Victory Hill Trails Closed?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Victory Hill Trails Closed?

    Just found out through word of mouth that Victory Hill Trails in VT are closed for the upcoming season? Website confirms and says details will come forward soon. Anyone have any more info?
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    Quote Originally Posted by VTSession View Post
    Just found out through word of mouth that Victory Hill Trails in VT are closed for the upcoming season? Website confirms and says details will come forward soon. Anyone have any more info?
    https://victoryhillmtb.com/

    "BREAKING NEWS: Victory Hill Sector will NOT be holding our volunteer day on Sunday. We are also SUSPENDING ALL membership registration and trail preparation activities
    An unfortunate situation has manifested itself. An announcement will be made in the next day or so."

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by majorjake View Post
    https://victoryhillmtb.com/

    "BREAKING NEWS: Victory Hill Sector will NOT be holding our volunteer day on Sunday. We are also SUSPENDING ALL membership registration and trail preparation activities
    An unfortunate situation has manifested itself. An announcement will be made in the next day or so."
    Sounds Lawyer-y.

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    Disrespectful asshole tourists? Maybe.....
    From September of last year...
    "Bikers coming from East Burke. PLEASE . PLEASE DO NOT USE Kirby Mountain Road to get to VH. MTB folks have been driving past the farm and retreat center on the Victory side of Kirby Mountain Road at high speed. A lady biker from Massatwoshetts in an SUV drove by there three weeks ago and killed their cat..and kept right on driving! Five chickens have been killed as well.

    They've tried putting speed bars by the farm which helped slow passing cars and then some assholes complained to the Town of Kirby about the speed bars! Whoever complained...those bikers are no longer welcome on VH.

    PLEASE drive around from East Burke from Rt 114 and the Victory Bog Road.

    If bikers continue to use Kirby Mountain road you are risking the future of our trails. VH will be shut down.

    THANKS."

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    I would place a large bet it’s not disrespectful tourists. Victory has a truly messed up local government in a way that’s almost impossible to describe. From the history of the last 30 years, I bet one of the warring town factions went after the Victory Hill folks legally in some manner. Taxes, zoning, permits, some punitive action.

    When we were there for the ESC Enduro race the land owner got hauled into town meeting to “explain themselves” in the middle of the event.

    There are some long standing toxic events going on over there that it’s clear no one can stop and you don’t want to get caught in the middle of. Very sorry to hear such an amazing effort and venue are in trouble.

    For more reading:
    Seven Days: an-ongoing-feud-illustrates-the-dark-side-of-small-town-life

    https://www.sevendaysvt.com/vermont/...nt?oid=3084817

    Seven Days: after-decades-of-feuding-is-it-time-to-disband-the-tiny-town-of-victory

    Seven Days: the-agony-of-defeat
    Last edited by Mdlman; 3 Weeks Ago at 05:01 PM. Reason: Added link

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    Wow, just read through those articles and I’m amazed a town of 60-70 people can have such a dysfunctional, spiteful functioning. Strange and interesting stuff.


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    And 1/3 of them are in the local government!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mdlman View Post
    I would place a large bet it’s not disrespectful tourists. Victory has a truly messed up local government in a way that’s almost impossible to describe. From the history of the last 30 years, I bet one of the warring town factions went after the Victory Hill folks legally in some manner. Taxes, zoning, permits, some punitive action.

    When we were there for the ESC Enduro race the land owner got hauled into town meeting to “explain themselves” in the middle of the event.

    There are some long standing toxic events going on over there that it’s clear no one can stop and you don’t want to get caught in the middle of. Very sorry to hear such an amazing effort and venue are in trouble.

    For more reading:
    Seven Days: an-ongoing-feud-illustrates-the-dark-side-of-small-town-life

    https://www.sevendaysvt.com/vermont/...nt?oid=3084817

    Seven Days: after-decades-of-feuding-is-it-time-to-disband-the-tiny-town-of-victory

    Seven Days: the-agony-of-defeat
    Holy shit. :\
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    Is the place with all of the animals that is right next door to Vicory Hill the Mitchell's animal sanctuary? Wasn't it on the market last fall?

