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In This State: Vermont eBird is an avian database for all

Chris Rimmer, left, executive director of the Vermont Center for Ecostudies, and VCE field biologist Kent McFarland at a birding site near the VCE office in Norwich. Photo by Tom Slayton
In its first 10 years, Vermont eBird has documented more than 380 bird species and tallied nearly 123,000 checklists of birds across Vermont. Thus, it has conducted probably the largest single measure of the state’s biodiversity.

 

Burlington College in fight for survival

The campus of Burlington College on North Avenue in Burlington. Photo by Laura Krantz/VTDigger
If a proposed land deal goes through, the college’s financial woes could be mitigated, but questions remain about the way administrators have handled the school's finances and management.

 

Life at an impasse: FairPoint worker misses job but supports strike

Bradford Elementary music teacher Heidi Allen discusses sound design with her husband, Josh Allen, while preparing the school's gym for the annual holiday concert in Bradford, Vt., on Dec. 18, 2014. Josh Allen, who is a striking Fairpoint worker, keeps busy by taking care of his four children, picketing, and running the handful of small businesses he operates with his wife.  Photo by Sarah Priestap/Valley News
Josh Allen of Bradford, one of the FairPoint workers who has been on strike since October, says that he’s been well-compensated for his work but says he’s earned every penny in a job that is both demanding and dangerous.

 

House Speaker Shap Smith seeks property tax reform proposals from the public

House Speaker Shap Smith speaks with reporters in his office on May 13, 2013. Photo by Anne Galloway/VTDigger
House Speaker Shap Smith is soliciting education finance reform proposals from the public. Education spending and financing reforms are top priorities for Smith this legislative session. Smith wants ideas from all-comers, and he is encouraging Vermonters to send him proposals. “Vermonters value high quality public education, but the current delivery and funding systems have resulted […]

 

Vermont Yankee decommissioning plan submitted to NRC

Spent fuel rod storage containers at  Vermont Yankee. File photo by Zachary P. Stephens/Brattleboro Reformer
Entergy Vermont Yankee officially presented the Nuclear Regulatory Commission with its Post Shutdown Decommissioning Report, but it's not that much different from the draft PSDAR presented to the state in October.

 

Margolis: Is Vermont spending too little?

Dezirae Sheldon.
Budget cuts have a cost – an economic cost if state colleges can’t train the technicians and nurses of the next decade, and a more intimate, personal cost if the disabled get fewer services, the streams get more polluted, and the babies of poor, confused, and perhaps irresponsible young mothers are less safe.

 

Boost financial literacy for all, task force recommends

Linda Tarr-Whalen, chair of k-12 Task Force Committee spoke as officials released the report of the Vermont Financial Literacy Task Force on Thursday at Champlain College. Photo by Stephen Mease / Champlain College.
Vermont falls short on financial literacy education at all levels, according to a new report. Members of a task force say better financial literacy would be a boon to individuals, families, and even the economy.

 

Administration spent about $1.6 million studying single payer

Gov. Peter Shumlin announces that single payer health care will not go forward in the next legislative session. Photo by John Herrick/VTDigger
Estimate includes consultants, the cost of several reports and administrative staff time. Cost will continue to add up as invoices are paid.

 

Digger Projects

2014 Election Micro-Site

The 2014 midterm elections are here. Access our comprehensive coverage, including debate archives, candidate profiles, side-by-side comparisons, campaign finance connections, and more. Visit project

VTDigger's Legislator Lookup

Enter your address in VTDigger's Legislative Lookup to find your lawmakers and learn more about them, including biographical and contact information, sponsored bills, voting records, committee memberships and campaign finance details. Visit project

Campaign Finance Database

VTDigger's Campaign Finance Database allows you to find out who gives to political campaigns and how candidates raise money in Vermont.

For the first time, and at no cost to taxpayers, users can easily search for donors and candidates by name, quickly retrieve aggregated totals, and explore business and family connections between donors. Visit project

VTDigger / Castleton Institute Poll

The VTDigger/Castleton Polling Institute poll is based on data from 682 interviews drawn from a random sample of registered voters in Vermont. Interviews were conducted by phone by from March 31 to April 7, 2014. Thirteen percent of interviews were conducted with registered voters on cellphones. The data reported are weighted based on estimations of the population of Vermont registered voters to account for differential in response rates among age groups. Visit project

A User's Guide to Vermont Health Connect

This special section explains how Vermont's health care exchange works for individuals and small businesses. The guide includes interactive subsidy graphs, a navigator map and detailed information about subsidies, penalties and tax ramifications. Visit project

Commentary

James Haslam: Moving forward on health care

Vermont can and must move forward -- with or without Shumlin -- to secure the human right to health care for everyone.

Paul Cillo: Where’s the crisis?

The so-called “K-12 education affordability crisis” is remarkable for the stunning lack of information to confirm that it even exists.

Rob Roper: Universal school choice is the answer

This system has been tested. We know it works. It is rooted in Vermont history and Vermont values. And, it is wildly popular in the communities that have it.

Quote of the Day

“My discussions with people go like this: They say, ‘I want you to lower my property taxes.’ I say, ‘What would you like me to do to lower your property taxes?’ Everyone has different ideas. The challenge we have as a Legislature is trying to bring consensus on how you solve the articulated problem most people feel, which is lower my property taxes.” — House Speaker Shap Smith

See more quotes

Comments

  • Jay Moore commented on James Haslam: Moving forward on health care: Moderator - Corrected version. Bravo, James. (...)
  • David Hurwitz commented on Community-media leaders recognized for contributions by RETN: Congratulations to Rob Hunter for a very well (...)
  • John McClaughry commented on House Speaker Shap Smith seeks property tax reform proposals from the public: Not to be radical or anything, but how about (...)
  • Michael Taub commented on Administration spent about $1.6 million studying single payer: 1.6 million would pay the salaries of a lot o (...)
  • George Coppenrath commented on Rob Roper: Universal school choice is the answer: “but who’s going to drive? parents with worn- (...)
  • Paul Richards commented on Life at an impasse: FairPoint worker misses job but supports strike: "Plus, if you had a job for 20+ years and the (...)
  • Wayne Andrews commented on Life at an impasse: FairPoint worker misses job but supports strike: Union workers live by the sword and die by th (...)
  • Traven Leyshon commented on James Haslam: Moving forward on health care: Kim, if you listen to and read the actual sta (...)
  • Robert Roper commented on Rob Roper: Universal school choice is the answer: "There aren’t many private schools that can o (...)
  • Desiree Roberts commented on Life at an impasse: FairPoint worker misses job but supports strike: That's not what they are saying at all. This (...)
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