The Vermont Statutes Online
- Subchapter 001: GENERAL PROVISIONS
§ 15-1. City; how constituted
That all the freemen of this State, inhabitants of said New Haven, Panton, and Ferrisburgh dwelling and inhabiting within the following bounds, viz: beginning on the line between Ferrisburgh and New Haven at the southeast corner of the town plot in said Ferrisburgh, from thence running north, 320 rods, to a stake and stones; from thence west, 400 rods, to a stake and stones; from thence south across Otter Creek 480 rods, to a stake and stones standing in Panton; from thence east across Otter Creek, 400 rods to a stake and stones standing in New Haven; from thence north, 160 rods, to the bounds first mentioned, including the waters of said Otter Creek within the preceding limits be, and the same is hereby ordained, constituted, and declared to be, from time to time, and forever hereafter one body politic and corporate in fact and in name, by the name of the City of Vergennes, and that by that name they and their successors forever shall and may have perpetual succession, and shall be persons in law capable of suing and being sued, pleading and being impleaded, in all suits of what nature soever; and also to purchase, hold, and convey any estate real or personal, and may have a common seal, and may change and alter the same at a pleasure, and shall be freemen of said City.
§ 15-2. Voters in City meetings
(a) A male or female citizen, 21 years of age, who has taken the freeman's oath and whose list is taken in a Town at the annual assessment preceding a Town meeting, and whose flood tax due such Town, was paid prior to the 15th day of February preceding such Town meeting, or who has attained the age of 21 years subsequent to the last annual assessment, or who is exempt from taxation for any cause, shall, while residing in such Town, be a voter in a Town meeting.
(b) A person qualified to vote in Town meeting under the provisions of this charter shall be qualified to vote in all other municipal meetings.
§ 15-3. City meetings
(a) On the 10th day of April, A.D. 1893, and annually thereafter on the first Tuesday of March, a meeting of the legal voters of said City shall be held at a place to be appointed by the City Council of said City, of which notice shall be posted in at least 3 public places within the limits of said City, and at least 12 days previous thereto, which notices shall be signed by the City Clerk and in case of his or her failure by the City Council, provided that if the annual meeting shall fail to be holden for want of notice herein before mentioned, or for any other cause, the corporation shall not thereby be prejudiced, and the several officers hereafter mentioned may at any time thereafter be elected at a special meeting called for that purpose as herein before provided.
(b) The Clerk of said City shall at any time when directed by the City Council or when requested in writing by 12 legal voters of said City, call a special meeting of the citizens of said City in the same manner as is provided for the annual meeting; in case of the failure of the Clerk to call the meeting as aforesaid, that duty shall be performed by the City Council or a majority of them.
§ 15-4. Election of officers
On the first Tuesday in March 1973, and biennially thereafter, the legal voters of said corporation shall elect from among their number a Mayor, who shall hold office for two years, and until his or her successor shall be elected and qualified. On the same date, and annually thereafter, they shall elect three aldermen for two years, and until their successors shall be elected and qualified, to succeed the aldermen whose term expires; a Lister for the term of three years to take the place of the Lister whose term expires; one Auditor for the term of three years; a City Grand Juror.
§ 15-5. Method of voting
(a) The annual meeting of said corporation, for the election of officers and for voting by printed ballot on questions to be decided shall be called at nine o'clock in the forenoon; and, for the transaction of other business, at seven-thirty o'clock in the evening of the day heretofore appointed. The election of officers shall be by ballot, similar to that used for the election of Representatives to the General Assembly, and all questions submitted to the voters, at the annual or special meeting of the City, as contained in the warning for such meetings, shall be decided by ballot, similar to that used in voting on the license questions; provided, however, that such method of voting shall apply only when application for a ballot is included in the petition for a special meeting, or in an article in the warning for a regular meeting, or when ordered by the City Council.
(b) The polls shall be kept open until seven o'clock in the afternoon and in case two or more leading candidates for the same office at any City election shall receive the same number of votes, resulting in no choice expressed by the voters, the City Council shall, at its next regular meeting, or at a special meeting held for that purpose, fill the office by the appointment of one of such leading candidates.
