Protecting Act 250 and Important Vermont Farmland

Sandy Levine | @CLFLevine

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We recently sent this e-mail to Vermont supporters as a continuation of the work by Conservation Law Foundation, Preservation Trust of Vermont, and Vermont Natural Resources Council, to uphold Act 250 and protect important Vermont farmland:

Dear friends,

Massive over-development of farmland threatens Vermont’s environment and communities. Send a letter to Governor Shumlin, Agency officials and your legislator opposing the destruction of valuable farmland for poorly-planned development.

It’s not just theoretical: A developer in Randolph wants to run roughshod over Vermont farmland. Plans are afoot to build over one million square feet of development – about the size of ten big box stores – on this important land. This area lies just miles from downtown Randolph at one of the most scenic and rural highway exits in Vermont.

A small part of the project is a new Visitor Center – about the size of a large house. But we don’t need the rest of this massive new development – which is more than 200 times larger than the Visitor Center – just to provide bathrooms.

The developer is pushing this massive development forward with the lure of this new Visitor Center. But this modest Visitor Center is really just a cynical ploy to get us to sacrifice nearly 180 acres of farmland to unnecessary development. Keeping farmland nearby is more important than ever as we face the floods and droughts of climate change. We shouldn’t trade our future food sources for a few toilets and a bunch of giant buildings. This proposal is a bad deal for us Vermonters – and it violates the law too.

Act 250 is a state law that requires large new developments to respect natural resources. It prevents developments from blindly paving over land, polluting the environment, and disrupting communities. Our lawmakers and state officials should enforce and strengthen this law.

Conservation Law Foundation along with Vermont Natural Resources Council, Preservation Trust of Vermont and Exit 4 Open Space are fighting hard to oppose the plan for Randolph and to ensure that the law protecting against destructive development is not sidelined. If this development is allowed here, then none of Vermont’s farmland is safe.

We need your help now.

Send a letter to Governor Shumlin, Agency officials and your legislator today. Tell them to uphold and strengthen Act 250. Tell them to oppose the destruction of Vermont’s important, finite farmland. Tell them to remember their duty to protect our valuable resources throughout Vermont.

Sincerely,

Sandra Levine, Conservation Law Foundation
Paul Bruhn, Preservation Trust of Vermont
Brian Shupe, Vermont Natural Resources Council

P.S. New projects are being reviewed every day – thank you for taking the time today to tell officials and state lawmakers where you stand.

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