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Title 24 Appendix: Municipal Charters

Chapter 153: TOWN OF STOWE

  • Subchapter 001: GENERAL LAW; APPLICATION
  • § 153-101. General law; application

    Except as modified by the provisions of this charter or by any lawful regulation or ordinance of the Town of Stowe, all provisions of the statutes of this State applicable to towns shall apply to the Town of Stowe. (Amended 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)


  • Subchapter 002: GENERAL POWERS OF THE TOWN
  • § 153-201. Corporate existence retained

    The inhabitants of the Town of Stowe within the corporate limits now established shall continue to be a municipal corporation by the name of the Town of Stowe. The Town's entire governmental jurisdiction includes the entire area which was previously that of the Village of Stowe. (Amended 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-202. Powers of the Town

    (a) The Town shall have all of the powers granted to towns and municipal corporations by the Constitution and laws of this State. It may enact ordinances, bylaws, and regulations not inconsistent with the Constitution of Vermont or with this charter, and impose penalties for the violation thereof.

    (b) The Town may acquire real property within or without its corporate limits for any Town purpose, in fee simple or lesser interest or estate, by purchase, gift, devise, or lease, and may sell, lease, mortgage, hold, manage, and control such real property as its interests may require. The Town may further acquire property within its corporate limits by condemnation where such authority is granted to towns by the statutes of the State of Vermont.

    (c) In this charter, no mention of a particular power shall be construed to be exclusive or to restrict the scope of the powers which the Town would have if the particular power were not mentioned. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-203. Particular powers

    In addition to powers otherwise conferred upon it by law, the Town is, for the purpose of promoting the public health, safety, welfare, and convenience, authorized:

    (1) to adopt and enforce ordinances relating to the making and installation of local improvements including curbs, sidewalks, and storm drains in a manner specified by the Town as a condition precedent to the issuance of a building permit;

    (2) to adopt and enforce police ordinances regulating the parking, operation, and speed of motor vehicles upon Town and State aid streets and highways;

    (3) to adopt and enforce ordinances relating to regulations, licensing, or prohibition of the storage and accumulation of garbage, ashes, rubbish, refuse, and waste materials; regulation of the removal and disposal of such materials; licensing for revenue and regulation or prohibition of the collection, removal, and disposal of such material; collection and removal of such materials by the Town either by contract or by a Town officer or department now existing or created for that purpose; and establishment of service rates to be paid the Town for such services;

    (4) to establish and maintain a police department and to adopt ordinances pertaining thereto;

    (5) to establish and maintain a fire department and to adopt ordinances pertaining thereto;

    (6) to establish and maintain a water department and to adopt ordinances pertaining thereto;

    (7) to establish and maintain an electric power system and to regulate power line installations, provided, however, that the Town shall have no authority under this charter which conflicts with that authority granted to the Public Utility Commission or any other State governmental agency. It shall have power to adopt ordinances pertaining thereto;

    (8) to establish and maintain a sewer department and to adopt ordinances pertaining thereto;

    (9) to compel the demolition, completion, and/or repair of any premises in such condition as to be substantially injurious or dangerous to persons or to other property in the vicinity and to adopt ordinances pertaining thereto;

    (10) to establish and maintain an ambulance service and to adopt ordinances pertaining thereto;

    (11) to establish and maintain a highway department and to adopt ordinances pertaining thereto;

    (12) to regulate or prohibit the moving of buildings in the streets or public highways of the Town;

    (13) to regulate the holding of public meetings in the streets, highways, or on public property of the Town;

    (14) to prevent riots, noises, disturbances, and disorderly assembly;

    (15) to establish and enforce an ordinance to control dogs; and

    (16) to adopt and enforce ordinances establishing building codes. (Amended 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-204. Ordinances

    (a) Method of adoption and enforcement.

    (1) Ordinance-making authority granted to the Town by this charter and general law shall be exercised pursuant to the provisions of subsections (b) through (e) of this section.

    (2) The Selectboard may provide penalties for the breach of any ordinance authorized by general law or this charter; may prosecute any person violating the same through the Town grand jurors or police officers who for such purposes shall be informing officers; and may maintain actions to restrain actual or threatened violations of the same. The establishment of any fine or penalty shall be by ordinance.

    (b) Introduction; first and second readings; public hearings.

    (1) Every ordinance shall be introduced in writing. If the Selectboard adopts the proposed ordinance, the Selectboard shall cause the ordinance or a concise summary of it meeting the requirements of 24 V.S.A. § 1972(a) to be published in a newspaper of general circulation in the Town in the form adopted, at least once, together with a notice of the time and place when and where there will be a public hearing to consider the same for final passage. The first such publication shall be at least one week prior to the date of the public hearing.

    (2) At the time and place so advertised, or at any time and place to which such hearing may from time to time be adjourned, such ordinance shall be read in full, and after such reading, all persons interested shall be given an opportunity to be heard.

