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.

Ways to Connect

Pete Hirschfeld / VPR

Late Thursday night, the Legislature adjourned for the year after passing a state budget that Gov. Phil Scott has said he will veto. Our panel of top political reporters looks at the two weeks of deadlock over the budget, and what happens next.

Alex Brandon / AP

Even before the Justice Department named former FBI director Robert Mueller as a special counsel to investigate ties between the Trump campaign and Russia, all three members of Vermont's congressional delegation said events in Washington this week highlighted the urgent need for an independent investigation into the issue.

Angela Evancie / VPR file

As Gov. Phil Scott ponders the future of the marijuana legalization bill, both supporters and opponents of the legislation are calling the governor's office hoping to influence his decision.

penfold / iStock.com

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont is seeking a nearly 13 percent increase in rates for people who get their coverage through Vermont Health Connect, the state's health care exchange.

Gov. Phil Scott says President Trump's firing of FBI Director James Comey is undermining public trust in government. That's why Scott wants a special commission named to look into possible Trump-Russia connections.

Angela Evancie / VPR FILE

A late proposal by Governor Phil Scott on teachers' health care plans sent the Legislative session into overtime. We hear from Governor Scott about the plan and the timing of introducing the idea so late in the session.

Gov. Phil Scott is reconsidering his opposition to a primary enforcement seat belt law.
Angela Evancie / VPR

A new marijuana legalization plan has gotten some important support at the Statehouse, with House Judiciary Committee chairwoman Maxine Grad now backing the bill.

Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP

Following news on Tuesday evening that President Trump has fired FBI Director James Comey, who was overseeing an investigation of possible ties between Russia and the Trump campaign, Senators Patrick Leahy and Bernie Sanders have renewed their calls for an independent investigation into the matter.

Angela Evancie / VPR/file

When lawmakers return to the Statehouse on Wednesday, one of the first items up for debate is a bill that creates an ethics commission in Vermont.

Toby Talbot / AP

Gov. Phil Scott's plan to have a statewide teachers' health care contract is emerging as a key issue at the end of the session. But many Democrats want these negotiations left at the local level. A roundtable of political reporters is with us to look at the latest developments from the Statehouse.

Angela Evancie / VPR file

There's no question that the Vermont House and Senate have very different views concerning the legalization of marijuana. In the final days of the session, some lawmakers are trying to bridge this gap with a new compromise plan.

Manuel Balce Ceneta / Associated Press

Sen. Patrick Leahy says a new budget agreement in Congress will preserve funding for many important Vermont programs for the rest of the federal fiscal year.

The Vermont House has given its approval to legislation that creates an ethics commission to investigate ethics complains about state officials. 

VPR

With just over a week to go before the end of the legislative session, it appears that many of the top Progressive priorities have stalled in Montpelier.

Outline of Vermont on top of collage of $1 bills.
Vepar5 / iStock.com

As we near the end of the legislative session, budget and tax issues are a focus at the Statehouse. VTDigger reporter Elizabeth Hewitt joins Vermont Edition to discuss the budget plans that were voted on in the House and Senate, as well as a recent proposal from the governor.

Sen. Patrick Leahy says he's extremely concerned about the Trump Administration's policies with North Korea because he doesn't think the Administration has a well thought out strategy to discourage North Korea from developing a nuclear weapons missile system.

The Vermont Senate has rejected an effort to raise the age to buy tobacco products from 18 to 21. The bill was defeated by three votes.

During the recent congressional recess, elected officials have faced angry crowds as their constituents questioned budget cuts and other priorities of the Trump Administration. Meanwhile, Vermont Rep. Peter Welch received a friendly, but concerned reception from constituents in East Montpelier.

Neal Goswami, the Vermont Press Bureau chief, spoke to Vermont Edition recently about what's happened during Gov. Phil Scott's first 100 days as governor. Plus, a look at where some legislative issues stand as the end of the session is in sight.

Taylor Dobbs / VPR

The 2017 legislative session is winding down. What initiatives will become top priorities in the final few weeks before adjournment?

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