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    Well. If people choose a life in Vt that is removed from the traffic and entitlement of the touristas, that is their right. Not everyone wants tourism to save them. Some folks just want their small town left alone. I get that. It's a shame all that work went in, but maybe more outreach should have been done to see if those locals who's lives would be affected by the creeping of the KT out into surrounding areas. I certainly would not want to live next door to a tourist destination. Been there, done that. It sucks. Did the land owners put on the Enduro without any notification to the town? That's dumb. If they are operating a pay to play trail network that is going to drastically change the traffic patterns, I imagine they need to be zoned commercial and take steps to mitigate friction with adjoining land owners, probably public notice needed ect. It certainly opens them up to liability as per the Vermont Landowner Liability act.

    Thanks for the back round. I remember reading the 7 days piece.
    The facebook post has been removed. If you make a public statement and suggest more information coming soon, and you don't want banter and speculation in public forums....this after posting in public....then provide some information...?

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    At least you're predictable Dave. You can always find a way to move every conversation back to the things that you dislike.

    None of the issues named in that reporting are about tourism, and none of them are about "wanting to be left alone". It's the exact opposite, people who can't stay out of each other's business dragging down an entire community over their petty wars.

    If the issues at Victory Hill were about their visitors misbehaving, the owners wouldn't have gone silent like they have. They would have instead done the exact same things they have done in the past when minor things came up that caused friction with their neighbors, the owners would have worked hard to make sure their visitors behaved better.

    If you knew these landowners you wouldn't accuse them of being a neighborhood menace.

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    Really hoping this is not a permanent thing. I love that network of trails and was hoping to get back there this summer and hit the the trails I missed last time. I could see it going either way with inconsiderate bikers or crazy locals or some combination. Although a lot of riders are considerate there are always a few that could give a shit and ruin it for others.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mdlman View Post
    At least you're predictable Dave. You can always find a way to move every conversation back to the things that you dislike.

    None of the issues named in that reporting are about tourism, and none of them are about "wanting to be left alone". It's the exact opposite, people who can't stay out of each other's business dragging down an entire community over their petty wars.

    If the issues at Victory Hill were about their visitors misbehaving, the owners wouldn't have gone silent like they have. They would have instead done the exact same things they have done in the past when minor things came up that caused friction with their neighbors, the owners would have worked hard to make sure their visitors behaved better.

    If you knew these landowners you wouldn't accuse them of being a neighborhood menace.
    There is clear friction between the folks who's animals are getting killed and the MTBers driving too fast and too often past their house. The message above about the speed bumps, dead cat, chickens and speeders was taken off the VH FB page. If they were dragged in to the town meeting to "Explain themselves" during a big regional event, then I would suggest not everyone in town is 100 percent on board. I am not making any statements about the land owners aside from that fact that is was not smart to hold the ESE without public notification if that is what happened. Also, it's unfortunate that they moved into such a dysfunctional town to attempt to build out and operate a MTB destination when their (perhaps crazy) neighbors aren't into a commercial MTB spot being located down the road. Pretty sure this has something to do with MTB tourism... at least a little. As blasphemous as my anti-tourist rants may seem...every day that vibe creeps more into the conversation all over the country and the world, becasue there is more than a little validity to the opinions expressed there. I never wish for trail to be closed. I think these folks should be able to do what they want with their land. Those trails look awesome. All that. Hoping that this is not due to some horrible human tragedy for these folks. If it is access or some other legal or civil troubles, we're all interested to hear what's up. Patrick K is back in VT. Send him up there to smooth shit over...

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    After reading about the attitudes of the small population in Victory - VH trails seemed doomed to fail. The trail network around NEK is quickly growing and creeping into surrounding areas and the VH trails became hugely popular very quickly. Those quiet dirt roads quickly became flooded with out of town, enduro bros and I bet the locals noticed quickly.

    If the locals in Victory are half as angry as they sound, I'm shocked those trails lasted as long as they did.

    Dave does have a point. KT has become hugely popular in the last decade and the tourism has greatly help a few towns around. But just because Burke and East Haven folks are okay with mountain bikers flooding their towns, doesn't mean Victory wants the same.

