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Senate Calendar

thursday, may 3, 2007

121st DAY OF BIENNIAL SESSION

TABLE OF CONTENTS

                                                                                                                Page No.

ACTION CALENDAR

Third Reading

H. 248    Establishing a Vermont telecommunications authority....................... 1560

                              Sen. Cummings amendment............................................. 1560

                              Sen. Illuzzi amendment..................................................... 1560

Second Reading

Favorable with Proposal of Amendment

H. 522    Relating to the viability of Vermont agriculture.................................. 1561

                        Agriculture Committee Report................................................ 1561

                        Finance Committee Report.................................................... 1573

                        Sen. Kitchel, Sears, Mazza and Illuzzi amendment.................. 1573

                        Sen. Condos Amendment...................................................... 1573

                        Sen. Giard amendment........................................................... 1574

House Proposals of Amendment

S. 6         Preventing conviction of innocent persons........................................ 1574

                        Sen. Sears amendment........................................................... 1587

NOTICE CALENDAR

House Proposals of Amendment

S. 7         Compassionate use of marijuana for medical purposes..................... 1591

S. 51       Prohibiting discrimination on basis of gender identity........................ 1596

S. 82       Use of Vermont addresses & representations of Vermont origins..... 1597

S. 116     Relating to miscellaneous election law amendments.......................... 1599

S. 121     Relating to autism spectrum disorders.............................................. 1604

S. 133     Operation of a motor vehicle by junior operators and safety belts..... 1607

ORDERED TO LIE

S. 70       Empowering municipalities to regulate application of pesticides......... 1611


S. 102     Decreasing percentage to determine school dist. excess spending..... 1611

S. 118     Fiscal review of high spending districts & special education.............. 1611

JRS 24   Federal “fast track” process for congressional review of international ......       trade agreements          1611

Concurrent Resolutions for Notice

(For text of Resolutions, see Addendum to May 3, 2007 Calendar)

SCR 22    Commending the State House cafeteria management & staff............ 208

HCR 125  Liz Stephen on her accomplishments as a competitive skier............. 209

HCR 126  In memory of J. Russell Carpenter & M. Ellen Carpenter................ 210

HCR 127  Nursing staff at Southwestern VT Medical Center........................... 211

HCR 128  75th anniversary of the Green Mountain National Forest................. 213

HCR 129  Honoring state emp. during Public Service Recognition Week......... 215

HCR 130  Vermont Adaptive Ski & Sports & participating athletes ................ 216

HCR 131  Congratulating Vt. Business Roundtable on 20th anniversary........... 217

HCR 132  Honoring Dan Collins for over 40 years as a public educator........... 218

HCR 133  Honoring Northfield fire chief William C. Lyon................................ 219

HCR 134  Honoring Sandra Demasi Kingsley’s career at Norwich Univ.......... 221

HCR 135  Community H.S. of Vermont on earning accreditation..................... 222

HCR 136  Collin Bigras for being named to 2007 Trapshooting First Team...... 223

HCR 137  Honoring the role of foster parents during foster parent month......... 224

HCR 138  Thomas Secoy on winning 2007 Vt. Arbor Day poster contest....... 226

HCR 139  25th anniversary of Vietnam Veterans Memorial and veterans......... 227

HCR 140  FISA’s 2007 international rowing tour on the Connecticut River...... 229

HCR 141  Rte. 100B Byway Committee designation of Mad River Byway...... 230

 



 

ORDERS OF THE DAY

ACTION CALENDAR

Third Reading

H. 248

An act relating to establishing the Vermont telecommunications authority to advance broadband and wireless communications infrastructure throughout the state.

PROPOSAL OF AMENDMENT TO H. 248 TO BE OFFERED BY SENATOR CUMMINGS, ON BEHALF OF FINANCE, BEFORE THIRD READING

Senator Cummings moves to amend the Senate proposal of amendment in Sec. 17, in  30  V.S.A. §248a, by striking out subsection (c), and by inserting a new subsection (c) to read as follows:

(c)  Before the public service board issues a certificate of public good under this section, it shall find that:

(1)  the proposed facilities, in the aggregate, will not have an undue adverse effect on aesthetics, historic sites, air and water purity, the natural environment, and the public health and safety, with due consideration having been given to the relevant criteria specified in subsection 1424a(d) and subdivisions 6086(a)(1) through (8) and (9)(K) of Title 10;

(2) unless there is good cause to find otherwise, substantial deference in determinations under this subsection have been given to the recommendations of the municipal and regional planning commissions, the recommendations of the municipal legislative bodies, and the plan of any affected municipality;

(3) the proposed facilities are in conformance with the regional plan.

PROPOSAL OF AMENDMENT TO H. 248 TO BE OFFERED BY SENATOR ILLUZZI BEFORE THIRD READING

Senator Illuzzi moves that the Senate propose to the House to amend the bill by adding a new section, to be Sec. 20a, to read as follows:

Sec. 20a.  STUDY OF THE EFFECT OF ELECTROMAGNETIC FIELDS AND MOBILE PHONE USE ON HONEYBEES

The secretary of the agency of agriculture, food and markets shall study the causes of the precipitous decline in the wild and domestic honeybee population in Vermont. The secretary shall consult with the commissioner of the department of public service in determining the effect, if any, of electromagnetic fields and mobile phone use on honeybees. The secretary shall consult with the secretary of the agency of natural resources in determining the effects of the application of pesticides. In addition, the secretary of agriculture, food and markets shall study the impact of the varroa mite and colony collapse disorder. The secretary shall report his findings with recommendations for assisting Vermont beekeepers to the house and senate committees on agriculture on or before January 15, 2008.

Second Reading

Favorable with Proposal of Amendment

H. 522

An act relating to the viability of Vermont agriculture.

Reported favorably with recommendation of proposal of amendment by Senator Kittell for the Committee on Agriculture.

The Committee recommends that the Senate propose to the House to amend the bill by striking out all after the enacting clause and inserting in lieu thereof the following:

Sec. 1.  GOALS

The goals of this act are for Vermont to:

(1)  Support programs and policies that foster the development of a diversified agricultural sector that:

(A)  offers farmers an opportunity to sell their products to a marketplace that pays them a reasonable rate of return for their labor and capital investments;

(B)  offers the public nutritious and safe foods;

(C)  produces, markets, and distributes agricultural products in a sustainable manner that conserves energy and the environment;

(D)  fosters on-farm renewable energy production and its infrastructure that maximizes energy conservation and efficiency and limits greenhouse gases;

(E)  provides economic stability to preserve the necessary infrastructure of the agricultural industry;

(F)  expands the market opportunities for farm-raised poultry and other meat products.

(2)  Maintain the state’s prominence as a major milk producer in the region, and;

(A)  assure a continued supply of high quality milk to processors and consumers in the region;

(B)  enable Vermont dairy farmers, processors, and retailers and their supporting infrastructure to achieve a positive return on their labor and investment;

(3)  Enable agricultural operations of diverse sizes producing a wide array of products to prosper in Vermont and contribute to the state and regional economy.

(4)  Support initiatives such as the development of a mobile slaughtering unit to serve Vermont poultry farmers.

(5)  Assure continued stewardship of the land with respect for the environment and efficient use of energy.

Sec. 2.  LEGISLATIVE FINDINGS

The general assembly finds:

(1)  A viable agricultural sector in Vermont represents part of a secure regional food supply, which in turn lends itself to energy and economic efficiencies.

(2)  The general public is increasingly interested in locally produced food.

(3)  The benefits of local food systems to local communities include open land, jobs, nutritious and safe foods, and youth education opportunities.

(4)  Farms are an integral part of Vermont’s overall economy.

(5)  Vermont agriculture is dependent upon a reliable and affordable supply of electrical energy, fuel, feed, and other supplies.

(6)  Vermont agriculture is dependent upon the availability of a competent work force; the shortage of willing and knowledgeable workers is detrimental to farm operations.

(7)  Current workers’ compensation insurance rates account for a significant portion of farmers’ payroll expenses.

(8)  Succession, or the transfer of farms from one generation to the next, is a critical part of a viable future for Vermont agriculture.

(9)  Vermont is the leading producer of fluid milk in New England, but only about five percent of its production is consumed in Vermont.

(10)  The current federal milk pricing system does not allow a reasonable return on labor and investment for most Vermont dairy farmers.

(11)  Regional marketing arrangements such as the Northeast Interstate Compact for Dairy Pricing have provided a positive operating margin without taxpayer subsidies or support.

(12)  The general assembly finds that dairy processing facilities in Vermont are crucial to both Vermont dairy farmers and the promotion of the Vermont name.

(13)  The “Vermont” name evokes a positive image for people and contributes to the marketing of Vermont products.

(14)  Value-added products offer profit potential and economic opportunity for Vermont producers and nonfarmer entrepreneurs alike.

(15)  Emerging agricultural sectors such as grape and wine growers and producers and artesan cheese makers have tremendous potential in Vermont and offer exciting value-added and agri-tourism opportunities to communities throughout the state.

(16)  Many factors affect the ability of businesses to process value-added food products, including shortage of capital, lack of design and engineering expertise, and issues relating to multi-layered state and federal regulation such as permitting, zoning, and inspection.

(17)  Institutional purchasers in Vermont have difficulty sourcing locally raised good quality products, including proteins such as meats and poultry.

(18)  There is a shortage of slaughter and meat processors as well as a lack of training opportunities for industry personnel.

(19)  Federal restrictions prevent interstate shipment of state-inspected meat from amenable species, although Vermont standards are equal to or exceed federal standards.

(20)  Relationship-based food systems such as farm-to-school programs, community supported agriculture (CSA) programs, farmers’ markets, and pick-your-own operations are increasingly popular and offer areas of opportunity for new farmers.

Sec. 3.  LEGISLATIVE INTENT

The general assembly intends:

(1)  To support and develop a more robust and self-sustaining agricultural sector that also promotes emerging agricultural industries.

(2)  That the policies and programs of the state will support and promote the Vermont agriculture industry as a vital component of the state’s economy and essential steward of our land.

(3)  That current policies and programs pertaining to the viability of Vermont’s agricultural industry be reviewed and confirmed or changed in order to assure the long-term economic prosperity of the industry.

(4)  That Vermont will cooperate and coordinate with other northeastern states to assure stable and fair prices for milk sold in the northeastern market.

(5)  That Vermont will promote processing and consumption of agricultural products bearing the Vermont seal of quality.

* * * Local Food Procurement * * *

Sec. 4.  FOOD AND DAIRY PROCUREMENT

(a)  The agency of agriculture, food and markets in cooperation with the agency of administration and the department of buildings and general services shall establish a system whereby the state will follow its own “buy local” campaign by purchasing local food and dairy products.  In so doing, the agency shall determine:

(1)  The amount of food and dairy products purchased annually by the state and state-funded entities, other than primary and secondary schools, and the associated costs.

(2)  The number and type of government and state-funded entities that purchase food and dairy products and the quantities and varieties purchased by each.

(3)  The person or persons with authority to make food and dairy purchasing decisions within each entity and the scope of that authority.

(4)  The implications of a program that directs “local” purchasing.

(b)  The agency of agriculture, food and markets, the agency of administration, and the department of buildings and general services shall:

(1)  Establish a system for local producers and processors to market their products to state purchasing entities.

(2)  Establish a system for state purchasing entities to advertise to and connect with local producers and processors.

(3)  Establish a program in the agency of agriculture, food and markets to provide strategic and technical assistance to local producers and processors for creating or enlarging the facilities necessary to produce or process food for sale to the state or other expanded markets.

(4)  Establish a system for the purchase of local food and dairy products at all levels of state government, other than primary and secondary schools, and at state-funded entities, other than primary and secondary schools.

(5)  Draft rules, policies and procedures for this section and report their findings with respect to feasibility, cost and progress to the joint agriculture committees on or before November 1, 2007.

(c)  All rules, policies, and procedures necessary to implement this section shall be adopted on or before October 1, 2008.

(d)  In carrying out the provisions of this section, the agency of agriculture, food and markets, the agency of administration, and the department of buildings and general services shall seek input from and work with citizen and farmer organizations such as the Northeast Organic Farming Association, Vermont F.E.E.D., and the Vermont Fresh Network.

* * * Dairy Processing * * *

Sec. 5.  INSTATE PROCESSING FACILITIES

(a)  Legislative finding.  The general assembly finds that dairy processing facilities in Vermont are an integral part of the infrastructure of both Vermont agriculture and the entire Vermont economy.  These facilities provide jobs and create income that is spent multiple times in Vermont.

(b)  The secretary of agriculture, food and markets shall:

(1)  Determine ways to attract and retain dairy processors to the state;

(2)  Determine ways to increase the numbers of producers processing their own milk;

(3)  Calculate the additional costs and benefits to dairy producers that may result from these additional processors;

(4)  Develop proposals for developing additional instate processing facilities.  These proposals and any recommendations for legislative action shall be presented to the house and senate committees on agriculture on or before November 1, 2007.

Sec. 6.  DAIRY PRICING INITIATIVE

The secretary of the agency of agriculture, food and markets shall endeavor to reestablish the Northeast Interstate Compact for Dairy Pricing or establish an alternative regional pricing system that assures Vermont dairy farmers of a fair, stable, and equitable price for their milk.  The secretary shall collaborate with Vermont’s Congressional delegation, the governor’s dairy task force, the coordinated milk pricing group, the region’s dairy cooperatives, and the Congressional delegations and state legislatures of the other states in the region to take such steps as necessary to assure the continued viability of dairy farming in the northeast and to assure consumers of an adequate, local supply of pure and wholesome milk.

