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Question 2: Burlington's Proposed Carbon Tax

an aerial image of the McNeil Generating Plant in Burlington Vermont with Lake Champlain in thebackground

On the first Tuesday in March for the last 250 years, Vermonters across the state have kept up with one of the most basic and traditional forms of democracy known as locally as Town Meeting Day.  Using a form of voting referred to as “Australian ballots”, residents of each city/town are able to voice their support or opposition to municipal proposals like town & school budgets, city council & school board elections, and specific issue or project ballot items.

According to an article on the VTDigger website, there are three-quarters of a billion dollars in municipal requests up for Vermont residents to decide on tomorrow at their local town meeting day polling sites.  Many towns are hosting in-person voting again for the first time since the covid pandemic shifted voting to mail-in ballots for the past two years.

Burlington voters will have a bit of work to do when fulfilling their civic duty this year as in addition to choosing 5 seats on the City Council, there are a number of ballot items addressing sensitive issues such as police oversight, resident-proposed ordinances, redistricting and one that we’ve been paying close attention to, carbon impact fees.

In conjunction with the City of Burlington’s ambitious goal of being a net-zero (carbon) city by 2030, the “carbon impact fee” proposal is being marketed as an attainable balance between the ultimate goal of carbon neutrality while at the same time keeping housing affordable for those who wish to make Burlington their home.  While most see the proposal, officially known as question 2 on the ballot, as a step in the right direction towards addressing the dangers of carbon emissions, others argue that the City is not prepared to successfully handle a move away from traditional fossil fuel energy sources. 

Voters will get the final say when casting their ballots before the 7PM deadline on Tuesday evening.  For more information on ballot Question 2 check out the full article “Burlington Considers Kicking Fossil Fuels to the Curb” on the website. 

Since 1985, we’ve helped thousands of clients buy and sell real estate in Northwest Vermont.  As the top-selling real estate Team in Burlington, our goal is to provide you with the local insight, information, and resources necessary to make your purchase and/or sale an informed and enjoyable experience.  Contact us today to get started!