Act 250 and Section 248

The CCRPC reviews proposed development under Act 250 and Section 248. CCRPC’s participation in these processes is part of an effective regional planning process for the betterment of Chittenden County.

ACT 250

Act 250 is Vermont’s land use and development law. The law provides a public, quasi-judicial process for reviewing major developments in Vermont. Act 250 permit applications are reviewed by one of nine District Environmental Commissions – Chittenden County is District 4. Each of Vermont’s eleven Regional Planning Commissions is a party by right which may appear and participate in the Act 250 proceeding of a proposed development in District whose site is located either in or on the boundaries with a municipality that is a member of that Regional Planning Commission [“Act 250 Environmental Board Rule 14(A)(3)”]. CCRPC has a responsibility to “appear before district environmental commissions to aid them in making a determination as to the conformance of developments and subdivisions with the criteria of 10 V.S.A. § 6086” (24 V.S.A. §4345a(13)).

See CCRPC’s Act 250 and Section 248 Review Policy below for information on the projects and criteria where CCRPC focuses its Act 250 review.

SECTION 248

Section 248 is a section of Vermont Statute that requires utilities and companies to obtain approval from the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) for projects including electric generation and transmission facilities. Approval from the PUC is called a “Certificate of Public Good (CPG).” The 2018 ECOS Regional Plan includes enhanced standards for CCRPC to review petitions for CPGs. The ECOS Plan was granted a Determination of Energy Compliance on August 9, 2018, which means the PUC will give it a higher level of review than it would otherwise receive in Section 248 proceedings.

See CCRPC’s Act 250 and Section 248 Review Policy below for information on the projects and standards where CCRPC focuses their Section 248 review, as well as the timing of comments.


RESOURCES

CCRPC Policies

Act 250

Section 248


CONTACT

For more information on the CCRPC’s Act 250 review process, please contact Emily Nosse-Leirer, Senior Planner, at (802) 846-4490 x *15.

Act 250 hearing notices, correspondence related to the Section 248 Public Utilities Commission process, or other permitting notices should be sent to permitting@ccrpcvt.org.


BACKGROUND

With the construction of Interstate 89 and the expansion of IBM in Essex Junction, Vermont experienced rapid population growth in the 1960s. This growth brought many important planning concerns to the forefront, including sprawl and environmental degradation. At the time, there were no state-level environmental regulations or land use controls in Vermont. In 1970, Vermont sought to address the planning issues raised in the 1960s by enacting the Land Use and Development Law (commonly known as Act 250). Act 250 was intended to achieve a balance between economic development and the legitimate interests of citizens, municipalities, and state agencies in protecting the environment. The law created nine District Commissions and an Environmental Board tasked to review development applications based on the 10 criteria specified in Act 250.