VPR News
5:22 pm
Tue April 22, 2014

Frat Houses Fret Over Statehouse Tax Bill

The owners of the Sigma Phi fraternity house on College Street in Burlington would owe $31,068 this year in taxes if it didn't have a tax exemption.
Taylor Dobbs VPR

A tax bill in the statehouse has fraternities and sororities in Burlington on the defensive.

The bill would revoke a long-standing tax exemption for the owners of fraternity and sorority housing and require them all to pay taxes based on the appraised value of the property.

For the 10 fraternity and sorority houses in Burlington, those payments add up to $278,120 a year, and the students in those groups say the bill threatens their presence in the university community.

Read more
Vermont Edition
3:19 pm
Tue April 22, 2014

What We Talk About When We Talk About GMOs

A protest on World Environment Day, Wednesday June 5, 2013, in Quezon, Philippines. A coalition called "Green Moms" advocates organic foods to show their opposition to a genetically modified rice variety known as "Golden Rice."
Bullit Marquez AP

Vermont is poised to pass a GMO labeling bill before the end of the session. The labeling issue is framed as a right to know what's in our food. But that's not the only thing people talk about when they argue about GMOs. There's also a controversy about whether GMOs might be bad for our health, or whether enough research has even been done on the health effects. And there's an argument over whether GMOs lead to an overuse of herbicides, which in turn may create species of super-weeds. Or whether GMOs help farmers use fewer insecticides and till the soil less often.

Read more
Vermont Edition
1:57 pm
Tue April 22, 2014

Greenland's Ice Yields New Information About Climate Shifts

Scientists were stunned to discover an ancient tundra landscape frozen under two miles of ice in Greenland. It’s been there for three million years--and may lead geologists to rethink how Greenland’s big ice works. UVM professor Paul Bierman led the team
Joshua Brown/University Of Vermont

When a group of scientists led by UVM’s Paul Bierman started studying a sample of ice taken from the very bottom of Greenland’s ice sheet, they expected to find a mix of ice and dirt or rock. But what they discovered surprised them. It revealed a landscape very unlike what everyone had envisioned, and changes our understanding of what’s been happening to Greenland’s ice over the last several million years.

Read more
Vermont Edition
1:49 pm
Tue April 22, 2014

Update: The 2014 Sugaring Season

A long, cold winter followed by a sudden spring is usually not a good dynamic for sugarmakers.

Ann Rose is co-owner of Green Mountain Sugar House in Ludlow. She spoke with Vermont Edition about how the 2014 sugaring season has been going for her and other sugarmakers.

Read more
Vermont Edition
12:00 pm
Tue April 22, 2014

Toxic Labeling: Who Should Decide?

A recently passed Senate bill would give the state health department jurisdiction over labeling or banning products containing toxic chemicals.
Rick Bowmer AP

When consumer products such as carpeting, jewelry or cosmetics contain toxic chemicals, who should decide how they should be labeled or if they should banned?

A bill passed by the Senate would give that authority to the state health department. But the House version limits that jurisdiction to just children’s products. And industry leaders would like to further limit its reach.

Bill-sponsor State Senator Kevin Mullin of Rutland and Associated Industries of Vermont Vice President William Driscoll discuss the pros and cons of the bill.

Read more
VPR News
6:15 am
Tue April 22, 2014

Vermont Advocate: Men Must Help Change The Culture Of Domestic Violence

About 40 years ago a group of women in Brattleboro got together to create a safe haven for other women in their community who were suffering from abuse.

The Women’s Crisis Center changed its name a few years ago to the Women’s Freedom Center. VPR’s Mitch Wertlieb spoke with Shari May, community outreach advocate for the Women’s Freedom Center.

The late 1960s and early 1970s marked a time of great change around civil rights issues, including women’s rights.

Read more
VPR News
5:30 am
Tue April 22, 2014

Legislators Push 'Reset' On Broadband Goals

A bill moving through the Legislature sets ambitious new broadband goals for Vermont. 

If the goals are met, it would mean high speed fiber optic service for every Vermont location  within the next 10 years. But it's not clear how that goal will be reached, or how the improvements will be paid for.

Until now the state has set incremental targets for broadband coverage – beginning with the goal of simply providing some kind of service to every Vermont address.

Read more
The Frequency
5:40 pm
Mon April 21, 2014

Shumlin Health Care Architect To Coordinate Regional Reform Efforts

Anya Rader Wallack testifies before the House Appropriations committee on Feb. 7, 2013 in Montpelier.
Toby Talbot AP

Anya RaderWallack, the principal architect of Gov. Peter Shumlin’s single-payer health care reform initiative, announced Monday that she has agreed to advise Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center on health reform issues across Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont.

Read more
VPR News
5:17 pm
Mon April 21, 2014

Thousands Of Vermont Health Connect Customers Stuck On Service Backlog

Vermont leads the nation when it comes to per-capita enrollment in the new health insurance exchange. But for many customers, the transition to Vermont Health Connect has been anything but smooth. And thousands of Vermonters are now stuck in a sort of insurance limbo as the state works to iron out wrinkles in the system.

Nearly a sixth of the state’s population will soon be getting its health coverage through plans sold on the new online exchange. And officials in the Shumlin Administration say they’ve exceeded their enrollment targets.

Read more
Dorothy's List
5:16 pm
Mon April 21, 2014

And The DCF Book Award Goes To...

R.J. Palacio's "Wonder" is the 2013-2014 winner of the Dorothy Canfield Fisher Book Award.
Random House

Voting among Vermont's fourth through eighth graders for the 2013-2014 Dorothy Canfield Fisher Children's Book Award concluded on Friday. And the winner is...

Wonderby R.J. Palacio!

Read more

Pages