    I'll just have to stick to Perry Hill for scratch my local bro-enduro itch.
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    Although I love the idea of mountain biking helping revitalize an area I can totally understand people in a town of under 100 people not looking to be overrun with people. Most people who move and live in small towns aren't usually looking to be near a lot of people... Hope there is a way to keep access. Maybe no parking on site. Have to ride in and out from Burke so it avoids the car traffic?

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    I just got an e mail with the PDF attached. Apparently the town clerk filed a complaint about VH being subject to act 250 for operating Commercial facilities and Events. A judgement agreed. They either have to stop improvements, construction and commercial operations or go through permitting ect. They have until May 30th to notify the town of their intentions.

    Could have state-wide ramifications for pay to play, and commercial trail work operations. As a trail builder, I have wondered how we can move so much dirt with machines ect without any permitting. Seems like the state might be catching on.
    https://anrweb.vt.gov/ANR/vtANR/Act2...x?Num=JO-7-286

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    Quote Originally Posted by WATERBOOY View Post
    Although I love the idea of mountain biking helping revitalize an area I can totally understand people in a town of under 100 people not looking to be overrun with people. Most people who move and live in small towns aren't usually looking to be near a lot of people... Hope there is a way to keep access. Maybe no parking on site. Have to ride in and out from Burke so it avoids the car traffic?
    I'll bet people will sneak into the trails by pedaling from KT. Just don't get caught by a shotgun yielding local.
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mdlman View Post
    I would place a large bet it’s not disrespectful tourists. Victory has a truly messed up local government in a way that’s almost impossible to describe. From the history of the last 30 years, I bet one of the warring town factions went after the Victory Hill folks legally in some manner. Taxes, zoning, permits, some punitive action.

    When we were there for the ESC Enduro race the land owner got hauled into town meeting to “explain themselves” in the middle of the event.

    There are some long standing toxic events going on over there that it’s clear no one can stop and you don’t want to get caught in the middle of. Very sorry to hear such an amazing effort and venue are in trouble.

    For more reading:
    Seven Days: an-ongoing-feud-illustrates-the-dark-side-of-small-town-life

    https://www.sevendaysvt.com/vermont/...nt?oid=3084817

    Seven Days: after-decades-of-feuding-is-it-time-to-disband-the-tiny-town-of-victory

    Seven Days: the-agony-of-defeat

    Oh, that's rich!

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    How many of you guys have been to Victory? It's hardly over-run with mountain bikers. With the exception of the ESC, I have never seen more than 2 or 3 cars there. And to over-run the town, first you'd need a town to over-run. You drive past a couple of houses on one wide dirt road. If you come over the hill past the little farm, it is literally the only house on that road. I can't even imagine how people could drive fast on it, I'm always creeping along trying not to rip the bottom of my car off, or I should say, I was, as I no longer go that way. Either way, Flower seems to be OK with bikers, just not fast ones running over her cat! I have to think that for her, she could sell more herbal stuff to people passing through, it's probably more good than bad for them.

    It's a shame about the Act 250 stuff, you read the VT Digger article and see that 80% of the town is on disability or some other form of public assistance, and it seems like this has to be about pure jealousy. Also, it's laughable to think that mountain bike trails are "damaging" to former paper company land.

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    Quote Originally Posted by epic View Post
    How many of you guys have been to Victory? It's hardly over-run with mountain bikers. With the exception of the ESC, I have never seen more than 2 or 3 cars there. And to over-run the town, first you'd need a town to over-run. You drive past a couple of houses on one wide dirt road. If you come over the hill past the little farm, it is literally the only house on that road. I can't even imagine how people could drive fast on it, I'm always creeping along trying not to rip the bottom of my car off, or I should say, I was, as I no longer go that way. Either way, Flower seems to be OK with bikers, just not fast ones running over her cat! I have to think that for her, she could sell more herbal stuff to people passing through, it's probably more good than bad for them.

    It's a shame about the Act 250 stuff, you read the VT Digger article and see that 80% of the town is on disability or some other form of public assistance, and it seems like this has to be about pure jealousy. Also, it's laughable to think that mountain bike trails are "damaging" to former paper company land.
    I've been there quite a few times and I saw it get progressively more crowded each time I came. I also helped a guy get his Civic out of a ditch because he was driving too fast on the road before the lot.
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    As they say, "This is why we can't have nice things".

