The conferences are organized by UVM Extension in partnership with participating organizations. They are designed to help town clerks, planners, listers, select board members and other officials do their jobs more effectively by providing updates on tax laws and regulations, municipal recordkeeping and effective strategies for handling planning, zoning and other town issues.
2018 Theme: Technology, Efficiency, and Collaboration: Innovations to Improve Municipal Practice
KEYNOTE PANEL: with Jim Condos, Vermont Secretary of State, John Quinn, Secretary of VT Agency of Digital Services and Chief Information Officer; Michael Schirling, Secretary of Agency of Commerce and Community Development.
Do you sense funding streams drying up or getting diverted away from your municipal work? When this happens we look for ways to work smarter by turning our focus to innovative approaches like using technology, increasing efficiency and building collaborations. These three approaches form the theme for our 2018 Conference looking for innovative ways to improve municipal practices. Keynote panelists will share their state-level insight for Vermont and offer suggestions on how municipalities can incorporate these approaches to extend resources.
Technology and Municipal Government: The Impact of Technology on Open Meeting Law and the Public Records Act, Jim Condos, Vermont Secretary of State
Secretary of State Jim Condos shared the implications of evolving technology on Vermont’s Open Meeting Law and Public Records Act, and consideration municipal employees and elected municipal officers must keep in mind to stay compliant with VT’s open government laws. In addition, they discussed the ways technology can help with compliance, specifically records management and electronic meeting options.
The Emergency Management Director (EMD) as Teambuilder, Emily Harris, MPA, Vermont Emergency Management
The session focused on the roles, responsibilities, and key products produced by a municipality’s Emergency Management Director. Skills in planning, collaboration, and stakeholder team building in all phases of emergency management were highlighted.
Solid Waste Management for Vermont Municipalies, Paul Tomasi & Bruce Westcott, Vermont Solid Waste District Manager’s Association (SWDMA)
This workshop was crafted to assist municipalities with unraveling Vermont’s Universal Recycling Law (Act 148) and the State-mandated Materials Management Plan (MMP). It focused on who is responsible for what, when they need to comply, and steps for reaching compliance.
Town Road Erosion Inventory and Drainage Management Standards for Town Highway Access Policies, Milly Archer, CFM, Vermont League of Cities & Towns
The Municipal Road General Permit (MRGP) requires towns to implement customized, multi-year plans to stabilize road drainage systems. The permit jurisdiction is limited to the municipal road right-of-way. In this workshop they demonstrated how towns can inventory road erosion problems. Topics of discussion focused on how municipal highway access policies addressing drainage into the ROW from outside the road drainage system can help towns comply with the MRGP. Download the VLCT Model Highway Access Policy (.DOCX)
Finding Efficiencies from Mapping the Assessment Process and Use of Metrics, John Vickery, Vermont Assessors and Listers Association (VALA)
John Vickery mapped the assessor/lister office process, and discussed the use of metrics and stats as a way to improve office efficiency.
Thanks to our Gold Sponsor: Vermont Department of Taxes
The Vermont Department of Taxes provides taxpayers with the resources they need to understand the ever-changing tax law.
Thanks to our Silver Sponsor: Vermont State Data Center
The Vermont State Data Center provides data access and utilization assistance to Vermont data users and facilitates Census Bureau data collection programs.
Past Workshops: 2017
2017 Theme: “Rural Economies in a Changing Demographic Landscape”
Keynote: “Building Unity, Direction and Priorities through Community Engagement,” Paul Costello
We are thrilled to welcome our 2017 Keynote speaker Paul Costello from the Vermont Council on Rural Development. Have you noticed how the same volunteers do most of the work in your town? Do you feel besieged by long lists of problems or ideas for initiatives that 'someone' should undertake to address? Many towns face the same challenges of engaging their community in a way that establishes direction and leadership to advance common priorities. Paul will address effective ways to pull people together, to build a stronger community, to advance key projects, and to better connect to resources to help your town move forward.
About Paul Costello: Paul Costello has served as the Executive Director of the Vermont Council on Rural Development since 2000. VCRD runs an annual Rural Summit, and conducts "Community Visits" that help rural communities build priorities, set action plans, and build connections to resources. It also provides customized facilitation on rural development policy at the local, regional and state level. Paul is a native Vermonter who attended UVM before earning a PhD in Intellectual History at McGill.
(above) Building Unity, Direction and Priorities through Community Engagement, Paul Costello Presentation Notes
Effective and Efficient Meeting Management, Lee A. Krohn, Chittenden County Regional Planning Commission
Ingredients for Downtown & Village Revitalization, Lori Hirshfield, Town of Hartford Dept of Planning & Development
Ingredients for Downtown & Village Revitalization, Gary Holloway, VT Department of Housing and Community Development
Every Town Will Benefit from Statewide Parcel Mapping, Leslie Pelch, Vermont Center for Geographic Information
- Vermont Statewide Property Parcel Mapping Project & Program | Presentation Notes
- Top 10 List: Using Parcel Data
Past Workshops: 2016
A few highlights and resources:
Plenary Session: Inventorying the Strengths and Assets in Your Community, by Shoshanah Inwood
- Presentation Slides (PDF)
- Using Community Capitals to Develop Assets for Positive Community Change (PDF)
- Mapping the Assets of Your Community: A Key Component for Building Local Capacity (PDF)
Slow It, Spread It and Sink It Using Green Stormwater Infrastructure, by Milly Archer and Becky Tharp