§ 15-6. Mayor and Aldermen
The Mayor shall preside at all meetings of the City except freeman's meetings, with the power of moderator in town meetings, and at meetings of the City Council. The Mayor, together with the aldermen shall constitute a Board of City Council and shall have the management of the affairs of the corporation and the necessary powers for that purpose, and in addition thereto all the powers of selectmen, and shall establish pounds. Said City Council shall hold a meeting on a stated day of each month, to be determined by that body, and oftener at the call of the Mayor. In case of the absence, resignation, or inability from any cause of the Mayor, the duties of the Office shall devolve on the senior Alderman, chosen by City Council, for the remainder of the Mayor's official term. The Mayor and aldermen shall, ex officio, have and exercise all the powers and authority of justices of the peace.
§ 15-7. Duties of the Clerk, etc.
The Clerk of said City shall be, ex officio, Clerk of the City Council and, as such, shall have the custody of all books, papers, and records of said City, keep a record of the proceedings of the Board, certify copies thereof, and, except as otherwise provided, shall perform the usual duties of a town clerk. The other officers elected at the annual meetings of said City shall have the same powers and duties and be subject to the same restrictions and liabilities as are now provided by law for the various town officers. All officers of the City shall be sworn for the faithful performance of their duties.
§ 15-8. Duty of auditors
(a) The accounts of the several officers shall be closed and in the hands of the auditors at least two weeks before the annual meeting; any officer failing to so report shall not be eligible to re-election to said office for the ensuing year.
(b) It shall be the duty of the auditors to audit the accounts of the Treasurer and other City officers and report the accounts so settled with the items thereof and also the state of the treasury, to the City at its annual meeting and said report shall be printed by the auditors at the expense of the City and circulated among the taxpayers thereof, at least one week before the annual meeting.
§ 15-9. Appointments by City Council
(a) The City Council at their first meeting of each fiscal year shall appoint a City Manager who shall have all the duties and responsibilities of a town manager as set forth in 24 V.S.A. chapter 37 as amended from time to time; a Treasurer, who shall discharge the duties incident to that office; a City Clerk; one or more constables; and may appoint a City Attorney.
(b) None of such officers shall be a member of the City Council. The compensation of all officers shall be fixed by the City Council and all of said officers shall be under the direction of City Council and shall hold office until their respective successors shall be appointed and qualified; subject however, to removal by the City Council for just cause. No claim for personal services shall be allowed to the officers elected at the annual meeting, except as fixed by law or by City Council, unless said claim is fixed by vote of the City at the annual meeting.
(c) All appointments by the City Manager shall be subject to approval by the City Council.
§ 15-10. Highways, etc.
The City Council is hereby authorized and empowered to lay out new highways, streets, public walks, and squares, for the use of said City, or to alter those already laid out; and to regulate and pave streets or highways and construct common sewers therein and to plant the highways, streets, public walks, and squares with trees for shade or ornament; and to fix the plans of public bridges within the City, and build or rebuild and repair the same as often as necessary, taking the same measures in all respects as are or may be directed by the laws of this State to be taken in case of highways laid out by the selectmen for the use of their towns, and to construct and repair sidewalks in the principal streets of said City and to direct in what manner and of what materials such sidewalks shall be constructed or repaired, and may assess the owners of property, through which or fronting which such sidewalks are constructed, so much of the expense thereof as said City Council shall judge said lands and property to be benefited thereby, after giving six days notice of the time and place of hearing to the parties interested, their agents, or attorneys; such assessment to be collected in the same manner as City taxes are collected. Any person or persons aggrieved by the laying out of such highways, streets, public walks, squares, or bridges, or by being assessed for sidewalks as above provided, may have the same remedy by application to the county court as is provided by law in cases of highways laid out by the selectmen.
§ 15-11. Ordinances and regulations
(a) The City Council shall (subject to the right of said corporation to alter, amend, or repeal the same at any annual or special meeting) have power to make, establish, alter, amend, or repeal ordinances, regulations, and bylaws for the following purposes, and to impose penalties for the breach thereof:
(1) To establish and regulate a market, and to regulate and license the selling or peddling of meat, fish, or other provisions from vehicles about the City, and all moneys paid for such licenses shall belong to the City and be paid into the City Treasury.