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    Correct me if I'm wrong but they could let people ride for free and stay open, right?

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    I'm sure there are a lot of ways you could do it. Become a 501c3 for example, but it sounds like it's really about conflict with neighbors. Apparently at one point last fall a neighbor took an excavator and dug a giant ditch across the road to keep people out. I don't think the Act 250 is real an issue. Burke Bike Park didn't need one.

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    I'm with epic, this talk of "overrun" with bike tourism is bonkers. You can't see the VH trails from the road, you can't see the car parking lot from the road, the bikes don't cross the public road, and there is one small sign. It's about as invisible and low impact as trail networks get, it's mostly built on old eroded logging skid roads.

    There's a ton of detail in the Act 250 filing, it's very revealing.

    The folks who have developed this are about as anti-corporate as you can get, they're just folks who love bikes and thought they might be able to run a small local business doing what they love. They only made $15k last year selling tickets, that's 1,000 visitors over the whole season, or maybe 40 people per week.

    The Act 250 filing states that they are in the process of gaining non-profit status, hopefully once they get the legal status correct they'll be back up and ok.

  25. #25
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    Been hunting and fishing in Victory for years, the people there are on the back side of the mountain for a reason. Yes the 60 or 70 people there are "unique" and there is a nasty town culture. This particular episode has nothing to do with the chickens, cats and the asshats driving too fast on KMR. In fact those impacted folks are very nice people and if you see them, stop by and say hello and check on Flower as she has had a tough go of things.

    Act 250 is fun to navigate......good luck
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    I'm interested in the opinions of folks who have read the Act 250 decision and/or have dealt with Act 250 in the past: would making the trails free to all move the network towards having a "municipal purpose" as opposed to a "commercial purpose," the latter being subject to Act 250, the former not? This seems to be a key point in the filing, does membership in the VTS, which has pay-to-play networks on its membership rolls (KTA, Catamount).

    Dave points out that it is a wonder more commercial trail building hasn't been affected by Act 250. I feel the same way and it appears VTS membership, either straight up or as part of VMBA, has been the saving grace for many spots avoiding Act 250 red tape.

    Do any Vermonters know the status of the Act 250 hearings that happened last fall? There seemed to be a growing sentiment that recreational trails should not be subject to Act 250 - I wonder if the state has addressed this recently?

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    Quote Originally Posted by epic View Post
    Apparently at one point last fall a neighbor took an excavator and dug a giant ditch across the road to keep people out. I don't think the Act 250 is real an issue. Burke Bike Park didn't need one.
    2 point I find interesting. One, this is a microcosm. Not all of Vermont wants to be saved by tourism. We can dismiss the locals as backwoodsy, crazy, whatever. A town of 60ppl doesn't want to be a destination for thousands of MTB tourist. Pretty real and basic issue.

    Two, act 250. No one has really needed one, but since the mechanization happened there has been a lot of talk about when the state would catch on that "We" are out in the woods moving hundreds of tons of material over the course of a project. Water bars, culverts, wetlands, streams and bridges. We are no longer as unobtrusive as we once were. We definitely cause changes run-off, silt and I can't tell you how many silted in water bars I've dug out over the years. Excavated trails are not stable for commercial level traffic. While I think the storm water issue is a tiny drop in the bucket as compared to what, say SMR did up at Spruce, the level of construction going on in the town and state forests probably should have some oversight. I suggest this should lead to a distinction being made between bike park style/level of development and use vs. backcountry/primitive level development and use.
    Last edited by DaveVt; 2 Weeks Ago at 06:28 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveVt View Post
    Correct me if I'm wrong but they could let people ride for free and stay open, right?
    Quoted for explanation...I think so.

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    Quote Originally Posted by east_coaster View Post
    I'm interested in the opinions of folks who have read the Act 250 decision and/or have dealt with Act 250 in the past: would making the trails free to all move the network towards having a "municipal purpose" as opposed to a "commercial purpose," the latter being subject to Act 250, the former not? This seems to be a key point in the filing, does membership in the VTS, which has pay-to-play networks on its membership rolls (KTA, Catamount).

