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Searching 2021-2022 Session

The Vermont Statutes Online

 

Title 9 : Commerce and Trade

Chapter 108 : MOTOR VEHICLE MANUFACTURERS, DISTRIBUTORS, AND DEALERS FRANCHISING

(Cite as: 9 V.S.A. § 4100b)
  • § 4100b. Enforcement; Transportation Board

    (a) The Transportation Board established in 19 V.S.A. § 3 shall enforce the provisions of this chapter.

    (b) The Board shall adopt rules to implement the provisions of this chapter.

    (c) Except for civil actions filed in Superior Court pursuant to section 4099 of this title, the Board shall have the following exclusive powers:

    (1) Any person may file a written protest with the Board complaining of conduct governed by and in violation of this chapter. The Board shall hold a public hearing in accordance with the rules adopted by the Board.

    (2) The Board shall issue written decisions and may issue orders to any person in violation of this chapter.

    (d) The parties to protests shall be permitted to conduct and use the same discovery procedures as are provided in civil actions in the Superior Court.

    (e) The Board shall be empowered to determine the location of hearings, appoint persons to serve at the deposition of out-of-state witnesses, administer oaths, and authorize stenographic or recorded transcripts of proceedings before it. Prior to the hearing on any protest, but no later than 45 days after the filing of the protest, the Board shall require the parties to the proceeding to attend a prehearing conference in which the Chair or designee shall have the parties address the possibility of settlement. If the matter is not resolved through the conference, the matter shall be placed on the Board's calendar for hearing. Settlement communications shall remain confidential, shall be exempt from public inspection and copying under the Public Records Act, shall not be disclosed, and shall not be used as an admission in any subsequent hearing.

    (f) Compliance with the discovery procedures authorized by subsection (d) of this section may be enforced by application to the Board. Obedience to subpoenas issued to compel witnesses or documents may be enforced by application to the Superior Court in the county where the hearing is to take place.

    (g) Any party to any proceeding under this chapter who recklessly or knowingly fails, neglects, or refuses to comply with an order issued by the Board shall be fined a civil penalty not to exceed $2,500.00. Each day of noncompliance shall be considered a separate violation of such order.

    (h) Within 20 days after any order or decision of the Board, any party to the proceeding may apply for a rehearing with respect to any matter determined in the proceeding or covered or included in the order or decision. The application for rehearing shall set forth fully every ground upon which it is claimed that the decision or order complained of is unlawful or unreasonable. No appeal from any order or decision of the Board shall be taken unless the appellant makes an application for rehearing as provided in this subsection, and when the application for rehearing has been made, no ground not set forth in the application shall be urged, relied on, or given any consideration by the Board unless the Board for good cause shown allows the appellant to specify additional grounds. Any party to the proceeding may appeal the final order, including all interlocutory orders or decisions, to the Superior Court within 30 days after the date the Board rules on the application for reconsideration of the final order or decision. All findings of the Board upon all questions of fact properly before the court shall be prima facie lawful and reasonable. The order or decision appealed from shall not be set aside or vacated except for errors of law. No additional evidence shall be heard or taken by the Superior Court on appeals from the Board.

    (i) In cases where the Board finds that a violation of this chapter has occurred or there has been a failure to show good cause under section 4089 or 4098 of this title, the Superior Court, upon petition, shall determine reasonable attorney's fees and costs and award them to the prevailing party. (Added 2009, No. 57, § 1, eff. June 1, 2009; amended 2015, No. 23, § 7.)