the federal Drinking Water Act in accordance with chapter 120 of Title 24.  Acceptance of this grant money is hereby approved, provided all notifications are made under subsection 4760(a) of Title 24.

(2)  The commissioner of corrections, with the approval of the secretary of human services, may accept federal grants made available through federal crime bill legislation. 

(3)  The commissioner of buildings and general services may accept grants of funds, equipment, and services from any source, including federal appropriations, for the installation, operation, implementation, or maintenance of energy conservation measures or improvements at state buildings.

(4)  The commissioner of buildings and general services may accept federal grant funds in connection with the state health and forensic laboratories.  These funds may be used to defray or supplement costs in Sec. 3 of this act.

(5)  The commissioner of buildings and general services may accept federal grant funds from the department of public safety for the purpose of purchasing, designing, and retrofitting a new emergency management facility and emergency operations center.  No state funds shall be appropriated to this project from general obligation bonds issued for capital construction under this act or any prior capital construction act. 

(b)  Each receipt of a grant or gift authorized by this section shall be reported by the commissioner of the department receiving the funds to the chairs of the senate and house committees on institutions and to the joint fiscal committee. 

* * * Buildings and General Services * * *

Sec. 26.  PROJECTS FUNDED IN PRIOR YEARS; BENNINGTON STATE OFFICE BUILDING; BUILDING #617 IN ESSEX JUNCTION

(a)  The commissioner of buildings and general services is authorized to use funds appropriated under this act for capital projects requiring additional support that were funded with capital or general appropriations made in prior years.

(b)  The commissioner of buildings and general services is authorized to spend up to $250,000 from funds appropriated for the Bennington state office building in Sec. 1(14) of No. 52 of the Acts of 2007 for the purpose of developing a comprehensive proposal to meet state office building needs while supporting the downtown redevelopment initiative in the town of Bennington.  In developing the proposal, the commissioner may hire one or more consultants to evaluate existing and potential state office space in Bennington, and shall consult with the Bennington downtown task force created by Sec. 4 of No. 53 of the Acts of 2007 to explore and evaluate opportunities.  Any recommended proposal shall limit the state’s capital appropriation for the project to up to a total of $10 million, and the commissioner shall explore all potential funding opportunities for the proposal.  On or before January 15, 2009, the commissioner of buildings and general services shall submit a report to the senate and house committees on institutions on behalf of the department of buildings and general services and the Bennington downtown task force regarding a plan for the Bennington state office building and Bennington district and family courts.  The proposal may include any of the following:

(1)  Selling the current state office building and land, and relocating state programs, services, and staff to another site.

(2)  Redeveloping one or more state buildings.  Redevelopment may include any of the following for all or portions of the building or buildings:  renovations, razing, leasing, entering into condominium agreements, entering into partnership agreements, and location of state programs, services, and staff.

(3)  Purchase or lease of a building or buildings, or a portion of a building or buildings in the town of Bennington for relocation of state programs, services, and staff.

(4)  Purchase of land and construction of a building in the town of Bennington, with priority consideration given to the designated downtown development district; location of state programs, services, and staff in the downtown building; and potential use of a portion of the building by nonstate workers through a lease, condominium agreement, or partnership agreement.

(c)  Current construction plans and funding for the health and public safety laboratories at Building 617 in Essex referenced in Sec. 3 of this act require phased construction, which could potentially increase the overall cost of this project.  It is therefore deemed to be in the state’s best interest to expedite construction, and it is the intent of the general assembly to approve the exploration by the commissioner of buildings and general services of various development options that would expedite the construction process.  Notwithstanding sections 161, 165, and 166 of Title 29, the commissioner of buildings and general services is authorized to explore, develop, and negotiate with the current property manager all development options available regarding the land and property commonly referred to as “Building 617” in Essex Junction.  Upon obtaining approval from the secretary of administration and the chairs and vice chairs of the senate and house committees on institutions, the commissioner of buildings and general services may undertake any of the following:

(1)  Enter into one or more development agreements that would expedite the design, development, construction, and occupancy of the proposed health and forensic laboratories.

