10 V.S.A. Section 8008 authorizes the Secretary to issue an Administrative Order (AO) when it is determined that a violation exists.
When an AO is filed, the Environmental Court will sign the AO in the event that it is properly served on a respondent, the respondent does not request a hearing within 15 days of receipt of the AO, and the AO otherwise meets the requirements of 10 V.S.A. Chapter 201. When signed by the Environmental Court, the AO becomes a Judicial Order.
Final AO documents issued since 1996 as well as final AOs issued by the Vermont Natural Resources Board are available.
10 V.S.A. Section 8007 authorizes the Secretary to accept an Assurance of Discontinuance (AOD) from a respondent for a violation as an alternative to administrative or judicial proceedings. An AOD is a written settlement agreement, signed by the Secretary and the respondent.
When an AOD is filed, the Environmental Court will sign the AOD if it is sufficient to carry out the purposes of 10 V.S.A. Chapter 201. When signed by the Environmental Court, an AOD becomes a Judicial Order.
Final AOD documents issued since 1996 as well as final AODs issued by the Vermont Natural Resources Board are available.
10 V.S.A. Section 8019 authorizes the Secretary to issue a Civil Complaint (CC) when it is determined that a violation exists. Once a Civil Complaint is filed with the Environmental Court and mailed to the respondent they must deliver a plea to the Court (admitted, no contest, or denied) within 15 days of the issuance of the Complaint, otherwise a default judgment will be entered against the respondent.
If a respondent requests a hearing on the Civil Complaint, the Environmental Court will schedule the matter for trial.
By issuing a Civil Complaint, the Secretary cannot seek an additional penalty for the violation specified in the complaint if the waiver penalty is paid, judgment is entered after trial or appeal, or a default judgment is entered. However, the Secretary may issue additional civil complaints or take other enforcement action authorized by law, including a monetary penalty when a violation is continuing or is repeated. It may also bring an enforcement action to obtain injunctive relief or remediation, and may recover the costs of bringing that action and any economic benefit the respondent obtained as a result of the underlying violation as authorized by law.
Final CCs issued since 2013 as well as final Citations issued by the Vermont Natural Resources Board are available.
10 V.S.A. Section 8009 authorizes the Secretary to issue an Emergency Administrative Order (EO) when a violation presents an immediate threat of substantial harm to the environment or public health.
An EO may be issued when the following takes place:
- the EO has been presented to the Environmental Court;
- all reasonable efforts have been made to notify the respondent of its presentation to the Court (date & time);
- and the Court has found that the Secretary has made a sufficient showing that grounds for issuance of the order exist.
Final EOs issued since 1996 are available.