    Dave points out that it is a wonder more commercial trail building hasn't been affected by Act 250. I feel the same way and it appears VTS membership, either straight up or as part of VMBA, has been the saving grace for many spots avoiding Act 250 red tape.

    Do any Vermonters know the status of the Act 250 hearings that happened last fall? There seemed to be a growing sentiment that recreational trails should not be subject to Act 250 - I wonder if the state has addressed this recently?
    I responded above, but as I read it, yes. If the trails were not pay to play, act 250 would not apply. They don't have to close this year, just stop collecting fees. This could cause folks to take a closer look at the relationship between the company that holds the land, and the group doing the trail work. It's kind of gray as my CPA wife reads it in the filing.

    Trails built for commercial use without going through act 250. Red Herring or not, it's pretty clear they are subject to act 250. So should KT, Burke Mtn, Millstone, Killington, Suicide 6, Sugarbush, ect., if they are not already.

    Edit. KTA and Millstone my be 501c, but I wonder if the extensive structures and PT lumber used to cross wetlands needs oversight as well. Like I said....ripples.
    Last edited by DaveVt; 2 Weeks Ago at 06:30 AM.

  30. #30
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    I am also interested in the Current Use status. Can a pay to play bike park also enjoy a special tax rate under Current Use? Under the landowner liability act, they are also exposed to liability if they charge a fee.

    Current use.... "Development and Penalties
    Once land is enrolled, it is subject to a lien. If this land is ever developed, the owner at the time of development must pay the Land Use Change Tax. The land use change tax is calculated as 10% of the fair market value of the developed parcel or portion of a parcel. When a portion of a parcel is withdrawn or developed, the fair market value of the portion is determined by valuing the portion as a stand-alone parcel.

    In this program, development includes any of the following:

    Subdivision so that one or more of the resulting parcels is less than 25 acres
    Construction of buildings, roads, or structures not used for forestry purposes
    Commercial mining, excavation or landfill activity, or cutting timber contrary to the management plan or contrary to state standards."

    Excavation? Yup. Roads? Well, excavated bike trails are close. Any trees cut during trail development? Likely many many small trees.

    Land Owner Liability Act. "The law does not cover:
    • Individuals who are invited onto the
    land by the owner for a reason other
    than recreation,
    • Those who pay a fee to the landowner
    for recreational use of the land,
    • Lands owned by a municipality or the
    state.
    Landowner liability is the same whether or
    not there is a conservation or recreation
    easement on the property.
    The law states that an owner shall not be
    liable for property damage or personal injury
    sustained by a person who does not pay a fee..."

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveVt View Post
    I am also interested in the Current Use status. Can a pay to play bike park also enjoy a special tax rate under Current Use? Under the landowner liability act, they are also exposed to liability if they charge a fee.

    Current use.... "Development and Penalties
    Once land is enrolled, it is subject to a lien. If this land is ever developed, the owner at the time of development must pay the Land Use Change Tax. The land use change tax is calculated as 10% of the fair market value of the developed parcel or portion of a parcel. When a portion of a parcel is withdrawn or developed, the fair market value of the portion is determined by valuing the portion as a stand-alone parcel.

    In this program, development includes any of the following:

    Subdivision so that one or more of the resulting parcels is less than 25 acres
    Construction of buildings, roads, or structures not used for forestry purposes
    Commercial mining, excavation or landfill activity, or cutting timber contrary to the management plan or contrary to state standards."

    Excavation? Yup. Roads? Well, excavated bike trails are close. Any trees cut during trail development? Likely many many small trees.

    Land Owner Liability Act. "The law does not cover:
    • Individuals who are invited onto the
    land by the owner for a reason other
    than recreation,
    • Those who pay a fee to the landowner
    for recreational use of the land,
    • Lands owned by a municipality or the
    state.
    Landowner liability is the same whether or
    not there is a conservation or recreation
    easement on the property.
    The law states that an owner shall not be
    liable for property damage or personal injury
    sustained by a person who does not pay a fee..."
    This is why VH and other organizations should just operate with the museum model of "this is our suggested donation" but come here for free.

    I know certain trails are located on town or state forest lands that have their own forest management program. Any new trails or construction of work in the forest is supposed to be run through the forest manager.