(2)  Sell the state’s property or any portion thereof located at 30 and 42 Allen Martin Drive in Essex Junction.  The commissioner’s authority to sell includes the discretion to apply the proceeds from the sale to the state’s contribution or costs related to the development plan for the health and forensic laboratories.

(3)  Reallocate any unencumbered prior capital appropriations for the development and construction of the health and forensic laboratories to the state’s contribution or costs related to the plan for expedited construction.  

(4)  Enter into operating leases or agreements, including condominium agreements, or other agreements such as lease-purchase, lease-lease back, sell-lease back, land lease, or any combination thereof to expedite the construction of Building 617 in Essex Junction.

Sec. 27.  PROPERTY TRANSACTIONS; MISCELLANEOUS

(a)  Notwithstanding 29 V.S.A. § 166(b), the commissioner of buildings and general services, with the approval of the secretary of administration, is authorized to sell or lease 900 square feet of state-owned land at the Newport state office building in the town of Newport.  After payment of any costs and fees associated with the transaction, proceeds from a sale shall be deposited into a capital fund pursuant to 29 V.S.A. §166(d), and proceeds from a lease shall be deposited into a property management fund pursuant to 29 V.S.A. § 160.

(b)  Notwithstanding 29 V.S.A. § 166(b), the commissioner of buildings and general services, with the approval of the secretary of administration, is authorized to subdivide and sell, at fair market value based on an appraisal paid for by the prospective purchaser, a section of state-owned property located on Railroad Row in the town of Hartford.  After payment of any costs and fees associated with the sale, proceeds shall be deposited into a capital fund pursuant to 29 V.S.A. § 166(d).

(c)  Notwithstanding 29 V.S.A. §166(b), the commissioner of buildings and services is authorized to subdivide and sell, as described below, the real property commonly referred to as the “Former Tree Farm Property” and associated buildings located in the town and village of Essex.  The property is located on the east side of Old Colchester road, the northerly part of the property being located in the town of Essex and the southerly part of the property being located in the village of Essex Junction.  Proceeds from the sale or sales, net of all related development, permitting, relocation, and sale costs, shall be deposited into a capital fund pursuant to 29 V.S.A. § 166(d).  The commissioner may:

(1)  Negotiate and enter into a sales agreement with the town of Essex, the village of Essex Junction, the Tree Farm Management Group, Inc., or any combination thereof for the sale of the parcel currently subject to a lease agreement between the state of Vermont, the town of Essex, and the village of Essex Junction; provided that the terms of the sale include a covenant restricting use of the land to educational and recreational uses and prohibiting development for housing, commercial, or industrial use.

(2)  Sell the wooded portion of the land on the eastern side, provided that the terms of the sale include a covenant restricting use of the land to educational and recreational uses and prohibiting development for housing, commercial, or industrial use.

(3)  Sell the small parcel in the western corner which contains the barn.  This portion of the land may be sold for development at fair market value or may be sold as part and parcel of the portions described in subdivisions (1) and (2) of this subsection with the same restrictions that apply to the other portions.

(d)  Pursuant to 29 V.S.A. § 166, the commissioner of buildings and general services, with the approval of the secretary of administration, shall sell, lease, subdivide, convert into condominiums, or any combination thereof, the Thayer School building located at 1193 North Avenue in Burlington; provided, however, that any transaction includes the stipulation that the department of motor vehicles must remain at the site.  After payment of any costs and fees associated with the transaction, proceeds from a sale shall be deposited into a capital fund pursuant to 29 V.S.A. § 166(d), and proceeds from a lease shall be deposited into a property management fund pursuant to 29 V.S.A. § 160.