* * * On-farm Poultry Processing and Labeling for Sale * * *

Sec. 7.  DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND AGENCY OF AGRICULTURE, FOOD AND MARKETS REGULATIONS

The department of health shall not require inspection of poultry that is exempt from inspection under 6 V.S.A. § 3312(b).

Sec. 8.  6 V.S.A § 3312 is amended to read:

§ 3312.  INSPECTION; EXCEPTION EXCEPTIONS

(a)  Inspection shall not be provided under this chapter at any establishment for the slaughter of livestock or poultry or the preparation of any livestock products or poultry products which are not intended for use as human food, but these products shall, prior to their offer for sale or transportation in intrastate commerce, unless naturally inedible by humans, be denatured or otherwise identified as prescribed by rules of the secretary to deter their use for human food.  These licensed establishments shall be subject to periodic review.

(b)  Inspection shall not be required for the slaughter or preparation of poultry products of the producer’s own raising on the producer’s own farm, whether or not they are intended for use as human food if:

(1)  Fewer than 1,000 birds are slaughtered annually; and

(2)  No birds are offered for sale or transportation in interstate commerce; and

(3)  The poultry products are only sold, as whole birds only, from the farm, at a farmers’ market, or to a food restaurant licensed by the commissioner of health, or are for personal use.

(c)  All poultry sold at a farmers’ market or to a restaurant pursuant to the exemption in subsection (b) of this section shall be labeled with the following information:

(1)  Name of farm and name of producer;

(2)  Address of farm including zip code;

(3)  “Exempt per 6 V.S.A. § 3312(b):  NOT INSPECTED.”  This statement shall be prominently displayed with such conspicuousness (as compared with other words or statements, designs, or devices in the labeling) as to render it likely to be read and understood under customary conditions of purchase and use.

(4)  Safe handling and cooking instructions as follows:

“SAFE HANDLING INSTRUCTIONS:

Keep refrigerated or frozen.  Thaw in refrigerator or microwave.

Keep raw poultry separate from other foods.

Wash working surfaces, including cutting boards, utensils, and hands after touching raw poultry.

Cook thoroughly to an internal temperature of at least 165 degrees Fahrenheit maintained for at least 15 seconds.

Keep hot foods hot.  Refrigerate leftovers immediately or discard.”

(d)  Poultry sold to food restaurants under the exemption in subsection (b) of this section shall also include the following on the label:

“Any menu item that includes this poultry must clearly state the name of the farm and have the words “poultry processed on the farm and not inspected” on the menu in proximity to the menu item.”

(e)  The poultry producer, upon first selling poultry to a food restaurant, must procure a signed statement from the food restaurant stating that the food restaurant is aware that the poultry is exempted from inspection under subsection (b) of this section, and that the menu of the food restaurant must have the information required by subsection (d) of this section.  The poultry producer must keep the signed statement on file as long as the producer is selling poultry to the food restaurant under this section.  The poultry producer must have a signed statement on file from each food restaurant to which poultry is sold under this section and an exact copy of each statement, including the name of the producer and the name of the purchasing restaurant shall be forwarded to the department of health.

Sec. 9.  POULTRY SLAUGHTER STUDY

(a)  The agency of agriculture, food and markets shall review the effectiveness of the mobile processing units authorized by this act and the exemption from inspection authorized by this act.  The agency shall also consider the benefits to the poultry industry of each program individually and both programs working together.

(b)  The agency shall report its findings and recommendations no sooner than November 1, 2009 and no later than December 1, 2009.

* * * Authorizing Mobile Processing Units * * *

Sec. 10.  6 V.S.A. § 3302 is amended to read:

§ 3302. DEFINITIONS

As used in this chapter, except as otherwise specified, the following terms shall have the meanings stated below:

* * *

(42)  “Mobile slaughter and processing establishment” means any transportable structure used for slaughtering or processing of meat or poultry products on a farm or on an agricultural fairground registered pursuant to section 3902 of Title 20. 

Sec. 11.  6 V.S.A. § 3305(17) and (18) are added to read:

(17)  authorize and recognize mobile slaughter and processing establishments as official establishments or exempt them under subdivision 3305(13) of this section;

(18)  sell or lease a mobile slaughtering unit and may retain any proceeds therefrom in a revolving fund designated for the purpose of purchasing additional mobile slaughtering units by the agency.

* * * Vermont Seal of Quality * * *

Sec. 12.  6 V.S.A. § 2964(e) is amended and (f) is added to read:

(e)  As used in this chapter, "agricultural products" means any product of a farming operation as defined in 10 V.S.A. § 6001(22)(A), (B), (C) and, (D), and poultry slaughtered and inspected using a mobile processing unit authorized pursuant to subdivision 3305(17) of this title.

(f)  The secretary shall annually review the effectiveness of the identification program for increasing the value of Vermont agricultural products.

* * * Mobile Processing Units Comply with AAPs * * *

Sec. 13.  6 V.S.A. § 4810(a)(1) is amended to read:

(1)  "Accepted Agricultural Practices" (AAPs) shall be standards to be followed in conducting agricultural activities in this state.  These standards shall address activities which have a potential for causing pollutants to enter the groundwater and waters of the state, including dairy and other livestock operations plus all forms of crop and nursery operations and on-farm or agricultural fairground, registered pursuant to section 3902 of Title 20, livestock and poultry slaughter and processing activities.  The AAPs shall include, as well as promote and encourage, practices for farmers in preventing pollutants from entering the groundwater and waters of the state when engaged in, but not limited to, animal waste management and disposal, soil amendment applications, plant fertilization, and pest and weed control.  Persons engaged in farming, as defined in section 6001 of Title 10, who follow these practices shall be presumed to be in compliance with water quality standards. AAPs shall be practical and cost effective to implement.  The AAPs for groundwater shall include a process under which the agency shall receive, investigate, and respond to a complaint that a farm has contaminated the drinking water or groundwater of a property owner.

* * * Enforcement of Accepted Agriculture Practices * * *

Sec. 14.  6 V.S.A. § 4812 is amended to read:

§ 4812.  CORRECTIVE ACTIONS

(a)  When the secretary of agriculture, food and markets determines that a person engaged in farming is managing a farm using practices which are inconsistent with practices defined by rules under this subchapter, the secretary may issue a written warning which shall be served in person or by certified mail, return receipt requested.  The warning shall include a brief description of the alleged violation, identification of this statute and applicable rules, a recommendation for corrective actions that may be taken by the person, along with a summary of federal and state assistance programs which may be utilized by the person to remedy the violation and a request for an abatement schedule from the person according to which the practice shall be altered.  The person shall have 30 days to respond to the written warning.  If the person fails to respond to the written warning within this period or to take corrective action to change the practices in order to protect water quality, the secretary may act pursuant to subsection (b) of this section in order to protect water quality.

(b)  After an opportunity for a hearing, the secretary may issue cease and desist orders and institute appropriate proceedings on behalf of the agency to enforce this subchapter.

(c)  Whenever the secretary believes that any person engaged in farming is in violation of this subchapter or rules adopted thereunder, an action may be brought in the name of the agency in a court of competent jurisdiction to restrain by temporary or permanent injunction the continuation or repetition of the violation.  The court may issue temporary or permanent injunctions, and other relief as may be necessary and appropriate to curtail any violations.

(d)  The secretary may assess administrative penalties in accordance with sections 15, 16, and 17 of this title against any farmer who violates a cease and desist order or other order issued under subsection (b) of this section.

(e)  Any person subject to an enforcement order or an administrative penalty who is aggrieved by the final decision of the secretary may appeal to the superior court within 30 days of the decision.  The administrative judge may specially assign an environmental judge to superior court for the purpose of hearing an appeal.

* * * Permit Amendments * * *

Sec. 15.  10 V.S.A. § 6081(s) is added to read:

(s)  No permit amendment is required for farming that:

(1)  will occur on primary agricultural soils preserved in accordance with section 6093 of this title; or

(2)  will not conflict with any permit condition issued pursuant to this chapter. 

Permits shall include a statement that farming is permitted on lands exempt from amendment jurisdiction under this subsection.

* * * Farm Workers’ Compensation * * *

Sec. 16.  FARM WORKERS’ COMPENSATION INSURANCE

(a)  The secretary of the agency of agriculture, food and markets shall consult with the department of labor; the department of banking, insurance, securities, and health care; and representatives of the farm community to determine what can be done to lower the cost of workers’ compensation for agricultural employers.  The secretary shall report with recommendations to the house and senate committees on agriculture on or before November 1, 2007.

(b)  The department of labor, in consultation with the agency of agriculture, food and markets, the University of Vermont extension service, the department of health, the Vermont farm bureau, the Green Mountain Council of Cooperatives, and other interested parties, shall develop a statewide farm safety initiative.  The initiative shall perform outreach, technical assistance, and training for farmers and farm workers in best safety practices to be followed and assist in reinforcing a culture of safety on the farm.  In conjunction with this effort, the department of banking, insurance, securities, and health care administration shall work with insurers to get merit rating and other discounts for farms with good safety records.

(c)  The agency of agriculture, food and markets shall collaborate with farm organizations to alert farmers of the advantages of consulting alternative providers about the cost of their farm workers’ compensation insurance.

(d) The agency of agriculture, food and markets, the department of labor, and the department of banking, insurance, securities and health care administration shall submit a brief report on the effectiveness of this section in reducing workers’ compensation insurance rates. The report shall be submitted no later than January 15, 2008.

* * * Farm Energy * * *

Sec. 17.  FARM ENERGY PURCHASE REPORT

(a)  Legislative findings.  The general assembly finds that state-government buildings use 4.2 megawatt hours of electricity each year.

(b)  The agency of agriculture, food and markets shall study establishing a farm energy purchase program in coordination with the Vermont electric utility companies.  The study shall consider whether there is a need to develop a program to purchase renewable energy attributes from farm-based renewable energy projects to ensure a market for farm produced energy.  The study shall also consider how farm-based renewable energy can help to support a portion of state government electrical usage and the possibility of modeling a voluntary statewide program after Central Vermont Public Service’s “Cow Power” program.  The agency shall report to the house and senate committees on or before November 1, 2007 with its findings and any legislative proposals.

* * * Statutory Review * * *

Sec. 18.  AGENCY OF AGRICULTURE, FOOD AND MARKETS REVIEW

(a)  The agency of agriculture, food and markets in consultation with the legislative council shall jointly review existing state statutes as they pertain to public or quasi public entities created to provide and promote services to the Vermont agriculture sector.  The review shall consider the relevancy of the statutes as they relate to economic conditions in which Vermont agriculture is operating today.  The review shall include recommended changes in authorizing language to improve effectiveness in the development and delivery of programs designed to enhance the long-term viability of Vermont’s agriculture industry.

(b)  The agency of agriculture, food and markets with the legislative council shall report their findings back to the house and senate committees on agriculture no later than November 1, 2007.

* * * Viticulture * * *

Sec. 19.  VERMONT GRAPE AND WINE COUNCIL

(a)  The agency of agriculture, food and markets shall help establish a Vermont grape and wine council.  The council shall include representatives of grape growers, wine producers,  the University of Vermont extension program, the University of Vermont College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, the agency of agriculture, food and markets, the department of economic development, the department of tourism and marketing and the hospitality council of the Vermont chamber of commerce.

(b)  The Vermont grape and wine council shall:

(1)  provide long-term support to the emerging grape and wine industries in Vermont by providing services, including research and education;

(2)  explore mechanisms such as grants and dues from its institutional members for funding its activities;

(3)  collaborate with the department of labor in order to seek workforce development funding;

(4)  foster the development of partnerships between all parties interested in the emerging grape and wine industry.

* * * Meat Production * * *

Sec. 20.  MEAT CUTTERS

The Department of labor in cooperation with the agency of agriculture, food and markets shall work with the meat processing industry to provide technical assistance, training, education, and other assistance to help expand the industry in Vermont.

* * * Labor * * *

Sec. 21.  DEPARTMENT OF LABOR

(a)  Legislative finding.  All agricultural industries are experiencing an

ever-increasing need for workers who are willing to work the hours involved in agriculture and who have the multiple skills necessary to handle successfully the multiple and varied responsibilities of the various facets of the agriculture industry.  Therefore, the department of labor has a crucial and ongoing role in the long-term viability of Vermont agriculture.

(b)  The department of labor shall at all times work in cooperation with the agency of agriculture, food and markets as well as the varied agricultural industries in Vermont and shall focus efforts on sustaining and strengthening the viability of Vermont agriculture by recruiting, educating, training, and maintaining a strong agricultural workforce that is not only capable of working in existing agricultural industries but also in emerging areas of Vermont agriculture where the need for skilled workers is even more profound.

* * * Dairy Pricing * * *

Sec. 22.  6 V.S.A. § 2924(f) is added to read:

(f)  Payment Statements. Payment statements provided to producers of cows’ milk shall include in the payment statement the national support price, the Boston, Massachusetts price, the producer price differential, and the amount per hundredweight of any charges or deductions where applicable.  The format shall be provided with clear language and with no abbreviations, except where the abbreviation is spelled out elsewhere in the statement.

Sec. 23.  PAYMENT STATEMENT DRAFTING

The agency of agriculture, food and markets shall draft a model payment statement that carries out the intent of Sec. 22 of this act and that may be used by milk purchasers.

