The Vermont House has advanced a bill aimed at enhancing the protection of Vermont’s lakes from the damaging effects of some shoreline development.
But environmental groups say the bill has been significantly watered down. Jake Brown of the Vermont Natural Resources Council is calling the House version weak, and says he hopes the Senate can strengthen it.
Rep. Kate Webb, a Shelburne Democrat and a leading sponsor of the bill, says it went through 12 drafts as attempts were made to compromise with municipalities and property rights advocates.
The bill originally called for new restrictions on development within 100 feet of the water’s edge on Vermont lakes, and for preservation of most vegetation along the shore.
Now it calls for a permit for building within 250 feet of the water.