(2) To restrain and prohibit all descriptions of gaming and for the destruction of all instruments and devices used for that purpose.
(3) To regulate the exhibitions of common showmen and shows of every kind not interdicted by law, and to regulate, restrain, or license itinerant vendors and peddlers, and all moneys received for such licenses shall belong to the City and be paid into the City Treasury.
(4) To prevent riots, noises, disturbances, or disorderly assemblages.
(5) To abate and remove nuisances, and to restrain and suppress houses of ill-fame and disorderly houses.
(6) To compel the owner or occupant of any unwholesome, noisesome, or offensive house or place to remove or cleanse the same from time to time as may be necessary for the health or comfort of the inhabitants of the City.
(7) To direct the location of all slaughterhouses, markets, steam mills, blacksmith shops, and sewers.
(8) To regulate the manufacture and keeping of gunpowder, ashes, and all other dangerous and combustible material.
(9) To regulate the making of alterations and repairs of stovepipes, furnaces, fireplaces, and other things from which damage from fire may be apprehended, and also to regulate the use of buildings in crowded localities for hazardous purposes; to provide for the preservation of buildings from fires by precautionary measures and inspections; to regulate the size, height, and material of new buildings to be constructed in the City, or in certain prescribed localities therein, and to establish and regulate a Fire Department and fire companies.
(10) To prevent immoderate riding or driving in the streets, and cruelty to animals.
(11) To regulate the erection of buildings and prevent encumbering the streets, sidewalks, and public alleys with firewood, lumber, carriages, boxes, or other things, and provide for the care, preservation, and improvements of public grounds.
(12) To restrain or regulate the running at large of cattle, horses, swine, sheep, and goats, and to regulate or restrain the running at large of dogs. And in addition to the tax now imposed by the laws of this State upon owners or keepers of dogs, to impose upon or require of the owner or keeper of any dog or dogs such additional tax or a license fee for the keeping thereof, and prescribe such penalties in default thereof as may be deemed necessary. And all moneys received hereunder shall belong to the City and be paid into the City Treasury.
(13) To compel all persons to remove from the sidewalks and gutters in front of the premises owned or occupied by them all snow, ice, dirt, and garbage, and to keep such sidewalks and gutters clean, and to compel the owners or occupants of any land or premises in the City to cut and remove from the streets and sidewalks in front of such land or premises all grass, thistles, and weeds growing or being thereon, under such regulations as may be prescribed therefor.
(14) To license innkeepers, keepers of saloons, victualing houses, billiard saloons, and auctioneers, under such regulations as shall be prescribed therefor; and all moneys paid for such licenses shall belong to the City and be paid into the City Treasury.
(15) To regulate or restrain the use of rockets, squibs, firecrackers, or other fireworks in the streets or commons, and to prevent the practicing therein of any amusements having a tendency to injure or annoy persons passing therein, or to endanger the security of property.
(16) To regulate gauging, the place and manner of selling and weighing hay, packing, inspecting, and branding beef, pork, and produce, and of selling and measuring wood, lime, and coal and to appoint suitable persons to superintend and conduct the same.
(17) To license porters, cart-men, and the owners and drivers of hackney coaches, cabs, or carriages, and to regulate their fees and prescribe their duties.
(18) To provide for the lighting of the City.
(19) To prohibit and punish willful injuries to trees planted for shade, ornament, convenience, or use, public or private; and to prevent and punish trespasses or willful injuries to or upon public buildings, squares, commons, cemeteries, or other property.
(20) To manage and control the public places, parks, and commons in said City, and to regulate the use of the same by the public, and to prevent and punish trespasses or willful injuries to or upon any fountains, shade or ornamental tree or shrub, building, or structure placed therein by or under the orders of the corporation, in such a manner as shall not be inconsistent with the laws of the State.
(21) To regulate or prohibit the suspending or putting up of any sign or awning, in or over any street, lane, alley, common, or other public place in the City; and, whenever the public good may require, to order and direct that signs or awnings heretofore erected or suspended as aforesaid shall be taken down or removed.