Sec. 24.  EFFECTIVE DATE

This act shall take effect upon passage.

(Committee Vote: 5-0-0)

Reported without recommendation by Senator MacDonald for the Committee on Finance.

(Committee vote: 4-0-3)

(For House amendments, see House Journal for March 22, 2007, page 385.)

AMENDMENT TO PROPOSAL OF AMENDMENT OF THE COMMITTEE ON AGRICULTURE TO H. 522 TO BE OFFERED BY SENATORS KITCHEL, SEARS, MAZZA AND ILLUZZI

Senators Kitchel, Sears, Mazza and Illuzzi move to amend the proposal of amendment of the Committee on Agriculture by striking out Secs. 8 and 9 in their entirety.

PROPOSAL OF AMENDMENT TO H. 522 TO BE OFFERED BY SENATOR CONDOS

Senator Condos moves to amend the proposal of amendment of the Committee on Agriculture as follows:

First:  In Sec. 16, (a), after the words “and health care;” by adding the words representatives of the farm labor community;

Second:  In Sec. 16, (a), after the words “shall report with recommendations” by adding the words specific to issues of farm labor


AMENDMENT TO PROPOSAL OF AMENDMENT OF THE COMMITTEE ON AGRICULTURE TO H. 522 TO BE OFFERED BY SENATOR GIARD

Senator Giard moves to amend the proposal of amendment of the Committee on Agriculture by striking out Sec. 17 in its entirety and inserting in lieu thereof a new Sec. 17 to read as follows:

Sec. 17.  FARM ENERGY PURCHASE REPORT

(a)  Legislative findings.  The general assembly finds that state government buildings use 4.2 megawatt hours of electricity each year.

(b)  The agency of agriculture, food and markets, in consultation with the Vermont electric utility companies and other renewable attribute companies, shall study establishing a farm energy purchase program to purchase renewable energy attributes from farm-based renewable energy projects to ensure a market for farm-produced energy.  The study shall also consider how farm‑based renewable energy can help to support a program of state government electrical usage similar to a voluntary statewide program modeled after Central Vermont Public Service’s “Cow Power” program.  The agency shall report to the house and senate committees on agriculture on or before November 1, 2007 with its findings and any legislative proposals.

House Proposals of Amendment

S. 6

An act relating to preventing conviction of innocent persons.

The House proposes to the Senate to amend the bill by striking all after the enacting clause and inserting in lieu thereof the following:

Sec. 1.  13 V.S.A. chapter 182 is added to read:

CHAPTER 182.  INNOCENCE PROTECTION

Subchapter 1.  Postconviction DNA Testing

§ 5561.  PETITION FOR POSTCONVICTION DNA TESTING

(a)  A person convicted of a qualifying crime may at any time file a petition requesting forensic DNA testing of any evidence which may contain biological evidence that was obtained during the investigation or prosecution of the crime.  The petition shall:

(1)  specifically identify the crime for which the petitioner asserts that he or she is innocent and the evidence which the petitioner seeks to have subjected to DNA testing;

(2)  contain the petitioner’s certification, under oath, that the petitioner did not commit the crime for which he or she was convicted;

(3)  contain the petitioner’s certification, under oath, that the petition is true and accurate; and

(4)  allege facts showing that DNA testing may be material to the petitioner’s claim of innocence.

(b)  As used in this section:

(1)  “Biological evidence” means:

(A)  a sexual assault forensic examination kit; or

(B)  semen, blood, saliva, hair, skin tissue, or other identified biological material.

(2)   “Person convicted of a qualifying crime” means a person convicted of:

(A)  one of the following crimes as defined in this title:

(1) arson causing death, § 501;

(2)  assault and robbery with a dangerous weapon, § 608(b);

(3)  assault and robbery causing bodily injury, § 608(c);

(4)  aggravated assault, § 1024;

(5)  murder, § 2301;

(6)  manslaughter, § 2304;

(7)  aggravated murder, § 2311;

(8)  kidnapping, § 2405;

(9)  unlawful restraint, §§ 2406 and 2407;

(10)  maiming, § 2701;

(11)  sexual assault, § 3252;

(12)  aggravated sexual assault, § 3253;

(13)  burglary into an occupied dwelling, § 1201(c); or

(14)  lewd and lascivious conduct with a child; § 2602.

(B)  any felony not listed in subdivision (b)(1) of this section, if the petition is filed within 30 months after the conviction becomes final, the person presents specific facts demonstrating that DNA evidence will provide substantial evidence of the person’s innocence, and the court finds that the interests of justice would be served by permitting the petition.   

(c)(1)  The petition shall be filed in the superior court of the county where the conviction was imposed, and shall not be heard by a judge who presided over the trial, sentencing, or any motion hearing related to evidence to be admitted at the trial. 

(2)(A)  Unless subdivision (B) of this subdivision (2) applies, the petitioner shall provide copies of the petition to the attorney general and to the state’s attorney in the district where the conviction was obtained. 

(B)  If the petitioner is not represented by counsel, the court shall provide copies of the petition to the attorney general and to the state’s attorney in the district where the conviction was obtained.

(3)  Within 30 days after it receives the petition, the state shall agree to perform the requested DNA testing in a timely manner or file a response to the petition.  The petitioner may file a reply to the state’s response only within ten days after the response is filed. 

(4)  The court shall schedule a hearing on the petition within 90 days after the state’s response is filed unless the state notifies the court that it has agreed to provide the testing in a timely manner or the court dismisses the petition pursuant to subsection (c) of this section. 

(5)  Time limits under this subsection may be extended for good cause shown or by consent of the parties.

(c)  The court shall dismiss the petition without a hearing if it determines that:

(1)  the petition, response, reply if any, files, and records conclusively establish that the petitioner is entitled to no relief; or

(2)  the petition was not made to demonstrate innocence or the appropriateness of a lesser sentence and will unreasonably delay the execution of sentence or administration of justice.     

§ 5562.  ASSIGNMENT OF COUNSEL

The court may appoint counsel if the petitioner is unable financially to employ counsel and may order that all necessary costs and expenses incident to the matter, including but not limited to court costs, stenographic services, printing, and reasonable compensation for legal services, be paid by the state from the appropriation to the defender general.  On appeal, the supreme court may make a similar order.

§ 5563.  VICTIM NOTIFICATION

If the address of a victim of the crime which the petitioner claims to be innocent of in the petition is known, the state’s attorney or attorney general shall give written notice of a petition under this section to the victim as soon as the petition is received.  If the victim’s current address is not known, the state’s attorney or the attorney general shall consult with the department of corrections victim services division to verify the victim’s last known address.  The notice shall be by any reasonable means to the victim's last known address and shall indicate whether the petitioner is represented by public or private counsel.  Upon the victim's request, the state’s attorney or attorney general shall give the victim notice of the time and place of any hearing on the petition and shall inform the victim of the disposition of the petition and the outcome of any hearing.  If DNA testing is ordered, the state’s attorney or the attorney general shall inform the victim whether the test results require further court hearings, the time and place of any hearings, and the outcome of the hearings.

§ 5564.  DISCOVERY

(a)  Upon motion by the petitioner or the state, and after providing the nonmovant with reasonable opportunity to respond to the motion, the court may permit reasonable discovery and the right to depose witnesses.  The court in its discretion may delay ruling on any discovery motions until after it has determined whether to dismiss the petition pursuant to subsection 5561(c) of this section.  

(b)  A discovery order issued pursuant to this section may include the following:

(1)  The court may order the state to locate and provide the petitioner with any documents, notes, logs, or reports relating to items of physical evidence collected in connection with the case or to help the petitioner locate items of biological evidence that the state contends have been lost or destroyed.  The court may further order the state to take reasonable measures to locate biological evidence that may be in its custody or to help the petitioner locate evidence that may be in the custody of a public or private hospital, public or private laboratory, or other facility.

(2)  If evidence has previously been subjected to DNA testing, the court may order production of laboratory reports prepared in connection with the testing and may order production of the underlying data and the laboratory notes.

(3)  If any DNA or other biological evidence testing was previously conducted by either the prosecution or the defense without knowledge of the other party, the court may order that the previous testing be disclosed.

(4)  If the court orders DNA testing under this subchapter, the court shall order the production of any laboratory reports prepared in connection with the testing and may order production of the underlying data, bench notes, or other laboratory notes.

§ 5565.  PRESERVATION OF BIOLOGICAL EVIDENCE; POLICIES

The department of public safety shall disseminate policies regarding the collection and preservation of biological evidence to all state and local law enforcement agencies on or before July 1, 2007.  Law enforcement agencies shall adopt the policies distributed pursuant to this section, or adopt similar policies on a department-by-department basis.

§ 5566.  ORDER; NECESSARY FINDINGS; CONFIDENTIALITY

(a)  The court shall grant the petition and order DNA testing if it makes all of the following findings:

(1)  A reasonable probability exists that the petitioner would not have been convicted of the crime which the petitioner claims to be innocent of in the petition if the results of the requested DNA testing had been available at the time of the original prosecution.

(2)  One or more of the items of evidence that the petitioner seeks to have tested is still in existence.

(3)  The evidence to be tested was obtained in connection with the offense that is the basis of the challenged conviction and:

(A)  was not previously subjected to DNA testing; or

(B)  although previously subjected to DNA testing, can be subjected to additional DNA testing that provides a reasonable likelihood of significantly more probative results.

(4)(A)(i)  The chain of custody of the evidence to be tested establishes that the evidence has not been tampered with, replaced, or altered in any material respect; or

(ii)  If the chain of custody does not establish the integrity of the evidence, the testing itself has the potential to establish the integrity of the evidence.

(B)  For purposes of this subchapter, evidence that has been in the custody of a law enforcement agency, a governmental body, or a public or private hospital shall be presumed to satisfy the chain-of-custody requirement of this subdivision.

(b)  The court may designate in its order:

(1)  the type of DNA analysis to be used;

(2)  the testing procedures to be followed;

(3)  the preservation of some portion of the sample for replicating the testing;

(4)  additional DNA testing, if the results of the initial testing are inconclusive or otherwise merit additional scientific analysis.

(c)  DNA profile information from biological samples taken from any person pursuant to a petition under this subchapter shall be confidential and shall be exempt from any law requiring disclosure of information to the public.

§ 5567.  APPEALS

An order entered on the petition may be appealed to the Vermont supreme court pursuant to the Rules of Appellate Procedure.

§ 5568.  CHOICE OF LABORATORY; PAYMENT

(a)  If the court orders DNA testing under this subchapter, the testing shall be conducted at a facility mutually agreed upon by the petitioner and the state and approved by the court.  If the parties are unable to agree, the court shall designate the testing facility and provide the parties with a reasonable opportunity to be heard on the issue.

(b)  The court shall impose reasonable conditions on the testing to protect the parties’ interests in the integrity of the evidence and the testing process.

(c)(1)  The state shall bear the costs of testing performed at the state crime laboratory.

(2)  Except as provided in subdivision (3) of this subsection, the court may require the petitioner or the state or both to pay for testing performed at a private laboratory.

(3)  If the state crime laboratory does not have the ability or resources to conduct the type of DNA testing to be performed, the state shall bear the costs of testing at a private laboratory which does have such capabilities or resources.

§ 5569.  PROCEDURE AFTER TEST RESULTS OBTAINED

(a)  The results of any postconviction DNA testing conducted pursuant to this subchapter shall be disclosed to the state’s attorney, the attorney general, the petitioner, and the court.

(b)  If the results of forensic DNA testing ordered under this subchapter support the facts alleged in the petition, the court shall schedule a hearing as soon as practicable after the results are received to determine the appropriate relief to be granted.  The petitioner and the state shall be permitted to submit motions and be heard at the hearing.

(c)  At or subsequent to the hearing, the court may issue an order including but not limited to the following:

(1)  setting aside or vacating the petitioner’s judgment of conviction;

(2)  granting the petitioner a new trial;

(3)  granting the petitioner a new sentencing hearing;

(4)  discharging the petitioner from custody;

(5)  specifying the disposition of any evidence that remains after the completion of the testing;

(6)  granting the petitioner additional discovery on matters related to DNA test results or the conviction or sentence under attack, including documents pertaining to the original criminal investigation and the identities of other suspects; or

(7)  providing such other relief as the court deems appropriate.

(d)  If the person’s conviction is reversed or vacated or the person is pardoned as a result of DNA evidence:

(1)  The court shall order the removal and destruction of the person’s name and any information about that conviction from the sex offender registry established under section 5402 of this title, the child abuse registry established under section 4916 of Title 33, the vulnerable adult registry established under section 6911 of Title 33, and any other registry on which the person’s name appears solely because of his or her conviction of the offense for which the person’s actual innocence has been established.  If the person has more than one entry on a registry, only the entry related to the offense for which the person’s actual innocence has been established shall be removed and destroyed.

(2)  The court shall order the Vermont crime information center to remove and destroy any criminal records it has related to the person’s commission of the offense for which his or her actual innocence has been established.  If the center has records related to the person’s commission of other offenses, only the records related to the offense for which the person’s actual innocence has been established shall be removed and destroyed.

(3)  It shall not be a violation of Vermont law for the person to respond when asked, that he or she has never previously been convicted of a crime, and that his or her innocence of the crime charged has been established.  This subdivision shall not apply if the person has been convicted of a crime other than the one for which the person’s conviction was reversed or the person was pardoned as a result of DNA evidence.   

(e)  An order issued under this section may be appealed to the Vermont supreme court pursuant to the Rules of Appellate Procedure. 