    (3) After such hearing, the Selectboard may finally adopt such ordinance with or without amendment, except that, if the Selectboard makes an amendment, it shall cause the amended ordinance or a concise summary of it meeting the requirements of 24 V.S.A. § 1972(a) to be published at least once together with a notice of the time and place of a public hearing at which such amended ordinance will be further considered, which publication shall be at least three days prior to the public hearing. At the time so advertised or at any time and place to which such meeting may be adjourned, the amended ordinance shall be read in full, and after such hearing, the Selectboard may finally adopt such amended ordinance, or again amend it subject to the same procedure as outlined herein.

    (c) Effective Date. Every ordinance shall become effective upon passage unless otherwise specified.

    (d) Rescission. All ordinances shall be subject to rescission by a special Town meeting, as follows: If, after final passage by the Selectboard of any such ordinance, a petition signed by voters of the Town not less in number than five percent of the legal voters of the Town is filed with the Town Clerk requesting its reference to a special Town meeting, the Selectboard shall fix the time and place of such meeting which shall be within 60 days after the filing of the petition, and notice thereof shall be given in the manner provided by law in the calling of a special Town meeting. An ordinance so referred shall remain in effect upon the conclusion of such meeting unless a majority of those present vote against the ordinance at the special meeting.

    (e) Petition for enactment.

    (1) Subject to the provisions of subsection (d) of this section, voters of the Town may at any time petition in the same manner as in subsection (d) for the enactment of any proposed lawful ordinance by filing such petition, including the text of such ordinance, with the Town Clerk. The Selectboard shall call a special Town meeting to be held within 60 days of the date of such filing, unless prior to such meeting such ordinance shall be enacted by the Selectboard. The ordinance shall take effect immediately after the conclusion of such meeting provided that voters constituting a majority of those voting thereon, shall have voted in the affirmative.

    (2) The proposed ordinance shall be examined by the Town Attorney before being submitted to the special Town meeting. The Town Attorney is authorized, subject to the approval of the Selectboard, to correct such ordinances so as to avoid repetitions, illegalities, and unconstitutional provisions and to ensure accuracy in its text and references and clearness and precision in its phraseology, but he or she shall not materially change its meaning and effect.

    (f) Filing. The Town Clerk shall prepare and keep in the Town Clerk's office a book of ordinances which shall contain each ordinance finally passed by the Selectboard, together with a complete index of the ordinances according to subject matter.

    (g) Existing ordinances. All existing ordinances shall remain in effect. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-205. Reservation of powers to the Town

    Nothing in this subchapter shall be so construed as in any way to limit the powers and functions conferred upon the Town of Stowe and the Selectboard of the Town by general or special enactments in force or effect or hereafter enacted by the General Assembly; and the powers and functions conferred by this charter shall be cumulative and in addition to the provisions of such general or special enactments. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)


  • Subchapter 003: TOWN MEETING
  • § 153-301. Application of general law

    Provisions of the laws of the State of Vermont relating to the qualifications of voters, the manner of voting, the duties of election officers, and all other particulars respective to preparation for, conducting, and management of elections, so far as they may be applicable, shall govern all Town elections and all general and special meetings, except as otherwise noted in this subchapter. The Moderator shall conduct all Town meetings according to Robert's Rules of Order. The Town Clerk shall keep a record of the proceedings of all Town meetings. (Amended 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-302. Annual Town report and warning

    Copies of the annual Town report and warning shall be made available not later than 10 days prior to the annual meeting.

  • § 153-303. Time of holding

    (a) The annual Town meeting for the consideration of the budget and other Town business shall be held on the first Tuesday of March, or on any of the three immediately preceding days, as determined by the Selectboard.

    (b) The election of officers by Australian ballot and the voting on all questions to be decided by Australian ballot shall take place on the annual Town meeting day. The polls shall be opened for a minimum of nine consecutive hours between 6:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. as shall be determined and warned by the  Selectboard. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2017, No. M-3, § 2, eff. May 17, 2017.)


  • Subchapter 004: OFFICERS
  • § 153-401. Officers generally; elected officers; recall

    (a) The elected officers of the Town of Stowe shall be: Selectboard members, Moderator, and listers. These officers shall have all the powers and authority necessary to carry out their duties and responsibilities under this charter and the laws of the State of Vermont.

    (b) Elected Town officers may be removed from office as follows:

    (1) A petition signed by not less than 30 percent of the registered voters of the Town shall be filed with the Selectboard requesting a vote on whether one or more elected officer shall be removed from office before the expiration of the officer's term. The date of signing by each voter shall be indicated in the petition, and the date shall not be earlier than 30 days prior to the filing of the petition.

