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BILL AS PASSED HOUSE AND SENATE 2007-2008

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H.405

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 sum of $11,650,000 is appropriated 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 house and senate committees on institutions are notified before that action is taken.  The individual appropriations in this section are estimates only.

(1)  Montpelier, design and construction of a state office and parking facility at the so‑called triangle site adjacent to the Dog River Road.  The funds shall be used to remove the ledges on the site, begin construction of facilities to house the state archives, build a parking lot, and develop plans for the location of the department of motor vehicles and the emergency operations center on the site.  However, if a problem arises in developing the site pursuant to this subdivision, the commissioner of buildings and general services shall meet with the senate and house committees on institutions to consider alternatives and may proceed with an alternate plan if one is approved by majority vote of those committee members voting at a meeting called by the chairs of the committees:                                                                                            (1,700,000)

(2)  Montpelier, 120 State Street, exterior caulking:                                                                                                                                                           (350,000)

(3)  Statewide major maintenance:                                                (7,065,000)

(4)  Burlington, 32 Cherry Street, design and repairs:          (150,000)

(5)  Statewide, building reuse:                                                         (150,000)

(6)  Statewide, contingency fund:                                                    (500,000)

(7)  Statewide, planning:                                                                   (25,000)

(8)  Statewide, Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA):

(A)  Robert H. Wood, Jr., Academy and Lee Emerson Courthouse:                                                                                                                (175,000)

(B)  Women’s shelters, phase II:                                                  (50,000)

(9)  Waterbury State Complex, fire alarm system:                           (200,000)

(10)  Springfield state office building, retaining wall, phase II, design and construction of a garage:                                                 (145,000)

(11)  State House flag conservation, phase II:                                   (20,000)

(12)  Renewable energy, wind project, Ed Weed fish culture station:                                                                                                                                    (25,000)

(13)  Middlesex, renewable energy, solar project:                            (30,000)

(14)  Bennington courthouse and state office building, either for work that will enable state employees and the public to reoccupy the building or to seek a new site for the facility.  Funds shall not be expended until the house and senate committees on institutions have reviewed diagnostic tests and approved a plan for spending the funds by majority vote of those present and voting at a joint meeting called by the chairs of the two committees for the purpose:                                                                                       (1,000,000)

(15)  Montpelier, State House, reconstruction of the fire escape leading from the 2nd and 3rd floor annex:                                        (60,000)

(16)  Montpelier, State House, renovation of the Robert H. Gibson Senate Cloak Room:                                                          (5,000)

(Total appropriation – Section 1                                             $11,650,000)

Sec. 2.  TAXES

The sum of $100,000 is appropriated to the department of taxes as the fourth appropriation in 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 sum of $7,500,000 is appropriated to the department of buildings and general services for construction and renovation of building 617 in Essex, including co-location of the department of health and department of public safety forensics laboratories.

(Total appropriation - Section 3                                                $7,500,000)

Sec. 4.  HUMAN SERVICES

The sum of $1,100,000 is appropriated to the department of buildings and general services for the agency of human services for the projects described in this section.

(1)  Site acquisition for corrections work camps:                             (100,000)

(2)  Vermont state hospital, renovations:                                         (100,000)

(3)  St. Albans, Northwest state correctional facility, sewage treatment:                                                                                                                 (150,000)

(4)  Windsor, Southeast state correctional facility:

(A)  dam inspection and repair:                                                  (100,000)

(B)  access road repairs:                                                            (300,000)

(5)  Woodside Juvenile Rehabilitation Center, conversion of the underused racquetball court into classrooms:                          (300,000)

(6)  Chittenden Regional Correctional Facility, installation of cameras, replacing security windows in the “F” unit, providing four new security doors in the “A2” unit, painting, and carpet replacements:                                 (50,000)

(Total appropriation – Section 4                                                $1,100,000)

Sec. 5.  JUDICIARY

The sum of $270,000 is appropriated to the department of buildings and general services for security and wall improvements at the Barre district court building, including security cameras to be mounted on the outside of the building.  The commissioner of buildings and general services and the district court administrator shall work with the Barre City Council to determine placement of the cameras.