§ 5570.  SUCCESSIVE PETITIONS

(a)  The court shall not be required to entertain a second or successive petition for similar relief on behalf of the same petitioner unless it appears the petition will be assisted by the availability of more advanced DNA technology.

(b)  The court may entertain a second or successive petition if it determines that doing so would serve the interests of justice.

Subchapter 2.  Compensation for Wrongful Convictions

§ 5572.  RIGHT OF ACTION; PROCEDURE

(a)  A person convicted and imprisoned for a crime of which the person was exonerated pursuant to subchapter 1 of this chapter shall have a cause of action for damages against the state.

(b)  An action brought under this subchapter shall be filed in Washington County superior court.  Notice of the action shall be served upon the attorney general.

(c)  The Vermont Rules of Civil Procedure shall apply to actions brought under this subchapter, and the plaintiff shall have a right to trial by jury.  The Vermont Rules of Appellate Procedure shall apply to appeals from orders and judgments issued under this subchapter.

(d)  The attorney general may consider, adjust, determine, and settle any claim for damages brought against the state of Vermont under this subchapter.

§ 5573.  COMPLAINT

(a)  A complaint filed under this subchapter shall be supported by facts and shall allege that:

(1)  the complainant has been convicted of a crime, been sentenced to a term of imprisonment, and served all or any part of the sentence; and

(2)  the complainant’s actual innocence has been established by DNA evidence which resulted in the person’s conviction being reversed or vacated or the granting of a pardon. 

(b)  The court may dismiss the complaint, upon its own motion or upon motion of the state, if it determines that the complaint does not state a claim for which relief may be granted.

§ 5574.  BURDEN OF PROOF; JUDGMENT; DAMAGES 

(a)  A claimant shall be entitled to judgment in an action under this subchapter if the claimant establishes each of the following by a preponderance of the evidence:

(1)  The complainant was convicted of a crime, was sentenced to a term of imprisonment, and served all or any part of the sentence.

(2)(A)  The complainant’s conviction was reversed or vacated; or

(B)  The complainant was pardoned for the crime for which he or she was sentenced.

(3)  DNA evidence establishes that the complainant did not commit the crime for which he or she was sentenced.

(4)  The complainant did not fabricate evidence or commit or suborn perjury during any proceedings related to the crime with which he or she was charged.

(b)(1) Except as provided in subdivision (2) of this subsection, a claimant awarded judgment in an action under this subchapter shall be entitled to damages for each year the claimant was incarcerated in an amount to be determined by the trier of fact and adjusted proportionally for partial years served.  The damage award may also include:

(A)  Economic damages, including lost wages and costs incurred by the claimant for his or her criminal defense and for efforts to prove his or her innocence.

(B)  Up to ten years of physical and mental health care through the state employees’ health care system, offset by any amount provided through the claimant’s employers during that time period.

(C)  Compensation for any reasonable reintegrative services and mental and physical health care costs incurred by the claimant for the time period between his or her release from mistaken incarceration and the date of the award.

(D)  Reasonable attorney’s fees and costs for the action brought under this subchapter.  

(2)  A claimant entitled to judgment under this section whose conviction resulted from a plea agreement shall only be eligible for the remedies provided by subdivisions (1)(B), (C), and (D) of this subsection. 

(c)  Damages awarded under this section:

(1)  shall not be subject to any state taxes, except for the portion of the judgment awarded as attorney’s fees; and

(2)  shall not be offset by any services awarded to the claimant pursuant to this section or by any expenses incurred by the state or any political subdivision of the state, including expenses incurred to secure or maintain the claimant’s custody or to feed, clothe, or provide medical services for the claimant.

(d)  The claimant’s acceptance of a damages award, compromise, or settlement as a result of a claim under this subchapter shall be in writing and, except when procured by fraud, shall be final and conclusive on the claimant, and constitute a complete release by the claimant of any claim against the state and a complete bar to any action by the claimant against the state with respect to the same subject matter. 

(e)  A claimant shall be entitled to compensation under this subchapter only if he or she would not otherwise have been incarcerated for another sentence.  

§ 5575.  PAYMENT

(a)  Any award made or compromise or settlement against the state of Vermont agreed upon by the attorney general in response to an action brought under this subchapter shall be paid by the state treasurer out of the treasury, and the emergency board shall reimburse the state treasurer therefore from time to time.

(b)  If the state elects to self‑insure for liability as defined in section 5601 of Title 12, any award, compromise, or settlement against the state of Vermont agreed to by the attorney general shall be paid by the treasurer from the liability self-insurance fund.

(c)  To the extent that an award, settlement, or compromise is covered by a policy of liability insurance, payment will be governed by the terms of the policy.

§ 5576.  LIMITATIONS

(a)  Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section, an action for wrongful conviction under this subchapter shall be commenced within three years after the person’s actual innocence is established by the person’s conviction being reversed or vacated or by the granting of a pardon.

(b)(1)  If the state challenges the establishment of the actual innocence of a person entitled to bring an action under this subchapter, the limitations period shall not commence until the challenge is finally resolved.

(2)  If a person entitled to bring an action under this subchapter is not provided the notice required by section 5586 of this title, the person shall have an additional year within which to bring the action.     

§ 5577.  NOTICE OF RIGHT OF ACTION

(a)  A copy of this subchapter shall be provided to a person by a court:

(1)  issuing judicial relief establishing the person’s actual innocence through vacating or reversing the person’s conviction; or

(2)  receiving notice of a pardon.

(b)  A person receiving a copy of this subchapter pursuant to subsection (a) of this section shall be required to acknowledge its receipt in writing on a form established by the court administrator.  The acknowledgement shall be entered on the docket by the court and shall be admissible in an action filed under this subchapter.

Sec. 2.  PRESERVATION OF EVIDENCE STUDY COMMITTEE

(a)  A committee is established for the purpose of studying issues related to the preservation of evidence in criminal cases.

(b)  The committee shall consist of the following members:

(1)  one member appointed by the executive director of the department of state’s attorneys and sheriffs, who shall be the chair of the committee;

(2)  one district court clerk appointed by the court administrator;

(3)  the attorney general or designee;

(4)  one member appointed by the Vermont chiefs of police association;

(5)  the captain of the bureau of criminal investigations or designee;

(6)  one member appointed by the Vermont criminal justice training council;

(7)  the commissioner of public safety or designee;

(8)  the executive director of the Vermont crime laboratory or designee;

(9)  the defender general or designee;

(10)  an investigator appointed by the defender general; and

(11)  a staff public defender appointed by the defender general;

(12)  one member appointed by the Vermont sheriffs’ association;

(13)  one member appointed by the Vermont center for crime victims services.

(c)  The committee shall consider the following:

(1)  Current statewide policies regarding the preservation of evidence in criminal cases, and whether a statewide policy should be adopted;

(2)  Current policies in local jurisdictions regarding the preservation of evidence in criminal cases, and whether these policies are consistent with one another and with relevant statewide policies;

(3)  Best practices regarding the preservation of evidence in criminal cases;

(4)  The appropriate duration for preservation of evidence, with specific consideration of whether evidence should be preserved while a convicted person is incarcerated or while the person is under other forms of state supervision;

(5)  Whether and how advances in DNA testing technology should effect policies concerning preservation of evidence;

(6)  Whether current facilities provide enough space to preserve the evidence that needs to be preserved; and   

(7)  Whether there should be one central, statewide repository for evidence collected in criminal cases.

(d)  The committee shall have the assistance and cooperation of all state and local agencies and departments.  The committee shall consult with the Innocence Project.  The department of public safety shall provide professional and administrative support for the committee. 

(e)  The committee shall report its findings and recommendations, including proposals for legislative action, to the senate and house committees on judiciary no later than December 15, 2007 whereupon the committee shall cease to exist.

Sec. 3.  EYEWITNESS IDENTIFICATION AND CUSTODIAL INTERROGATION RECORDING STUDY COMMITTEE

(a)  A committee is established for the purpose of studying issues related to best practices regarding eyewitness identification procedures and audio and audio-visual recording of custodial interrogations.  The committee shall:

(1)  study and analyze federal and state models and develop best practices regarding:

(A)  audio and audio-visual recording of any custodial interrogations related to the investigation or prosecution of felonies; and

(B)  eyewitness identification procedures for conducting photo lineups and live lineups.

(2)  Study current statewide policies regarding eyewitness identification procedures for conducting photo lineups and live lineups and audio and

audio-visual recording of custodial interrogations, and whether statewide policies on these issues should be adopted; and

(3)  Study current policies in local jurisdictions regarding eyewitness identification procedures for conducting photo lineups and live lineups and audio and audio-visual recording of custodial interrogations, and whether these policies are consistent with one another and with relevant statewide policies.

(b)  The committee shall consist of the following members:

(1)  one member appointed by the executive director of the department of state’s attorneys and sheriffs, who shall be the chair of the committee;

(2)  the attorney general or designee;

(3)  one member appointed by the Vermont chiefs of police association;

(4)  the captain of the bureau of criminal investigations or designee;

(5)  one member appointed by the Vermont criminal justice training council;

(6)  the commissioner of public safety or designee;

(7)  the defender general or designee;

(8)  an investigator appointed by the defender general;

(9)  a staff public defender appointed by the defender general;

(10)  one member appointed by the Vermont sheriffs’ association;

(11)  one member appointed by the Vermont center for crime victims services; and

(12)  one member appointed by the Vermont bar association.

(d)  The committee shall have the assistance and cooperation of all state and local agencies and departments.  The committee shall consult with the Innocence Project.  The department of public safety shall provide professional and administrative support for the committee. 

(e)  The committee shall report its findings and recommendations, including proposals for legislative action, to the senate and house committees on judiciary no later than December 15, 2007, whereupon the committee shall cease to exist.

PROPOSAL OF AMENDMENT TO HOUSE PROPOSAL OF AMENDMENT TO S. 6 TO BE OFFERED BY SENATOR SEARS

     Senator Sears moves that the Senate concur in the House proposal of amendment with further proposal of amendment as follows:

First:  In Sec. 1, 13  V.S.A. § 5561, by adding a new subsection (d) to read as follows:

(d)  No person shall file a petition requesting forensic DNA testing pursuant to this chapter until after July 1, 2008 if the person’s conviction resulted from a plea agreement.

Second: In Sec. 1, chapter 182 of 13 V.S.A., by striking out § 5563 in its entirety and inserting in lieu thereof a new § 5563 to read as follows:

§ 5563.  VICTIM NOTIFICATION

(a)  If the address of a victim of the crime which the petitioner claims to be innocent of in the petition is known, the state’s attorney or attorney general shall give written notice of a petition under this section to the victim upon the victim’s request. If the victim’s current address is not known, the state’s attorney or the attorney general shall consult with the department of corrections victim services division to verify the victim’s last known address.  The notice shall be by any reasonable means to the victim's last known address and shall indicate whether the petitioner is represented by public or private counsel. Upon the victim’s request, the state’s attorney or attorney general shall give the victim notice of the time and place of any hearing on the petition and shall inform the victim of the disposition of the petition and the outcome of any hearing.  If DNA testing is ordered, the state’s attorney or the attorney general shall inform the victim whether the test results require further court hearings, the time and place of any hearings, and the outcome of the hearings.

(b)  The rights of victims contained in this section do not entitle a victim to be a party in any proceeding, or to any procedural rights which are not specifically provided for in this section, including any right to request a delay or rescheduling of any proceeding.

Third:  In Sec. 1, 13  V.S.A. § 5566(a), by striking out subdivision (1) in its entirety and inserting in lieu thereof a new subdivision (1) to read as follows:

(1)  A reasonable probability exists that the petitioner would not have been convicted or would have received a lesser sentence of the crime which the petitioner claims to be innocent of in the petition if the results of the requested DNA testing had been available at the time of the original prosecution.  

Fourth:  In Sec. 1, 13  V.S.A. § 5569, by striking out subsection (a) in its entirety and inserting in lieu thereof a new subsection (a) to read as follows:

(a)  The results of any postconviction DNA testing conducted pursuant to this subchapter shall be disclosed to the state’s attorney, the attorney general, the department of corrections, the parole board, the petitioner, and the court.

Fifth:  In Sec. 1, 13  V.S.A. § 5574, by striking out subsection (b) in its entirety and inserting in lieu thereof a new subsection (b) to read as follows:

(b) A claimant awarded judgment in an action under this subchapter shall be entitled to $50,000.00 in damages for each year the claimant was incarcerated adjusted proportionally for partial years served.  The damage award may also include:

(1)  Economic damages, including lost wages and costs incurred by the claimant for his or her criminal defense and for efforts to prove his or her innocence.

(2)  Compensation for any reasonable reintegrative services and mental and physical health care costs incurred by the claimant for the time period between his or her release from mistaken incarceration and the date of the award.

(3)  Reasonable attorney’s fees and costs for the action brought under this subchapter.  

Sixth:  In subsection (b) of Sec. 2, by striking out subdivision (13) in its entirety and inserting in lieu thereof two new subdivisions, to be numbered (13) and (14), to read as follows:

(13)  one member appointed by the Vermont center for crime victims services;

(14)  one member appointed by the Vermont police association.

Seventh:  In Sec. 2, by striking out subsection (d) in its entirety and inserting in lieu thereof a new subsection (d) to read as follows:

(d)  The committee shall have the assistance and cooperation of all state and local agencies and departments.  The committee shall consult with the Innocence Project and may consult with the senate and house committees on judiciary.  The department of public safety shall provide professional and administrative support for the committee.