    (2) If the petition, as filed, meets the requirements of subdivision (1) of this subsection, the Selectboard shall call a special Town meeting, to be held within 45 days of the filing of the petition, to vote on whether the named elected Town officer shall be removed.

    (3) The named elected Town officer shall be removed only if at least as many registered voters of the Town vote as voted in the election at which the officer was elected, or at least one-third of the registered voters of the Town vote, whichever is greater, and a majority of the number of votes is cast for removal.

    (4) Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, a vote on a recall petition shall be by Australian ballot.

    (c) A vacancy resulting from the recall of an elected Town officer shall be filled in the manner prescribed by law.

    (d) A recall petition shall not be brought against a particular named individual more than once within any 12-month period. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2009, No. M-18 (Adj. Sess.), § 2, eff. May 5, 2010; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-402. Selectboard; number of members; terms of office; election

    (a) There shall be a Selectboard consisting of five members.

    (b) The term of office of a Selectboard member shall be as follows: Three Selectboard members shall serve for terms of three years and two Selectboard members shall serve for terms of two years. Selectboard members shall serve until their successors are elected and qualified.

    (c) All Selectboard members shall be elected at large. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001)

  • § 153-403. Organization of Selectboard

    (a) Forthwith after their election and qualification, the Selectboard shall organize and elect a Chair, Vice Chair, and Clerk by a majority vote of the entire Selectboard, and shall file a certificate of such election for record in the office of the Town Clerk. The Clerk shall not be a member of the Selectboard.

    (b) The Chair of the Selectboard or, in his or her absence, the Vice Chair, shall preside at all meetings of the Selectboard and shall be recognized as head of the Town government for all ceremonial purposes.

    (c) In the event of death, resignation, change of residence to a location outside the Town, or incapacity of any Selectboard member, the remaining members of the Selectboard may appoint a person eligible to fill that position until the next annual or special Town meeting. Incapacity shall include the failure by any member of the Selectboard to attend at least 70 percent of the meetings of the Selectboard in any calendar year. In the event the Selectboard is unable to agree upon an interim replacement until the next annual Town meeting, a special election shall be held forthwith to fill the position. In the event of a second vacancy, an election shall be held forthwith to fill both positions. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-404. Meetings of the Selectboard

    (a) As soon as possible after the election of the Chair and Vice Chair, the Selectboard shall fix the time and place of its regular meetings. Such meetings shall be held at least once a month.

    (b) The Selectboard shall determine its own rules and order of business.

    (c) The presence of three members shall constitute a quorum.

    (d) All meetings of the Selectboard shall be open to the public unless, by an affirmative vote of the majority of the members present, the Selectboard shall vote that any particular session shall be an executive session in accordance with 1 V.S.A. § 313. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-405. Record of proceedings of the Selectboard

    (a) An official record of the proceedings of the Selectboard shall be kept by its Clerk, which shall be kept in the office of the Town Clerk and shall be open for public inspection within five days of the meeting.

    (b) The minutes of each meeting shall be approved by the Selectboard at its next meeting and the official copy authenticated by signature of the Clerk of the Selectboard. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2009, No. M-18 (Adj. Sess.), § 3, eff. May 5, 2010; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-406. Appointments by the Selectboard

    (a) Before making appointments, the Selectboard shall make public a list of all vacancies.

    (b) The Selectboard shall appoint the following:

    (1) Members of the Zoning Board of Adjustment or Development Review Board;

    (2) Members of the Planning Commission;

    (3) Town Manager; and

    (4) Constable or constables.

    (c) The Selectboard may appoint such additional commissions, committees, and officers they feel to be in the best interest of the Town.

    (d) The Selectboard may appoint in the event their services become necessary: Grand jurors, real estate appraiser, fence viewers, and all other appointive or elective officers authorized by statute.

    (e) The terms of all appointed officers shall be not more than three years except as otherwise specified in this charter and shall commence on the first day of the second month following the annual Town meeting. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2007, No. M-1, § 2, eff. Jan. 20, 2007; 2009, No. M-18 (Adj. Sess.), § 4, eff. May 5, 2010; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-407. Compensation of officers; appointees

    (a) Compensation paid to the Selectboard members and other elected officials shall be set by the voters at the annual meeting. Officers' salaries must be set forth as a separate item in the annual budget presented to the meeting.

    (b) The Selectboard shall fix the compensation of all appointees and the Town Manager, except as otherwise provided in this charter.

    (c) Except as hereinafter provided, all fees prescribed by State law, charter, ordinance, or otherwise shall be collected for the benefit of the Town and paid to the Town Treasurer. No fees shall be used directly by any receiving officer or inure directly to the benefit of the officer. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2007, No. M-1, § 3, eff. Jan. 20, 2007; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-408. Powers and duties of the Selectboard

    (a) The members of the Selectboard shall constitute the legislative body of the Town of Stowe for all purposes required by statute except as otherwise herein specifically provided in this charter, and shall have all powers and authority given to and shall perform all duties required of town legislative bodies or selectboards under the laws of the State of Vermont and this charter.

