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.
Subchapter 001 : General Provisions; Definitions(Cite as: 24 V.S.A. § 4307)
§ 4307. Municipal Bylaw Modernization Grants
(a) There are created Municipal Bylaw Modernization Grants to assist municipalities in updating their land use and development bylaws. Bylaws updated under this section shall increase housing choice, affordability, and opportunity in areas planned for smart growth. The Grants shall be funded by monies allocated from the municipality allocation of the Municipal and Regional Planning Funds established in subdivision 4306(a)(3)(C) of this title and any other monies appropriated for this purpose.
(b) Disbursement to municipalities shall be administered by the Department of Housing and Community Development through a competitive process providing the opportunity for all regions and any eligible municipality to compete regardless of size.
(c) Funds may be disbursed by the Department in installments to ensure the municipal bylaw updates meet the goals of this section.
(d) Funding may be used for the cost of regional planning commission staff or consultant time and any other purpose approved by the Department.
(e) A municipality grantee shall use the funds to prepare amendments to bylaws to increase housing choice, affordability, and opportunity and that support a neighborhood development pattern that is pedestrian oriented in areas planned for smart growth consistent with the smart growth principles established in section 2791 of this title and that prioritize projects in designated areas in accordance with chapter 76A of this title.
(f) To receive the grant, the municipality shall:
(1) identify municipal water and wastewater disposal infrastructure, municipal water and sewer service areas, and the constraints on that infrastructure based on the best available data;
(2) increase allowed housing types and uses, which may include duplexes, to the same extent as single-family homes;
(3) include parking waiver provisions in areas planned for smart growth consistent with smart growth principles as defined in section 2791 of this title and appropriate situations;
(4) review and modify street standards that implement the complete streets principles as described in 19 V.S.A. § 309d and that are oriented to pedestrians;
(5) reduce nonconformities by making the allowed standards principally conform to the existing settlement within any area designated under chapter 76A of this title and increase allowed lot, building, and dwelling unit density by adopting dimensional, use, parking, and other standards that allow compact neighborhood form and support walkable lot and dwelling unit density, which may be achieved with a standard allowing at least four units per acre or allowing the receipt of a State or municipal water and wastewater permit to determine allowable density or by other means established in guidelines issued by the Department;
(6) restrict development of and minimize impact to important natural resources, including new development in flood hazard areas, undeveloped floodplains, and river corridor areas, unless lawfully allowed for infill development in §29-201 of the Vermont Flood Hazard Area and River Corridor Rule;
(7) update the municipal plan’s housing element as provided in subdivision 4382(a)(10) of this title related to addressing lower- and moderate- income housing needs, implement that element of the plan including through the bylaw amendments, and demonstrate how those bylaws support the implementation of the housing element; and
(8) comply with State and Federal Fair Housing Act, including the fair housing provisions of Vermont’s Planning and Development Act.
(g) On or before September 1, 2022, the Department shall adopt guidelines to assist municipalities applying for grants under this section. (Added 2021, No. 182 (Adj. Sess.), § 27, eff. July 1, 2022.)