Taylor Dobbs / VPR File

In a packed ballroom in South Burlington's DoubleTree Hotel, a well-known scientist studying Lake Champlain stood up and told state officials that some of the targets they've set to reduce pollution into the lake simply cannot be reached.

"It's just silly," said Mike Winslow, the staff scientist for the Lake Champlain Committee in an interview. He was talking about the state's target of a 60 percent phosphorus reduction from forests in a section of the southern Champlain watershed.


The ink on this year’s state budget is barely dry. But the Shumlin administration is already putting together next year’s spending plan, and agency heads have been instructed to develop zero-growth budgets.

“Caution” and “restraint" are the two words Administration Secretary Justin Johnson is using to characterize the state’s approach to building next year’s budget. And caution and restraint, at this point at least, mean a level-funded spending plan for next year.

Sara Vitale / Angel Boy Art

In adaptive sports, traditional equipment like skis and bicycles are altered to fit someone who needs it so that they too can access and enjoy the sport. Instead of equipment, Angel Boy Art in Brattleboro alters paintbrushes and other mediums to create art therapy for kids in need.

Ted S. Warren / AP

The forest fires in California and the Pacific Northwest may feel very far away, but crews of local firefighters and Forest Service employees have been rotating out to those locations all summer to provide relief and assistance in fire suppression.

Alison Redlich / AP

Campaign 2016 is officially underway. Recently, House Speaker Shap Smith announced that he's seeking the Democratic nomination for governor. Smith is one of several Democrats with his eye on the office, but he's the first to make it official.

AP/Toby Talbot

Stories about New Orleans ten years after Hurricane Katrina have prompted Vermonters to also reflect on the four years since Tropical Storm Irene; both anniversaries are this weekend. A UVM disaster sociologist says that social and economic advantages are the strongest indicators of how a child will do in recovering from a disaster, rather personality or character traits. 

Christian K. Lee / Molly Riley / Charlie Neibergall / AP

The dynamics of the Democratic presidential primary campaign could change dramatically if Vice President Joe Biden enters the race. But Bernie Sanders' campaign says it has no plans to change its basic strategy if Biden decides to run.

Toby Talbot / AP

Earlier this month, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Vermont state government released new targets for reducing pollution in Lake Champlain and a detailed plan for how the state would reach those targets. But the plan is already attracting some criticism.

A statewide series of meetings that began this week is designed to rally members of the faith community to the cause of economic equality.

Courtesy / Burlington School District

Burlington School officials announced Wednesday morning that superintendent Yaw Obeng, who lives in Canada and has had trouble securing a visa since he was chosen to lead the district, was awarded a visa this week and will be in Burlington for the coming school year.