    (b) Within the limitations of the foregoing, the Selectboard shall have the power to:

    (1) authorize the expenditure of all Town money, except when this power is expressly conferred upon another body by this charter;

    (2) appoint and remove the Town Manager or Interim Town Manager and supervise, create, change, and abolish offices, commissions, or departments other than the offices, commissions, or departments established by this charter and by law;

    (3) appoint the members of all boards, commissions, committees, or similar bodies unless specifically provided otherwise by this charter and by law; and

    (4) inquire into the conduct of any officer, commission, or department and investigate any and all municipal affairs. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2007, No. M-1, § 4, eff. Jan. 20, 2007; 2009, No. M-18 (Adj. Sess.), § 5, eff. May 5, 2010; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-409. Interference with administration

    Neither the Selectboard nor its members shall give orders to or seek to direct the actions of any employee who is subject to the direction and supervision of the Town Manager. (Added 2009, No. M-18 (Adj. Sess.), § 6, eff. May 5, 2010; amended 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)


  • Subchapter 005: BOARD OF LISTERS AND REAL ESTATE APPRAISER; BOARD OF LIBRARY TRUSTEES
  • § 153-501. Board of Listers

    The Board of Listers shall consist of three listers, one elected each year for a term of three years. The Board shall have the same powers and duties prescribed for listers under the laws of the State of Vermont. (Amended 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-502. Appraisal of property

    The Board of Listers shall appraise or cause to be appraised by the real estate appraiser appointed by the Selectboard all real property for the purpose of establishing the grand list. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-503. Board of Library Trustees

    (a) The Board of Library Trustees shall consist of seven members appointed by the Selectboard to staggered three-year terms. The library trustees shall be responsible for setting general policies concerning library operations, including programs and collections, consistent with the provisions of this charter. The Library Director shall be responsible for ensuring that library policy adopted by the library trustees is effectively implemented.

    (b) Library personnel are Town employees subject to the personnel policies and labor agreements duly adopted by the Selectboard. The Town Manager shall have the authority to hire, appoint, fix the salary of, discipline, suspend, and remove the Library Director and all employees pursuant to the provisions of this charter and personnel rules adopted pursuant to this charter.

    (c) On the hiring of the Library Director, the Town Manager shall seek the advice of the library trustees. The library trustees shall have at least two trustees on the search committee to review resumes and interview candidates. The Town Manager shall give seven days' notice to the library trustees of his or her intent to hire the Library Director prior to extending a job offer.

    (d) Trust funds and other donations to benefit the Library shall be under the exclusive control and direction of the library trustees subject to the terms of the document creating the trust or evidencing the gift. The Town Treasurer shall maintain separate accounts for these funds and shall write checks from those accounts as directed by the library trustees. Town appropriations and all other taxpayer-sourced library funds shall be subject to and handled in accord with financial policies and controls duly adopted by the Selectboard.

    (e) Except as otherwise provided in this section, to the extent of any conflict between the provisions of this charter and the provisions of Vermont statutes pertaining to municipal libraries, the provisions of this charter shall control. (Added 2009, No. M-18 (Adj. Sess.), § 7, eff. May 5, 2010; amended 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)


  • Subchapter 006: AUDITORS
  • § 153-601. Repealed. 2009, No. M-18 (Adj. Sess.). § 19, eff. May 5, 2010.

  • § 153-602. Annual audit

    The Selectboard shall provide for an annual independent audit by a certified public accountant. (Amended 2009, No. M-10 (Adj. Sess.), § 8, eff. May 5, 2010.; )


  • Subchapter 007: TOWN MANAGER
  • § 153-701. Town Manager; appointment; qualifications; term

    The Selectboard shall appoint a Town Manager for an indefinite term. The Town Manager shall be chosen on the basis of executive, administrative, and professional qualifications and not on the basis of political affiliation. The Town Manager shall not:

    (1) be a candidate for or simultaneously hold any elective office within the Town;

    (2) be employed by the Town in any capacity except as Town Manager; or

    (3) organize any political party or serve as a member of a political party committee. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2007, No. M-1, § 5, eff. Jan. 20, 2007; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-702. Oath; bond

    Before entering upon his or her official duties, the Town Manager shall be sworn to the faithful performance of those duties by the Town Clerk and shall give a bond to the Town in an amount and with sureties as the Selectboard may require. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2007, No. M-1, § 6, eff. Jan. 20, 2007; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-703. Powers and duties

    (a) The Town Manager shall be the chief executive officer and the head of the administrative branch of the Town government, and shall be responsible to the Selectboard for the efficient administration of the municipal affairs of the Town.

