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.

Police: 9-year-old accidentally shot by father

A 9-year-old girl is being treated for a gunshot wound after she was accidentally shot by her father, police say. According to Vermont State Police, Randy Babcock was cleaning his .22 caliber handgun at a family camp in Ira on Sunday when the gun accidentally fired, striking his daughter, McKenzie Ezzo, in the stomach. Ezzo’s […]

Vermont Gas says rate decrease would save customers $30 a year

Vermont Gas said Monday that it will request a 3 percent rate decrease for natural gas that, if approved, would begin Nov. 1. The company asked the regulatory Public Service Board to OK what the company says is its 12th rate decrease since January 2012. The latest proposed decrease would save customers about $30 a […]

Dorset fire districts consider collaboration, consolidation

Editor’s note: This article is by Andrew McKeever, of the Manchester Journal, in which it was first published Aug. 27, 2015. DORSET — Town officials met with representatives of Dorset’s two fire districts Monday at the town offices to begin a process of exploring how a consolidation into one fire department — or more collaboration […]

Environmental judge approves Costco gas pump plan

An environmental court judge has approved Costco’s plans to build a gasoline filling facility at its Colchester store. Costco’s plans to build a 12-pump facility on the warehouse retailers’ property near Interstate 89 and U.S. 2 and 7 were first launched in 2007. Concerns over a nearby wetland, filed by the owners of two nearby […]

State legislators ask Labor Department to ensure Uber’s compliance with employment laws

A group of lawmakers is questioning whether Uber, the ride-sharing company operating under temporary permission in Burlington, is in compliance with Vermont law. The Legislative Vermont Workers’ Caucus submitted a letter Aug. 20 to Annie Noonan, commissioner of the Department of Labor, regarding Uber’s alleged noncompliance with state laws governing workers’ compensation and unemployment. According […]

VSEA wins concessions for PSAP workers at stations set to close early

The state employees union has secured concessions for workers at two emergency call centers that the Department of Public Safety chose to close early, according to a memo obtained by VTDigger. State officials said the Rutland and Derby public safety answering points, or PSAPs, will– close next week because they don’t have adequate staff to […]

Jury duty scam calls continue in Chittenden County

The Chittenden County Sheriff’s Department says it has has received more than 30 complaints of a phone scam involving jury duty. The callers inform residents that they have missed jury duty and an arrest warrant will be issued unless they pay $978.98 through a wire transfer or a prepaid credit card. Crystal Baldwin, an employee […]

Winston Prouty Center votes to pursue purchase of Austine School campus

Editor’s note: This article is by Howard Weiss-Tisman, of the Brattleboro Reformer, in which it was first published Aug. 26, 2015. BRATTLEBORO — The Winston Prouty Center for Child Development Board of Directors has unanimously approved a plan to pursue the purchase of the former Austine School for the Deaf campus. The board voted Monday […]

Interim E-911 Board director named to permanent post

The independent board that runs Vermont’s 911 system announced Tuesday that its interim executive director will take the position permanently. Barb Neal has been serving as interim executive director of the Enhanced 911 Board since April, when David Tucker retired after 30 years in state government and recommended Neal as his ideal replacement. She worked […]

State names new director of EB-5 Regional Center

A new director of the state’s EB-5 Regional Center was named Tuesday. Gene Fullam, who has worked for foreign and domestic investment banks, will replace former director Brent Raymond, who resigned last month to take a job at Mount Snow. The federal EB-5 immigrant investor program offers foreign nationals the opportunity to gain U.S. citizenship […]

TransCanada loses appeal of tax assessment against Rockingham

Editor’s note: This article is by Domenic Poli, of the Brattleboro Reformer, in which it was first published Aug. 25, 2015. ROCKINGHAM — The town has won its tax case involving TransCanada. Rockingham went to court with the North American energy giant over a tax appeal regarding the latter’s hydroelectric dam at 20 Mill St. […]

Demonstrators attempt to halt work on Vermont Gas project in Essex

Opponents of a natural gas pipeline extension attempted to halt work on the project Monday in Essex. A group of more than a dozen demonstrators attempted to disrupt work along Vermont 289 on Vermont Gas Systems’ proposed pipeline extension from Colchester to Middlebury, according to a news release from the group Rising Tide Vermont. The […]

Advocate takes new role with public health nonprofit

The Vermont Public Health Association, an advocacy nonprofit, has hired Montpelier attorney Anthony Iarrapino as an executive adviser, the group announced Friday. Iarrapino, who previously worked for the Conservation Law Foundation, made his first foray into public health advocacy during the last legislative session spearheading a push for an excise tax on sugar sweetened beverages […]

Update: UVM, union reach agreement on part-time faculty contract

The University of Vermont and the union representing 163 part-time faculty members has reached an agreement on new contract. The deal reached with United Academics calls for a 8.75 percent salary increase over the three-year contract and faculty members who teach nine or more credits a semester per year will be eligible to receive university-paid […]

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