(e)  Notwithstanding 29 V.S.A. § 166(b), the commissioner of buildings and general services may sell or lease land, mineral rights, or both, as follows:

(1)  the land and mineral rights are those located at the Robert H.Wood, Jr. Criminal Justice and Fire Service Training Council in Pittsford that adjoin land currently operated by Casella Property Management for purposes of gravel excavation and sale;

(2)  the transaction is limited to no more than three acres of land or mineral rights;

(3)  the term of a lease is limited to no more than 10 years;

(4)  the sale or lease price shall be based upon the fair market value of the source mineral rights; and

(5)  after payment of any costs and fees associated with the transaction, proceeds from a sale shall be deposited into a capital fund pursuant to 29 V.S.A.

§ 166(d), and proceeds from a lease shall be deposited into a property management fund pursuant to 29 V.S.A. § 160.

Sec. 28.  LOCATION OF STATE OFFICES

(a)  Sec. 2(a)(5) of No. 61 of the Acts of 2001 and Sec. 28 of No. 149 of the Acts of the 2001 Adj. Sess. (2002), relating to occupancy of 133 State Street in Montpelier, are repealed.

(b)  18 V.S.A. § 3(b), relating to the location in Chittenden County of the executive and administrative offices of the department of health, is repealed.

(c)  3 V.S.A. § 260(b) is amended to read:

(b)  The principal office of each administrative department shall be located at such location as the secretary of the agency of administration determines with the approval of the governor, except that the principal office of the health department shall be in Burlington, and the military department shall be at Camp Johnson.

Sec. 29.  29 V.S.A. § 152(a)(31) and (32) are added to read:

(31)  Receive payments from vendors through the real-time demand response program (DRP).  The commissioner may contract with third‑party brokers or directly with Independent System Operators to generate or reduce electrical demand, or both, for state owned facilities in return for payments to the state which shall be retained by the facilities operations revolving fund established in section 160a of this title.

(32)  Accept funds and other contributions for state house renovations and restorations; educational, interpretive, and curatorial projects; and acquisition of historic furnishings, fixtures, and works of art for projects that pertain to the state house.

Sec. 30.  32 V.S.A. § 701a(c) is added to read:

(c)  The sums appropriated and spending authority authorized by a capital construction act shall be continuing and shall not revert at the end of the fiscal year.


* * * Judiciary * * *

Sec. 31.  INVENTORY OF COUNTY COURTHOUSES

It is the intent of the general assembly to establish a consistent formula for use of a county courthouse by the supreme court, district court, family court, and judicial bureau.  In keeping with this intent, the commissioner of buildings and general services and the court administrator shall conduct an inventory of all county courthouses in the state and report to the senate and house committees on institutions on or before January 15, 2009 on the following:

(1)  ownership of each county courthouse;

(2)  the number of state courts occupying space in county courthouses and county courts occupying space in state courthouses;

(3)  existing financial and other agreements between the court administrator and the assistant judges for use of a county courthouse by a state court or use of a state courthouse by a county court; and

(4)  a recommendation for a fee-for-space formula for use of a county courthouse by a state court or use of a state courthouse by a county court.

* * * Building Communities Grants * * *

Sec. 32.  REPEAL

The following are repealed:

(1)  Sec. 35 of No. 43 of the Acts of 2005, relating to a broadband development competitive grant program.

(2)  Sec. 34 of No. 43 of the Acts of 2005, relating to a recreational and educational facilities grant program.

(3)  Sec. 36 of No. 43 of the Acts of 2005, relating to a human services competitive grant program.

Sec. 33.  RECREATIONAL FACILITIES GRANT PROGRAM 

(a)  Creation of program.  There is created a recreational facilities grant program to be the successor to and a continuation of the recreational and educational facilities grant program established in Sec. 34 of No. 43 of the Acts of 2005 to provide competitive grants to municipalities as defined in chapter 117 of Title 24 and to nonprofit organizations for capital costs associated with the development and creation of community recreational opportunities in Vermont communities.  The program is authorized to award matching grants of up to $25,000 per project, provided that grant funds shall be awarded only when evidence is presented by a successful applicant that three dollars have been raised from nonstate sources for every one dollar awarded under this program.