    The Liability act falls into that same grouping of the organization not charging.


    Dave, this means VMBA is going to need to collect all the mountain biking $$$ in the state and all the organizations will need to beg for their share of it so everyone can ride for "free"!! Your wish has come true

    Also this thread is dangerous now.

  32. #32
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    And I thought ripping off Van Halen's logo pretty much exactly would be their biggest challenge.......I stand corrected.....
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    Vermont, unlike every other state surrounding it, doesn’t have a current use program for recreation which means you can harvest timber and get a tax break or develop and not, but if you want trails you need to periodically deal with the headache of a logging operation. It’s justified as a way of keeping forests healthy, but not sure how true this is.

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    An extreme solution would be to build a wall around Vermont. If you are not a Vermont resident, you are not allowed in.

    A less harsh idea would be to appease the locals by naming one of trails, "Dead Chicken Way", in honor of their smooshed fowl.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott O View Post
    An extreme solution would be to build a wall around Vermont. If you are not a Vermont resident, you are not allowed in.

    A less harsh idea would be to appease the locals by naming one of trails, "Dead Chicken Way", in honor of their smooshed fowl.
    I support this. Shorter lift lines in the winter, empty trails and more beer for me. We'll build the wall from hemp and maple syrup, it'll be an engineering marvel.
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    Current use has issues. It is used by folks with a lot of land to pay about 1/10th the property taxes us poor fools without dozens of acres. The penalty for with drawl from the program is minimal, the land can still be developed when the landowner sees fit, and the oversight to make sure they are following the mgnt. plan is all but non-existent. Lords and servants.
    https://vtdigger.org/2014/01/21/stev...ent-use-abuse/
    Current use tax shelter...."Donations" to their own not for profit to pay for excavator built trails despite excavation being listed in the Current Use documentation as prohibited....write off, then collect fees for access. At the end of the day what they end up paying for property taxes is shockingly low. This shift the tax burden onto lees fortunate folks to pay 10x the property taxes/$.
    Recreation tourism. Saving us all indeed. It's just a tax shelter for the well-off.

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    Pretty sure Current use isn't applicable in VT for recreational purposes https://tax.vermont.gov/property-own...property-types I believe similar tax incentive programs are allowable in Ma., NH, and Maine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Smokee300 View Post
    Pretty sure Current use isn't applicable in VT for recreational purposes https://tax.vermont.gov/property-own...property-types I believe similar tax incentive programs are allowable in Ma., NH, and Maine.
    Yes, but land put in the Current Use Program, it seems, may have conflict in then developing for recreation, if they change the land with excavation, build bridges, put in culverts or change run-off patterns. In addition, any "Gains" made by the towns of Victory or e.Burke come at a cost to the locals in the form of tax burdens, which further erode the notion that having recreation in your town is helping your town if it is on private land enrolled in current use.....like in Victory. Some other spots as well.

    Seems like with everyone trying to figure out how to lower taxes to make Vt a more attractive place to live for middle class folks, taking a look at this program would be prudent.

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott O View Post
    An extreme solution would be to build a wall around Vermont. If you are not a Vermont resident, you are not allowed in.

    A less harsh idea would be to appease the locals by naming one of trails, "Dead Chicken Way", in honor of their smooshed fowl.
    Fine as long as we can make Massachusetts pay for it.

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveVt View Post
    Yes, but land put in the Current Use Program, it seems, may have conflict in then developing for recreation, if they change the land with excavation, build bridges, put in culverts or change run-off patterns. In addition, any "Gains" made by the towns of Victory or e.Burke come at a cost to the locals in the form of tax burdens, which further erode the notion that having recreation in your town is helping your town if it is on private land enrolled in current use.....like in Victory. Some other spots as well.