(Total appropriation – Section 5                                               $  270,000)

Sec. 6.  BUILDING COMMUNITIES GRANTS

The following sums are appropriated for building community 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:                                   180,000

(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:                              180,000

(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.  The appropriation 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:                                                                                                                      200,000

(4)  To the department of buildings and general services for the recreational and educational facilities grant program established in Sec. 34 of No. 43 of the Acts of 2005:                                                                               200,000

(5)  To the Vermont telecommunications authority established by the general assembly in 2007 for broadband development grants.  However, if no Vermont telecommunications authority is created by the general assembly in the 2007 legislative session, these funds shall be appropriated to the department of information and innovation for a broadband development grant program established in Sec. 35 of No. 43 of the Acts of 2005:             200,000

(6)  To the department of buildings and general services for the human services grant program established in Sec. 36 of No. 43 of the Acts of 2005:                                                                                                                                              200,000

(7)  To the department of agriculture, food and markets for emergency funding for farm capital needs resulting from the February 2007 blizzard.  The funds shall be used according to a plan determined by the secretary of the agency of agriculture, food and markets.                                                    100,000

(Total appropriation – Section 6                                               $ 1,260,000)

Sec. 7.  COMMERCE AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT

(a)  The sum of $250,000 is appropriated to the department of buildings and general services for the agency of commerce and community development for major maintenance at historic sites statewide; provided, the maintenance shall be under the supervision of the department of buildings and general services.

(b)  The sum of $50,000 is appropriated to the department of buildings and general services for the agency of commerce and community development for the design for an addition to the visitors’ center at the President Calvin Coolidge State Historic Site.

(c)  The sum of $50,000 is appropriated to the agency of commerce and community development for underwater preserves. 

(d)  The sum of $15,000 is appropriated to the agency of commerce and community development for roadside historic site markers.

(e)  The sum of $40,000 is appropriated to the agency of commerce and community development for protecting, preserving, moving, or re-interring human remains discovered in unmarked burial sites.

(Total appropriation – Section 7                                                 $  405,000)

Sec. 8.  EDUCATION

(a)  The sum of at least $9,567,598 shall be expended by the department of education for state aid for school construction projects pursuant to section 3448 of Title 16.  Of this amount, $9,567,598 shall be from capital funds and is appropriated by this act.  The remaining amount shall be from general funds pursuant to Sec. 277(b)(4) of the Fiscal Year 2008 Appropriations Act.  Of this amount:

(1)  $1,800,000 shall be used to fund emergency projects under 16 V.S.A. § 3448(a)(3)(A).

(2)  $1,000,000 shall be used to fund projects to extend the life of the building pursuant to 16 V.S.A. § 3448(a)(3)(B), excluding aid for an eligible biomass heating system.

(3)  $1,395,529 shall be used to fund purchase of biomass heating systems pursuant to 16 V.S.A. § 3448(a)(3)(B).  These funds shall be prorated among the following:

(A)  Mt. Abraham Union High School District

(B)  Burlington School District

(C)  Mount Anthony Union High School District

(D)  Williamstown School District

(4)  $5,216,378 shall be for partial payment of the final school construction awards pursuant to 16 V.S.A. § 3448.  These funds shall be prorated among the following:

(A)  Brattleboro Union High School District                           

(B)  Dresden School District                                      

(C)  Williamstown School District                                          

(D)  Rockingham School District for Saxtons River Elementary School                                                                

(E)  Rockingham School District for Bellows Falls Central Elementary School

(F)  Waterbury-Duxbury Union School District                      

(5)  $155,691 shall be for the state share of energy performance contracts entered into pursuant to section 3448f of Title 16.

(6)  Of the amount appropriated from general funds pursuant to Sec. 277(b)(4) of the Fiscal Year 2008 Appropriations Act, the first $400,000 shall be for projects to extend the life of a building pursuant to subdivision (2) of this subsection, the next $45,000 shall be used to pay for an energy performance contract pursuant to subdivision (5) of this subsection, 25 percent of the remainder shall be prorated among those projects listed in subdivision (3) of this subsection, and 75 percent of the remainder shall be prorated among those projects listed in subdivision (4) of this subsection.

(b)  The sum of $1,000,000 is appropriated to the department of education for construction at regional technical centers as follows: 

(1)  For completion of construction at the Patricia Hannaford Career Center in Middlebury, up to the amount of $48,610. 

(2)  The remainder shall be appropriated to the department of buildings and general services for construction at the Windham Regional Career Center in Brattleboro.

(c)  The sum of $200,000 is appropriated to the department of education for regional technical education centers and comprehensive high schools to assist with the purchase of educational program equipment, to be distributed in equal amounts to each center and high school with no local matching funds required.

