Vermont legislature

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 […]

Shumlin backs off single payer plan

Gov. Peter Shumlin announces that single payer health care will not go forward in the next legislative session. Photo by John Herrick/VTDigger

Gov. Peter Shumlin’s dream of a single payer health care plan evaporated Wednesday as the administration said the state could not afford it anytime in the near future.

Rep. Bill Lippert to play pivotal role as chair of House Health Care

Rep. William Lippert, D-Hinesburg, chair of the House Committee on Judiciary. Photo by Roger Crowley/for VTDigger

Rep. Maxine Grad will be chair of House Judiciary; Rep. Dave Sharpe will lead House Education and Rep. Mitzi Johnson will take over House Appropriations.

Administration prepared to scrap SPEED program

A turbine at Green Mountain Power's Kingdom Community Wind project on Lowell Mountain.  Photo by John Herrick/VTDigger

The Department of Public Service says a system such as a renewable portfolio standard would better meet the state’s energy goals than the current voluntary system.

Sen. Tim Ashe clarifies VPR remarks about single payer

Sen. Tim Ashe, D/P-Chittenden, is chair of the Senate Committee on Finance. Photo by Roger Crowley/for VTDigger

State Sen. Tim Ashe, D/P-Chittenden, says universal coverage should be a goal during discussion of a publicly financed health care system next session.

Dottie Deans: Winding down and looking ahead

Vermont Democrats heard you during the election, and we listened.

Inside the Golden Bubble: Caucus jocularity belies tough game ahead in Montpelier

Speaker of the House Shap Smith also attended the ceremony.

This year the fault lines are difficult to see in advance. With more Republicans in the Statehouse and a post-election sense that the electorate put many Democrats who won on probation, there could be a number of divided votes in both the House and Senate chambers.

Jim Masland: Health care reform can’t wait

The first order of business for the new Legislature is to develop the financing that will make Green Mountain Care work. It will not be easy by any means.

Allan Rodgers: The $10,000 college degree

EXC Could Vermont, always first in experiments, offer a statewide $5,000 associate degree education, followed by a $5,000 bachelor’s degree completion program?

Keelan: Making the veterans home work

The administration made the suggestion that the home’s certified beds be reduced when in fact it should be just the opposite — they should be doubled.

Gregory Dennis: The governor and the ungrateful liberals

Midway between the November elections and the start of the Vermont legislative hunting season, the question on most political observers’ minds is this: Will Gov. Shumlin get his groove back?

Trail Mix: Milne concedes he won’t concede

Scott Milne

VIDEO While Milne insisted at a press conference on Monday that he won’t twist the arms of lawmakers, he launched into a post-election campaign speech at the Statehouse that was apparently designed to shame them into voting against Shumlin.

Scott Milne expects to make announcement Monday

Republican Scott Milne said Thursday he will likely tell the public Monday how he plans to proceed with his campaign for governor. Milne on Nov. 4 lost the popular vote by 2,434 votes against incumbent Democratic Gov. Peter Shumlin. But because neither candidate garnered more than 50 percent of the votes, the Legislature will choose […]

Property tax reform, education cost control proposals emerge from ad hoc working group

House Speaker Shap Smith in his office at the Statehouse in Montpelier on Thursday. Photo by Tom Brown/VTDigger

Lawmakers this session will decide whether to tinker with Act 60 and Act 68, or replace the state’s unique statewide property tax system with a new formula for funding education. The other looming question is whether lawmakers will institute cost controls that would put a damper on school spending.

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