    (b) The Town Manager shall attend all meetings of the Selectboard, except when the Town Manager's removal or discipline is being considered; shall keep the Selectboard informed of the financial condition and future needs of the Town; and shall make reports as may be required by law, this charter, or ordinance, or which may be requested by the Selectboard. The Town Manager shall make other reports and recommendations as he or she may deem advisable. The Town Manager shall perform other duties as may be prescribed by this charter, or required of the Town Manager by law, ordinance, or resolution of the Selectboard not inconsistent with this charter.

    (c) The Town Manager shall be an ex-officio member of all standing committees of the Town but shall not have or cast a vote.

    (d) The Town Manager shall prepare and submit a recommended annual budget to the Selectboard and be responsible for the administration of the budget after adoption.

    (e) The Town Manager shall be the general purchasing agent of the Town and purchase all supplies for every department of the Town, except the Electric Department.

    (f) The Town Manager shall perform any other duties assigned by State law not in conflict with this charter.

    (g) The Town Manager shall be responsible for the operation of all departments of the Town, not otherwise provided for in this charter.

    (h) The Town Manager shall have authority to hire, appoint, fix the salary of, discipline, suspend, and remove the Zoning Administrator, Town Clerk, Town Treasurer, Assistant Town Clerk(s), Assistant Treasurer(s), and all other employees of the Town not hired or appointed by the Selectboard, subject to the provisions of this charter or personnel rules adopted pursuant to this charter. The Town Manager may authorize any department head subject to the Town Manager's direction and supervision to exercise these powers with respect to that department head's subordinates. Prior to hiring a department head, the Town Manager shall notify the Selectboard of the intent to hire a department head, and the Selectboard may take action within seven days of receipt of that notice that overrides the Town Manager's authority to hire that department head. Thereafter, the Town Manager shall select and submit notification to the Selectboard of an alternate choice for that department head.

    (i) The Town Manager may, when advisable or proper, delegate to subordinate officers and employees of the Town any duties conferred upon the Town Manager by this charter or by action of the Selectboard.

    (j) The Town Manager shall be responsible for the enforcement of all Town ordinances.

    (k) Where final authority for policy formulation and adoption rests with the Selectboard, the Town Manager shall play an integral role in developing and analyzing policies and alternatives for the Selectboard's consideration and be responsible for implementation of policies approved by the Selectboard. (Added 2007, No. M-1, § 7, eff. Jan. 20, 2007; amended 2009, No. M-18 (Adj. Sess.), § 9, eff. May 5, 2010; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-704. Compensation

    The Town Manager shall receive compensation as may be determined by the Selectboard, subject to the provisions of this charter. (Added 2007, No. M-1, § 7, eff. Jan. 20, 2007; amended 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-705. Removal of Town Manager

    The Selectboard may remove the Town Manager by a vote of a least three of its members to be effective not less than 60 days after the vote. The Town Manager may be suspended during the period from initial action to remove the Town Manager by the Selectboard to the end of the removal date, but the Town Manager shall continue to be paid throughout the suspension. (Added 2007, No. M-1, § 7, eff. Jan. 20, 2007; amended 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)


  • Subchapter 008: BUDGET
  • § 153-801. Fiscal year

    The fiscal year of the Town shall begin on the first day of July and end on the last day of June of each calendar year. The fiscal year shall constitute the budget and accounting year as used in this charter. (Amended 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-802. General fund budget preparation and submission

    (a) The Town Manager, at least 50 days before the annual Town meeting, or at such previous time as may be directed by the Selectboard, shall submit to the Selectboard a financial report containing:

    (1) an estimate of the financial condition of the Town as of the end of the fiscal year;

    (2) an itemized statement of appropriations recommended for current expenses, during the next fiscal year, with actual appropriations and expenditures for the immediate preceding fiscal year;

    (3) an itemized statement of estimated revenues from all sources other than taxation, for the next fiscal year, and comparative figures of tax and other sources of revenue for the current and immediate preceding fiscal years;

    (4) a capital budget and program showing anticipated capital expenditures, financing, and tax requirements; and

    (5) such other information as may be required by the Selectboard.

    (b) The budget shall be published not later than two weeks after its preliminary adoption by the Selectboard. The Selectboard shall fix the time and place for holding a public hearing for the budget, and shall give a public notice of such hearing. The Selectboard shall then review the budget and propose it, with or without change, to the annual Town meeting. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2007, No. M-1, § 8, eff. Jan. 20, 2007; 2009, No. M-18 (Adj. Sess.), § 10, eff. May 5, 2010; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-803. Publication

    The proposed budget shall be published in the Town report and copies made available at least 10 days before the annual meeting.

  • § 153-804. Appropriations

    From the effective date of the budget, the several amounts stated therein, as approved by the annual Town meeting, become appropriated to the several agencies and purposes therein named.