(d)  The sum of $20,000 is appropriated to the department of education to reimburse school districts for costs incurred to install wiring harnesses capable of being connected to emergency electrical power generators during emergencies when schools are used as community shelters or operation centers, or both.

(e)  The sum of $22,521 is appropriated to the department of education to pay the Williamstown school district for 25 percent of the approved costs of   replacement of a roof at the Williamstown elementary school. 

(Total appropriation – Section 8                                                 $10,810,119)

Sec. 8a.  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.  The commissioner of buildings and services and the commissioner of education shall gather information about past state funding of the Austine School, legal obligations of the state to the school, and legal interest of the state in the school.  The commissioners shall present this information to the senate and house committees on institutions on or before January 15, 2008.

(Total appropriation - Section 8a                                              $      50,000)

Sec. 9.  UNIVERSITY OF VERMONT

The sum of $1,600,000 is appropriated to the University of Vermont for construction, renovation, or maintenance projects.  The university shall file with the general assembly an annual report, on or before January 15, that details the status of capital projects funded in whole or in part by state capital appropriations.

(Total appropriation – Section 9                                               $ 1,600,000)

Sec. 10.  VERMONT STATE COLLEGES

The sum of $1,600,000 is appropriated to the Vermont State Colleges for major facility maintenance.  The state colleges shall file with the general assembly an annual report, on or before January 15, that details the status of capital projects funded in whole or in part by state capital appropriations.

(Total appropriation – Section 10                                             $ 1,600,000)

Sec. 11.  NATURAL RESOURCES 

(a)  The sum of $3,950,000 is appropriated to the agency of natural resources for water pollution control projects.  Of this amount:

(1)  $1,700,000 shall be for the state match 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)  $300,000 shall be for completion of pollution control projects on a list prepared by the agency of natural resources, dated May 20, 2003 entitled “Wastewater Project Phase-In List from the Capital Bill Conference Committee 2003; Legislative Session” and referenced in Sec. 55 of No. 63 of the Acts of 2003; and

(3)  $1,950,000 shall be for construction of the wastewater facilities project in Pownal and interest paid on funds borrowed for the project.  Up to $900,000 of this amount, as determined by the secretary, may be used as an interim replacement of any special federal grants for construction of Contract 2B undertaken in 2008.

(b)  The sum of $1,900,000 is appropriated to the agency of natural resources for the drinking water program.  Of this amount:

(1)  $1,650,000 shall be used for the state match for the federal FY07 capitalization grant; and

(2)  $250,000 shall be for the drinking water state revolving fund loan program.

(c)  The sum of $2,050,000 is appropriated 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, as follows:

(1)  Wetlands restoration and protection:                                        $ 250,000

(2)  Stream stabilization grants:  $1,200,000.  Of this amount, $100,000 shall be used for long‑term flood mitigation along the Dog River in Roxbury.

(3)  $600,000 for wastewater phosphorus treatment at municipal wastewater treatment plants as follows:

(A)  Hardwick                                                                             100,000

(B)  Proctor                                                                                  50,000

(C)  Ludlow                                                                                   30,000

(D)  Milton                                                                                   270,000

(E)  Richmond                                                                                50,000

(F)  Springfield                                                                             100,000

(d)  The sum of $300,000 is appropriated to the agency of natural resources for maintenance and repair of state-owned dams.

(e)  The sum of $800,000 is appropriated to the agency of natural resources for the department of forests, parks and recreation for rehabilitation of aging state park infrastructure.

(f)  The sum of $50,000 is appropriated to the agency of natural resources for the Green Mountain Club, Inc. for the procurement, in fee simple or by easement, of properties along the Long Trail. 

(g)  The sum of $50,000 is appropriated to the agency of natural resources for the Lake Champlain Walleye Association, Inc. as follows:

(1)  To purchase weed mats for three ponds in Franklin County:    21,150

(2)  To build an advanced fry system at the Bald Hill hatchery.  The Walleye association shall give the fry system to the department of fish and wildlife:                                                                                                                                  28,850

(h)  The sum of $300,000 is appropriated to the agency of natural resources for the department of fish and wildlife to carry out phase II of renovations to the Bennington fish culture station.

(Total appropriation – Section 11                                              $ 9,400,000)

Sec. 12.  MILITARY

The sum of $200,000 is appropriated to the department of the military for major maintenance, to investigate the cost-effectiveness of potential energy efficiency upgrades, and to design improvements to make the armories ADA compliant.

