Bennington

Paint chips on a wood surface
XiFotos / iStock

lengthy investigation by Reuters News identified thousands of U.S. communities with lead levels more than twice those found in Flint, Michigan, during that city's notorious water crisis — and several of those communities are in Vermont.

This drawing shows part of the plan developers have for The Putnam Block in downtown Bennington.
courtesy of Stevens &-Associates

A development group in Bennington says it's acquired a major downtown property that's part of a $50 million renovation project.

Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

An investment group in Bennington says it needs more time before finalizing a deal to purchase a major downtown property. In July, investors said they secured a 90-day purchase and sale agreement for the historic Putnam Hotel, and five other buildings in the center of Bennington.

Ric Cengeri / VPR File

The course of history is often shaped by the outcome of battles, even small ones.  That's the case with the Battle of Bennington, which was fought back in August 1777.  Phil Holland is an English teacher at Community College of Vermont and the author of the new book A Guide to the Battle of Bennington and the Bennington Monument.

Steve Zind / VPR

For the past several years, co-working spaces have been popping up across Vermont, from Bennington to Burlington; Vergennes to St. Johnsbury.

While each location is different, they all share some common goals. Foremost among them is helping new businesses get started.

Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

An investment group wants to bring residential housing and new office space to a former downtown Bennington hotel with a plan to jumpstart economic development across southwestern Vermont.

Bennington County Towns Look To Improve Local Economy

Mar 18, 2016
Andrew McKeever for VPR

In Bennington County, concerns are growing about a regional economy that’s only slowly rebounding from the Great Recession.

Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

The state is ramping up its efforts to protect North Bennington residents from potential widespread hazardous chemical exposure.

Andrew McKeever / VPR

Four years after Tropical Storm Irene devastated central and southern Vermont, federal officials have identified nearly 900 properties in Bennington County as being in high-risk areas for future floods.

Property owners now have a three-month window to buy flood insurance before the cost of coverage will increase.

The editorial staffs at a number of small-town newspapers in Vermont and Massachusetts are getting smaller still.

New England Newspapers Inc., has laid off 10 editorial employees at papers it owns including the Brattleboro Reformer, the Bennington Banner and the Manchester Journal.  The layoffs leave skeleton crews at the three Vermont newspapers.

AP

If you've read only one thing by author Shirley Jackson, it's almost definitely her short story "The Lottery," a taut narrative about a yearly small-town ritual - with nasty twist. But Jackson had a productive, masterful career beyond "The Lottery." Some might say, two careers.

A new project in Bennington hopes to tap into the growing popularity of coworking spaces.

Organizers of the project, called The Lightning Jar, have partnered with the Vermont State Employees Credit Union to convert 1,200 square feet of the credit union’s downtown offices into a coworking space.

duncan1890 / iStock

This week marks two important dates for William Shakespeare: Although his actual birth date is unknown, he was baptized on April 26, 1564, and died almost 400 years ago on April 23, 1616.

David Evans, president of Southern Vermont College in Bennington, argues that everyone – literary scholar or not – should be acquainted with Shakespeare, and not just on the anniversary of his death.

There was some good news recently for Vermont's only state home for veterans. Vermont House members in Montpelier voted to fund the Vermont Veterans Home in Bennington with $5.4 million from the state's General Fund.

Seventy-two Vermont communities add fluoride to their water system to help keep prevent tooth decay. But on town meeting day in Bennington, voters there said they don't want fluoride added to their water.

Plasan North America says it is closing its manufacturing plant in Bennington. The company has 62 employees in Vermont.

In a statement, Plasan North America President Keith Rayborn said, “Unfortunately, economic realities in the defense industry have forced us to consolidate our facility in Michigan.”

Plasan manufactures products for the defense applications, including armor for vehicles.

The company says the Vermont facility will close in July. It says employees will receive a severance package and extended health care.

The report was prepared by the State Agency of Administration. Its goal is to develop a plan for eliminating the home’s need for state subsidies by 2018. The study attributes recent shortfalls in part to a low census. The facility is budgeted for 171 beds but typically has fewer than 130 residents.

But Steve Howard of the Vermont State Employees Association, which represents workers at the home, says downsizing isn’t the answer.

Joe Krawczyk / submitted photo

Longtime Bennington Town Clerk Timothy Corcoran died at his home Thursday of cancer at the age of 64.  Corcoran also served on the Bennington Select Board and in the legislature for 16 years. He was known in political circles as "the Mayor of Bennington."

It was often said that no one knew more about Bennington and its people than Tim Corcoran. A VPR recording from the Bennington Firehouse during a 2010 election, shows him in his element, greeting townspeople by name and directing them to the right lines.    

A three-way contest is underway for the two Senate seats that represent Bennington County and the Windham County town of Wilmington. Two Democrats – a longtime senate incumbent and a current house member – are running as a team. They face a relative political newcomer  who’s running as a Republican.

Susan Keese / VPR

The school that canceled its homecoming semi-formal in response to a sexually suggestive dance craze has scheduled a new dance. But twerking won’t be tolerated at Bennington’s Mount Anthony Union High School.

Twerking has been around long enough to make it into online versions of Britain’s Oxford Dictionary. It’s defined as dancing “in a sexually provocative manner involving thrusting hip movements and a low, squatting stance.”

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