    Seems like with everyone trying to figure out how to lower taxes to make Vt a more attractive place to live for middle class folks, taking a look at this program would be prudent.
    Dave - Just as another thought on revisiting Current Use, it could be a slippery slope if they abolish or change the Current Use as a tax shelter. Many of the larger tracts of land in private ownership (not lumber companies) here in the NEK are owned by multi-generational Vermonters. Former farms not viable any longer as an economic center. If they no longer are able to receive the tax reduction associated with the CU program, chances are they will have to sell off the land, or sub divide due to the tax burden. More probable than not land would be purchased by folks not from VT and I'm not sure that is the intended outcome.
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    Man, the more I look at Current Use, the more I want to leave Vt. It's a scam. Yes, it's roots come from a good place. Yes, it saves family farms ect, but more and more over the last 20 years it has become a tax shelter for large land owners to pay as little as 10% of the property tax people who can't afford 75 acres of land to live on.
    Taxes are why people don't live here. Current use is no small part of that issue.

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  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveVt View Post
    ...it has become a tax shelter for large land owners to pay as little as 10% of the property tax people who can't afford 75 acres of land to live on...
    I'm not very familiar with VT current use, but this is simply not true in NH. I own 18 acres and 17 of them are in CU. I pay property taxes on my 1 acre (with house & garage) similar to my neighbors with 1-5 acre lots. It is true that the CU acreage is taxed very low but if you live on it you're likely paying a commensurate amount of property taxes as those with small lots.

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    Quote Originally Posted by radair View Post
    I'm not very familiar with VT current use, but this is simply not true in NH. I own 18 acres and 17 of them are in CU. I pay property taxes on my 1 acre (with house & garage) similar to my neighbors with 1-5 acre lots. It is true that the CU acreage is taxed very low but if you live on it you're likely paying a commensurate amount of property taxes as those with small lots.
    Yup. Land, not homestead. So I have .3 acres and a house. Someone with 30 and the same house enjoys a very regressive property tax rate. They basically pay 20 bucks per acre more than me so less than 600 bucks more than me for the same house and 90 times more property. Thats an increase of 20 percent for land worth in the ball park of 100K more than my place. The more land is worth in your town, the more regresssive the rate becomes because the program values all forestry land at $112 bucks an acre, and you pay approx. 2% of that. So land in CU in Stowe see massive savings while land out in the boonies sees less, but still a considerable amount if it's a large piece. If someone has resources and buys large pieces of land, and enrolls them, then sits on them and logs them it costs them very little. In Vt it's an outdated plan that was a stop-gap measure..."Until the Vermont property tax system can be fixed. All these years later, the Vermont property tax system is still broken and Current Use is bigger, more complex, and more expensive than ever." This from one of the foresters in the you tube video below.

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    My biggest annoyance with the current use law in NH is that you can post your land to block public use, while enjoying the tax break.
    I have lots of land in current use and none of it is posted, all are welcome, mtn bikers, hunters, fishermen, hikers, etc.

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    Quote Originally Posted by needmorealtitude View Post
    My biggest annoyance with the current use law in NH is that you can post your land to block public use, while enjoying the tax break.
    I have lots of land in current use and none of it is posted, all are welcome, mtn bikers, hunters, fishermen, hikers, etc.
    Same in Vt.
    Remember that when CU was created in 1978 there was a hell of a lot more timber industry activity in Vt. The wood coming off private land was feeding into that production economy. As of last year, a daily hardwood harvest in Central Vt was in the red according to numbers provided at a meeting in Bradford. Way less timber industry being fed by way more private land in current use. The value to the public as fuel for the timber product industry has decreased. If the land isn't managed the result will be no high end timber to take anyway. The climate has changed. The industry has changed and largely disappearing. Half as many loggers in Vt than 20 years ago.

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    From Facebook:

    "All public access to Victory Hill Sector trails is currently suspended by the landowner following the recent Jursidictional Opinon issued by the State's Regional Act 250 Coordinator.
    The situation has been upsetting to our ridership, our team and our contractors who are losing employment and income due to the State's misuse of Act 250 upon a host landowner who welcomed trails to their land.
    Do not ride the trails, please.
    Thanks for your patience."

    also:

    https://anrweb.vt.gov/PubDocs/ANR/Pl...R1WRsjQO5LGjwY

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    Word is they would rather stay closed than get an Act 250 permit because of the precedent it will set

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mdlman View Post
    Word is they would rather stay closed than get an Act 250 permit because of the precedent it will set
    OR...they could let people ride for free and stay open. No one has acknowledged this.

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