This session, Montpelier legislators are considering a bill that would change the municipal plan cycle from five years to 10. While it may not sound like much, "It's huge," Mad River Valley Planning District (MRVPD) Steering Committee member Jim Sanford said at the committee's meeting on Thursday, March 19.
According to Sanford, who also serves as vice chair of the Warren Planning Commission, under the current law towns are required to update their municipal plans every five years. "We start redoing it almost as soon as we're done," Sanford said of the Warren Town Plan update. "We're always playing catch up."
If the bill, H.367, were to pass, towns would be required to update their municipal plans every 10 years, meaning that local planning commissions "could do some actual planning," Sanford said, instead of just reviewing and updating the document.
According to MRVPD director Joshua Schwartz, the bill is not expected to be taken up by state committees until next year, but supporting its passage is a priority for the Vermont Planners Association.