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Dear Representative ____,

I urge you to oppose H4741, the “expedited permitting bill”. It would disempower communities, threaten the environment, and encourage poorly planned, potentially harmful development.

Specifically, the bill:
· Undermines local zoning, an important community tool for democratically guiding local development.
· Eliminates the rights of citizens to protect endangered river ways and coastlines through legal proceedings.
· Requires automatic approval if cause to modify or stop the project is not fully established within an inadequate 180-day time limit.
· Allows potentially harmful development to proceed while under appeal.
· Pressures cities and towns to adopt “expedited permitting” through coercive financial incentives.
· Erodes the traditional authority of Town Meeting by placing the decision to adopt expedited permitting in the hands of the Board of Selectmen. 
·Disregards longstanding safeguards for local democracy and the community environment.

I hope you will allow ample time for statewide hearings and local input before new permitting laws are enacted. It is unacceptable that this bill is coming up for a vote without the public having had a chance to testify on its critical provisions.

I would appreciate if you would get back to me and let me know how you vote on this bill.

Thank you very much.


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