The Vermont Statutes Online
Title 24: Municipal and County Government
Chapter 095: WATER MAINS AND SEWERS
§ 3401. Drainage adjacent to cities and incorporated villages
In a town having a municipality within its limits, authorized by law to construct main sewers, drains, and outlets at the expense of the abutters or those interested, where a sewer, drain, or outlet will benefit those outside the limits of such municipality as well as those inside, upon petition of a majority of those interested in its construction, setting forth that they are liable to contribute towards its expense and that the public health and convenience demand it, the selectboard may join the proper officers of such municipality in laying out and constructing the same.
§ 3402. Construction; taking land
With the proper officers of such municipality the selectboard shall cause the same to be constructed, and, for such purpose, may enter upon and construct the same upon private land under the same proceedings as are prescribed for the taking of lands by selectmen for highway purposes. They shall make return of their doings and of the damages awarded by them to the office of the town clerk to be there recorded.
§ 3403. Apportionment of expense
When such sewer, drain, or outlet has been constructed, the selectboard and the same number selected by and from the proper officers of such municipality shall agree upon the proportion of expenses that shall be borne by those inside and those outside the limits of such municipality. In case of a disagreement, the decision of a majority shall be final.
§ 3404. Assessment of parties; notice
When an agreement is made as to the amount that shall be paid by those outside the municipality, as provided in section 3403 of this title, the selectboard shall forthwith give notice to all real estate owners benefited by such sewer, drain, or outlet, when and where they will hear and determine the amount of expense to be borne by each party so benefited. Such notice may be delivered in writing to the party or served like a writ of summons.
§ 3405. Determination of amount; record; lien
At such hearing, the selectboard shall assess each real estate owner outside such municipality benefited by the construction of such sewer, drain, or outlet, his or her proportion of the expense, according to frontage or the benefit received. When such assessment is made and signed by the selectboard or a majority of it, it shall be recorded in the office of the town clerk. When so recorded, it shall be a first lien except taxes and may be enforced, as a tax lien is enforced, upon the land described in the assessment until the same is paid.
§ 3406. Appeal; not to delay construction
When a person is dissatisfied with the decision of the selectboard upon the question of the extent of or necessity for the taking of land for such sewer, drain, or outlet, or in the award of damages therefor or in any assessment for contribution, such person may petition to the Superior Court for a rehearing in the premises. Any number of persons aggrieved may join therein, but such petition shall not delay the laying or repairing of such sewer, drain, or outlet, where the same is for the reassessment of damages or contribution. (1973, No. 193 (Adj. Sess.), § 3, eff. April 9, 1973.)
§ 3407. Proceedings
If for a rehearing upon the question of the extent of or public necessity for taking such land, or on the award of damages, such petition shall be served on the town clerk within 60 days after the return of the doings of the selectmen has been filed in such clerk’s office and, if for a rehearing on the question of assessment, within 60 days after such assessment has been recorded in the office of the town clerk. Such proceedings shall be had on such petition as are provided in case of petitions or appeals from proceedings of the selectmen in taking lands for highway purposes, except as herein provided. The commissioners shall notify the town clerk of the time and place, when and where they will hear the matter. The Superior Court shall have power to make such order in regard to recognizance for costs as it deems necessary. (Amended 1973, No. 193 (Adj. Sess.), § 3, eff. April 9, 1974.)
§ 3408. Collection
When an assessment remains unpaid for the space of 30 days, the treasurer of the town shall issue a warrant for its collection directed to the collector of taxes, who shall have the same power to enforce the collection and shall proceed in the same manner as is provided by law for the collection of taxes.
§ 3409. Manner of assessment
The proceedings, assessment, and collection of the proportion of expense to be paid by those within the limits of such municipality shall be in the same manner as is provided in their several charters.
§ 3410. Water mains and sewerage outside cities and villages
When the public good and necessity require water mains, drains, sewers, or sewer outlets to be laid out so as to extend into a town outside the limits of a city or village, or when the public good and necessity require that water mains, drains, sewers, or sewer outlets so laid out, be altered or discontinued, the city, by its council, or the village, by its trustees, if the parties interested cannot agree as to the question of public necessity or damages, may apply by petition to the Superior Court of the county where the highways or lands lie that will be occupied or affected by such laying out, alteration, or discontinuance, for the appointment of commissioners to inquire into the necessity of such laying out, alteration, or discontinuance, and of taking or occupying highways or other lands, and as to the damages that will be sustained thereby. (1973, No. 193 (Adj. Sess.), § 3, eff. April 9, 1974.)
§ 3411. Service; commissioners
The petition, with a citation, shall be served on the towns, corporations, or persons owning or interested in the highways or lands affected, either as abutting owners or otherwise, as a writ of summons requiring appearance to be made therein within 21 days from the date of service. Unless cause is shown to the contrary, the court shall appoint three disinterested freeholders as such commissioners.
§ 3412. Notice; hearing; report; judgment
The commissioners shall appoint a time and place for hearing and shall give at least 12 days’ notice thereof to the clerk of the municipality and to all persons and municipalities owning or interested in the highways or lands. When they have completed their inquiries, they shall make report to the court. Upon hearing, the court may accept or reject the report in whole or in part, and, by its order, may establish, alter, or discontinue such water mains, drains, sewers, or sewer outlets, in whole or in part, may render judgment for such damages as may be sustained, may tax costs as appears just, and may issue execution for such damages and costs.
§ 3413. Sewers in towns; powers of the selectboard; petition
The selectboard of a town shall have the same authority to construct a sewer in a village in that town as is given by this chapter to selectboard of a town having a municipality within its limits. However, before acting, the selectboard shall receive a petition signed by 10 or more legal voters of such town asking them to construct a sewer or sewers in such village or an order of the State Board of Health authorizing them so to do. (Amended 1959, No. 329 (Adj. Sess.), § 27, eff. March 1, 1961.)
§ 3414. Hearing; assessment
Upon receiving such petition, the selectboard shall give 10 days’ notice of a hearing upon the public necessity for the construction of such sewer by posting notices to that effect in three public places in such village. When, after notice and hearing, the selectboard decide that the public good requires the construction of such sewer, they may proceed to construct the same at the expense of the town. They then shall notify all parties who will be benefited thereby to appear before them to be heard upon the apportionment of the cost of such sewer among those benefited, by giving to each of such persons a written notice of the time and place of such hearing, signed by a majority of the selectboard, which notice shall be given not less than 10 days before such hearing. All parties benefited by the construction of such sewer shall be assessed for the construction of the same according to the benefit received.
§ 3415. Taking land; proceedings
The selectboard shall have the same powers in the taking of land for the construction of such sewer, in the assessment of damages therefor, in the assessment for benefits conferred and in all proceedings necessary for carrying out the provisions of this section and sections 3413 and 3414 of this title, as are conferred upon the selectboard by this chapter. The same right of appeal is hereby given to persons dissatisfied with the decision of the selectboard upon the question of the public necessity for taking land, the assessment of damages therefor, or the assessment of contribution for the construction of such sewer, as is given to such persons by this chapter.