Promote growth that’s well planned
I strongly support the bill in the Legislature (H.823) that would amend Act 250 to clarify criterion 9L, which concerns “rural growth areas,” and replace it with language that minimizes sprawl and strip development. This change is long overdue. The “rural growth areas” provision in Act 250 has always been difficult to interpret and has essentially become meaningless. H.823 would address that problem by allowing the Act 250 process to more effectively and predictably promote development in existing settlements while discouraging new strip development, which contributes to sprawl. The bill has passed the Vermont House and is now being considered by the Senate. My hope is that the Senate will vote in the positive for this important legislation that will promote well-planned growth in Vermont.
The writer was chairman of the Environmental Board from 1995 to 1998 and a founder of Smart Growth Vermont.
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