Commentary policy publishes 12 to 18 commentaries a week from a broad range of community sources. All commentaries must include the author’s first and last name, town of residence and a brief biography, including affiliations with political parties, lobbying or special interest groups. We have a minimum length of 400 words. We have found the ideal length is approximately 800 to 1,000 words. We provide some copyediting support, but we do not have the staff to fact-check commentaries. We reserve the right to reject opinions for matters of taste and accuracy. Commentaries are voices from the community and do not represent VTDigger in any way. Please send your commentary to Cate Chant, [email protected] and Anne Galloway, [email protected]

Monica Donovan: Growing a cannabis economy for everyone

With both Canada and Massachusetts moving toward legalization in the near future, it’s Vermont’s economy that will find itself losing.

Bill Schubart: Legislative false economies

As the legislative session winds down, it’s time to consider what happened, what didn’t, and more important, why?

Steve May: Informed consent — cannabis and ‘Tax & Regulate’

To have watched the cannabis and opiate legislative fights this term, one can’t help but feel like these conversations are happening on Pluto.

Martha McSherry: Cannabis legalization and civil rights

It is time for representatives in the Vermont House to take a deep breath and legalize, control and regulate the cannabis market.

Julia Maisto: Corrections must report facts and figures

Racial statistics are but one of many of the statistics omitted in the Department of Corrections FY 2015 Facts and Figures.

Islam & Eng: Resuscitating single payer health care

A single payer plan cannot be executed in a vacuum. While all incumbent health care stakeholders may not be appeased, their concerns should be openly addressed.

Don Keelan: Impact of a $15 minimum wage

A sector that has been consciously absent from the debate in bringing the minimum wage to $15 per hour has been the nonprofit sector.

Mary Powell: No apologies for salary

Annette Smith tries to shame me personally in an effort to increase support for her cause.

T.J. Donovan: Creating a more level playing field

Vermonters should be able to find employment opportunities without being disqualified because they made poor decisions earlier in their lives that led to a criminal conviction.

Michael Ware: Don’t drink the Teflon

Why does the U.S. government, seemingly obsessed with the safety of its citizens regarding possible terrorist attacks, allow big industry and agro-giants to pollute our air, food and water with potentially thousands of carcinogens?

George Jaeger: Foreign policy — the neglected issue

The conundrum facing voters is who is more likely to guide this nation wisely through the coming, probably more dangerous years and lay the basis for a coherent new long-term foreign policy.

Mary Hooper: Finding the right balance

The House Committee on Commerce has worked for two years to find the balance between people who really are independent businesses and those who really are employees.

Schuyler Gould: Is nuclear power really worth it?

George Clain, former president of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers local at Vermont Yankee, continues the equivocation of the nuclear power industry which prompted my original commentary.

Poor Elijah’s Almanack: Hold the phone

While boosters bill digital technology as the “golden key that will unlock students’ motivation and engagement,” critics warn that classroom tech has been “overhyped” and delivered mostly “unfulfilled promises.”