Eighth:  In subsection (b) of Sec. 3, by striking out subdivision (12) in its entirety and inserting in lieu thereof two new subdivisions, to be numbered (12) and (13), to read as follows:

(12)  one member appointed by the Vermont bar association;

(13)  one member appointed by the Vermont police association.

Ninth:  In Sec. 3, by striking out subsection (d) in its entirety and inserting in lieu thereof a new subsection (d) to read as follows:

(d)  The committee shall have the assistance and cooperation of all state and local agencies and departments.  The committee shall consult with the Innocence Project and may consult with the senate and house committees on judiciary.  The department of public safety shall provide professional and administrative support for the committee.

Tenth:  By adding new Secs. 4- 6 to read:

Sec. 4.  4 V.S.A. § 1102(b) is amended to read:

(b)  The judicial bureau shall have jurisdiction of the following matters:

(1)  traffic Traffic violations alleged to have been committed on or after July 1, 1990;.

(2)  civil Civil ordinance violations alleged to have been committed on or after July 1, 1994;.

(3)  minor Minor fish and wildlife violations alleged to have been committed on or after September 1, 1996;.

(4)  violations Violations of subsection 1005(a) of Title 7, relating to possession of tobacco products by a person less than 18 years of age;.

(5)  violations Violations of 7 V.S.A. § 1007, relating to furnishing tobacco products to a person under the age of 18 years;.

(6)  violations Violations of 24 V.S.A. § 2201, relating to littering, burning of solid waste, and illegal dumping;.

(7)  violations Violations of subchapter 9 of chapter 1 of Title 16, relating to hazing;.

(8)  violations Violations of 20 V.S.A. §§ 2056a, 2056b, and 2056c, relating to unauthorized disclosure of criminal record information;.

(9)  violations Violations of 7 V.S.A. § 656, relating to illegal possession of alcoholic beverages;.

(10)  violations Violations under subdivision 658(c)(1) of Title 7, relating to an employee of a second class licensee selling alcohol to a minor during a compliance check;.

(11)  violations Violations of 18 V.S.A. § 4234b(b), relating to selling ephedrine base, pseudoephedrine base, or phenylpropanolamine base.

(12)  Violations of 13 V.S.A. § 352(3), (4), and (9), relating to cruelty to animals.

Sec. 5.  13 V.S.A. § 353 is amended to read:

§ 353.  DEGREE OF OFFENSE; SENTENCING UPON CONVICTION

(a)  Penalties.

(1)  Except as provided in subdivision (3) or (4) of this subsection, cruelty to animals under section 352 of this title shall be punishable by a sentence of imprisonment of not more than one year, or a fine of not more than $2,000.00, or both.  Second and subsequent convictions shall be punishable by a sentence of imprisonment of not more than two years or a fine of not more than $5,000.00, or both.

* * *

(4)(A)  Except as provided in subdivision (B) of this subdivision (4), a person found in violation of subdivision 352(3), (4), or (9) of this title pursuant to this subdivision shall be imprisoned not more than one year or fined not more than $2,000.00, or both.  Second and subsequent convictions shall be punishable by a sentence of imprisonment of not more than two years or a fine of not more than $5,000.00, or both.

(B)  A law enforcement officer shall issue a civil citation to a person who violates subdivision 352(3), (4) or (9) of this title if the person has not been previously adjudicated in violation of this chapter.  A person adjudicated in violation of subdivision 352(3), (4), or (9) of this title pursuant to this subdivision shall be assessed a civil penalty of not more than $500.00.  At any time prior to the person admitting the violation and paying the assessed penalty, the state’s attorney may withdraw the complaint filed with the judicial bureau and file an information charging a violation of subdivision 353(3), (4), or (9) of this title in district court.   

* * *

Sec. 6.  13 V.S.A. § 7251(d) is added to read:

(d)  Fines, forfeitures, and penalties imposed by the judicial bureau for violations of subdivisions 352(3)(4), and (9) of this title, relating to animal cruelty that result from the enforcement by villages, towns, and cities within their jurisdiction shall be paid to the respective village, town, or city, except for a $12.50 administrative charge for each violation which shall be retained by the state.  The enforcement by villages, towns, and cities shall be by a local law enforcement officer or a law enforcement officer by contract with the village, town, or city.  Such law enforcement officer shall be certified according to the provisions of 20 V.S.A. § 2358.

NOTICE CALENDAR

House Proposals of Amendment

S. 7

An act relating to compassionate use of marijuana for medical purposes.

The House proposes to the Senate to amend the bill by striking all after the enacting clause and inserting in lieu thereof the following:

Sec. 1.  18 V.S.A. chapter 86 is amended to read:

CHAPTER 86.  THERAPEUTIC USE OF CANNABIS

* * *

Subchapter 2.  Marijuana for Medical Symptom Use

by Persons with Severe Illness

§ 4472.  DEFINITIONS

For the purposes of this subchapter:

(1)  “Bona fide physician-patient relationship” means a treating or consulting relationship of not less than six months duration, in the course of which a physician has completed a full assessment of the registered patient’s medical history and current medical condition, including a personal physical examination.

(2)  “Debilitating medical condition,” provided that, in the context of the specific disease or condition described in subdivision (A) or (B) of this subdivision (2), reasonable medical efforts have been made over a reasonable amount of time without success to relieve the symptoms, means:

(A)  end of life care for cancer or acquired immune deficiency syndrome; or

(B)  cancer, acquired immune deficiency syndrome, positive status for human immunodeficiency virus, multiple sclerosis, or the treatment of these diseases or medical conditions if:

(i)  the disease or condition or its treatment results in severe, persistent, and intractable symptoms; and

(ii)  in the context of the specific disease or condition, reasonable medical efforts have been made over a reasonable amount of time without success in relieving the symptoms.

(A)  cancer, multiple sclerosis, positive status for human immunodeficiency virus, acquired immune deficiency syndrome, or the treatment of these conditions, if the disease or the treatment results in severe, persistent, and intractable symptoms; or

(B)  a disease, medical condition, or its treatment that is chronic, debilitating, and produces severe, persistent, and one or more of the following intractable symptoms: cachexia or wasting syndrome; severe pain; severe nausea; or seizures.

(3)  “Marijuana” shall have the same meaning as provided in subdivision 4201(15) of this title.

(4)  “Physician” means a person who is:

(A)  licensed under chapter 23 or chapter 33 of Title 26, and is licensed with authority to prescribe drugs under Title 26; or

(B)  a physician, surgeon, or osteopathic physician licensed to practice medicine and prescribe drugs under comparable provisions in New Hampshire, Massachusetts, or New York.

(5)  “Possession limit” means the amount of marijuana collectively possessed between the registered patient and the patient’s registered caregiver which is no more than one two mature marijuana plant plants, two four immature plants, and two ounces of usable marijuana.

(6)  “Registered caregiver” means a person who is at least 21 years old who has never been convicted of a drug-related crime and who has agreed to undertake responsibility for managing the well-being of a registered patient with respect to the use of marijuana for symptom relief.

(7)  “Registered patient” means a person who has been issued a registration card by the department of public safety identifying the person as having a debilitating medical condition pursuant to the provisions of this subchapter.

(8)  “Secure indoor facility” means a building or room equipped with locks or other security devices that permit access only by a registered caregiver or registered patient.

(9)  “Usable marijuana” means the dried leaves and flowers of marijuana, and any mixture or preparation thereof, and does not include the seeds, stalks, and roots of the plant.

(10)  “Use for symptom relief” means the acquisition, possession, cultivation, use, transfer, or transportation of marijuana or paraphernalia relating to the administration of marijuana to alleviate the symptoms or effects of a registered  patient’s debilitating medical condition which is in compliance with all the limitations and restrictions of this subchapter.  For the purposes of this definition, “transfer” is limited to the transfer of marijuana and paraphernalia between a registered caregiver and a registered patient.

§ 4473.  REGISTERED PATIENTS; QUALIFICATION STANDARDS AND PROCEDURES

(a)  To become a registered patient, a person must be diagnosed with a debilitating medical condition by a physician in the course of a bona fide physician-patient relationship. 

(b)  The department of public safety shall review applications to become a registered patient using the following procedures:

(1)  A patient with a debilitating medical condition shall submit, under oath, a signed application for registration to the department.  If the patient is under the age of 18 the application must be signed by both the patient and a parent or guardian.  The application shall require identification and contact information for the patient and the patient’s registered caregiver applying for authorization under section 4474 of this title, if any.  The applicant shall attach to the application a copy of relevant portions of the patient’s medical record sufficient to establish that the patient has a debilitating medical condition medical verification form developed by the department pursuant to subdivision (2) of this subsection.

(2)  The department of public safety shall develop a medical verification form to be completed by a physician and submitted by a patient applying for registration in the program.  The form shall include:

(A)  A cover sheet which includes the following:

(i)  A statement of the penalties for providing false information.

(ii)  Definitions of the following statutory terms:

(I)  “Bona fide physician-patient relationship” as defined in subdivision 4472(1) of this title.

(II)  “Debilitating medical condition” as defined in subdivision 4472(2) of this title.

(III)  “Physician” as defined in subdivision 4472(4) of this title.

(B)  A verification sheet which includes the following:

(i)  A statement that a bona fide physician-patient relationship exists under subdivision 4472(1) of this title, or that under subdivision (3)(A) of this subsection (b) the debilitating medical condition is of recent or sudden onset, and the patient has not had a previous physician who is able to verify the nature of the disease and its symptoms.

(ii)  A statement that reasonable medical efforts have been made over a reasonable amount of time without success to relieve the symptoms.

(iii)  A statement that the patient has a debilitating medical condition as defined in subdivision 4472(2) of this title, including the specific disease or condition which the patient has and whether the patient meets the criteria under subdivision 4472(2)(A) or subdivision 4472(2)(B).

(iv)  A signature line which provides in substantial part: “I certify that I meet the definition of ‘physician’ under 18 V.S.A. § 4472(4)(A) or 4472(4)(B) (circle one), that I am a physician in good standing in the state of _______, and that the facts stated above are accurate to the best of my knowledge and belief.”

(v)  The physician’s contact information.  

(2)(3)(A) The department shall transmit the completed medical verification form to the physician and contact the physician him or her for purposes of verifying the existence of a bona fide physician-patient relationship and confirming the accuracy of the medical record information contained in the form.  The department may approve an application, notwithstanding the six-month requirement in subdivision 4472(1) of this title, if the department is satisfied that the medical verification form confirms that the debilitating medical condition is of recent or sudden onset and that the patient has not had a previous physician who is able to verify the nature of the disease and its symptoms.

(B)  If the physician is licensed in another state as provided by subdivision 4472(4)(B) of this title, the department shall contact the state’s medical practice board and verify that the physician is in good standing in that state.

(3)(4)  The department shall approve or deny the application for registration in writing within 30 days from receipt of a completed registration application.  If the application is approved, the department shall issue the applicant a registration card which shall include the registered patient’s name and photograph, as well as a unique identifier for law enforcement verification purposes under section 4474d of this title.

(4)(A)(5)(A)  A review board is established.  The medical practice board shall appoint three physicians licensed in Vermont to constitute the review board.  If an application under subdivision (1) of this subsection is denied, within seven days the patient may appeal the denial to the board.  Review shall be limited to information submitted by the patient under subdivision (1) of this subsection, and consultation with the patient’s treating physician.  All records relating to the appeal shall be kept confidential.  An appeal shall be decided by majority vote of the members of the board.

(B)  The board shall meet periodically to review studies, data, and any other information relevant to the use of marijuana for symptom relief.  The board may make recommendations to the general assembly for adjustments and changes to this chapter.

(C)  Members of the board shall serve for three-year terms, beginning February 1 of the year in which the appointment is made, except that the first members appointed shall serve as follows:  one for a term of two years, one for a term of three years, and one for a term of four years.  Members shall be entitled to per diem compensation authorized under section 1010 of Title 32.  Vacancies shall be filled in the same manner as the original appointment for the unexpired portion of the term vacated.

§ 4474.  REGISTERED CAREGIVERS; QUALIFICATION STANDARDS AND PROCEDURES

(a)  A person may submit a signed application to the department of public safety to become a registered patient’s registered caregiver.  The department shall approve or deny the application in writing within 30 days.  The department shall approve a registered caregiver’s application and issue the person an authorization card, including the caregiver’s name, photograph, and a unique identifier, after verifying:

(1)  the person will serve as the registered caregiver for one registered patient only; and

(2)  the person has never been convicted of a drug‑related crime.

(b)  Prior to acting on an application, the department shall obtain from the Vermont criminal information center a Vermont criminal record, an out-of-state criminal record, and a criminal record from the Federal Bureau of Investigation for the applicant.  For purposes of this subdivision, “criminal record” means a record of whether the person has ever been convicted of a drug-related crime.  Each applicant shall consent to release of criminal records to the department on forms substantially similar to the release forms developed by the center pursuant to section 2056c of Title 20.  The department shall comply with all laws regulating the release of criminal history records and the protection of individual privacy.  The Vermont criminal information center shall send to the requester any record received pursuant to this section or inform the department of public safety that no record exists.  If the department disapproves an application, the department shall promptly provide a copy of any record of convictions and pending criminal charges to the applicant and shall inform the applicant of the right to appeal the accuracy and completeness of the record pursuant to rules adopted by the Vermont criminal information center.  No person shall confirm the existence or nonexistence of criminal record information to any person who would not be eligible to receive the information pursuant to this subchapter.

