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McClaughry: The steady erosion of liberty

Tue, 02/13/2018 - 3:59am -- tim

by John McClaughry From Revolutionary days into modern times, Vermonters have championed the liberty extolled in our 1777 Constitution. Article I declared that “all men have certain natural, inherent , and unalienable rights, amongst which are the enjoying of and defending life and liberty, acquiring, possessing and protecting property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety.”

Bank of Bennington and SVHC dedicate Kids Korner

Tue, 02/13/2018 - 2:24am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Leaders and staff from The Bank of Bennington and Southwestern Vermont Health Care gathered in the hospital’s Women’s and Children’s Services family waiting area to dedicate it as Kids Korner. The project was made possible through a $25,000 donation The Bank of Bennington made to Southwestern Vermont Health Care (SVHC). The funds were given in celebration of the bank’s centennial year for the creation of interactive, child-friendly waiting areas within the health system.

Scott appoints 13 to boards and commissions in January

Mon, 02/12/2018 - 4:29pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Governor Phil Scott today announced he appointed 13 Vermonters to State boards and commissions in the month of January. Boards and commissions serve an important role in state government, giving Vermonters numerous opportunities to serve their state and communities. The Governor’s office is currently soliciting applications to fill vacancies and upcoming term expirations. All those interested in serving on a board or commission should visit the Governor’s website to apply.

Delegation: Trump 'dead wrong' on infrastructure plan

Mon, 02/12/2018 - 4:25pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Vermont's congressional delegation, as well as most of their Democratic colleagues, were disappointed with President Trump's infrastructure plan presented to Congress today. The president's plan leans heavily on privatizing infrastructure, as well as leveraging local and state funds, in order to repair and upgrade large projects. Among those projects earmarked for selling off are the two airports serving Washington, DC: Dulles and Reagan National.

Tax reform to protect Vermont’s working families from $30 million tax hike

Mon, 02/12/2018 - 4:04pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Most Vermonters will see a tax increase from the new federal law that was supposed to cut taxes. So, Governor Phil Scott today released details on his tax reform plan, the Working Family Taxpayer Protection Act, to ensure Vermonters don’t see a surprise $30 million tax increase due to changes in federal law. The Federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) changed many components of the federal personal income tax structure that will impact Vermont’s tax system.

AGs urge Congress to help protect employees from sexual harassment

Mon, 02/12/2018 - 3:31pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Vermont Attorney General TJ Donovan joined a bipartisan coalition of 56 states and territories today urging Congress to end secret, forced arbitration in cases of workplace sexual harassment. Too often employees are required to sign employment contracts containing arbitration agreements mandating that sexual harassment claims be resolved through private arbitration instead of the judicial process. The secrecy surrounding these proceedings can protect serial violators and provide inadequate relief to victims.

VELCO and National Grid make key agreements for Granite State Power Link

Mon, 02/12/2018 - 1:45pm -- tim

by Timothy McQuiston Vermont Business Magazine New Hampshire regulators rejected on February 1 a permit for the winning bid by Eversource on a 1,200 megawatt renewable energy contract for the state of Massachusetts. While Eversource has vowed to appeal, losing bidders have renewed their efforts to capture the lucrative contract, which could have a profound economic impact on Vermont. Last week TDI-New England and its under-Lake Champlain project announced it was still interested, with Governor Phil Scott lending his support. And today, Vermont Electric Power Company (VELCO) and National Grid's GridAmerica Holdings, Inc, announced that they have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) and a services agreement to support the Granite State Power Link (GSPL) project.

Vermont State Police report on fatal shooting on I-89 Sunday

Mon, 02/12/2018 - 1:13pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Vermont State Police have released the following information on a fatal shooting on Interstate 89 on Sunday afternoon. At approximately 3:51 pm a Vermont State Police Trooper and an officer with the Richmond Police Department shot a male subject following a traffic stop that occurred on Interstate 89 southbound near mile marker 69 in the town of Bolton. The subject, later identified as Benjamin Gregware, 42 of Sheldon, was the sole occupant of the vehicle and he was subsequently transported to UVM Medical Center in Burlington where he later died.

UVM, faculty union begin fact-finding today

Mon, 02/12/2018 - 10:37am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine An independent fact-finder will begin hearing evidence from The University of Vermont and its faculty union, United Academics, this morning. As part of the process, both parties will present evidence and data to the independent fact-finder, who will make a recommendation at a later time regarding the single open issue, which is to determine the level of an appropriate salary increase.  There may be a need for a second fact-finding session in March.

Leahy outlines Vermont priorities in budget deal

Mon, 02/12/2018 - 9:51am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The Senate and the House early Friday morning passed a bipartisan budget agreement to keep the federal government open, strengthen the military and invest in priorities here at home.  President Trump signed the bill upon receiving it Friday morning.  Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), as Vice Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, played a key role in negotiating the package, which passed the Senate by a vote of 71 to 28, and the House by a vote of 240 to 186. Congressman Peter Welch voted in favor, while Senator Bernie Sanders voted against.

Air Guard responds to anti-F-35 Burlington ballot question

Mon, 02/12/2018 - 9:40am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The City of Burlington has added a citizens, non-binding question on the Town Meeting Day ballot regarding whether Burlington voters support, or not, the basing of the F-35 at the Air Guard base at the Burlington International Airport. There was much debate about the wording of the ballot question, which eventually was left intact from the original petition. On Friday afternoon Vermont National Guard Major General Steven Cray held a press conference at the base to discuss the F-35. His opening comments and video are below, as well as the ballot resolution.