(Total appropriation – Section 12                                                $  200,000)

Sec. 13.  PUBLIC SAFETY AND FIRE SERVICE TRAINING COUNCILS

(a)  The sum of $30,000 is appropriated to the department of buildings and general services for the department of public safety to install monitoring equipment on underground storage tanks at various state police offices.

(b)  The sum of $50,000 is appropriated to the department of buildings and general services for the department of public safety for a feasibility study for a new public safety field station to serve southeastern Vermont.

(c)  The sum of $70,000 is appropriated to the department of buildings and general services to make improvements to the existing parking lot and loading dock at the Vermont fire service training council facility in Pittsford.

(Total appropriation – Section 13                                                   $150,000)

Sec. 14.  CRIMINAL JUSTICE

(a)  The sum of $125,000 is appropriated to the department of buildings and general services to improve the firing range at the Vermont criminal justice training council in Pittsford. 

(b)  The sum of $42,000 is appropriated to the department of buildings and general services to construct new kennel facilities at the Vermont criminal justice training council in Pittsford. 

(Total appropriation – Section 14                                                $167,000)


Sec. 15.  AGRICULTURE, FOOD AND MARKETS

(a)  The sum of $1,800,000 is appropriated to the agency of agriculture, food and markets, best management practice implementation cost share program, for agricultural nonpoint source pollution reduction.  Farmers participating in this program may receive a maximum of 80 percent of state aid when no federal dollars are available.

(b)  The sum of $180,000 is appropriated to the agency of agriculture, food and markets for the competitive grants program for agricultural fair capital projects.  No single entity shall be awarded more than ten percent of this appropriation.

(c)  The sum of $100,000 is appropriated to the agency of agriculture, food and markets to assist with the construction of an underground cattle pass on Vermont Route 100 to serve the Turner farm in Waitsfield.  In fiscal year 2008, the agency shall use the funds to design, permit, and install the pass and associated highway traffic safety features.  The associated work is contingent upon the Turner estate donating any necessary right-of-way outside the existing highway right-of-way and entering into an agreement binding the Turner estate and its successors-in-interest to a maintenance and liability agreement satisfactory to the agency of transportation.  However, if  another $100,000 is not appropriated for this project in the fiscal year 2008 transportation bill, the $100,000 shall be appropriated to the department of agriculture, food and markets for emergency funding for farm capital needs resulting from the February 2007 blizzard pursuant to Sec. 6(7) of this act.

(Total appropriation – Section 15                                            $2,080,000)

Sec. 16.  VERMONT PUBLIC TELEVISION

The sum of $250,000 is appropriated to Vermont Public Television for continued work on the federally mandated conversion of Vermont Public Television’s transmission sites to digital broadcasting format. 

(Total appropriation – Section 16                                                  $250,000)

Sec. 17.  VERMONT INTERACTIVE TELEVISION

The sum of $100,000 is appropriated to Vermont Interactive Television for audio upgrade of the system, and purchase of new cameras. 

(Total appropriation – Section 17                                                $100,000)

Sec. 18.  VERMONT RURAL FIRE PROTECTION

The sum of $100,000 is appropriated to Vermont rural fire protection for the Vermont rural fire protection task force to continue the dry hydrant program.

(Total appropriation – Section 18                                                $100,000)

Sec. 19.  VERMONT VETERANS HOME

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

(Total appropriation – Section 19                                                           1,000,000)

* * * Financing This Act * * *

Sec. 20.  REALLOCATION OF FUNDS

The following are reallocated to the department of buildings and general services to defray expenditures authorized in Sec. 1 of this act:

(1)  $2,404 of the amount appropriated in Sec. 8 of No. 29 of the Acts of 1999 (Battle of the Wilderness Civil War monument).

(2)  $50,000 of the amount appropriated in Sec. 4 of No. 43 of the Acts of 2005 (Rutland courthouse).

(3)  $1,350 of the amount appropriated by Sec. 14 of No. 63 of the Acts of 2003 (Heat project at 116 State St.).

(4)  $8,260 of the amount appropriated by Sec. 3 of No. 121 of the Acts of the 2003 Adj. Sess. (2004) (renovations to the Dale Correctional facility).

(5)  $105 of the amount appropriated by Sec. 14 of No. 121 of the Acts of the 2003 Adj. Sess. (2004) (firefighter equipment).