(b) Said City Council may make and establish, amend, or repeal any other bylaws, rules, and ordinances which it may deem necessary for the well-being of said City and not repugnant to the Constitution or laws of the State; and such City Council may impose a fine not exceeding one hundred dollars, to be prosecuted and recovered before any justice of the peace within said City, in which action it shall be sufficient to declare generally that the defendant or defendants is or are guilty of the breach of a certain bylaw, naming such bylaw generally; and under such declaration the special matter may be given in evidence. And all writs for the breach of any bylaw may issue against the body of the defendant or defendants in due form of law, on the complaint of the City Attorney or Grand Juror, the process and procedure to be similar to that employed in prosecutions for breach of the peace, including mittimus, if deemed necessary to enforce the penalty imposed.
(c) As long as the City owes a bonded debt the City Council shall annually assess upon the grand list of the City, in addition to all other taxes, a tax of at least 10 cents on the dollar, the proceeds of which shall be applied for the redemption of such bonded debt and shall constitute a sinking fund, which shall be safely deposited or invested, under the direction of the City Council so as to yield a proper rate of interest. Such tax shall be collected in the same manner as other taxes of said City are collected, and delinquents shall be subject to the same penalties provided therefor.
§ 15-12. Taxes
The City Council shall lay a tax not exceeding 300 cents on the dollar of the grand list of said City on the ratable estate within the same, whether of residents or nonresidents, for any of the purposes hereinbefore mentioned, and shall make out a rate bill accordingly and deliver the same to the Treasurer and the Constable or Collector shall have power to collect it and may sell property to satisfy the same, and for want thereof may commit any person against whom he or she has such a tax to jail. Such sales for taxes shall be advertised and conducted as provided by the Public Laws; provided however, that, if any parcel of real estate so advertised and sold shall yield a larger amount at such sale than the total amount of taxes, costs, and charges against the owner, such sale shall not thereby be void, but shall stand, subject to the statutory right of redemption, upon tender of payment to the owner of the amount of such excess. And the City Council shall be a Board for the Abatement of Taxes.
§ 15-13. Official bonds
The Treasurer, Constable, and collectors shall severally give good and sufficient bonds to the City to be approved by the City Council, in such sums as may be fixed by said Council, and in case of their failure to give bonds as aforesaid within 10 days after their election to said office, the office shall be vacant and it shall be the duty of the City Council to fill all such vacancies and all those caused by death, resignation, or otherwise.
§ 15-14. Water
The City Manager and the aldermen who are designated as water commissioners are hereby empowered to enter in the day time, any premises or buildings in said City in which city water may be used, for the purpose of determining how much of said water is used, and for the reasonable inspection of the same.
§ 15-15. Bonded debt [Transitional Provisions]
§ 15-16. City Court
There may be holden in said City, from time to time, as occasion arises a City Court, which shall be a court of record, presided over by a justice of the peace who shall be designated by the City Council as judge thereof; of which court the City Clerk shall be the Clerk. Said Court shall have the same jurisdiction and powers within said City as justices of the peace now have, and shall be subject to and governed by all statutes relating to courts of justices of the peace.
§§ 15-17-25. [Repealed.].
§ 15-26. Sales, etc.
(a) All sales, leases, or grants of any real estate, belonging to the City shall be signed by the Mayor thereof, and sealed with the City Seal, and any conveyance so executed, if approved by a meeting of the citizens of the City legally assembled, and recorded in the records of the town where the lands so sold, leased, or granted lie, shall be good and effectual in law to convey the estate intended to be conveyed by such sale, lease, or grant.
(b) Any allocation of wastewater treatment capacity of the wastewater treatment plant of the City and any use of any wastewater distribution mains of the City connected to the plant serving any property outside the territorial limits of the City shall require a written agreement setting forth the specific terms and conditions of the allocation of wastewater capacity or use of wastewater distribution mains of the City connected to the plant. Any written agreement allocating wastewater treatment capacity outside the territorial limits of the City shall be approved at an annual or special meeting of the voters of the City legally assembled and, once signed by the City Council, or its authorized representative, shall be recorded in the land records of the municipality where the lands are located and benefited by the allocation of wastewater treatment capacity or use of wastewater distribution mains of the City connected to the plant. (Amended 2007, No. M-15, § 2, eff. May 16, 2007.)