(c)  A registered caregiver may serve only one registered patient at a time, and a registered patient may have only one registered caregiver at a time.

§ 4474a.  REGISTRATION; FEES

(a)  The department shall collect a fee of $100.00 $50.00 for the application authorized by sections 4473 and 4474 of this title.  The fees received by the department shall be deposited into a registration fee fund and used to offset the costs of processing applications under this subchapter.

(b)  A registration card shall expire one year after the date of issue, with the option of renewal, provided the patient submits a new application which is approved by the department of public safety, pursuant to sections section 4473 or 4474 of this title, and pays the fee required under subsection (a) of this section.

* * *

S. 51

An act relating to prohibiting discrimination on basis of gender identity.

The House proposes to the Senate to amend the bill as follows:

First:  In Sec. 18, 21 V.S.A. § 495, by striking out subsection (g) in its entirety and inserting in lieu thereof a new subsection (g) to read as follows:

(g)  Notwithstanding any provision of this subchapter, an employer shall not be prohibited from establishing and enforcing reasonable workplace policies to address matters related to employees’ gender identity, including permitting an employer to establish a reasonable dress code for the workplace. 

Second:  By striking out Sec. 18a in its entirety and inserting in lieu thereof a new Sec. 18a to read as follows:

Sec. 18a.  LEGISLATIVE INTENT

(a)  It is the intent of the general assembly that 21 V.S.A. § 495(g) shall not be used as a pretext for an employer to enact workplace policies that deny an individual the protections afforded under this subchapter.

(b)  It is the intent of the general assembly that this act shall not require the offer of or coverage for additional health benefits under any insurance policy or certificate, subscriber contract, or employee health benefit plan.  This act shall not be interpreted to reduce any rights to health benefits that may be available under other law.

S. 82

An act relating to the use of Vermont addresses and representations of Vermont origins.

The House proposes to the Senate that the bill be amended as follows:

Sec. 2.  10 V.S.A. § 7105(e)(1)(J) is amended to read:

(J)  A mercury-added neon type sign or lamp.

Sec. 3.  10 V.S.A. § 7106(i)(3) is amended to read:

(3)(A)(i)  Labeling of products that contain, as their only mercury-added components, one or more lamps not intended to be replaceable by the user or consumer that are used for one or more of the purposes enumerated in this subdivision shall meet all the requirements of subsections (a) through (f) of this section, except no label is required on the internal lamp, no label is required on the package, and no label is required to be visible prior to purchase.  A label must be included in the care and use manual or product instructions, if any in the event that no care and use manual is produced for the product, the product instructions.

(i)  Lamp purposes subject to this subdivision shall be:

(I)  backlighting;

(II)  liquid crystal display (LCD) panel;

(III)  scanning images; or

(IV)  copying images.

(ii)  This subdivision (A) shall apply to products containing lamps used for other purposes, if those products are approved under subsection (h) of this section, except that there need not be compliance in this instance with the requirement established in subdivision (h)(1)(A)(ii), regarding the effectiveness of the proposed alternative.

(B)  Labeling of products with a screen or LCD panel less than seven inches on the diagonal that contain, as their only mercury-added components, one or more lamps not intended to be replaceable by the user or consumer that are used for backlighting shall meet all the requirements of subsections (a) through (c) of this section by placing the label on the product or in the care and use manual or product instructions, if any in the event that no care and use manual is produced for the product, the product instructions.  No label is required on the internal lamp, and no label shall be required to be visible prior to purchase.

(C)  Labeling of a product that contains as its only mercury-added components a lamp or lamps at least one of which is intended to be replaceable by the user or consumer must meet the labeling requirements of subsections (a) through (f) of this section, except no label is required to be visible prior to purchase. A label must also be included in the care and use manual or product instructions, if any in the event that no care and use manual is produced for the product, the product instructions. If the replaceable lamp is placed within a housing intended to be replaceable by the user or consumer, the housing must also be labeled.

(D)  Labeling of replacement components for products in subdivision (A) or (B) of this subdivision (3) shall meet all the requirements of subsections (a) through (f) of this section by labeling the package on the replacement component.

Sec. 4.  ELECTRONICS LABELING

(a)  Notwithstanding the labeling requirements contained in subsection

7106(a) of Title 10, the following products shall not be offered for final sale,  sold at a final sale, or distributed in Vermont on or after October 1, 2007,  unless both the product and its packaging are labeled in accordance with  section 7106 of Title 10:

(1)  A product that was manufactured on or after October 1, 2007 with a screen or an LCD panel more than seven inches on the diagonal that contains, as its only mercury-added component, one or more lamps not intended to be replaceable by the user or consumer; or

(2)  A product that was manufactured on or after October 1, 2007 that  contains as its only mercury-added component a replaceable lamp that is  placed within a housing intended to be replaceable by the user or consumer used in a projection system or projection television; or

(3)  A product that was manufactured on or after October 1, 2007 that contains as its only mercury-added component, one or more nonreplaceable  or nonremovable mercury-added lamps used for backlighting, LCD panels,  scanning images or copying images.

(b)  The requirement of subsection (a) of this section may also be met by compliance with the terms of any approved alternative labeling method granted under subsection 7106(h) or (i) of Title 10.

(c)  A retailer may not be found in violation of this section if the retailer lacked knowledge that the product contained mercury.

Sec. 5.  EFFECTIVE DATE; REPEAL

(a)  This act shall be effective upon passage.

(b)  Sec. 4 of this act shall be repealed on July 1, 2008.

S. 116

An act relating to miscellaneous election law amendments.

The House proposes to the Senate to amend the bill as follows:

First:  By striking Sec. 8 in its entirety and inserting in lieu thereof a new Sec. 8 to read:

Sec. 8.  17 V.S.A. § 2493(a) is amended to read:

(a) The secretary of state shall adopt rules governing the use and the selection of any voting machine in the state. These rules shall include requirements that:

* * *

(2)  The secretary of state shall provide for the security of voting machines at all times. Voting machines, not including the ballot box portion, shall be locked in a vault or a secure location at all times when not in use.  The secretary of state may conduct a random post election audit of any polling place election results for a primary or general election within 30 days of the election.  If the secretary determines that a random audit shall be conducted of the election results in a town or city, the town clerk shall direct two members of the board of civil authority to transport the ballot bags to the office of the secretary of state not later than 10:00 a.m. on the morning when the secretary has scheduled the audit.  The secretary shall open the ballot bags and conduct the audit in the same manner as recounts are to be conducted under sections 2602e through 2602h ballots are counted under sections 2581 through 2588 of this title.  The secretary of state shall publicly announce the results of the audit as well as the results from the original return of the vote.  If the secretary finds that the audit indicates that there was possible fraud in the count or return of votes, the secretary shall refer the results to the attorney general for possible prosecution.

* * *

(5) Establish a process for municipalities using voting machines, whereby markings on ballots that are unreadable by a machine may be transferred by a pair of election officials, who are not members of the same political party, to ballots that are readable by the machine.

Second:  By adding a Sec. 8a to read:

Sec. 8a.  17 V.S.A. § 2532(a) is amended to read:

(a)(1)  An early or absentee voter, or an authorized family member or health care provider acting in on the voter’s behalf, may apply for an early voter absentee ballot by telephone, in person, or in writing.  “Family member’’ here As used in this section, “family member” means a person’s spouse, children, brothers, sisters, parents, spouse’s parents, grandparents, and spouse’s grandparents.  Any other authorized person may apply in writing or in person.  The application shall be in a form prescribed by the secretary of state. substantially the following form:

REQUEST FOR EARLY VOTER ABSENTEE BALLOT

Name of early or absentee voter: ____________________________________

Current address: _________________________________________________

Residence (if different): ___________________________________________

Telephone contact:    _________________         E-mail:    ________________

If applicant is other than the early or absentee voter:

Name of applicant: _______________________________________________

Address of applicant: _____________________________________________

Relationship to early or absentee voter: _______________________________

Telephone contact:    _________________         E-mail:    ________________

Date: _____________ Signature:_____________________________________

(2) If the application is made by telephone or in writing, the information supplied must be in substantial conformance with the information requested on this form.

Third:  By adding a Sec. 8b to read:

Sec. 8b.  17 V.S.A. § 2546 is amended to read:

§ 2546.  DEPOSIT OF EARLY VOTER ABSENTEE BALLOTS IN BALLOT BOX

(a)  No sooner than 30 days before the opening of polls on election day, the town clerk of a municipality with at least 5,000 registered voters on its checklist may direct two election officials working together to open the outside envelope in order to sort absentee ballots by ward and district, may data enter the return of the ballots by the voter, may determine that the certificate has been signed, and may place the inside envelopes in various secure containers to be transported to the polling places on election day.   No sooner than 48 hours before the opening of polls on election day, a town clerk in all other municipalities may direct two election officials working together to open the outside envelope and remove the certificate envelope in order to determine that an absentee ballot certificate has been properly signed by the early voter, and that the name of the early voter appears on the checklist.  The election officials shall check the name of the early voter off the entrance checklist and place the sealed envelope into a secure container marked “checked‑in early voter absentee ballots” to be transported to the polling place on election day.  Upon opening of the polls on election day, ballots from this container may be opened by election officials, who are not members of the same political party, and deposited either into the ballot box or into the voting machine.

(b)  The town clerk or presiding officer shall deliver the unopened early voter absentee ballots to the election officials at the place where the entrance checklist is located.  If the ballots are in a container marked “checked‑in early voter absentee ballots,” two election officials from different political parties may open the envelopes and deposit the ballots into the ballot box or into the voting machine.  If the ballots have not been previously checked off the entrance checklist and if an elections election official determines that the certificate on the envelope is signed by the early voter, the name of the early voter appears on the checklist, and the early voter is not a first-time voter in the municipality who registered by mail, the elections election official shall mark the checklist, open the envelope, and deposit the ballot in the proper ballot box or voting machine.  If the early voter is a first-time voter who registered by mail, the elections election official shall determine whether the identification required under subdivision 2563(a)(1) of this title has been submitted by the voter. Upon ascertaining that the proper identification has been submitted by the voter, the elections election official shall mark the checklist, open the envelope, and deposit the ballot in the proper ballot box or voting machine.  If the proper identification has not been submitted, the ballot shall be treated as a provisional ballot, as provided in subchapter 6A of this chapter.

(b)(c)  All early voter absentee ballots shall be commingled with the ballots of voters who have voted in person.

Fourth:  By adding a Sec. 8c to read:

Sec. 8c.  17 V.S.A. § 2548(b) is amended to read:

(b)  A person who in good faith has received early voter absentee ballots for his or her use but has not yet marked them, if he finds that he or she is able to vote in person, may cast the early voter absentee ballots as provided above, or may vote in person after returning the complete set of unmarked ballots, together with the envelope intended for their return, to the presiding officer at the time the voter appears to vote in person.  If a person does not have his or her absentee ballots to return, the person shall be checked off the checklist and permitted to vote only after completing a sworn affidavit that he or she does not have his or her absentee ballots to return.  The presiding officer shall return the unused early voter absentee ballots and envelope to the town clerk, who shall make a record of their return on the list of early or absentee voters and treat them as spoiled or unused ballots, pursuant to section 2568 of this title.

Fifth:  By adding a Sec. 9a to read:

Sec. 9a.  17 V.S.A. § 2587 is amended to read:

§ 2587.  RULES FOR COUNTING BALLOTS

* * *

(e)  In the case of “write-in” votes in a primary election, the act of writing in the name of a candidate, or pasting a label containing a candidate’s name upon the ballot, without other indications of the voter’s intent, shall constitute a vote for that candidate, even though no cross is placed after such name.  The election officials counting ballots and tallying results must shall list every person who receives a “write-in” vote and the number of votes received.  On each tally sheet, the counters shall add together the names of candidates that are clearly the same person, even though a nickname or last name is used.  Names of fictitious persons shall not be listed.

(f)  In the case of “write-in” votes in a general election, the act of writing in the name of a candidate, or pasting a label containing a candidate’s name upon the ballot, without other indications of the voter’s intent, shall constitute a vote for that candidate, even though no oval is marked or cross is placed after such name.  The election officials counting ballots and tallying results shall list each person who receives a “write-in” vote and the number of votes received, except that a write-in candidate shall not have his or her name listed and votes counted unless the candidate has filed a declaration of candidacy form with the official where nominating petitions must be filed for the office by 12:00 p.m. on the day prior to election day.  The declaration of candidacy form shall contain the same information as the candidate consent form.  Votes for write-in candidates who have not filed a declaration of candidacy form shall be counted as “write-in” votes but shall not be listed by name.  On each tally sheet, the counters shall add together the names of candidates that are clearly the same person, even though a nickname or last name is used.  Names of persons who did not file a declaration of candidacy and fictitious persons shall not be listed, but votes for these persons shall be counted as “write-in” votes.

(g)  When the same number of persons are nominated for the position of justice of the peace as there are positions to be filled, the presiding officer may declare the whole slate of candidates elected without making individual tallies, providing each person on the slate has more votes than the largest number of write-in votes for any one candidate.

