The Vermont Statutes Online

Title 19: Highways

Chapter 1: STATE HIGHWAY LAW

19 V.S.A. § 1. Definitions



§ 1. Definitions

As used in this title:

(1) "Agency" means the Agency of Transportation.

(2) "Board" means the Transportation Board.

(3) "Branch" means a major component of a division of a department or major unit of a department with staff functions.

(4) "Chair" means the Chair of the Transportation Board, unless otherwise specified.

(5) "Commissioner" means the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles responsible to the Secretary for the administration of the Department.

(6) "Department" means the Department of Motor Vehicles.

(7) "Develop" means the partition or division of any tract of land of any size by a person through sale, lease, transfer, or any other means by which any interest in or to the land or a portion of the land is conveyed to another person which will require the construction of permanent new or enlarged points of access to a State or town highway other than a limited access facility pursuant to subsection 1702a(a) of this title; excluding, however, tracts of land located entirely within a city or incorporated village.

(8) "Director" means the head of a division.

(9) "District" means a geographic subdivision of the State primarily established for maintenance purposes.

(10) "District transportation administrator" means the person in charge of a district.

(11) "Division" means a major unit of the Agency engaged in line functions other than the Department of Motor Vehicles.

(12) "Highways" are only such as are laid out in the manner prescribed by statute; or roads which have been constructed for public travel over land which has been conveyed to and accepted by a municipal corporation or to the State by deed of a fee or easement interest; or roads which have been dedicated to the public use and accepted by the city or town in which such roads are located; or such as may be from time to time laid out by the Agency or town. However, the lack of a certificate of completion of a State or town highway shall not alone constitute conclusive evidence that the highway is not public. The term "highway" includes rights-of-way, bridges, drainage structures, signs, guardrails, areas to accommodate utilities authorized by law to locate within highway limits, areas used to mitigate the environmental impacts of highway construction, vegetation, scenic enhancements, and structures. The term "highway" does not include State Forest highways, management roads, easements, or rights-of-way owned by or under the control of the Agency of Natural Resources, the Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation, the Department of Fish and Wildlife, or the Department of Environmental Conservation.

(13) "Management road" means a road not designated as a "State Forest highway" used for the long-term management of lands owned by or under the control of the Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation, the Department of Fish and Wildlife, or the Department of Environmental Conservation to meet the responsibilities and purposes set forth in 10 V.S.A. chapter 83, 10 V.S.A. part 4, and regulations promulgated under those statutes. The term "management road" includes associated easements and rights-of-way. A "management road" is not a "highway" or a "town highway" as defined in this title, is not a public road, and the public has no common law or statutory right of access or use of such a road. A "management road" may be open for temporary, seasonal uses by the public or may be closed temporarily or seasonally at the discretion of the agency of natural resources, the department of forests, parks and recreation, the department of fish and wildlife, or the department of environmental conservation. A "management road" may be closed permanently upon 30 days' notice to the governing body of the municipality in which the road is located and any affected user groups. Designation of a road as a "management road" shall not diminish any deeded rights-of-way or easements of private landowners on lands owned or controlled by the Agency of Natural Resources, the Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation, the Department of Fish and Wildlife, or the Department of Environmental Conservation.

(14) "Person" includes a municipality or State agency.

(15) "Scenic road" means any road designated pursuant to this title.

(16) "Secretary" means the head of the Agency who shall be a member of the Governor's Cabinet responsible directly to the Governor for the administration of the Agency.

(17) "Section" means a major component of a division or department or major unit of the Agency.

(18) "Selectboard" includes village trustees and city councils.

(19) "State Forest highway" means a road used for the long-term management of lands owned by or under the control of the Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation to meet the responsibilities and purposes set forth in 10 V.S.A. § 2601 et seq. and regulations promulgated under that statute. The term "State Forest highway" includes easements and rights-of-way. A "State Forest highway" is not a "highway" or a "town highway" as defined in this title, is not a public road, and the public has no common law or statutory right of access or use of such road. A "State Forest highway" may be open for temporary, seasonal uses by the public or may be closed temporarily or seasonally for any reason at the discretion of the Agency of Natural Resources or the Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation. A "State Forest highway" may be closed permanently upon 30 days' notice to the governing body of the municipality in which the road is located and to any affected user groups. Designation of a road as a "State Forest highway" shall not diminish any deeded rights of way or easements of private landowners on lands owned or controlled by the Agency of Natural Resources or the Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation.

(20) "State highways" are those highways maintained exclusively by the Agency of Transportation.

(21) "Throughway" means a highway specially designated giving traffic traveling on the throughway the right-of-way at all intersections.

(22) "Town" includes incorporated villages and cities.

(23) "Town highways" are class 1, 2, 3, and 4 highways:

(A) that the towns have authority to exclusively or cooperatively maintain; or

(B) that are maintained by the towns except for scheduled surface maintenance performed by the Agency pursuant to section 306a of this title.

(24) "Traffic Committee" consists of the Secretary of Transportation or his or her designee, the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles or his or her designee, and the Commissioner of Public Safety or his or her designee and is responsible for establishing speed zones, parking and no parking areas, regulations for use of limited access highways, and other traffic control procedures.

(25) "Limited access highway" means a highway where the right of owners or occupants of abutting land or other persons to access, light, air, or view in connection with the highway is fully or partially controlled by public authority, in accordance with chapter 17 of this title. The term "highway" does not include State Forest highways, management roads, easements, or rights-of-way owned by or under the control of the Agency of Natural Resources, the Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation, the Department of Fish and Wildlife, or the Department of Environmental Conservation. (Added 1985, No. 269 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; amended 1993, No. 61, § 39, eff. June 3, 1993; 1995, No. 60, § 39, eff. April 25, 1995; 1995, No. 183 (Adj. Sess.), §§ 18h, 18k, eff. May 22, 1996; 2003, No. 151 (Adj. Sess.), § 2, eff. June 3, 2004; 2009, No. 50, § 88; 2011, No. 126 (Adj. Sess.), § 3.)