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Searching 2021-2022 Session

The Vermont Statutes Online

 

Title 3 : Executive

Chapter 051 : NATURAL RESOURCES

Subchapter 001 : Generally

(Cite as: 3 V.S.A. § 2809)
  • § 2809. Reimbursement of Agency costs

    (a)(1) The Secretary may require an applicant for a permit, license, certification, or order issued under a program that the Secretary enforces under 10 V.S.A. § 8003(a) to pay for the cost of research, scientific, programmatic, or engineering expertise provided by the Agency of Natural Resources, provided that the following apply:

    (A) The Secretary does not have such expertise or services and such expertise is required for the processing of the application for the permit, license, certification, or order.

    (B) The Secretary does have such expertise but has made a determination that it is beyond the Agency's internal capacity to effectively utilize that expertise to process the application for the permit, license, certification, or order. In addition, the Secretary shall determine that such expertise is required for the processing of the application for the permit, license, certification, or order.

    (2) The Secretary may require an applicant under 10 V.S.A. chapter 151 to pay for the time of Agency of Natural Resources personnel providing research, scientific, or engineering services or for the cost of expert witnesses when Agency personnel or expert witnesses are required for the processing of the permit application.

    (3) In addition to the authority set forth under 10 V.S.A. chapters 59 and 159 and section 1283, the Secretary may require a person who caused the Agency to incur expenditures or a person in violation of a permit, license, certification, or order issued by the Secretary to pay for the time of Agency personnel or the cost of other research, scientific, or engineering services incurred by the Agency in response to a threat to public health or the environment presented by an emergency or exigent circumstance.

    (b) Prior to commencing or contracting for research, scientific, or engineering expertise or services or contracting for expert witnesses for which the Secretary intends to seek cost reimbursement under subdivisions (a)(1) and (2) of this section, the Secretary shall notify the applicant for a permit, license, certification, or order of the Secretary's authority to assess costs under this section.

    (c)(1) Within 15 days of issuance of notice under subsection (b) of this section, an applicant for a permit, license, certification, or order may request a meeting with the Secretary to identify and review the proposed Agency services or contracting services that may be assessed to the applicant.

    (2) The Secretary may enter into agreements with an applicant for a permit, license, certification, or order under which either the applicant or the Agency of Natural Resources shall provide or pay for the necessary research, scientific, or engineering expertise or services or expert witnesses.

    (3) When the Secretary meets with an applicant under this subsection, the Secretary shall provide the applicant in writing a preliminary estimate of the costs to be assessed and the purpose of the funds. In the case of requests to pay costs under subdivision (a)(1)(B) of this section, the Secretary shall be limited to a reimbursement of not more than $50,000.00.

    (d) The following apply to the authority established under subsection (a) of this section:

    (1)(A) The Secretary may require reimbursement only of costs in excess of $3,000.00 except as provided in subdivision (B) of this subdivision (1).

    (B) Where the Secretary has requested reimbursement of programmatic expertise pursuant to subdivision (a)(1)(B) of this section. The Secretary may require reimbursement only of costs in excess of $3,000.00 or one-half of the permit application fee assessed under section 2822 of this title, whichever is greater.

    (2) The Secretary may revise estimates previously noticed as necessary from time to time during the progress of the work and shall notify the applicant in writing of any revision.

    (3) The Secretary shall provide the applicant with a detailed statement of a final assessment under this section showing the total amount of money expended or contracted for in the work and directing the manner and timing of payment by the applicant.

    (4) All funds collected from applicants under the provisions of this section shall be paid into the Environmental Permit Fund established pursuant to section 2805 of this title, except that funds collected under provisions of subdivision (a)(2) of this section shall be paid into the Natural Resources Management Fund established pursuant to 23 V.S.A. § 3106(d).

    (e) The Secretary may withhold a permit approval or suspend the processing of a permit application for failure to pay reasonable costs imposed under this subsection.

    (f) An action or determination of the Secretary under this section shall constitute an act or decision of the Secretary that may be appealed in accordance with 10 V.S.A. § 8504.

    (g) Concerning an application for a permit to discharge stormwater runoff from a telecommunications facility as defined in 30 V.S.A. § 248a that is filed before July 1, 2017:

    (1) Under subdivision (a)(1) of this section, the Agency shall not require an applicant to pay more than $10,000.00 with respect to a facility.

    (2) The provisions of subsection (c) (mandatory meeting) of this section shall not apply. (Added 2009, No. 146 (Adj. Sess.), § F19; 2011, No. 53, § 3b, eff. May 27, 2011; amended 2011, No. 161 (Adj. Sess.), § 12; 2013, No. 190 (Adj. Sess.), § 23, eff. June 16, 2014; 2013, No. 199 (Adj. Sess.), § 33; 2015, No. 57, § 19.)