Sixth:  By striking Sec. 14 in its entirety and inserting in lieu thereof a new Sec. 14 to read:

Sec. 14.  17 V.S.A. § 2682 is amended to read:

§ 2682.  PROCESS OF VOTING; APPOINTMENTS

* * *

(c)  In a municipal election controlled by this subchapter, the person receiving the greatest number of votes for an office shall be declared elected to that office; a certificate of election need not be issued.  However, in order to be elected a write-in candidate must receive 30 votes or the votes of one percent of the registered voters in the municipality, whichever is less.  The act of writing in the name of a candidate, or pasting a label containing a candidate’s name upon the ballot, without other indications of the voter’s intent, shall constitute a vote for that candidate, even though no oval is marked or cross is placed after such name.  The election officials counting ballots and tallying results shall list each person who receives a “write-in” vote and the number of votes received, except that a write-in candidate shall not have his or her name listed and votes counted unless the candidate has filed a declaration of candidacy form with the town clerk or presiding officer by the close of the polls on election day or unless there are no candidates printed on the ballot.  The declaration of candidacy form shall contain the same information as the candidate consent form.  Votes for write-in candidates who have not filed a declaration of candidacy form shall be counted as “write-in” votes but shall not be listed by name.  On each tally sheet, the counters shall add together the names of candidates that are clearly the same person, even though a nickname or last name is used.  Names of persons who did not file a declaration of candidacy and fictitious persons shall not be listed, but votes for these persons shall be counted as “write-in” votes.

* * *

(e)  If there is a tie vote for any office, the legislative body, or in their stead, the municipal clerk, shall within seven days warn a runoff election to be held not less than 15 days nor more than 22 days after the warning.  The only candidates in the runoff election shall be those who were tied in the original election.  However, if one of the candidates that are tied withdraws his or her candidacy within five days after the election, the town clerk shall certify the other tied candidate as the winner, and there shall be no runoff election.


S. 121

An act relating to autism spectrum disorders.

The House proposes to the Senate to amend the bill by striking all after the enacting clause and inserting in lieu thereof the following:

Sec. 1.  FINDINGS

The general assembly finds:

(1)  Autism is a life-long pervasive developmental disorder identified in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM‑IV).  The five pervasive developmental disorders are:  autistic disorder; Asperger’s disorder; pervasive developmental disorder, not otherwise specified; Rett’s disorder; and childhood disintegrative disorder.  These lifelong disorders are often referred to collectively as autism spectrum disorders.

(2)  Autism spectrum disorders are neurologically based developmental disorders that can have profound lifelong effects in social interaction, the ability to communicate, imagination, and the establishment of relationships.

(3)  Children are diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders by psychologists, developmental pediatricians, psychiatrists, and neurologists.

(4)  In 1992, only 13 Vermont children with autism spectrum disorders received special education in Vermont.  According to the preliminary December 1, 2006 child count, 582 children with autism spectrum disorders are currently receiving special education in Vermont.

(5)  There is no single intervention that will be effective for all individuals with autism spectrum disorders or for the same individual across his or her lifespan.

(6)  National Research Council findings suggest that up to 48 percent of young children with autism spectrum disorders make marked progress when they receive intensive early intervention.

Sec. 2.  PROPOSAL FOR AN INTERAGENCY INITIATIVE TO ENHANCE SERVICES FOR INDIVIDUALS WITH AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDERS

(a)  On or before January 15, 2008, the secretary of human services and the commissioner of education shall develop an interagency proposal for a coordinated, life-long system of care designed to address the needs of Vermonters with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and their families.  The

agency of human services shall assume primary responsibility for developing the proposed plan.  The plan shall be:

(1)  Consistent with the Vermont Interagency White Paper on Autism Spectrum Disorders, issued March 2006, and informed by other papers or proposals developed by or for the agency of human services or the department of education. 

(2)  Developed in collaboration with a broad spectrum of stakeholders, including individuals with ASD and their families, professionals with established expertise in ASD, private and public providers of services to individuals with ASD and their families, entities providing support to families of individuals with ASD, and members of the autism task force, the Vermont developmental disabilities council, and the Act 264 advisory board.  Collaboration with individuals with ASD and their families shall reflect diversity in geography, in diagnoses, and in the severity of symptoms.  It shall also ensure consideration of an individual’s needs as a child, as a youth, and as an adult.

(b)  The proposed plan shall include:

(1)  A profile of the range of diagnoses and needs of the children, youth, and adults to be served.

(2)  Projections of the future needs of individuals with ASD in Vermont, including transitional services related to socialization, job training and employment, and independent living in a community-based format to assist individuals moving from school to the community.

(3)  Identification of the specific goals of the proposed plan for a life-long system of care for individuals with ASD and their families.

(4)  Development of research-based best practices guidelines to enhance the ability of public and private providers to meet the needs of individuals with ASD and their families.

(5)  A review of the educational and human services-related supports and services currently available to individuals with ASD throughout their lifetime.

(6)  A review of the supports and services currently available to the families of individuals with ASD.

(7)  Identification of the strengths of and deficiencies in the current system of supports and services identified in subdivisions (5) and (6) of this subsection and of the availability of those supports and services in all areas of the state.

(8)  Identification of the additional supports and services needed for an effective life-long system of care for individuals with ASD and their families and recommendations for how unmet needs might be satisfied. 

(9)  A review of the current role of public schools in connection with the provision of services to individuals with ASD, including:

(A)  the financial impact that the provision of these services has on school budgets.

(B)  Consideration of whether the current allocation of costs between the education system and the agency of human services for the provision of services to individuals with ASD is appropriate and whether any possible reallocation is appropriate, advisable, and consistent with federal law and whether any possible reallocation is appropriate, advisable, and consistent with federal law.

(10)  A detailed proposal, with a related timeline, for implementing the proposed life-long system of care, including:

(A)  The manner in which existing resources and facilities might be used or redirected to support the system.

(B)  The availability of federal and other potential funding sources for the proposed system of care.

(C)  Strategies to encourage collaboration among existing and new resources to provide coordinated, life-long services, training, technical assistance, information dissemination, and consultation to individuals with ASD and their families, including a centralized, publicly available information system with an information “hotline”.

(D)  Strategies to encourage collaboration among existing and new resources to provide coordinated training, technical assistance, information dissemination, and consultation to schools, local agencies, and other providers of developmental, mental health, and early intervention services to individuals with ASD and their families.

(E)  Strategies for enabling access to the early and accurate diagnosis of ASD.

(F)  Strategies for encouraging collaboration with higher education programs to provide a sufficient number of well‑trained professionals to provide life-long services to individuals with ASD and their families in all regions of the state.

(G)  Provisions ensuring regular review and revision of the proposed system of care.

(c)  On or before January 15, 2008, the agency and the department shall present a written plan consistent with this section to the governor, the house committees on education, on human services, and on appropriations, and the senate committees on education, on health and welfare, and on appropriations. 

Sec. 3.  EFFECTIVE DATE

This act shall take effect from passage.

S. 133

An act relating to the operation of a motor vehicle by junior operators and primary safety belt enforcement.

The House proposes to the Senate to amend the bill by striking all after the enacting clause and inserting in lieu in thereof the following:

Sec. 1.  TITLE OF THE ACT

This act shall be known as and may be cited as the “Highway Traffic Safety Act of 2007.”

* * * Legislative Findings * * *

Sec. 2.  LEGISLATIVE FINDINGS

The general assembly finds that:

* * * General Findings * * *

(1)  In December 2006, the governor transmitted to the Division Administrator of the Federal Highway Administration the Strategic Highway Plan for Vermont that stated “The first half of 2006 was trending toward a near record‑breaking year for highway deaths and incapacitating injuries.”  In response to this trend, the Strategic Highway Fatality Plan for Vermont was created with the mission to “minimize the occurrence and severity of crashes, related human suffering, and economic losses on the Vermont transportation network.”

(2)  In response to this increase, the commissioner of public safety held a law enforcement summit to develop collaborative strategies to combat these fatalities.

(3)  According to the governor’s highway safety office, each highway fatality costs the state of Vermont more than $900,000.00.

(4)  In further recognition of the terrible toll in terms of human suffering, and financial loss resulting from motor vehicle crashes, on July 6, 2006, the Vermont department of health’s injury prevention program hosted the 2006 Symposium on Preventing Crashes Among Young Drivers at the Inn at Essex, Vermont.  The symposium brought together key leaders in highway safety, transportation, public health, and youth development for an in‑depth,

multidisciplinary exploration of crashes among young drivers and opportunities for prevention.

* * * Teen Driving Safety * * *

(1)  The Strategic Highway Safety Plan for Vermont of 2006, signed by the governor and endorsed by state agencies, stated that “new language” should be added to the existing graduated driver license legislation to achieve:

(A)  Restrictions on passengers in cars driven by young drivers.

(B)  Nighttime limitations for young drivers.

(C)  Primary safety belt enforcement to the age of 18.

(D)  No cell phone use for junior operators. 

(2)  From a public health perspective, “Motor vehicle crashes are among the most serious problems facing teenagers (Anatomy of Crashes Involving Young Drivers‑Preventing Teen Motor Crashes).”  According to the Centers for Disease Control, highway injuries and deaths constitute the largest reason for youth injuries and deaths, and therefore constitute a public health risk warranting remedial action.

(3)  According to the above sources, the 2002 cost of crashes involving drivers ages 20 through 25 was $40.8 billion.  (National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, 2006.)

(4)  A study conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety on junior operators demonstrated that a single passenger nearly doubled the risk of a fatal crash, and two or more passengers raise the risk fivefold for the junior operator.

(5)  Nighttime is one of the riskiest times of day for junior operators due to DUI, darkness, and sleep deprivation in teens.  Midnight to 2 a.m. is the most dangerous time.

* * * Cell Phones * * *

(1)  The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration policy on cell phones states “The primary responsibility of the driver is to operate a motor vehicle safely.  The task of driving requires full attention and focus.  Cell phone use can distract drivers from this task, risking harm to themselves and others.  Therefore, the safest course of action is to refrain from using a cell phone while driving.”

(2)  Teens, driving, and cell phones are a dangerous mix due to teens’ vulnerability to distractions and accidents.  (“Teens, phones, cars, a bad mix,” The Sunday Rutland Herald, June 26, 2005—Source—The National Transportation Safety Board.)

* * * Safety Belts * * *

(1)  States with primary enforcement average 10 percent higher usage than states with secondary enforcement.

(2)  A crash involving an unrestrained person costs 55 percent more than for someone who was restrained.

(3)  Approximately 74 percent of the costs associated with crashes are paid for by society; the victim pays the balance.

(4)  Drivers who do not wear safety belts are also most likely to engage in risky driving behavior, such as speeding or drinking and driving.

(5)  Traffic crashes are a health care issue, not an enforcement issue.  As Dr. Eliot Nelson, pediatrician at Vermont’s Childrens Hospital and professor at the UVM school of medicine said, “By passing primary (enforcement), the legislature can save more lives with one stroke of the pen than I can in a lifetime of practice.”

* * * Operation After Recall Is a Civil Violation * * *

Sec. 3.  23 V.S.A. § 676 is amended to read:

§ 676.  OPERATION AFTER SUSPENSION, REVOCATION, OR REFUSAL, OR RECALL ‑ CIVIL VIOLATION

(a)  A person whose license or privilege to operate a motor vehicle has been revoked, suspended or, refused, or recalled by the commissioner of motor vehicles for any reason other than a violation of sections 1091(b), 1094(b), 1128(b) or (c), or 1201 or a suspension under section 1205 of this title and who operates or attempts to operate a motor vehicle upon a public highway before the license or privilege of the person to operate a motor vehicle has been reinstated by the commissioner commits a civil traffic violation.

(b)  In establishing a prima facie case against a person accused of violating this section, the judicial bureau shall accept as evidence, a printout attested to by the law enforcement officer as the person’s motor vehicle record showing convictions and resulting license suspensions.  The admitted motor vehicle record shall establish a permissive inference that the person was under suspension or had his or her license revoked or recalled on the dates and time periods set forth in the record.  The judicial bureau shall not require a certified copy of the person’s motor vehicle record from the department of motor vehicles to establish the permissive inference.

* * * Junior Operator Night‑Time Restriction * * *

Sec. 4.  23 V.S.A. § 614(c) and (d) are added to read:

(c)  A person operating with a junior operator’s license shall not operate a motor vehicle between midnight and 5:00 a.m. except when carrying the signed and dated written permission of a parent or guardian that contains the parent's or guardian's contact information, including a home and work address and phone numbers, or except when:

(1)  traveling on a direct route between work and home;

(2)  traveling for a school‑related activity; or

(3)  going to or returning from hunting or fishing, provided the operator has in his or her possession hunting or fishing equipment and a valid hunting or fishing license.

(d)  A person in violation of subsection (c) of this section shall be allowed to drive his or her vehicle on a direct route home, following issuance of a traffic ticket by a law enforcement officer.

* * * Safety Restriction on the Use of Cellular Telephones and Hand‑Held Electronic Devices by Junior Operators * * *

Sec. 5.  23 V.S.A. § 1095a is added to read:

§ 1095a.  WIRELESS TELEPHONE USE; HAND‑HELD ELECTRONIC DEVICES; LEARNERS AND JUNIOR OPERATORS

A person operating a motor vehicle with a learner permit under the provisions of section 617 of this title or with a junior operator license under the provisions of section 607 of this title shall not use any wireless telephone or hand‑held electronic device while operating on the traveled portion of the highway.  This prohibition shall not apply if it is necessary to place an emergency 911 call.

