Howard Weiss-Tisman

Reporter For Southern Vermont & The Connecticut River Valley

Howard Weiss-Tisman is VPR's reporter for Southern Vermont & the Connecticut River Valley. He worked at the Brattleboro Reformer for 11 years, reporting on most towns in the region and specializing on statewide issues including education, agriculture, energy and mental health. Howard received a BA in Journalism from University of Massachusetts. He filed his first story with VPR in September 2015.

Ways to Connect

Bess Klassen-Landis

A group of actors that are putting on the play 1776 see a lot of connections between the work of our country's founders and the people who make decisions in their local communities at town meeting.

Some of the play's actors have been traveling around the Upper Valley to talk with people as they make their way into town meeting.

A clock at Four Corners in Bennington, pictured here in July 2014
Angela Evancie / VPR File

There could be a governmental shift coming to Bennington. On Town Meeting Day, voters will decide if the town should elect a mayor, instead of sticking with the town manager system that's currently in place.

A graph from the Drug Poisoning (Overdose) Fatalities Report released Thursday shows accidental deaths involving heroin and fetanyl in Vermont. The report notes that 2016 and 2017 data are preliminary. Find the report here: http://bit.ly/2CQH9Pm
Vermont Department of Health, Courtesy

The number of accidental overdose deaths in Vermont involving the synthetic drug fentanyl increased significantly last year, according to a new report.

Jared Cadwell, the Fayston selectboard chairman, holds papers at a desk and looks over the town's Town Meeting Day warning in the town's municpal building.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

If you take a quick scan at this year's Town Meeting Day warnings, you won't find too many ambitious projects that require long-term borrowing. Vermont town officials say ongoing debates in Washington and Montpelier are making it hard to plan too far into the future.

Brattleboro Memorial Hospital settled claims made under the federal False Claims Act.
Brattleboro Memorial Hospital / BMH

Vermont's U.S. Attorney says Brattleboro Memorial Hospital allegedly submitted bills to Medicare and Medicaid without the proper documentation.

Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

The Agency of Natural Resources is poking holes in a report that says Saint-Gobain was not responsible for some of the PFOA contamination in Bennington.

Victoria Banerjee checks on a tank of wort, or unfermented beer, at Hermit Thrush Brewery in Brattleboro.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

Vermont's craft brewers are asking lawmakers to update the state's franchise law because they say it unfairly benefits beer and wine distributors.

Nanci Leitch stands in the bedroom in her house in Guilford. There's a bed and a painting on the wall.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

Lawmakers are debating a bill that would require people who use Airbnb, and other online short-term rental companies, to register with the state.

Tim Van Orden of Bennington wears a blue coat and runs on snowshoes through some snowy trees.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

This March, a national snowshoe race will make its way back to Vermont.

Snowshoe racing may not be in the Olympics (yet), but for one Bennington resident, the spectacle of hundreds of people racing through a winter wonderland on snowshoes just might be ready for primetime.

In a unanimous decision, the Public Utility Commission found that Vermont can regulate Voice over Internet Protocol service under federal law.
Ingram Publishing / Thinkstock

The Public Utility Commission says Vermont can regulate Voice over Internet Protocol, or VoIP, service.

A sign at Southern Vermont Medical Center explaining the visitor policy in light of the flu outbreak.
Ashley Jowett / SVMC

Hospitals are working to limit the spread of the flu as more cases are reported across Vermont.

Taps like this one at Academy School in Brattleboro were replaced after state tests discovered lead was leaching into the water.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

In November, the Department of Health announced that it was going to test 16 of the older schools around Vermont that get water from municipal sources to see if the pipes and fixtures in those buildings were leaching lead into the water. So far, they have detected unsafe levels of lead in some of the school buildings' water.

Balfour Studios

The chief medical officer of Vermont Medicaid says more research is needed before the state would be able to cover acupuncture in the insurance program for low-income Vermonters.

Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

When Act 148 — the state's Universal Recycling Law — unanimously passed in 2012, it put a lot of new requirements on the state's waste haulers. Two years shy of the next key implementation deadline, the Senate Natural Resources and Energy Committee is considering a bill that would ease some of those requirements.

Georgia Mountain Wind

The head of the Vermont Department of Public Service says it would require significant resources for the state to take a more proactive role in tracking down businesses and individuals that violate their state permits when operating renewable energy projects.

And for now, it's just "not feasible."

Workers pick through salad greens at Pete's Greens in Craftsbury. Pete's Greens is one of the large farms in the state that will have to comply with new food safety rules this year.
Howard Weiss-TIsman / VPR

Congress passed the Food Safety Modernization Act back in 2011 to cut down on foodborne illnesses in the produce industry, and the law just went into effect on Vermont's larger farms on Jan. 26.

This file photo, taken on Dec. 13, 2016, shows the interior of an Uber car that is set to driverless mode on a San Francisco test drive.
Eric Risberg / Associated Press File

The Agency of Transportation says Vermont needs to get ready for the eventual arrival of self-driving vehicles.

Department of Liquor Control Deputy Commissioner Gary Kessler looks through some of the fake IDs the state collected using a new high-tech scanner.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

The Department of Liquor Control has collected more than 800 fake IDs since introducing a new high-tech detection scanner at bars and stores, mostly around the Burlington area.

Green Mountain Power has received a state permit to build a commercial Tesla battery storage system in Panton.

This catamount is on display at the Vermont History Museum in Montpelier.
Matthew Johnson / Vermont Historical Society

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service says there is no evidence that the catamount is still roaming in the Northeast, and the federal agency has officially removed the large cat from the federal endangered species list.

Pages