Bob Kinzel

Host, Reporter

Bob is a veteran Vermont journalist, specializing in political reporting. He is based in VPR’s Capital Bureau located across the street from Vermont’s Statehouse. Prior to joining VPR full time in 2002, Bob ran the Vermont News Service for 21 years. The service provided daily local news for eleven stations, including VPR. Bob started the News Service following a stint as news director for WNCS.

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What can state agencies like DAIL, the Department of Disabilities, Aging and Independent Living, do to help Vermonters age well?
AleksandarNakic / iStock

The coming decades will bring pivotal demographic changes to Vermont as baby boomers retire in greater numbers and continue to get older. We're talking with DAIL—the Department of Disabilities, Aging and Independent Living—about their plans to help Vermonters "age well."

Senate Judiciary chairman Dick Sears is looking to modify Vermont's domestic terrorism laws as a way to deal with future cases of violence
Angela Evancie / VPR File

After a Vermont Supreme Court ruling last week said Jack Sawyer could not be held without bail because his actions did not constitute "an attempt" to commit a crime, the Senate Judiciary Committee is exploring the state's domestic terrorism law as a way to charge similar crimes in the future.

Illustration of a hand holding a dollar sign between thumb and forefinger.
mhatzapa / iStock.com

The Vermont Senate has approved legislation that prohibits employers from asking applicants about their salary history. Backers say it would help reduce the pay gap between men and women.

Ijubaphoto / VPR

It's a new state agency that most people have never heard of and its primary job is to protect all of the state's computer systems and data from a cyber attack. Agency secretary John Quinn says it's an ongoing and relentless battle.

Rep. Peter Welch thinks it would be a mistake for President Trump to fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
Alex Brandon / Associated Press File

Rep. Peter Welch has joined a bipartisan effort of House members who want to protect Special Counsel Robert Mueller from being fired by President Donald Trump.

"Vermont Edition" hears from GOP Legislative leaders on some of the key issues that remain to be decided in the final weeks of the biennium.
Ric Cengeri / VPR

The end of the Legislative session looms, but there is still time for movement on a number of key issues. We get input on education funding, financing clean water efforts, the state minimum wage and paid family leave from the Republican legislative leadership.

Gov. Phil Scott signs three pieces of gun control legislation amid boos and cheers on the front steps of the statehouse Wednesday, April 11, 2018.
Emily Alfin Johnson / VPR

S.55, a bill that became the unexpected hot-button issue of the session so far, was signed into law Wednesday on the steps of the Vermont Statehouse.

Essex Orleans Democratic senator John Rodgers speaks at the Vermont Statehouse.
Bob Kinzel / VPR

Opponents of a comprehensive gun control bill are making a last-minute effort to encourage Gov. Phil Scott to veto the legislation.

Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Facebook, arrives for a Capitol Hill Meeting with Sen. Bill Nelson on Monday. Later in the week, Zuckerberg will be testifying before members of Congress about how Facebook data was used in the 2016 election."
J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press

Sen. Patrick Leahy says Congress should demand that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg give a full accounting about why the company allowed a political consulting firm to obtain profiles of more than 87 million of its users during the 2016 presidential campaign.

The Vermont Statehouse with a cloudy sky, with people gathering in front of the building.
Liam Elder-Connors / VPR

Vermont lawmakers have given their unanimous approval to two additional gun control measures. Now those are headed to Gov. Phil Scott, who has previously announced support for the bills.

Two cranes lift the 14-foot statue of Ceres, the Roman goddess of agriculture, from the capitol dome as part of $2 million rennovation project.
Bob Kinzel / VPR

The golden dome that crowns Vermont's capitol building is undergoing a $2 million renovation. We're looking at what the project will accomplish with Statehouse Curator David Schutz.

Washington County Sen. Anthony Pollina discusses the Progressive agenda in Montpelier.
AP/Toby Talbot

Progressive leaders in Montpelier began the legislative session with a plan for Vermonters to pay their school taxes based on their income, rather than the value of their property. The plan failed to gain traction in both the House and Senate. We're talking with Progressive leaders about how their agenda has been received in the Statehouse this year.

The golden dome of the Vermont Statehouse in December 2016
Meg Malone / VPR File

Legislation creating paid family leave in Vermont has gotten a big boost at the Statehouse, as the head of the Senate Committee on Economic Development, Housing and General Affairs says the proposal is a top priority for the panel.

However, the outlook for the bill is still uncertain because Gov. Phil Scott opposes the legislation.

The Roman goddess of Agriculture, Ceres, has been weathering the winter storms for over 70 years atop Vermont’s Statehouse in Montpelier. Monday, she decended (with the help of two cranes.)
Bob Kinzel / VPR

The 14-foot goddess of Agriculture was removed from the top of the Statehouse dome by crane Monday as the first step of a $2 million renovation campaign.

Two metallic silhouettes of heads, one with a brain inside and one with computer imagery.
onurdongel / iStock

Vermont lawmakers are considering legislation to create an artificial intelligence task force. If the bill wins final approval, Vermont will be the first state in the country to take this step.

Milo Cress, a junior at Champlain Valley Union High School, went to the Vermont Statehouse this winter to testify in favor of this bill.

Gov. Phil Scott tells reporters that he "fully intends to sign" the gun control bill passed by the Senate
Bob Kinzel / VPR

Moments after the Senate passed the gun control bill, Gov. Phil Scott met with a group of reporters in the lobby of his office in the Pavilion Office Building.

A blue-green illustration of a brain.
Jakarin2521 / iStock

As artificial intelligence continues to develop, concerns grow about its invasive nature and reach. How much are we willing to cede to the machines, and what effect will that have on our lives?

The Vermont House recently passed a bill that would create an AI commission to address these subjects.

Senate chambers. Seen here in 2017.
Angela Evancie / VPR File

A weeks-long debate in the Vermont Legislature over controversial gun legislation came to end on Friday when the Senate held a final vote on a bill known as S.55.

Groundskeepers work on the field at AT&T Park during the San Francisco Giants media open house. MLB opening day is Thursday.
Eric Risberg / AP

Opening day means it's time for a Vermont Edition baseball show! We'll discuss the roster changes that took place over the winter, make predictions on who will win the pennant and discuss some of the rule changes being tried out at the minor league level to speed up the game.

Senate Pro Tem Tim Ashe, left, and Speaker of the House Mitzi Johnson, Right with Lt. Gov. David Zuckerman and Gov. Phil Scott, center in January 2018.
Emily Alfin Johnson / VPR

Our veteran statehouse reporter Bob Kinzel is answering your questions about state government, history and politics.

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