  • § 153-805. Amount to be raised by taxation

    The Town shall annually consider an article to raise by taxes on the grand list an amount equal to those expenditures to be paid by taxes which amount was appropriated by the voters at Town meeting and which expenditures are not met by funds from other sources. (Amended 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)


  • Subchapter 009: TAXES
  • § 153-901. Taxes on real property

    Taxes on real property shall be due in four equal installments on dates established annually by the Selectboard, provided the first payment in each fiscal year is not earlier than 30 days after the date tax bills for that fiscal year are mailed to taxpayers. Any taxes not paid when due shall be deemed delinquent and payable to the Collector of Delinquent Taxes. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2003, No. M-13 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 2009, No. M-18 (Adj. Sess.), § 11, eff. May 5, 2010; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-902. Interest

    An additional charge of two percent of the unpaid tax shall be imposed per month for each month or fraction of the month as interest on any tax not paid on or before the dates specified in section 901 of this charter. (Amended 2003, No. M-13 (Adj. Sess.), § 3; 2009, No. M-18 (Adj. Sess.), § 12, eff. May 5, 2010;)

  • § 153-903. Board of Abatement

    The Board of Civil Authority (the Selectboard members and justices of the peace) with the listers shall constitute a Board of Abatement as provided by law. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)


  • Subchapter 010: PERSONNEL
  • § 153-1001. Appointment and removal

    (a) Subject to the provisions of this charter, all employees other than elected officials and appointees of the Selectboard shall be appointed, suspended, or removed by the Town Manager without interference by the Selectboard. The Town and its employees shall comply with Vermont's Fair Employment Practices Act and shall not discriminate in their employment practices on account of political opinions or affiliations. Appointments, layoffs, promotions, and discipline, including suspensions, demotions, and removals, shall be determined on the basis of training, experience, fitness, and performance of the individual and be undertaken to ensure that the responsible administrative officer will secure efficient and competent service.

    (b) Employees of the Town whose terms and conditions of employment are not governed by the provisions of a collectively bargained labor agreement shall be hired, disciplined, suspended, demoted, removed, or laid off in accordance with the personnel rules and policies adopted by the Selectboard.

    (c) The Town Manager may remove a department head from his or her position, provided notification that the Town Manager intends to remove a department head is given in advance to the Selectboard. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2007, No. M-1, § 9, eff. Jan. 20, 2007; 2009, No. M-18 (Adj. Sess.), § 13, eff. May 5, 2010; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-1002. Personnel rules and regulations

    (a) The Town Manager or his or her designee shall be the personnel director. He or she may prepare personnel rules and regulations protecting the interests of the Town and of the employees. These rules and regulations must be approved by the Selectboard and shall include the procedure for amending them and for placing them into practice.

    (b) The rules and regulations may deal with the following subjects or with other similar matters of personnel administration: job classification, jobs to be filled, tenure, retirement, pensions, leaves of absence, vacations, holidays, hours and days of work, group insurance, salary plans, rules governing hiring, temporary appointment, lay-off, reinstatement, promotion, transfer, demotion, settlement of disputes, dismissal, probationary periods, permanent or continuing status, in-service training, injury, employee records, and further regulations concerning the hearing of appeals. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2007, No. M-1, § 10, eff. Jan. 20, 2007; 2009, No. M-18 (Adj. Sess.), § 14, eff. May 5, 2010; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-1003. Prohibitions

    No person in the service of the Town shall either directly or indirectly give, render, pay, or receive any service or other valuable thing for or on account of or in connection with any appointment, proposed appointment, promotion, or proposed promotion. (Amended 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)

  • § 153-1004. Conflict of interest

    All appointed Town officials and employees, including commissioners and employees of the Electric Department, shall be governed by and adhere to an ethics policy duly adopted by the Selectboard. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2009, No. M-18 (Adj. Sess.), § 15, eff. May 5, 2010.)


  • Subchapter 011: STOWE ELECTRIC UTILITY COMMISSION
  • § 153-1101. Electric Utility Commission

    (a) There shall be a Town of Stowe Electric Department.

    (b)(1) The Electric Commission shall be composed of three commissioners appointed by the Town of Stowe Selectboard for staggered terms of three years each.

    (2) It shall be the policy of the Town, as implemented by the Selectboard, insofar as possible to appoint commissioners with appropriate background and with an interest in the utilities field, bearing in mind the complexities of those related operations.

    (3) Should any commissioner become unable to serve for any reason, or resign, the Selectboard shall appoint a replacement to serve until the end of that term. The Selectboard may remove a commissioner if just cause is stated to the member in writing and after a public meeting if the commissioner requests one.

