Public meetings in Vermont must be held in person again, Condos says

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MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — Now that the state of emergency imposed to cope with the COVID-19 pandemic in Vermont is ending, meetings of public bodies must be held in person, Vermont Secretary of State Jim Condos said.

During the pandemic, public boards were authorized to hold those meetings remotely.

Condos said boards can still allow people to attend remotely, but a physical meeting location must be provided and those bodies must physically post notices of the meetings.

“Vermont’s public servants have made it clear that our government can still operate and make critical decisions during a public health emergency without sacrificing the right of Vermonters to know how their government is making those decisions and their right to participate in the process,” Condos said in a statement Monday. “As we transition towards our shared ‘new normal,’ it is vital that we use the many successes, best practices, and lessons learned from the last 15 months to improve how we, as trusted public officials, best serve the public.”

On Monday, after the state vaccinated just over 80% of the eligible population, Gov. Phil Scott lifted all COVID-19 restrictions. The state of emergency that allowed the remote meetings will expire at midnight Tuesday.

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