Bob Northrop devoted his life to support a variety of Vermont institutions.He was best known for his efforts to protect the Long Trail. Northrop hiked the trail end to end many times over the years, most notably in 2001 at the age of 80.

Northrop died this weekend at his home in Underhill.He was 92.

Northrop was born in Massachusetts. He went to Middlebury College in the early 1940s and after enlisting in the Army during the Second World War, attended college in New York and at the University of Vermont.

Kirk Carapezza / VPR

Vermont became the first state on Monday to publish the rates it would charge people who don't currently have health insurance to get coverage - a key step toward establishing the health exchanges that are central to the federal health care law known as Obamacare.

Under the proposed rates, the amount that individuals would pay every month would vary from $360 for the most basic package to more than $600 for the most comprehensive.

A school in Hanover is being tested for the presence of a chemical that was used as a refrigerant at a nearby laboratory.

Richmond Middle School sits across the road from the U-S Army Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory.

The chemical trichloroethylene was used as a refrigerant at the lab from the 1960s until 1987.

Officials say TCE has been found at trace levels on the lab grounds, but recent testing hasn't found any unsafe levels of the vapor at the school.

April showers bring out more than May flowers. They also signal the return of frog and salamander populations, including Vermont's iconic spring peepers. But increased development can mean more hazardous migrations for native amphibians.

After a long week debating budgets, taxes and renewable energy siting policies, Senate and House lawmakers can take a breath as they return to their committees this week to discuss a wide range of topics.The House Judiciary Committee will continue to take testimony on a measure that would decriminalize the poss

One of the concepts we hear about in the effort to improve our health care system is the idea of a patient-centered medical home.

Traditionally, a patient's health might be managed based on whatever ailment prompted an office visit. A medical home, by contrast, takes the person's major health issues into account as a more holistic idea. It requires the entire office staff to be involved in anticipating what care and information that patient will need. It's that anticipation that's one of the key differences that makes a medical home work.

Kirk Carapezza / VPR File Photo

Vermont, which continues to emerge as a national health care leader, released on Monday the amount it proposes to charge consumers for health insurance under the federal Affordable Care Act.

Under the proposed rates, the average cost for an individual would vary from $365.76 for the most basic package to $609.47 for the most comprehensive. Rates for family plans would be higher. People under certain income limits would get federal subsidies to pay for insurance.

VPR/Melody Bodette / David Marvin holds a fresh bottle of maple syrup at Butternut Mountain Farm in Morrisville. The company handles 50 percent of

Sap is flowing, the buckets are hanging from trees and the steam is billowing from country sugarhouses all over the state.

It's an image that helps sugarmakers market their syrup. But it's no longer a very accurate picture.

Maple has become big business. In the past ten years, the number of trees that aretapped has tripled and technological advancements have doubled the amount of syrup produced for each tap.

http://www.vpr.net/audio/news/regional_news/2013/04/spot-0330-0401-Maple Boom_040113_Melody Bodette.mp3

Dozens of Vermont musicians and artists have used crowdfunding to raise money for their projects by appealing for donations through the New York City based Website Kickstarter.

The site enables people to post information about a project, such as recording a CD or publishing a book. And then they can raise money to pay for the production through small donations.

http://www.vpr.net/audio/news/regional_news/2013/04/SPot-0401apz-Crowd Funding_040113_Steve Zind.mp3

Welch To Talk About Renewable Energy

Apr 1, 2013

Congressman Peter Welch is planning to announce legislation he says will make it easier to pay for renewable energy projects in Vermont and around the country.

Welch will talk about the proposal today with Vermont renewable energy companies at AllEarth Renewables in Williston.

Welch plans to tour the facility before the round-table discussion at 1 p.m.,which will include representatives from AllEarth, Darker Solar, Northern Power Systems, Encore Redevelopment and other companies.

Hundreds Protest Vermont Yankee

Apr 1, 2013

Hundreds of people who rallied in protest of the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant over the weekend, and they say it's time for the 41-year-old reactor to shut down.

More than 500 people marched through downtown Brattleboro Saturday carrying banners and chanting shut it down. Organizers claim the plant, owned by Entergy, has been operating illegally.

The march came five days after the Vermont Supreme Court denied a petition from the anti-nuclear New England Coalition to shut down the plant.

Truck Damages Dummerston Covered Bridge

Apr 1, 2013

Vermont State Police are looking for the driver of a box truck that shattered a cross beam and tore the trim on a covered bridge in Dummerston, believed to be the longest covered bridge still in use in the state.

Police said the Budget rental truck crashed into the West Dummerston Covered Bridge at about 5:15 p.m. Sunday. The truck stopped briefly, but the police said the driver did not report the accident.

The town's highway supervisor says the bridge did not sustain any structural damage and is still safe for travel.

UVM To Offer Online Public Health Course

Apr 1, 2013

The University of Vermont is launching an online certificate of graduate study in public health.

Beginning this summer, medical and nursing students, health practitioners, public health professionals, and health care researchers will be able to enroll in the 18-credit, online graduate course that navigates current public health and health policy issues.

The course is designed to give students a strong foundation in population health sciences including epidemiology, bio statistics and environmental health.

Volunteers Wanted For EEE Study

Apr 1, 2013

Vermont health officials are seeking volunteers for a study of Eastern equine encephalitis.

Matthew Thomas of the state Department of Health says officials hope to learn more about the prevalence of the mosquito-transmitted virus in Vermont. Two men, one from Brandon and the other from Sudbury, died last year in Vermont's first human cases of EEE.

Thomas tells the Rutland Herald that the plan is to draw blood from 150 to 200 volunteers at clinics in Brandon, Whiting and Sudbury.

Vt. To Post Health Care Rates

Apr 1, 2013

Vermont is poised to become the first state in the country to tell people without health insurance how much they can pay for coverage through the federal Affordable Care Act when it begins offering benefits next year.

The state starting today is going to post the proposed rates offered through the state's health care marketplace for various levels of coverage.

Andy Hyman of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation says it's a big step.

Moretown Landfill Shuts Down Before Deadline

Apr 1, 2013

A Vermont landfill that was ordered closed has shut down.

The Moretown landfill had until mid-April to close, but it closed on Saturday.

The Vermont Agency of Natural Resources this month ordered the Moretown landfill to cease operations, citing odor problem sand groundwater pollution.

WPTZ-TV reported that landfill officials said they closed earlier than required to prepare an appeal of the agency's decision to the state's environmental court.

Vermont now has only one landfill left used for trash disposal, in the northern Vermont town of Coventry.

Bill Would Regulate Disposal Of Unclaimed Remains

Apr 1, 2013

Dozens of long-dead patients at a Vermont psychiatric hospital are helping to modernize state law regulating what happens to unclaimed human remains.

The cemetery holding them came to public attention when Tropical Storm Irene flooded the Waterbury hospital complex in August 2011. A state lawmaker wanted to make sure the cemetery would be protected forever after the ruined hospital was relocated.

VPR.net Archive

Sep 30, 2012

On April 15, 2013 we launched a new VPR.net. Much of the program content from the past 6 months, along with several weeks of news, migrated to the new site. The remaining news, program, and playlist content is still available in our archive.

If you're looking for something, try the site Search: it searches across the current site and the archives.

To explore the archive, visit www.vpr.net/archive.

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