* * * Use of Cellular Telephones and other Electronic Devices by A Person Operating a Vehicle with an Operators License * * *

Sec. 6.  23 V.S.A. § 1095b is added to read:

§ 1095b.  USE OF HANDS‑FREE WIRELESS TELEPHONES AND ELECTRONIC DEVICES BY A PERSON WITH AN OPERATORS LICENSE

(a)  A person operating a motor vehicle with a valid operators license shall be restricted to using only a hands‑free wireless telephone or hands‑free electronic communication device while operating on the traveled portion of the highway.  This prohibition shall not apply if it is necessary to place an emergency 911 call.

(b)  As used in this section, “hands‑free” means a mobile telephone that has an internal feature or function, or that is equipped with an attachment or addition, whether or not permanently part of the mobile telephone, by which a user engages in a conversation without the use of either hand; provided, however, this definition shall not preclude the use of either hand to activate, deactivate, or initiate a function of the telephone.

* * * Primary Enforcement of Safety Belt Law; Federal Funds * * *

Sec. 7.  REPEAL; ACCEPTANCE OF FEDERAL FUNDS

(a)  23 V.S.A. § 1259(e) (secondary enforcement of safety belt law) is repealed.

(b)  The state is authorized to accept any additional funding available from the federal government attributable to the passage of this section.

Sec. 8.  EFFECTIVE DATES

(a)  This section and Secs. 1, 2, and 3 of this act shall take effect from passage.

(b)  Sec. 7 shall take effect on June 30, 2007.

(c)  Secs. 4, 5, and 6 shall take effect on September 1, 2007.

ORDERED TO LIE

S. 70

An act relating to empowering municipalities to regulate the application of pesticides within their borders.

PENDING ACTION:  Second reading of the bill.

S. 102

An act relating to decreasing the percentage to determine a school district’s excess spending.

PENDING ACTION:  Second reading of the bill.

S. 118

An act relating to fiscal review of high spending districts and special education.

PENDING ACTION:  Second reading of the bill.

J.R.S. 24

Joint resolution relating to the federal “fast track” process for congressional review of international trade agreements.

PENDING ACTION:  Second reading of the resolution.

Concurrent Resolutions

     The following concurrent resolutions have been introduced for approval by the Senate and House and will be adopted automatically unless a Senator or Representative requests floor consideration before the end of the session of the next legislative day.  Requests for floor consideration in either chamber should be communicated to the Secretary’s office and/or the House Clerk’s office, respectively.

S.C.R. 22

     Senate concurrent resolution commending the State House cafeteria management and staff for their outstanding work during the first year of the 2007-2007 biennium.

H.C.R. 125

House concurrent resolution congratulating Liz Stephen on her accomplishments as a competitive Nordic skier

H.C.R. 126

House concurrent resolution in memory of former Representative J. Russell Carpenter and of M. Ellen Carpenter

H.C.R. 127

House concurrent resolution congratulating the nursing staff at Southwestern Vermont Medical Center on the center’s second designation as a Magnet® hospital

H.C.R. 128

House concurrent resolution commemorating the 75th anniversary of the Green Mountain National Forest

H.C.R. 129

House concurrent resolution honoring state employees during Public Service Recognition Week

H.C.R. 130

House concurrent resolution honoring Vermont Adaptive Ski and Sports and the participating athletes on its Sugarbush ski team

H.C.R. 131

House concurrent resolution congratulating the Vermont Business Roundtable on its 20th anniversary

H.C.R. 132

House concurrent resolution honoring Dan Collins for over 40 years of superb service as a public educator

H.C.R. 133

House concurrent resolution honoring Northfield fire chief William C. Lyon

H.C.R. 134

House concurrent resolution honoring Sandra Demasi Kingsley for her outstanding 32‑year career on the administrative staff at Norwich University

H.C.R. 135

House concurrent resolution congratulating the Community High School of Vermont on earning accreditation from the New England Association of Schools and Colleges

H.C.R. 136

House concurrent resolution congratulating Collin Bigras on being named to the 2007 Sub-Junior All-American Trapshooting First Team

H.C.R.  137

House concurrent resolution honoring the role of foster parents during foster parent month

H.C.R. 138

House concurrent resolution congratulating Thomas Secoy on winning the 2007 Vermont Arbor Day poster contest

H.C.R. 139

House concurrent resolution commemorating the 25th anniversary of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, “The Wall,” in Washington, D.C. and all Vietnam War Veterans

H.C.R. 140

House concurrent resolution welcoming the FISA’s 2007 international rowing tour on the Connecticut River

H.C.R. 141

House concurrent resolution congratulating the Route 100B Byway Committee on the designation of the Mad River Byway


CONFIRMATIONS

The following appointments will be considered by the Senate, as a group, under suspension of the Rules, as moved by the President pro tempore, for confirmation together and without debate, by consent thereby given by the Senate.  However, upon request of any senator, any appointment may be singled out and acted upon separately by the Senate, with consideration given to the report of the Committee to which the appointment was referred, and with full debate; and further, all appointments for the positions of Secretaries of Agencies, Commissioners of Departments, Judges, Magistrates, and members of the Public Service Board shall be fully and separately acted upon.

Robert Britt of South Burlington - Member of the Vermont Economic Development Authority - By Sen. Condos for the Committee on Finance.  (1/25)

David E. L. Brown of Shelburne - Member of the Board of Libraries - By Sen. Giard for the Committee on Education.  (1/31)

John Rosenthal of Charlotte - Member of the Board of Libraries - By Sen. Doyle for the Committee on Education.  (1/31)

Kenneth Gibbons of Hyde Park - Member of the Vermont Educational and Health Buildings Finance Agency - By Sen. McCormack for the Committee on Finance.  (2/2),,

David R. Coates of Colchester - Member of the Municipal Bond Bank - By Sen. Condos for the Committee on Finance.  (2/21)

Paul. Beaulieu of Manchester Center - Member of the Vermont Housing Finance Agency - By Sen. Maynard for the Committee on Finance.  (2/21)

Susan Davis of Shelburne - Member of the Travel Information Council - By Sen. Mazza for the Committee on Transportation.  (3/13)

Jireh Billings of Bridgewater - Member of the Capitol Complex Commission - By Sen. Campbell for the Committee on Institutions.  (3/14)

John LaBarge of South Hero - Member of the Travel Information Council - By Sen. Mazza for the Committee on Transportation.  (3/21)

Susan K. Blair of Colchester - Alternate Member of the Parole Board - By Sen. Mazza for the Committee on Institutions.  (3/23)

William J. Pettengill of Guilford - Member Parole Board - By Sen. Coppenrath for the Committee on Institutions.  (3/23)

Jeffrey Larkin of Duxbury - Member of the Travel Information Council - By Sen. Scott for the Committee on Transportation.  (3/28)

Celine F. Champine of Newport Center - Member of the Community High School of Vermont Board - By Sen. Starr for the Committee on Education.  (4/6)

Richard Fraser of South Ryegate - Member of the Community High School of Vermont Board - By Sen. Nitka for the Committee on Education.  (4/6)

Blanche Kelley of Rutland - Member of the Community High School of Vermont Board - By Sen. Giard for the Committee on Education. (4/6)

Kathryn  T. Boardman of Shelburne - Member of the Vermont Municipal Bond Bank - By Sen. Condos for the Committee on Finance.  (4/18)

Steven Gurin of Barre - Member of the Educational and Health Buildings Finance Agency - By Sen. Maynard for the Committee on Finance.  (4/18)

Laurie A. Rowell of Rockingham - Member of the Valuation Appeals Board - By Sen. McCormack for the Committee on Finance.  (4/24)

Rene L. Blanchard of Essex Junction - Member of the Transportation Board - By Sen. Mazza for the Committee on Transportation.  (4/27)

R. Keith Armstrong of Bennington - Member of the Fish and Wildlife Board - By Sen. Hartwell for the Committee on Natural Resources and Energy.  (4/27)

Lisa Nolan Birmingham of Stowe - Member of the Natural Resources Board Land Panel - By Sen. Snelling for the Committee on Natural Resources and Energy.  (4/27)

George R. Crombie of Warren - Secretary of the Agency of Natural Resources - By Sen. Lyons for the Committee on Natural Resources and Energy.  (4/27)

George R. Crombie of Warren - Secretary of the Agency of Natural Resources - By Lyons for the Committee on Natural Resources and Energy.  (4/27)

Dana Kittell of East Fairfield - Member of the Fish and Wildlife Board - By Sen. MacDonald for the Committee on Natural Resources and Energy.  (4/27)

Wayne Alan LaRoche of Franklin - Commissioner of the Department of Fish and Wildlife - By Sen. MacDonald for the Committee on Natural Resources and Energy.  (4/27)

Elizabeth McLain of West Berlin - Member of the Natural Resources Board Land Panel - By Sen. MacDonald for the Committee on Natural Resources and Energy.  (4/27)

Eva Morse of Calais - Member of the Current Use Advisory Board - By Sen. Lyons for the Committee on Natural Resources and Energy.  (4/27)

Joan Nagy of Cambridge - Member of the Natural Resources Board Water Panel - By Sen. Snelling for the Committee on Natural Resources and Energy.  (4/27)

Michael Popowski, III of Northfield - Member of the Fish and Wildlife Board - By Sen. McCormack for the Committee on Natural Resources and Energy.  (4/27)

Jeffrey N. Wennberg of Rutland - Commissioner of the Department of Environmental Conservation - By Sen. Snelling for the Committee on Natural Resources and Energy.  (4/27)

Jonathan Wood of Jeffersonville - Commissioner of the Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation - By Sen. Hartwell for the Committee on Natural Resources and Energy.  (4/27)

Peter F. Young, Jr. of Northfield - Chair of the Natural Resources Board - By Sen. Lyons for the Committee on Natural Resources and Energy.  (4/27)

Peter F. Young, Jr. of Northfield - Chair of the Natural Resources Board - By Sen. Lyons for the Committee on Natural Resources and Energy.  (4/27)

R. Tasha Wallis of Stowe - Commissioner of the Department of Buildings and General Services - By Sen. Scott for the Committee on Institutions.  (4/30)

Peter C. Ozarowski of South Burlington - Member of the Parole Board - by Sen. Mazza for the Committee on Institutions.  (4/30)

James Ehlers of Colchester - Member of the Vermont Citizens Advisory Committee on Lake Champlain’s Future - By Sen. Hartwell for the Committee on Natural Resources and Energy.  (5/1)

Shari P. Young of East Montpelier - Member of the Children and Family Council for Prevention Programs - By Sen. Flanagan for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Justine Homiak of Jeffersonville - Member of the Children and Family Council for Prevention Programs - By Sen. Flanagan for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Stephen S. Rauh of East Montpelier - Member of the Public Oversight Commission - By Sen. Flanagan for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Daniel P. Smith of Burlington - Member of the Children and Family Council for Prevention Programs - By Sen. Flanagan for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Sharon Wilson of Duxbury - Member of the Human Services Board - By Sen. Flanagan for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Sharon Wilson of Duxbury - Member of the Human Services Board - By Sen. Flanagan for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Wendy Schroeder of South Burlington - Member of the Public Oversight Commission - By Sen. Kittell for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Theodore Marcy, M.D. of Williston - Member of the Vermont Tobacco Evaluation & Review Board - By Sen. Kittell for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Marcia Biondolillo of Barre - Member of the Public Oversight Commission - By Sen. Kittell for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Mark Moody of Montpelier - Member of the Children and Family Council for Prevention Programs - By Sen. Kittell for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Stephen R. Dale of Montpelier - Commissioner of the Department for Children and Families - By Sen. Racine for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Cynthia LaWare of Williston - Secretary of the Agency of Human Services - By Sen. Racine for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Stephen P. Coulman of Waltham - Member of the Children and Family Council for Prevention Programs - By Sen. Racine for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Deb Haskins of East Calais - Member of the Children and Family Council for Prevention Programs - By Sen. Racine for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Deb Haskins of East Calais - Member of the Children and Family Council for Prevention Programs - By Sen. Racine for Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Gary Richardson of Perkinsville - Member of the Human Services Board - By Sen. Mullin for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Kreig Pinkham of Northfield - Member of the Children and Family Council for Prevention Programs - By Sen. Mullin for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Sue Y. Clark of Vergennes - Member of the Children and Family Council for Prevention Programs - By Sen. Mullin for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

John B. Webber of Rutland - Member of the Board of Medical Practice - By Sen. Mullin for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

William Brooks of New Haven - Member of the Human Services Board - By Sen. Mullin for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Patrick Flood of East Calais - Commissioner of the Department of Aging and Independent Living - By Sen. Lyons for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Jessie Suter of Winooski - Member of the Children and Family Council for Prevention Programs - By Sen. Lyons for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Kenneth A. Schatz of Burlington - Member of the Children and Family Council for Prevention Programs - By Sen. Lyons for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Paul Hudson of Springfield - Chair of the Human Services Board - By Sen. White for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Lynn Marie Bundy of Waterford - Member of the Children and Family Council for Prevention Programs - By Sen. White for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

James L. Patterson of Barre - Member of the Children and Family Council for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Sharon L . Nicol of Sutton - Member of the Board of Medical Practice - By Sen. White for the Committee on Health and Welfare.  (5/3)

Joseph C. Benning of Lyndonville - Member of the Human Rights Commission - By Sen. Sears for the Committee on Judiciary.  (5/4)

Brian T. Byrnes of Middlebury - Member of the Human Rights Commission - By Sen. Nitka for the Committee on Judiciary.  (5/4)



Published by:

The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street
Montpelier, Vermont


www.leg.state.vt.us