(6)  of the amount appropriated in fiscal year 2007 for state aid for emergency construction projects pursuant to 16 V.S.A. § 3448(a)(3)(A):

(A)  $200,000 shall be appropriated to the department of education for technical equipment aid pursuant to Sec. 8(c) of this act; and

(B)  $300,000 shall be appropriated to the department of education to pay for projects to extend the life of a school building pursuant to Sec. 8(a)(2) of this act.

(Total reallocation– Section 20                                                    $562,119)

Sec. 21.  GENERAL OBLIGATION BONDS

The state treasurer is authorized to issue general obligation bonds in the amount of $49,200,000 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 21                                                   $49,200,000)

Sec. 22.  FUNDS FROM SALE OF LAND

Proceeds from the sale of a portion of state land located on Swift Street at the Chittenden regional correctional facility to the city of South Burlington shall be used to defray expenditures authorized in Sec. 1 of this act.            

(Total funds from sale of land - Section 22                                    $30,000)


* * * Managing This Act * * *

Sec. 23.  REALLOCATION; TRANSFER OF 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. 11 of this act.

Sec. 24.  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.

(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 house and senate committees on institutions and to the joint fiscal committee. 

* * * Buildings and General Services; State Buildings * * *

Sec. 25.  PROJECTS FUNDED IN PRIOR YEARS

(a)  Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section, 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)  Funds appropriated in Sec. 5(c) of No. 147 of the Acts of the 2005 Adj. Sess. (2006) shall be used only for improvements to the Bennington District and Family Court as directed by that act.         

Sec. 26.  PROPERTY TRANSACTIONS; MISCELLANEOUS

The commissioner of buildings and general services is authorized, with the approval of the secretary of administration, to sell the properties listed in this section pursuant to 29 V.S.A. § 166.  Of proceeds from the sales $50,000 is appropriated to the Friends of the State House for renovations to the state house.  The remainder is appropriated to the department of buildings and general services for construction and renovation of building 617 in Essex to house the department of health and department of public safety forensics laboratories. 

(1)  Brandon.  Notwithstanding the provisions of Sec. 1(b) of No. 59 of the Acts of 1993, all remaining parcels of land and buildings owned by the state of Vermont that once constituted the Brandon training school may be sold without approval from the emergency board. 

(2)  Newport.  All remaining condominium units in the Hebard state office building. 

(3)  Duxbury.  The 37-acre parcel of state land on route 100 next to Crossett Brook Middle School. 

Sec. 27.  29 V.S.A. § 44a(a) is amended to read:

(a)  The commissioner shall:

* * *

(7)  Ensure that early in the building design phase, the architect will discuss the placement and form of artwork with the selected artist, and that bid specifications will inform potential contractors of the artwork to be installed in the building or facility.


Sec. 28.  29 V.S.A. § 45 is amended to read:

§ 45.  DUTIES OF CONTRACTING AGENCY

Upon selection of an architect for any project, the contracting agency shall:

(1)  notify the architect of the provisions of this chapter; and

(2)  notify the commissioner and the council of the selection of the architect and the details of the project; and

(3)  ensure that the architect discusses the form and placement of the artwork with the artist early in the planning and design phase of the building.

Sec. 29.  29 V.S.A. § 48 is amended to read:

§ 48.  POWERS AND DUTIES OF COUNCIL

(a)  The council shall facilitate a process which will result in a recommendation of an artist or artist team for each project selected for installation of artwork.  The artist or artist team shall collaborate with the project architect or design team during the initial design phase of the project.

(b)  Following design of the project, the council shall:

(1)  appoint persons to serve on the art selection panel;

(2)  establish contract procedures for contracting with artists for works of art and with architects for services related to the planning for the acquisition of works of art;

(3)  on the advice of the art selection panel, arrange contracts with artists and order payments from the art acquisition fund for such works of art;

(4)  review the final installation and placement of works of art.  In the case of works to be commissioned, the art selection panel shall review the design, the final execution and the placement of the commissioned work;

(5)  assist occupant and contracting agencies in locating insurance when it deems such insurance is necessary for the protection of the works of art which are purchased.

(b)(c)  Without further appropriation, the council may expend funds transferred to it for administration of this chapter. 