§ 15-27. Resignation of Mayor
The Mayor of said City may, at any time, resign his or her office by filing his or her resignation with the Clerk of the City.
§ 15-28. Freemen
The freemen of the City shall have the right to choose a Representative to represent the same in the General Assembly of this State, and shall also have the same right to vote at elections for Governor, Lieutenant Governor, members of Congress and all other officers of the general and State government, that other freemen of this State have or may have.
§§ 15-29-30. [Transitional Provisions.].
§ 15-31. -50. [Reserved.]
- Subchapter 003: TRAFFIC COURT
§ 15-51. Creation
A Traffic Court for the City of Vergennes is hereby created and established with the sole jurisdiction of receiving waiver of process and trial, admission of violation and fines from violators of the provisions of parking and traffic ordinances of said City of Vergennes and for the sole purpose and with the sole authority of carrying out the provisions of this subchapter.
§ 15-52. Powers
The person holding the Office of City Treasurer of the City of Vergennes shall be the Judge of said Court, and shall exercise the powers, and perform the functions and duties thereof. The Judge of said Court shall act as the Clerk thereof, and keep its files and records, or shall appoint his or her deputy or assistant.
§ 15-53. Office
The City of Vergennes shall maintain said Traffic Court and provide quarters for the same in the City offices in said City.
§ 15-54. Violations, convictions; statement
Any person charged with the violation of any rule, regulation, restriction, or ordinance of said City, which regulates, restricts, or defines the time or place of parking vehicles in the City of Vergennes or prescribes any traffic regulations may within three days from the date of such charge by a statement signed by such person, admit such violation and waive issuing of any process and a trial by jury or hearing, and may voluntarily pay to said Traffic Court of said City the penalty herein prescribed; provided, however, that whenever in the opinion of said Court, the gravity of the offense requires a fine in excess of the above penalty, such Court may refuse to accept such signed statement and penalty and shall then make complaint to the proper prosecuting officer of said City, or to the State's Attorney of the County. In such event, such signed statement and penalty shall be returned to the offender and shall not be considered as an admission or used as evidence in any trial in any court in this State.
§ 15-55. Signed statements
Said Court shall treat such signed statements, if accepted and accompanied by the penalty herein prescribed, as a plea of guilty, and shall make such entry on its records. No costs, fees, or further charges shall be assessed against any person so admitting a violation of any parking or traffic rule, regulation, or ordinance, or shall be allowed or paid to any officer or person because of such violation, but such penalty shall be accepted by said Court in full discharge of the criminal liability of such person caused by such violation. Said Court shall retain all such signed statements for a period of two years from the date thereof, and shall keep a separate record, available to the public at any reasonable time, of all money collected and all other official acts done in connection therewith.
§ 15-56. Penalty
The penalty which may be so voluntarily paid by any person so violating any ordinance regulating, restricting, or defining the time and place of parking vehicles in the City of Vergennes shall be set by the City Council subject to the limits set forth in 23 V.S.A. chapter 19, Parking; police courts. Other violations of the ordinances of said City shall be punished in the manner prescribed by law.
§ 15-57. Collection
All money so collected by said Court in any one month shall be covered into the Treasury of the City of Vergennes on the first day of the following month with a statement of the names of the persons from whom the money was collected, provided that said Court may turn over said money collected during any shorter period at the end of such period.
§ 15-58. -60. [Reserved.]
- Subchapter 005: WATER SYSTEM
§ 15-61. Water system authorized
The City of Vergennes is hereby authorized and empowered to construct and maintain a water system, with necessary structures, appliances, pipe lines, aqueducts, pumps, pump house, filtration basin or basins, reservoir or reservoirs, water tower, or towers and all necessary appurtenances to operate the same by water power, gravity, electricity, or other means, and to conduct water to and distribute the same through said City for the purpose of supplying the inhabitants thereof with water for fire, domestic, mechanical, and other purposes, and may take and hold, by purchase or the right of eminent domain, in addition to the land, water power, water rights, privileges, and appurtenances thereof already owned or acquired by said City, such land and easements, springs, wells, ponds, streams, water privileges, and other sources of supply, located within or without the City limits, as may be necessary for obtaining a proper and adequate supply, storing and distributing same, preventing the pollution of the water supply of said City, and for proper construction, extension, and maintenance of said water system, provided, however, that such right of eminent domain shall not include the taking of private water power rights. Said City may enter upon and use any land, highways, easements, and rights of way through or over which it may be necessary for the pipes or aqueducts, reservoirs, water towers, structures, and appurtenances as may be necessary for the complete construction and maintenance of said water system; and may also, for the purposes aforesaid, dig up or occupy any common, highway, street, right of way, or bridge, for the purpose of laying, constructing, or repairing such pipes or aqueducts and all appurtenances thereof; and may, for the purposes of this subchapter, build, construct, and repair from time to time as may be necessary, the dam or falls of the water power now owned and used by said City.
