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Vermont News: Top Stories

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Latest district merger plans come with some quirks

education
One would join Montpelier — with more than 1,000 students — and tiny Roxbury even though they aren’t adjacent. Residents in another area have conditioned their approval on tax breaks.

 

Experts offer analysis of southern Vermont economic issues

Federal Reserve
Two economists said the region's workforce and demographic problems are shared by rural areas nationwide. But some believe regional cooperation could be a solution.

 

Rutland school board says talks with teachers at impasse

Rutland School District
The board said it offered a 4.76 percent average raise for each of the next four years. Health care is a sticking point too. The union criticized the decision "to walk away rather than keep talking."

 

Judge tosses portions of suit claiming race bias, illegal search

He dismissed allegations against the Bennington Police Department and its chief, but allowed other claims against the town and two officers to go forward.

 

No criminal charges for protesters at Middlebury College

Middlebury College
Local police said they didn’t have the evidence to charge people they could identify, and that they didn’t know the names of others. But they agreed with the college: Many weren’t students.

 

UPDATED: Scott vetoes pot legalization, but says he’s open to compromise

Gov. Phil Scott
He said the legislation does not sufficiently address his concerns about driving safety, youth access and more. But he suggested he might accept a revised version.

 

Scott appoints Mullin to chair Green Mountain Care Board

Kevin Mullin
Scott said he would also appoint Maureen Usifer, the former chief financial officer for Seventh Generation, to the other vacant board position.

 

Doggedly persistent, not always popular. Please support VTDigger’s investigative reporting.

Jane Sanders
We started writing about loan fraud allegations at Burlington College back in 2014. Until we wrote about Jane Sanders’ involvement, the public didn’t know.

 

Trump takes aim at rural areas and poor with budget plan

Donald Trump
The plan would cut many programs on which Vermonters rely, including Medicaid and LIHEAP. Trump said the latter sees “sizeable fraud and abuse” and is no longer necessary.

 

Margolis: Democracy needs a little secrecy

Private sign
We need not know everything the government thought about doing but decided against, or every conversation that went into every decision.

 

Former U.S. attorney joins UVM Health Network legal team

Eric Miller
In an earlier stint as a private attorney, Eric Miller represented the UVM Medical Center in a dispute with an independent doctors office.

 

UVM board approves historically low tuition increases

UVM
The college says it’s the smallest percentage increase since 1977. UVM is still among the most expensive public universities in the country.

 

No break for Jay Peak on tax penalty; court battle looms

Michael Goldberg
Town officials rejected a request by a court-appointed receiver who is overseeing properties tied to a federal fraud case. The tax bill has been paid, but a $164,159 late fee remains.

 

Rock-crushing operation restarts, and so does opposition

The state Supreme Court shut down the work in August. Now the operation at the Rock of Ages quarry in Barre Town has moved to another part of the property, and neighbors are furious.

 

Simmering conflict leads to principal’s replacement

school bus
The Stamford board raised issues including his attire, communication, and disagreements with an administrative assistant. The principal calls it micromanaging that led to “the worst year” of his career.

 

Special Reports and Projects

DC reporting: The latest on the Trump effect on Vermont

Follow news about the impact of the Trump administration’s policies on Vermont and keep tabs on Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., Sen. Patrick Leah, D-Vt., and Rep. Peter Welch, D-Vt.

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Lessons from Colorado: A pot legalization market grows overnight

With Vermont considering legalization, VTDigger examines the pitfalls and successes of the retail pot market in Colorado.

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VTDigger's 2017 legislative coverage

Find all of our coverage on important legislation and oversight issues on this microsite, and follow stories about bills listed by topic — education, energy, judiciary, the economy, health care, and the budget.

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Eyes on the Border

Authorities acknowledge that despite round-the-clock patrols and an advanced network of surveillance technology, they can’t be certain how much criminal activity occurs along the border.

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Maple Leaf Treatment Center closes

The opiate treatment facility closed in January after multiple state investigations into allegations of Medicaid fraud, inadequate patient care and a hostile work environment.

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Suspicion in a small town: A town clerk is accused of mishandling money

The Coventry Selectboard is suing town clerk Cynthia Diaz who is accused of embezzling $1.4 million. She says it’s “a smear campaign.”

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EB-5 fraud at Vermont's Jay Peak

Read about the latest developments. Check out the investigative stories VTDigger has published about Jay Peak, Q Burke and AnC Bio Vermont over the past several years.

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Quote of the Day

“If you’re an 85-year-old woman and you’re relying on heating assistance to heat your home when it’s 45 degrees inside, that is so real to you. It’s not political. It’s not a bumper sticker. That’s your life.” — Al Gobielle, Vermont Human Services Secretary on the cuts to major public assistance programs outlined in the President’s proposed budget.

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