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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 19 : Highways

Chapter 001 : State Highway Law; General Transportation Provisions

(Cite as: 19 V.S.A. § 5)
  • § 5. Transportation Board; powers and duties

    (a) General duties and responsibilities; exceptions. The regulatory and quasi-judicial functions relating to transportation shall be vested in the Board, except that the duties and responsibilities of the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles in Titles 23 and 32, including all quasi-judicial powers, shall continue to be vested in the Commissioner.

    (b) Naming transportation facilities.

    (1) Except as otherwise authorized by law, the Board is the sole authority responsible for naming transportation facilities owned, controlled, or maintained by the State, including highways and the bridges thereon, airports, rail facilities, rest areas, and welcome centers. The Board shall exercise its naming authority only upon petition of the legislative body of a municipality of the State, of the head of an Executive Branch agency or department of the State, or of 50 Vermont residents.

    (2) The Board shall hold a public hearing for each facility requested to be named. The Board shall adopt rules governing notice and conduct of hearings, the standards to be applied in rendering decisions under this subsection, and any other matter necessary for the just disposition of naming requests. The Board shall issue a decision, which shall be subject to review on the record pursuant to subsection (c) of this section. The Board may delegate the responsibility to hold a hearing to a hearing officer or a single Board member, subject to the procedure of subsection (c) of this section, but shall not be bound by 3 V.S.A. chapter 25 in carrying out its duties under this subsection.

    (c) Hearing examiners; report of findings; final orders; judicial review. The Board may delegate the responsibility to hear quasi-judicial matters, and other matters as it may deem appropriate, to a hearing examiner or a single Board member, to hear a case and make findings in accordance with 3 V.S.A. chapter 25, except that highway condemnation proceedings shall be conducted pursuant to the provisions of chapter 5 of this title. A hearing examiner or single Board member so appointed shall report the findings of fact in writing to the Board. Any order resulting from those findings shall be rendered only by a majority of the Board. Final orders of the Board issued pursuant to section 20 of this title (small claims against the Agency) may be reviewed on the record by a Superior Court pursuant to Rule 74 of the Vermont Rules of Civil Procedure. All other final orders of the Board may be reviewed on the record by the Supreme Court.

    (d) Specific duties and responsibilities. The Board shall:

    (1) hear appeals from Agency decisions and rulings regarding measurement, description, or reclassification of town highways pursuant to section 305 of this title;

    (2) hear and determine small claims pursuant to section 20 of this title;

    (3) provide appellate review, when requested in writing, of decisions of the Secretary of Transportation when he or she assumes the powers and duties of a selectboard in highway matters in unorganized towns and gores pursuant to section 16 of this title;

    (4) provide appellate review, when requested in writing, regarding legal disputes in the execution of contracts awarded by the Agency or by municipalities cooperating with the Agency to advance projects in the State’s Transportation Program;

    (5) provide appellate review, when requested in writing, of decisions of the Secretary in administering the provisions of Title 24, relating to junkyards;

    (6) provide appellate review when requested in writing, regarding the fairness of rents and fees charged for the occupancy or use of State-owned properties administered by the Agency;

    (7) provide appellate review, when requested in writing, of Agency decisions and rulings regarding private and commercial access to State highway rights-of-way pursuant to the permit process established in section 1111 of this title;

    (8) in coordination with the Agency, hold public hearings for the purpose of obtaining public comment on the development of State transportation policy, the mission of the Agency, and State transportation planning, capital programming, and program implementation;

    (9) hear and determine disputes involving the decision of a selectboard under subdivision 302(a)(3)(B) or subsection 310(a) of this title not to plow and make negotiable a class 2 or 3 town highway or section of a highway during the winter or involving discontinuances of class 3 or 4 town highways extending into adjacent towns under the provisions of subsection 771(c) of this title;

    (10) when requested by the Secretary, conduct public hearings on matters of public interest, after which it shall transmit its findings and recommendations to the Secretary and the Chairs of the Senate and House Committees on Transportation in a report that shall be a public document;

    (11) enforce all provisions and hear and determine all disputes arising out of 9 V.S.A. chapter 108, the Motor Vehicle Manufacturers, Distributors, and Dealers Franchising Practices Act;

    (12) maintain the accounting functions for the duties imposed by 9 V.S.A. chapter 108 separately from the accounting functions relating to its other duties;

    (13) hear and determine disputes involving a determination of the Agency under section 309c of this title that the municipality is responsible for repayment of federal funds required by the Federal Highway Administration.

    (e) Offices and assistance. Suitable offices and office equipment shall be provided by the State for the Board at Montpelier. The Board may employ clerical or other employees and assistants whom it deems necessary in the performance of its duties and in the investigation of matters within its jurisdiction.

    (f) Jurisdiction; subpoenas; witness fees. The Board shall have the power to determine and adjudicate all matters over which it is given jurisdiction. It may render judgments and make orders and decrees. Whenever the Board is sitting in a quasi-judicial capacity, it may issue subpoenas for the testimony of witnesses or the production of evidence. The fees for travel and attendance of witnesses shall be the same as for witnesses and officers appearing before a Civil Division of the Superior Court.

    (g) Reports to the General Assembly. From time to time, the Board may report to the General Assembly with suggestions of amendment to existing law or of new legislation as it deems necessary and any information concerning the companies, matters, and things under the jurisdiction of the Board and Agency that, in its opinion, will be of interest to the General Assembly.

    (h) Appeals from the Agency to the Board. Unless otherwise provided by law, when an appeal is allowed from the Agency to the Board, the appeal shall be taken by filing a notice of appeal with the Secretary within 30 days of the date of the Agency decision from which the appeal is taken. The Secretary shall promptly forward the notice of appeal to the Board, together with the Agency’s record of decision. (Added 1985, No. 269 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; amended 1989, No. 121, § 20a; 1989, No. 246 (Adj. Sess.), § 4; 1993, No. 172 (Adj. Sess.), § 13; 1997, No. 144 (Adj. Sess.), § 24; 1999, No. 156 (Adj. Sess.), § 31, eff. May 29, 2000; 2001, No. 64, § 11, eff. June 16, 2001; 2005, No. 178 (Adj. Sess.), § 8; 2007, No. 75, § 36; 2009, No. 57, § 3; 2009, No. 123 (Adj. Sess.), §§ 27, 29; 2009, No. 154 (Adj. Sess.), § 238; 2015, No. 40, § 27, eff. March 1, 2016; 2015, No. 167 (Adj. Sess.), § 6; 2021, No. 20, § 75; 2021, No. 184 (Adj. Sess.), § 35, eff. July 1, 2022.)