Municipal Day

When Governments Cooperate - State Government Municipal Day

Brought to you with Generous Support from  Community National Bank - Equal Housing Lender, Member FDIC

 

The 4th installment of this popular training for our municipal partners was a great success!  Planning for the 2017 event is underway and workshop details will be listed as they become availalbe in the spring.

Scroll down to see the workshop presentations from Friday, September 9th, 2016 which are posted underneath the workshop title whenever available.

Session 1 (8:15 - 9:30 am)

1a. Vermont’s Ecology and Environment: Caring for Natural Resources in Your Community

This workshop is presented on an ungoing basis, in various locations.  If you are interested in attending a session, contact jens.hilke@vermont.gov.
Last year's workshop "Vermont’s Ecology and Environment: An introduction to town planning for natural resources" covered cultural and historical context, ecological scales and a basic introduction to planning. This year's sequel, by contrast, will help you choose locally appropriate land use planning strategies for conserving natural resources. It uses case studies and exercises to show how taking action can work in real life. The overall goal is to build understanding of what you can do, how to work with different people in your community, how to choose ways to protect natural resources, and how to make it happen. Note: This is a 4-session workshop. You must sign up for all four sessions if you wish to take this class.

2. Municipal Roads Program

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The new DEC Municipal Road General Permit timelines and framework will be discussed. Collaboration with VTrans, VLCT, regional planning commissions and other partners through stakeholder groups, technical teams, and roads round table forums will be shared. The latest on MRGP standards and road erosion inventories will be included as well as grant funding, training, technical assistance, and outreach opportunities and approaches.

3. Town Plans that Work – Using the New Planning Manual

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Town plans can take a lot of effort to write and adopt plans, so how can we ensure they are useful, living documents that help improve our communities? Hear from municipalities that are updating their plans using Vermont’s new Planning Manual, engaging townspeople in articulating a vision and translating that into actionable policies while meeting all the statutory requirements for a plan. State program officials will also provide their perspectives and audience interaction is encouraged.

4. Natural Resource Inventories: Forest Blocks, Wildlife Corridors, Natural Communities, and Rare Species!

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Participants will learn about the range of features that may be included in town-wide natural resource inventories and how to access information that is already available for some of these features, including forest blocks, natural communities, and rare species. They will understand the benefits and practical considerations in coordinating a town-wide natural resource inventory and review options for integrating the range of natural resources identified through inventory into the town’s planning framework. Specific examples of town inventory results and town planning and zoning language will be provided and discussed.

5. Municipal Opportunities to Create Vermont’s Clean Energy Future!

Presentation unavailable.
Communities across Vermont are supporting and implementing energy improvements in facilities, transportation and operations to increase energy independence, reduce carbon pollution, and save money. This session will offer information on energy efficiency retrofits, transitioning to renewable electric and thermal energy, and supporting plug-in electric vehicle adoption for town operations as well as local residents and businesses. An expert panel will provide recommendations on prioritizing clean energy initiatives, organizing and financing energy projects and technical assistance options. Participants will have an opportunity to discuss prospects in their towns and share success stories with each other.

6.  In the Computer Lab:  ANR's Natural Resources Atlas 

Hands-on session; no presentation. 
This hands-on session will introduce you to ANR's Natural Resource Atlas and teach you to use it! The Atlas provides geographic information about environmental features and sites that the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources manages, monitors, permits, or regulates. For example this includes wetlands, public water sources, and conserved lands. In addition to standard map navigation tools, this site allows you to link from sites to documents where available, generate reports, export search results, import data, search, measure, mark-up, query map features, and print PDF maps. This tool will be useful for the town planning, development review, and managing town owned properties. Note: This workshop repeats in Session 2 and 3. Please sign up for ONLY ONE session.

Session 2 (11:00 am - 12:15 pm)

1b. Vermont’s Ecology and Environment: Caring for Natural Resources in Your Community
Session 2 of 4 contined from above. 
Note: This is a 4-session workshop. You must sign up for all four sessions if you wish to take this class.

7. Dollars make Sense: Funding for your water-related projects

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Increasing regulations, deferred maintenance, ageing infrastructure, competing interests, comprehensive infrastructure project planning all lead to ‘how are we going to pay for all of this?’ questions. During this session, we’ll provide an introduction to the state Water Infrastructure Financing Programs and how we can work with you on some of your infrastructure planning and funding needs.

8. Opportunities for Municipal Involvement in Energy Siting

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This workshop will explore opportunities for Municipalities to engage in the energy siting process that currently exists through Section 248. This session will also provide an overview of Act 147, the State’s new energy legislation, with a specific focus on the process towns may use to develop enhanced municipal plans that garner substantial deference in the Public Service Board siting process. Staff from the Agency of Natural Resources and Department of Public Service will also detail opportunities for public involvement and technical assistance available to towns and regions as Act 174 is implemented.