Sec. 30.  29 V.S.A. § 152(c) is amended to read:

(c)  Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the commissioner of buildings and general services is authorized to:

(1)  Implement a “Motorist Aid Refreshment Program” at state rest areas and information centers.  The commissioner is authorized to accept, without active solicitation, donations for the services and associated supplies, and may use surplus funds to pay for the information center program.

(2)  Permit nonprofit organizations and contracted information center operators to provide free refreshments to motorists.  Nonprofits and contracted information center operators may accept voluntary donations, without active solicitation, from motorists.

(3)  Adopt rules governing the provision of refreshments in accordance with this subsection.

Sec. 31.  29 V.S.A. § 152(a)(30) is added to read:

(30)  Provide services to the traveling public, lease space, sell products, and conduct any other activities within limits set forth in the federal Surface Transportation Act and Randolph-Sheppard Act and rules promulgated thereunder, to administer the information and welcome centers; and use funds generated in the centers to supplement funds for maintaining and operating the centers.

Sec. 32.  RELOCATION OF WILLISTON PUBLIC SAFETY BARRACKS

The department of buildings and general services shall continue its planning to relocate the Williston public safety barracks and E911 to building 617 in Essex.

* * * Education * * *

Sec. 33.  16 V.S.A. § 3448(a)(3)(B) is amended to read:

(B)  Second priority is given to construction projects in excess of $10,000.00 which address a need occasioned by deterioration of an existing building or equipment pursuant to subdivision (2)(A) of this subsection, and which extend the useful life of the building but which do not make extensive additions or extensive alterations to existing school facilities in which students are provided services.  Examples of projects given priority under this subdivision are replacement, addition, or repair to utilities,; projects which address environmental quality issues,; repair of a roof,; replacement of an existing space-heating, water-heating space-heating, water-heating, cooling, or refrigeration system that uses fossil fuels with a system for the same purpose that uses, or primarily relies upon, biomass, a geothermal/ground source, wind, or solar energy, or replacement of a system with a more efficient fossil fuel system that reduces fuel use by 10 percent or more or utilizes new technologies such as microturbines, cogeneration, fuel cells, or distributed generation, or; and replacement or upgrading of mechanical equipment.

Sec. 34.  16 V.S.A. § 3448(a)(4)(C) is amended to read:

(C)  the cost of projects to extend the life of a building which the board has approved but not yet reimbursed due to insufficient funds, as well as the estimated cost of those which might be approved by the state board in the coming fiscal year under subdivision (3)(B) of this subsection.  The legislature shall not approve an amount for this line item which exceeds more than five percent of the annual capital budget approved under subdivisions (A) and (B) of this subdivision (4).

Sec. 35.  16 V.S.A. § 3448(a)(7) is amended to read:

(7)  Award of construction aid.

(A)  The Except as provided in other subdivisions of this subdivision (7) and elsewhere in law, the amount of an award shall be 30 percent of the approved cost of the project.

* * *

(C)  The amount of an award shall be 50 percent of the approved cost of a project or applicable portion of a project which results in consolidation of two or more school buildings and which will serve the educational needs of students in a more cost-effective and educationally appropriate manner as compared to individual projects constructed separately.  A decision of the commissioner as to eligibility for aid under this subdivision (C) shall be final.  This subdivision (C) shall apply only to a project which has received preliminary approval by June 30, 2010.

Sec. 36.  STATE AID FOR SCHOOL CONSTRUCTION; SUSPENSION

(a)  The commissioner of education shall not accept, review, or act on any applications for state aid under chapter 123 of Title 16 submitted after

March 7, 2007 unless, prior to March 7, 2007, the electorate voted funds or authorized bonds, and thereafter all periods for reconsideration of the vote have expired, except for those projects which are:

(1)  eligible to be assigned first priority under 16 V.S.A. § 3448(a)(3);

(2)  necessary to ensure the health and safety, as determined by the commissioner, of students and employees using the building; or

(3)  school consolidation projects eligible for 50 percent aid under 16 V.S.A. § 3448(a)(7)(C).

(b)  It is the intent of the general assembly to use the time that state aid for school construction is suspended to review the recommendations of the commissioner of education and the commissioner of finance and management reported under Sec. 38 of this act and, based on those recommendations, develop a sustainable plan for state aid to school construction.  If no plan is in place by July 1, 2008, the general assembly will extend the period of suspension until a plan is in place.