    (c) The commissioners shall serve as electric commissioners under 30 V.S.A., §§ 2915 and 2916. The Electric Commission shall have authority to construct an electric light plant, for the purpose of lighting the street, walks, and other public grounds, and lighting any buildings therein, and supplying and furnishing electricity for domestic and other purposes to such persons and corporations in Stowe and adjoining town as it may desire upon such terms as may be agreed upon. And for this purpose may take, purchase, or acquire and hold any water power, land, and rights-of-way in said Town, needed for the construction, maintenance, and operation of said electric light plant, and may use any public highway over which it may be necessary or desirable to pass with the poles and wire of the same, provided the use of such public highway for the purpose of public travel is not thereby unnecessarily impaired. The Electric Commission shall have the power to purchase, hire, construct, or otherwise acquire an interest in, to maintain, operate, and to sell, lease, or otherwise dispose of any plant (including a gas plant) or system (including existing rights-of-way, poles, lines, towers and fixtures, and transmission line serving the existing system owned by others) located within or outside the State, for the production, distribution, purchase, or sale of electricity, to extend, enlarge, or improve the same and for that purpose to purchase, hire, construct, or otherwise acquire any real or personal property. These powers may be exercised through a taking by eminent domain in the manner prescribed by law. The Electric Commission shall also have the power to purchase, sell, and otherwise acquire and dispose of electricity including sale to electric distribution companies, cooperatives, municipal and privately owned, within or outside the State and to make all agreements, conveyances, and regulations necessary or convenient in connection therewith. All of the foregoing powers are in addition to and not in substitution for or in limitation of any other powers conferred by law, and are subject to regulatory review for municipal utilities as provided in Title 30, Vermont Statutes Annotated.

    (d) The Electric Department shall have its own professional management, staff, plan, equipment, and entirely separate financial accounts.

    (e) The Electric Department shall be directly managed by a General Manager who shall be responsible to the Electric Commission for the performance of his or her duties.

    (f)  The General Manager shall be the chief executive officer and head of the Electric Department and shall be responsible to the Electric Commission for the efficient administration of the Electric Department.

    (g) The General Manager shall attend all meetings of the Electric Commission, except when the General Manager's removal or discipline is being considered, and shall keep the Electric Commission informed of the financial condition and future needs of the Electric Department, and shall make reports as required by law or ordinance or which may be requested by the Electric Commission. The General Manager shall make other reports and recommendations as the General Manager may deem advisable. The General Manager shall perform other duties as may be prescribed by this charter, or required of the General Manager by law, ordinance, or resolution of the Electric Commission not inconsistent with this charter.

    (h) Prior to hiring a General Manager, the commissioners shall notify the Selectboard of the intent to hire, and the Selectboard may take action within seven days of receipt of that notice overriding the commissioners' authority to hire the identified individual as the General Manager. Thereafter, the commissioners shall select and submit notification to the Selectboard of an alternate choice for General Manager until the Selectboard is in agreement.

    (i) The commissioners shall have the authority to enter into labor agreements and to adopt personnel policies affecting the working conditions and terms of employment for Electric Department employees without the approval of the Selectboard. The General Manager of the Electric Department shall, subject to terms of labor agreements and personnel policies adopted by the electric commissioners, have the authority to hire, appoint, fix the salary of, discipline, suspend, and remove all employees of the Electric Department. The General Manager of the Electric Department shall receive all funds due the Electric Department, shall issue bills for services rendered, and have responsibility to maintain books of account. The electric commissioners shall approve the expenditure of money as it pertains to the Electric Department. The General Manager and other designated persons with authority specifically approved by the commissioners shall execute and issue on behalf of the Stowe Electric Department drafts, checks, and/or other negotiable orders for the payment of bills and charges of the Electric Department. All such accounting functions of the Electric Department shall be subject to an annual independent audit by a certified public accountant chosen by the electric commissioners.

    (j) The Town of Stowe Electric Department shall operate under the statutory authority and requirements of 30 V.S.A., chapter 79, relating to municipal electric plants, and 24 V.S.A., chapter 53, relating to municipal indebtedness, all of which control the financing, improvements, expansion, and disposal of the municipal electric plant and its operations. With specific reference to the legislative authorization contained in 24 V.S.A., chapter 53, subchapter 2, "Indebtedness for Public Utility Purposes," sections 1821-1828, the Electric Commission is permitted to issue revenue-backed bonds and/or general obligation bonds for any capital improvement purpose related to their responsibilities to operate such utilities for the benefit of the people of Stowe, provided each such issue of bonds is approved by the Selectboard and the voters according to law.

    (k) The charges and rates for electric service shall be a lien on real estate, wherever located, furnished with such service in the same manner and to the same effect as taxes are a lien upon real property under 32 V.S.A. § 5061. The owner of such property, furnished with electric service, wherever located, shall be liable for such charges and rates.

    ( l ) The Electric Department shall every year make a contribution to the Town of Stowe in lieu of taxes in form of a cash payment and/or the equivalent in free services and municipal rate benefits in an amount equaling the amount of money which would be received by the Town of Stowe in ad valorem real estate taxes were such department a privately owned utility.

