Scott vetoes Act 250 bill, signs expanded access to contraceptives

October 5, 2020 – Governor Phil Scott has vetoed H926, changes to Act 250, and signed several other bills, including expanding access to contraception for youth and adults. A decision on S54, commercial cannabis, is expected tomorrow.

A press release explains the Act 250 bill failed to address concerns for regulation of rural recreational trails:

In his veto letter to the Legislature, Governor Scott noted that at the start of the legislative session, there was broad support for a comprehensive, balanced modernization package, but the bill the Legislature delivered falls far short.  

“With this bill, the Legislature has created more regulatory uncertainty, not less. Our outdoor recreation economy, and the groups that help to maintain and preserve these networks, need a regulatory framework that is responsible, respectful and stable,” wrote Governor Scott in his letter to the Legislature. “Nothing in this bill modernizes or improves the Act 250 process – something that is widely agreed to be necessary after fifty years of existence,” the Governor added.  

Governor Scott’s executive order will advance provisions critical for Vermont’s recreational trails while awaiting further action on comprehensive Act 250 reform.

It directs the Agency of Natural Resources to begin a process to adopt a best management, practice-based program that can also facilitate compliance with Act 250 criteria should a trail network be required to obtain a permit; and to report back on any necessary legislative changes to promote high quality recreational trails that support the recreation economy.​ 

On October 5, Governor Scott signed bills of the following titles:

  • H.607, An act relating to increasing the supply of nurses and primary care providers in Vermont
  • H.611, An act relating to the Older Vermonters Act
  • H.663, An act relating to expanding access to contraceptives
  • H.674, An act relating to the definition of housesite for use value appraisals
  • H.795, An act relating to increasing hospital price transparency, hospital sustainability planning, provider sustainability and reimbursements, and regulators’ access to information
  • H.934, An act relating to renter rebate reform
  • H.967, An act relating to the provision of child care at family child care homes during remote learning days
  • S.354, An act relating to using Australian ballot for municipal meetings in the year 2021

To view a complete list of action on bills passed during the 2020 legislative session, visit https://governor.vermont.gov/governor-scotts-blog/2020-legislative-session.

Photo Credit http://www.vacationvermont.com – mountain biking in the Northeast Kingdom.