Sec. 37.  STATE AID FOR SCHOOL CONSTRUCTION; ANALYSIS

The joint fiscal office and the legislative council shall analyze:

(1)  the effects of lowering the percentage amount of school construction projects to be paid from funds raised through state bonding;

(2)  state aid for school construction systems in other states;

(3)  the effect of authorizing 30-year bonding;

(4)  the effect of paying for school construction aid over the life of the state bond instead of in two payments;

(5)  whether paying operating costs and property taxes are lowered as a result of entering into a performance contract pursuant to 16 V.S.A. § 3448f;

(6)  the effect of providing state aid for construction of technical centers at the same rate as and through the same process that is used by other school construction projects;

(7)  the pros and cons of using the education fund to pay for the state share of school construction;

(8)  the pros and cons of paying for emergency projects, biomass projects, performance contracts, and technical center equipment using

state-bonded funds versus considering these to be operating costs and paying for them from the education fund; 

(9)  a fair percentage for the state to pay for biomass projects based on savings that are actually realized by the school district.

Sec. 38.  COMMISSIONER OF EDUCATION; COMMISSIONER OF

               FINANCE AND MANAGEMENT; REPORT

On or before January 1, 2008, the commissioner of education and the commissioner of finance and management shall report to the general assembly on options considered and specific recommendations to address the needs and pressures of school construction, including recommendations for a funding mechanism for state school construction aid and revisions to criteria for school construction project approval.  The commissioners shall also consider whether technical center equipment should be paid for from capital obligations or from the education fund.

Sec. 39.  REPEAL

Sec. 49 of No. 68 of the Acts of 2003 as amended by Sec. 54 of No. 121 of the Acts of the 2003 Adj. Sess. (2004), relating to construction aid for school consolidation, is repealed.


* * * State Colleges * * *

Sec. 40.  SPENDING AND BONDING AUTHORIZATION; VERMONT

               STATE COLLEGES

Pursuant to subsection 2171(e) of Title 16, the Vermont State Colleges is authorized to expend up to $1,000,000 of its self-generated revenues established for the purpose of capital improvements on housing, dining, and general purpose facilities.

Sec. 41.  16 V.S.A. § 2171(e) is amended to read:

(e)  The corporation may make expenditures for capital improvements provided those capital improvements receive the specific prior approval of the general assembly.  Upon receiving approval, the.  The corporation is authorized to borrow money for building purposes, to give security therefor as may be required, to execute necessary or proper instruments in connection therewith, and is also authorized to accept, use, and administer such funds as may be made available to it for any of its corporate purposes by the United States or any of its agencies, and to agree to any terms and conditions with reference thereto which may be required thereby not inconsistent with its corporate purposes.

* * * Agency of Natural Resources * * *

Sec. 42.  10 V.S.A. § 1626a(c) is amended to read:

(c)  Additional state assistance eligibility.

(1)  Grants.  A proposed wastewater treatment plant which is eligible for a loan under subsection (b) of this section, and a wastewater treatment plant with a design hydraulic capacity of 250,000 or more gallons per day which is being refurbished, shall in addition be eligible for a grant of up to 50 percent of the cost of that portion of the plant to be used to treat septage, or septage and sludge in combination, if the commissioner of environmental conservation finds that the proposed plant capacity will be sufficient to receive, treat and dispose of septage alone in a quantity equivalent to the ratio of 4,000 gallons or more of such septage per day for each 1,000,000 gallons per day of plant design hydraulic capacity.  The portion of the plant used for processing septage, or septage and sludge in combination, shall include facilities for receiving septage and for the storage, treatment, transfer, and disposal of both septage and sludge.

* * *

Sec. 43.  24 V.S.A. § 4753(d) is amended to read:

(d)  Funds from the Vermont environmental protection agency pollution control fund and the Vermont pollution control revolving fund, established by subdivisions (a)(1) and (2) of subsection (a) of this section, may be awarded for:

(1)  the refurbishment or construction of a new or an enlarged wastewater treatment plant with a resulting total capacity of 250,000 gallons or more per day in accordance with the provisions of this chapter and section 1626a of Title 10; or

* * *

Sec. 44.  Sec. 8(a)(2) of No. 52 of the Acts of 1989, as amended by Sec. 18 of No. 276 of the Acts of the 1989 Adj. Sess. (1990) and Sec. 32 of No. 29 of the Acts of 1999, is amended to read:

(2)  That this conveyance shall be completed within 20 30 years of the effective date of this act.