    (m) An official record of the proceedings of the Commission shall be kept by its Clerk, shall be kept in the office of the Town Clerk, and shall be open for public inspection within five days of the meeting. The minutes of each meeting shall be approved by the Commission at its next meeting and the official copy authenticated by signature of the Clerk of the Selectboard. (Added 1905, No. M-9 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2009, No. M-18 (Adj. Sess.), § 16, eff. May 5, 2010; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)


  • Subchapter 012: STOWE WATER UTILITY COMMISSION
  • § 153-1201. Water Utility Commission

    (a) There shall be a Town of Stowe Water Department which shall be responsible initially for continuing the present specific water services in existence and being provided on June 30, 1996.

    (b) The water system taken over from the Village of Stowe and any additions thereto or modifications thereof shall be maintained separate from all other departments of the Town and no part of the rents and revenues therefrom may be used for any other purpose.

    (c) Unless otherwise voted by the Town at a Town meeting, all costs of the Water Department shall be paid by the users thereof and the annual water rents or charges shall be at a rate sufficient to cover annual expenditures, temporary indebtedness, the amortizing of bonded indebtedness and interest, and any dedicated (sinking) funds. Prior to the setting of the annual budget and annual water rents or charges, the water commissioners shall each year hold a public hearing for the purpose of receiving input concerning a proposed annual budget and annual water rents or charges for the Water Department. The public notice for such public hearing shall be given not less than 15 days prior to the date of the public hearing by the publication in a newspaper of general circulation in the Town of Stowe and by the posting of the same information in one or more public places within the Water Department service area. With specific reference to the legislative authority contained in 24 V.S.A., chapter 53, subchapter 2, "Indebtedness for Public Utility Purposes," sections 1821-1828, the Stowe Water Utility Commission is permitted to issue revenue-backed bonds and/or general obligation bonds for any capital improvement purpose related to their responsibilities to operate such utilities for the benefit of the people of Stowe, provided each such issue of bonds is approved by the Selectboard and the voters according to law.

    (d) The Selectboard of the Town of Stowe shall be the water commissioners and shall have the power to adopt and enforce rules, regulations, or ordinances concerning the control and operation of such water system in accordance with the powers enumerated in the general laws of the State with respect to water works and water supply.

    (e) The Water Department service area may be enlarged or modified by the Water Commission after holding a public hearing on any such proposed enlargement or modification. The public notice for each such public hearing shall be given not less than 15 days prior to the date of the public hearing by the publication of the date, place, and purpose of the hearing in a newspaper of general circulation in the Town of Stowe and by the posting of the same information in one or more public places within the Water Department service area. (Added 1999, No. M-9 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2009, No. M-18 (Adj. Sess.), § 17, eff. May 5, 2010; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)


  • Subchapter 013: AMENDMENT OF CHARTER
  • § 153-1301. Laws governing

    No section or provision of this charter may be repealed or amended unless the act making such repeal or amendment refers specifically to this charter and to the sections or provisions so repealed or amended. Any amendment to this charter must be submitted to the voters for their approval and, upon such approval, submitted to the General Assembly as provided by statutes. Amendments may be placed on the ballot by the Selectboard, a duly authorized Charter Review Commission appointed by the Selectboard, or upon petition filed with the Town Clerk by five percent of the legal voters of the Town. The petition must clearly state the amendment and must be filed at least 75 days before any annual Town meeting. In the event the petition is filed more than 90 days prior to the next annual Town meeting, the Selectboard shall be required to hold a special Town meeting for the purpose of considering the proposed amendment. (Amended 2001, No. M-7, § 2, eff. May 21, 2001; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)


  • Subchapter 014: EFFECTIVE DATE
  • § 153-1401. Effective date

    This charter shall become effective upon approval in accordance with 17 V.S.A. § 2645. Any amendment to this charter shall become effective in accordance with the laws of Vermont then in effect. (Amended 2009, No. M-18 (Adj. Sess.), § 18, eff. May 5, 2010; 2013, No. M-4, § 2, eff. May 8, 2013.)


  • Subchapter 015: MERGER TRANSITION PROVISIONS
  • § 153-1501. Merger of the Village and Town of Stowe

    Effective as of July 1, 1996, the Village of Stowe as constituted by Act No. 168 of the Laws of 1896, as amended, shall merge with and into the Town of Stowe, within its present geographic limits, as a single municipal corporation under the name of the Town of Stowe, and the Village of Stowe shall, except as hereinafter specifically provided otherwise for transition purposes, cease to exist as a municipal corporation and its charter shall be abolished.

  • §§ 153-1502-1507. Repealed. 2009, No. M-18 (Adj. Sess.), § 19, eff. May 5, 2010.