§ 15-62. Powers
Said City is authorized and empowered to borrow money and issue its negotiable bonds and notes to an amount not exceeding $160,000, maturing, in installments as may be determined by the special committee authorized by section 64 of this chapter, within a maximum period of 30 years from date of issue, for the purpose of acquiring the necessary lands, easements, and sources of supply and constructing said water system and paying all expenses incident thereto. Such bonds shall bear interest at a rate not exceeding five percent and shall not be sold for less than 95 percent of their par value. The bonds or notes shall be signed by the Mayor of said City and countersigned by its Treasurer, and if interest coupons are attached they shall bear the facsimile signature of the Treasurer of said City. The bonds or notes shall specify on their face the purpose for which they are issued, and that they are issued under the authority of this subchapter, which shall be conclusive evidence of the liability of said City to any bona fide holder of the same. It is hereby made the duty of the said City to provide for the payment, and to pay the interest and principal, of said bonds or notes as they shall fall due. If said City shall for any cause fail to provide means for the payment of the interest and principal that may become due, then it shall become the duty of the City Council, without vote of the City, seasonably to assess upon the grand list of said City a tax sufficient to meet the interest and principal of said bonds or notes as they respectively become due, and place the same with a proper warrant, signed by a justice of the peace, in the hands of the Collector of Taxes for said City to collect the same immediately and pay it into the hands of the Treasurer, whose duty it shall be to pay the principal and interest of said bonds or notes as they shall fall due. Nothing contained in this section shall be construed to prohibit the holder or holders of said bonds or notes from resorting to any legal means to enforce payment of same.
§ 15-63. Bonding; vote required
The City, by a two-thirds vote of the legal voters present and voting at a meeting duly warned and holden in whole or in part for that purpose, may vote to lay, construct, and maintain said system of water works as contemplated by this subchapter, and vote to borrow money for that purpose, and issue its negotiable bonds or notes, determined what amount of bonds or notes shall be issued therefor, determine the denomination thereof, the rate of interest thereon, and how and when payable.
§ 15-64. Special committee
Pursuant to such vote of the City, a special committee including the Mayor and chosen by the Chamber of Commerce of the City and confirmed by the City Council shall have charge of the borrowing of the money as hereinbefore provided, and shall lay out and construct said system of water works and shall have exclusive control and direction of the construction and all expenses incurred therein. Vacancies occurring in said committee shall be filled by the remaining members thereof, subject to confirmation by City Council. Said committee shall serve without pay, but shall be allowed their actual expenses.
§ 15-65. Damages; procedure for determining
If in any case the damages caused by talking the water, or by taking the land, or any right, title, or interest therein, or for entering upon and using any land as aforesaid, are not adjusted by agreement of the parties affected thereby, or if the owner disputes the necessity for such taking, the City Council shall proceed in the same manner as is provided by law for selectmen in taking lands for highway purposes and in awarding damages therefor. If any interested person or corporation is dissatisfied with the decision as to the necessity for or the extent of such taking or with the award of damages, it may apply by petition to the Addison County Court setting forth the particulars wherein said petitioner claims to be aggrieved, and any number of persons may join therein. Said petition, with a citation, shall be served on the Clerk of said City within 30 days from the filing of the award and description of the property taken, and at least 12 days before the term of the Court to which the petition is returnable; the Court shall thereupon appoint three disinterested persons as commissioners, who shall inquire into the intent and necessity of such taking, and as to the damages sustained by the petitioners. Said commissioners shall give at least six days' notice of the time and place of hearing to the petitioners, and to the Clerk of the City of Vergennes; they shall report their findings to the Court, and upon hearing said Court may accept or reject said report, in whole or in part, make such orders in the premises as justice requires, may render judgment for the petitioners respectively, may take costs for either party, and award execution. In case final judgment is rendered for the City, or if no appeal from the decision of the commissioners is taken, the City may immediately tender the amount awarded as damages and costs and thereupon enter upon and occupy the premises so taken.