Sec. 45.  24 V.S.A. § 4751 is amended to read:

§ 4751.  DECLARATION OF POLICY

It is hereby declared to be in the public interest to foster and promote timely expenditures by municipalities for water supply, water pollution control and solid waste management, each of which is declared to be an essential governmental function when undertaken and implemented by a municipality.  It is also declared to be in the public interest to promote expenditures for certain existing privately-owned public water systems and certain

privately-owned wastewater and potable water supply systems to bring those systems into compliance with federal and state standards and to protect public health.

Sec. 46.  24 V.S.A. § 4753(a) is amended to read:

(a)  There is hereby established a series of special funds to be known as:

(1)  The Vermont environmental protection agency (EPA) pollution control revolving fund which shall be used to provide loans to municipalities, state agencies, and the Vermont housing finance agency, for planning sewage systems and sewage treatment or disposal plants as defined in sections 3501(6) and 3601 of this title, for constructing publicly-owned sewage systems and sewage treatment or disposal plants as defined in sections 3501(6) and 3601 of this title, for planning or construction of certain privately-owned wastewater systems, and for implementing related management programs.

(2)  The Vermont pollution control revolving fund which shall be used to provide loans to municipalities, state agencies, and the Vermont housing finance agency, for planning pollution control facilities and, for constructing publicly-owned pollution control facilities, and for constructing certain privately-owned wastewater systems and potable water supply systems.

* * *

Sec. 47.  24 V.S.A. § 4753a is amended to read:

§ 4753a.  AWARDS FROM REVOLVING LOAN FUNDS

(a)  Pollution control.  The general assembly shall approve all categories of awards made from the special funds established by section 4753 of this title for water pollution control facility construction, in order to assure that such awards conform with state policy on water quality and pollution abatement, and with the state policy that, except as provided in subsection (c) of this section, municipal entities shall receive first priority in the award of public monies for such construction, including monies returned to the revolving funds from previous awards.  To facilitate this legislative oversight, the secretary of natural resources shall annually no later than January 15 report to the house and senate committees on institutions and on natural resources and energy on all awards made from the relevant special funds during the prior and current fiscal years, and shall report on and seek legislative approval of all the types of projects for which awards are proposed to be made from the relevant special funds during the current or any subsequent fiscal year.  Where feasible, the specific projects shall be listed.

(b)  Water supply.  The secretary of natural resources shall no later than January 15, 2000 recommend to the house and senate committees on institutions and on natural resources and energy a procedure for reporting to and seeking the concurrence of the legislature with regard to the special funds established by section 4753 of this title for water supply facility construction.

(c)  Notwithstanding other priorities established in law, the secretary may award up to $500,000.00 of the funds from the Vermont environmental protection agency control fund and the Vermont pollution control revolving fund, combined, to a state agency, the Vermont housing finance agency, or a municipality for the administration of loans to households with income equal to or less than 200 percent of the state average median household income for the repair or replacement of failed wastewater systems and failed potable water supplies, as those terms are defined in section 1972 of Title 10.  Upon award of funds under this section, the state agency, Vermont housing finance agency, or municipality shall agree, pursuant to a memorandum of understanding with the secretary of natural resources, to repay the funds awarded to the special fund from which they were drawn.

* * * State House Improvements * * *

Sec. 48.  STATEHOUSE IMPROVEMENTS

The friends of the state house is authorized to engage in private fundraising for improvements to the state house in accordance with the conceptual plan dated January 13, 2006.  No state funding shall be used for salaries or fees of fundraisers.  No naming opportunities shall be offered in connection with fundraising efforts. 

* * * County Courthouses * * *

Sec. 49.  CONSTRUCTION OF COUNTY COURTHOUSES; PRIORITY

               SYSTEM; COURT ADMINISTRATOR

(a)  The court administrator shall work with the commissioner of buildings and general services to develop a numerical rating system to create a priority list of county courthouse construction projects so that, when the general assembly has funds available to fund county courthouse construction projects, it may use the list to make funding decisions.

(b)  The court administrator and commissioner of buildings and general services shall present the system to the senate and house committees on institutions on or before January 15, 2008.

* * * Effective Date * * *

Sec. 50.  EFFECTIVE DATE

This act shall take effect on passage.  The sums appropriated and the spending authority authorized by this act shall be continuing and shall not revert at the end of the fiscal year.



Published by:

The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street
Montpelier, Vermont


www.leg.state.vt.us