(b)  Creation of committee.  There is established a recreational facilities grant advisory committee to include the commissioners of forests, parks and recreation and of buildings and general services, or the commissioners’ designees; a representative of the Vermont Recreation and Parks Association; two members of the Vermont general assembly, one appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives and one appointed by the senate committee on committees; a representative of the Vermont Trails and Greenways Council; and one citizen member to be appointed by the governor.  The members of the committee shall select a chair.  The citizen member shall serve for a term of two years or until his or her successor is appointed. 

(c)  Process.  The recreational facilities grant advisory committee shall coordinate and administer the recreational facilities grant program.  The commissioner of buildings and general services shall develop a simplified application form to ensure the following:

(1)  easy completion of the form by grant applicants;

(2)  demonstration of a community’s commitment and ability to generate required matching funds from local fundraising or other efforts;

(3)  equitable selection of grant recipients; and

(4)  accountability by grant recipients. 

(d)  Before it notifies an applicant that it will be awarded a grant, the recreational facilities grant advisory committee shall provide notice of the award and the time and location of any award presentation to the chairs of the senate and house committees on institutions and to those members of the general assembly who represent the area in which a successful applicant resides.

(e)  The department of buildings and general services shall provide administrative support to the program.


Sec. 34.  HUMAN SERVICES AND EDUCATIONAL FACILITIES

COMPETITIVE GRANT PROGRAM

(a)  Creation of program.  There is created a human services and educational facilities grant program to be the successor to and a continuation of the human services competitive grant program established in Sec. 36 of No. 43 of the Acts of 2005 to provide competitive grants to municipalities as defined in chapter 117 of Title 24 and to nonprofit organizations for capital costs associated with the major maintenance, renovation, or development of facilities for the delivery of human services and health care or for the development of educational opportunities in Vermont communities.  The program is authorized to award matching grants of up to $25,000 per project, provided that grant funds shall be awarded only when evidence is presented by a successful applicant that at least three dollars have been raised from nonstate sources for every dollar awarded under this program.

(b)  Creation of committee.  There is established a human services and educational facilities grant advisory committee to include the secretary of human services or the secretary’s designee; the commissioner of buildings and general services or the commissioner’s designee; two members of the Vermont general assembly, one appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives and one appointed by the senate committee on committees; and three representatives of broad-based community organizations, such as the United Way of Vermont, who shall be selected and appointed by the governor.  The members of the committee shall select a chair.  The members appointed by the governor shall serve for terms of two years or until their successors are appointed.

(c)  Process.  The human services and educational facilities grant advisory committee shall coordinate and administer the human services and educational facilities grant program.  The commissioner of buildings and general services shall develop a simplified application form to ensure the following:

(1)  easy completion of the form by grant applicants;

(2)  demonstration of a community’s commitment and ability to generate required matching funds from local fundraising or other efforts;

(3)  equitable selection of grant recipients; and

(4)  accountability by grant recipients. 

(d)  Before it notifies an applicant that it will be awarded a grant, the human services and educational facilities grant advisory committee shall provide notice of the award and the time and location of any award presentation to the chairs of the senate and house committees on institutions and to those members of the general assembly who represent the area in which a successful applicant resides.

(e)  The department of buildings and general services shall provide administrative support to the program.


* * * Education * * *

Sec. 35.  31 V.S.A. § 654(11) is amended to read:

(11)  Apportionment of total revenues, within limits hereinafter specified, accruing to the state lottery fund among as follows:

* * *

(D)  the transfer of moneys $23.6 million, if available, to the education fund established by section 4025 of Title 16, to be used solely for the purposes of state and local funding of public education;

(E)  any remaining funds shall be reserved for appropriation to the commissioner of education for state aid for school construction pursuant to

16 V.S.A. § 3448 as follows:

(i)  the first $4,000,000.00 shall be expended by the commissioner of education on school construction projects to extend the life of a building pursuant to

16 V.S.A. § 3448(a)(3)(B);

(ii)  any additional funds shall be expended by the commissioner of education on school construction projects in accordance with the prioritized list approved annually by the state board of education under 16 V.S.A. § 3448(a)(3).