§ 15-66. Authority to furnish water
Said City may sell or furnish water to any person or corporation for fire, sanitary, domestic, or other purposes not in conflict with the public service laws of the State, within or without said City, and lay all pipes necessary to furnish water to all such persons.
§ 15-67. Rules
The City Council shall make and establish all necessary rules and regulations for the government and operation of the water works, and may draw orders upon the Treasurer of said City for the necessary expenses of the same, may establish rates or rents for the use of the water, and provide for the collection of the same, and may, from time to time, modify, increase, or diminish such rates or rents, and extend them to any description of property or use as said City may see fit and deem proper. Such rates or rents for the use of the water as may be established upon lots, buildings, factories, steam engines, stores, shops, stables, and other property shall be collected from the owner of the property so supplied, unless otherwise provided in the lease of the water; and such rates or rents shall be in the nature of a tax, and be a lien and charge upon such buildings, lots, and other property so supplied, and may be collected in the same manner as any municipal tax. Said water rates or rents may be ordered to be paid in advance, and all necessary provisions and orders may be made by said City Council relating to the supply or stoppage of water as they may deem necessary to insure such payments. Said City Council shall appoint a Collector of Water Rates or Rents, and may remove him or her at pleasure; and said Collector, before he or she enters upon the duties of his or her office, shall execute a bond to the City of Vergennes and file the same with the Clerk of said City, conditioned for a just and true accounting of all money received and disbursed by him or her, and for the faithful performance of the duties of his or her office, in such sum and with such sureties as said City Council shall direct, and, if he or she fails to comply therewith within five days from his or her appointment, said office shall thereby become vacant, and said City Council shall appoint others until one so appointed duly qualifies. During the construction contemplated by this subchapter, the committee provided for in section 64 of this charter shall have the exclusive management and control of the existing water works, and of all matters and things appertaining thereto, and shall have all and the same power and authority now vested in the City Council, with reference thereto, with full power of delegation.
§ 15-68. Taking; notice
(a) Whenever a notice is required to be given for the taking of land or any right therein or the awarding of damages therefor, a citation shall be issued signed by the Clerk or City Attorney of said City, and containing the names of all persons to whom notice is to be given, which citation shall be served, in the manner provided for serving a writ of summons, upon the person or persons to whom notice is to be given, by a sheriff, constable, or police officer of said City, not more than 60 days nor less than six days prior to the time of hearing. The return of said officer upon the original citation shall have the same effect as evidence of such service as is by law given to the return of a sheriff or constable upon a writ of summons. Such citation and return shall be made a part of the record of such proceeding.
(b) If at any stage of the proceedings for the taking of land, or any right or interest therein, for the purposes of this subchapter it appears that any person or persons owning or interested in such land have not been duly notified, said proceedings shall not be held void by reason thereof, but shall be suspended until such person or persons are duly notified as hereinbefore provided. Whereupon the same proceedings shall be held in the same manner and with the same effect as if said person or persons had been duly notified by the original citation. If any person so notified appears he or she shall be heard upon all matters therein pending in which he or she is interested.
§ 15-69. Penalty
A person who shall wilfully disturb or injure said aqueduct, reservoir, filtration basin, or any of the connecting appurtenances, or works thereof, or pollutes the water thereof shall be liable to be prosecuted therefor by a Grand Juror of said City, or the State's Attorney of the county wherein said offense was committed, and shall be fined not more than $100.00 nor less than five dollars with costs of prosecution, and shall be liable to said City for all damage resulting to it by such disturbance, injury, or pollution, with full costs, the same to be recovered by said City in any action founded on this subchapter. Justices of the peace and the municipal court shall have concurrent jurisdiction with the county court of offenses under this section.