9. Where Land & Water Meet: Wetland, Shoreland, and Lake Encroachment Regulations

Presentation unavailable.
Join us to discuss real-life scenarios of land use regulation where land and water meet. Both the Wetland Rules and the Shoreland Protection Act come into play when we address development or harvesting along water bodies. This workshop will cover the history of wetland and shoreline degradation, the importance of natural resource protection, the effects of regulation on new and existing development, and how to navigate scenarios that involve multi-program jurisdiction.

10. Invasives Make Bad Neighbors

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Invasive plants and insects are an increasingly apparent problem along Vermont’s roads, rivers, fields, town forests, and even our own backyards. The scope of the problem may seem overwhelming, but individuals and towns can take specific steps that have measurable impacts when confronting this challenge.  Learn about resources that allow you to plan for the imminent arrival of the exotic emerald ash borer, a pest that causes nearly 100% mortality of ash trees. We’ll also discuss resources that allow you to plan, map, and prioritize invasive plant control and prevention efforts and the effective use of the site www.vtinvasives.org.

11.  In the Computer Lab:  ANR's Natural Resources Atlas 
Note: This workshop is repeated in Sessions 1 and 3.

Session 3 (1:30 - 2:30 pm)

1c. Vermont’s Ecology and Environment: Caring for Natural Resources in Your Community
Session 3 of 4 contined from above. Note: This is a 4-session workshop. You must sign up for all four sessions if you wish to take this class.

12. All About Act 250! (Part 1)

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When is an Act 250 permit required? Who makes this determination? What resources are available to help an applicant prepare an application? What is the Act 250 process? What are the criteria? Who reviews the application? Who can participate, and how? What is a municipal presumption? Why are some towns called a “1 acre” town, and others called a “10 acre town” – what does this mean? What are some of the best tools on the Act 250 website? Is Act 250 going paperless? Learn the answers to these questions, and more, by attending our workshop!

13. Municipal Projects Done Right – Revitalizing Downtowns

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What can municipal officials do to stimulate and sustain economic development in your villages and downtowns? Hear directly from local officials about successful revitalization through renovating buildings, improving streetscapes, addressing flooding, creating new housing and attracting and retaining businesses. They will discuss the factors that contributed to successful outcomes including funding and partnerships and lessons learned. State program officials will also provide their perspectives and audience interaction is encouraged.

14. Technical Assistance and Grant Opportunities from VTrans’ Highway Division

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VTrans has a variety of grant opportunities – both state and federally funded – that are available to assist municipalities with addressing environmental issues in their communities.  These funds can assist communities with both planning and construction activities. VTrans also provides many opportunities for technical assistance.  The participants should take-away a general knowledge of funding opportunities from the Municipal Assistance Bureau as well as contact information.

15. Universal Recycling Leaf, Yard and Clean Wood Requirements

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This workshop will go over options for handling leaf and yard debris and clean wood waste under the Universal Recycling law, which prohibits their disposal in the landfill. Universal Recycling law basics, including the upcoming landfill ban on food waste, will be covered. Handling of wood waste resulting from construction and demolition projects will also be discussed.

16.  In the Computer Lab:  ANR's Natural Resources Atlas 
Note: This workshop is repeated from Sessions 1 and 2. 

Session 4 (2:45 - 3:45 pm)

1d. Vermont’s Ecology and Environment: Caring for Natural Resources in Your Community
Session 4 of 4 contined from above. Note: This is a 4-session workshop. You must sign up for all four sessions if you wish to take this class.

17. All About Act 250! (Part 2)

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What is this new 9L criterion? How do I use the new guidance document to help design my project? What are the underlying concepts of 9L? What can my town do to help incorporate these concepts into our planning documents?  Learn the answers to these questions, and more, by attending our workshop!

18. Municipal Projects Done Right – Citizen Engagement 

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How can towns, large and small interest people in getting involved in municipal matters?  What does it take to build interest, excitement in municipal projects and a commitment to follow through. In this panel discussion, you’ll hear from municipal officials about how they improved communications, used proven public participation techniques to engage citizens in decision-making and brought new blood and energy onto local boards and commissions. They will discuss factors that contributed to successful outcomes and lessons learned. State program officials will also provide their perspective and audience interaction is encouraged.

19. Required Agricultural Practices

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The Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food & Markets (VAAFM) has been engaged in revisions of the Required Agricultural Practices (RAPs)—base level management standards for all farms in Vermont—since October of 2015.  The current RAP Proposed Rule proposes a scenario whereby municipalities, currently limited from writing bylaws for the RAPs, would be able to adopt regulations for small, backyard landowners who are engaged in agricultural activities on a small-scale, non-commercial level.  Join us for a discussion of the RAP Proposed Rules and the opportunity proposed for additional oversight by municipalities in Vermont.

If you have questions about this event, contact penny.percival@vermont.gov or call (802) 828-1294.

Interested in reading about the previous, 2015 event?  See the workshops that were offered last year by downloading the 2015 State Government Municipal Day Brochure.