Sec. 36.  TRANSITIONAL PROVISION

Notwithstanding Sec. 36(a) of No. 52 of the Acts of 2007, the commissioner of education is authorized to accept, review, or act on any applications for projects to extend the life of a building pursuant to 16 V.S.A. § 3448(a)(3)(B) if funds are available from the state lottery pursuant to 31 V.S.A. § 654(11)(E)(i).

Sec. 37.  16 V.S.A. § 3448(a)(5)(B) is amended to read:

(5)  Final approval for construction aid.

***

(B)  The state board may approve a final application for a project provided that:

* * *

(v)  the project has otherwise met the requirements of sections

3447–3456 of this title; and

(vi)  if the proposed project includes a playground, the project includes a requirement that the design and construction of playground equipment follow the guidelines set forth in the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission Handbook for Public Playground Safety; and

(vii)  if the total estimated cost of the proposed project is less than $25,000.00, no performance bond or irrevocable letter of credit shall be required.

* * * Natural Resources * * *

Sec. 38.  10 V.S.A. § 1625(e) is amended to read:

(e)  If the department finds that a proposed municipal water pollution control project is necessary to reduce effluent phosphorus concentration or mass loading to the level required in section 1266a of this title, the department shall award to the municipality, subject to the availability of funds, a state assistance grant.  Such grants shall be for 100 50 percent of the eligible project cost.  This funding shall not be available for phosphorus removal projects where the effluent concentration must be reduced in order to maintain a previously permitted mass loading of phosphorus.

Sec. 39.  FEDERAL ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY INCENTIVES PROGRAM; MATCHING FUNDS; REALLOCATION

(a)  Currently more than $20,000,000 in Federal Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) pollution reduction funds are available to Vermont farmers to reduce manure runoff into rivers and streams.  This funding is available if the state can provide $750,000 in state assistance for this purpose.  Therefore, the following funds shall be used to provide the state share:

(1)  $125,000 from funds for stream stabilization grants appropriated under Sec. 11(c)(2) of No. 52 of the Acts of 2007.

(2)  $75,000 from funds for best management practices appropriated under Sec. 15(a) of No. 52 of the Acts of 2007.

(3)  $220,000 from funds for ecosystem restoration and protection appropriated under Sec. 12(c)(1) of this act.

(4)  $250,000 from funds for best management practices appropriated under Sec. 16(1) of this act.

(b)  It is the intent of the general assembly to appropriate the remaining $100,000 of required state matching funds in the appropriations act of 2008 for fiscal year 2009.

* * * Military * * *

Sec. 40.  20 V.S.A. § 542 is amended to read:

§ 542.  ACQUISITION, MAINTENANCE AND DISPOSAL OF PROPERTY FOR THE NATIONAL GUARD USE

In the name of the state, the board shall be responsible for the real estate and personal property of the national guard.  The board may acquire or purchase, and maintain and dispose of by sale or otherwise real estate and personal property.  Upon determination by the board that real estate or personal property is to be disposed of, such disposal shall be at fair market value unless otherwise determined by the majority of the board.  Proceeds of any disposal shall be credited to a special fund and shall be available to the department of the military to offset the cost of any disposal and to provide improvements to real estate, to replace personal property, to acquire real estate or personal property, or any combination thereof for use by the department of the military in addition to any annual state capital appropriation.

* * * Effective Date * * *

Sec. 41.  EFFECTIVE DATE

This act shall take effect on passage.



Published by:

The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street
Montpelier, Vermont


www.leg.state.vt.us