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Searching 2023-2024 Session

The Vermont Statutes Online

The Vermont Statutes Online have been updated to include the actions of the 2023 session of the General Assembly.

NOTE: The Vermont Statutes Online is an unofficial copy of the Vermont Statutes Annotated that is provided as a convenience.

Title 10 : Conservation and Development

Chapter 049 : Protection of Navigable Waters and Shorelands

(Cite as: 10 V.S.A. § 1423)
  • § 1423. Water resources and shoreland use plan

    (a) The Secretary shall make studies, establish policies, and make plans for the efficient use, conservation, development, and protection of the State’s water resources and:

    (1) On the basis of these studies and plans, make recommendations to State agencies relative to their water resources activities.

    (2) Locate and maintain information relating to the State’s water resources. The Secretary shall collect pertinent data available from State, regional, and federal agencies, the University of Vermont, Vermont State Colleges, local units of government, and other sources.

    (3) Public shorelands in which the existing use is exclusively as a public water supply and public shorelands in which the potential use may be as a public water supply shall be classified on that basis.

    (4) Serve as a clearinghouse for information relating to water resources including referring citizens and local units of government to the appropriate sources for advice and assistance in connection with particular water use problems.

    (b) The Secretary shall prepare a comprehensive plan relating to water resources as a guide for the preparation of a State, regional, or municipal land use or development plan. The plan shall be based on the classification of waters pursuant to chapter 47 of this title. The plan shall to the extent possible give consideration to any existing regional or municipal plans that are compatible with the interests of the State. The primary purpose of the plan shall be for the preventive control of pollution, giving due consideration to necessary development and growth. The plans shall be governed by the following general standards:

    (1) Domestic uses shall be generally preferred.

    (2) Uses not inherently a source of pollution within an area shall be preferred over uses that are or may be a pollution source.

    (3) Areas in which the existing or potential economic value of public, recreational or similar uses exceeds the existing or potential economic value of any other use shall be classified primarily on the basis of the higher economic use value.

    (4) Use locations within an area tending to minimize the possibility of pollution shall be preferred over use locations tending to increase that possibility.

    (5) Use dispersions within an area shall be preferred over concentrations of uses or their undue proximity to each other.

    (6) Particular attention shall be given to safe and healthful conditions for the enjoyment of aquatic recreation; the demands of water traffic, boating, and water sports; the capability of the water resource; requirements necessary to ensure proper operation of septic tank disposal fields near navigable waters; building setbacks from the water; preservation of shore growth and cover; conservancy uses for low lying lands; and shoreland layout for residential and commercial developments.

    (c) [Repealed.] (Added 1969, No. 281 (Adj. Sess.), § 13; amended 1973, No. 147 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 1989, No. 265 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 1989, No. 265 (Adj. Sess.), § 10(b), eff. March 1, 1994; 2003, No. 115 (Adj. Sess.), § 35, eff. Jan. 31, 2005; 2015, No. 97 (Adj. Sess.), § 22.)