Vermont News Briefs

VTDigger’s beat reporters cover health care, politics, education, energy, the environment, business and state finances. We offer brief Vermont news stories on issues are are keeping tabs on.

Burlington man sentenced for selling heroin

A Burlington man was sentenced to three years of supervised release after he pleaded guilty to federal charges for dealing heroin. Samuel Spivack, 32, was sentenced Monday, according to a news release from the office of the U.S. attorney for the District of Vermont. The judge ordered him to serve the first three months on […]

ATF offering reward for leads in Waterbury armed robbery

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is seeking information about an armed robbery last month at a convenience store in Waterbury. The ATF is offering a reward of up to $5,000 for information that leads to an arrest of those involved in the holdup at the Champlain Farms on North Main Street at […]

‘Important historic’ turnip legislation gets governor’s signature

Maple is Vermont’s official state flavor and apple its official pie. Now Vermont will have the Gilfeather turnip as its official vegetable. Gov. Peter Shumlin signed the state vegetable into law Tuesday in the company of the sixth-grade class that lobbied for its recognition and the couple who trademarked the Gilfeather turnip name. The bill […]

New Jersey man sentenced to 36 months for heroin dealing

A federal judge sentenced a man to three years in prison Monday for dealing heroin in Vermont. Jonathan Nisbett, 24, of Newark, New Jersey, pleaded guilty to charges that he regularly traveled to Vermont to sell heroin in 2015. Nisbett was arrested in August as he was getting off a train in Essex Junction. Police […]

Woman gets federal prison in ambulance embezzlement case

A Derby Line woman is heading to federal prison after being convicted of fraud and tax evasion charges. Amy C. Fletcher, 45, was accused of embezzling nearly $290,000 from the Derby Line Ambulance service over the course of three years. She was the office manager for the program, which she ran with her then-husband, Brian […]

Brattleboro’s 15th Strolling of the Heifers is June 4

This article is by Robert Audette, of the Brattleboro Reformer, in which it was first published May 21, 2016. BRATTLEBORO — For the 15th year in a row, the heifers will stroll on Main Street on June 4. The Strolling of the Heifers Weekend, features a parade of flower-bedecked heifer calves led by future farmers […]

Vermont’s unemployment rate falls slightly

Vermont’s unemployment rate fell for the ninth consecutive month in April, this time to a seasonally adjusted 3.2 percent. The change from 3.3 percent in March is not statistically significant, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. But the rate remains lower than April’s national unemployment rate of 5 percent. Vermont was tied in […]

Addison County Rep. Jewett not seeking re-election

Former Democratic House Majority Leader Willem Jewett, D-Ripton, is retiring after 14 years in the House, the latest in a string of high-profile legislative retirements. “It’s been a pretty significant sacrifice in terms of family and my profession,” said Jewett, a lawyer by trade. “I need to take care of some things I haven’t had […]

Hydro-Quebec takes credit for emissions savings in U.S.

The Canadian electric utility Hydro-Québec, which supplies about 22 percent of Vermont’s power, says the renewable energy it exported to the U.S. in 2015 prevented 7.4 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions that otherwise would have come from fossil fuel plants. The assertion was part of an annual report the publicly owned utility released […]

Program touts results in getting kids to eat school breakfast

A pilot program looking at ways to get more kids to eat school breakfast has confirmed what many might suspect: It helps to serve it after the start of the school day. The initial Breakfast After the Bell Challenge increased the number of students eating school breakfasts by at least 20 percent in nine of […]

Republican lawyer declares bid for attorney general

Deborah Bucknam, a Republican attorney from Walden, officially announced her bid Monday to succeed Attorney General William Sorrell, a Democrat who is not seeking re-election. “Vermonters are looking for change in leadership and a new direction,” Bucknam said. “As attorney general, I will not only be the attorney for the state of Vermont, but I […]

Campbell aide Conor Kennedy running to succeed him in Senate

With Senate President Pro Tempore John Campbell not running for re-election, the Windsor County Democrat’s protege, Conor Kennedy, announced Monday that he hopes to fill the seat. Kennedy, 27, served as Campbell’s deputy chief of staff for three years in the Senate. When Campbell announced his impending departure in April, he said he wanted Kennedy […]

Baruth backs Ashe as next Senate President Pro Tem

The Senate majority leader has thrown his support behind Sen. Tim Ashe to be the next Senate President Pro Tempore. Sen. Philip Baruth, D-Chittenden, had been considering running for the top Senate job himself but said Friday he would support Ashe, a Democrat/Progressive, also from Chittenden County. Sen. John Campbell, the current pro tem, is […]

Baruth supports Ashe for Pro Tem

The Senate majority leader has thrown his support behind Sen. Tim Ashe to be the next Senate President Pro Tempore. Sen. Philip Baruth, D-Chittenden, had been considering running for the top Senate job himself but said Friday he would support Ashe, a Democrat/Progressive, also from Chittenden County. Sen. John Campbell, the current president pro tem, […]