Upper Valley

Charlotte Albright / VPR

Workers at the Lebanon Co-op Food Store have overwhelmingly rejected a bid to unionize.

Charlotte Albright / VPR/file

As the state prepares to re-open a controversial shooting range it owns in Hartland, a rift has developed within the Fish and Wildlife Board. One board member says the site is unsafe, but the commissioner strongly disagrees.

Charlotte Albright / VPR

A grocery co-op in the Upper Valley is in turmoil again. The most recent complaints by members of the Food Co-op Stores of the Hanover Consumer Cooperative Society come in response to the firing of a popular employee.

Charlotte Albright / VPR

A proposal for a 2,000-panel solar development in rural Woodstock has some neighbors upset. The selectboard also has concerns about whether the site is too wet and too scenic for a large solar array.

muharrem öner / iStock

A group of musicians in the Upper Valley have created a music streaming site called CaBallBreakeRadio that hopes to give overlooked singers and bands in Vermont and New Hampshire a better chance at being noticed.

Charlotte Albright / VPR

A 27-year-old man recovering from drug addiction will graduate from the Community College of Vermont on Saturday. Wayne Miller originally entered college for all the wrong reasons, but made a dramatic turnaround.

Charlotte Albright / VPR

A bankrupt ski resort in West Windsor could become a year-round haven for outdoor sports.  But first the town, with support from a land trust, has to raise enough money to buy a big chunk of the land. 

Charlotte Albright / VPR

Charity, some say, begins at home. But in Vermont, it’s also being taught in classrooms. At Bradford Elementary School in the Upper Valley, a philanthropy project has yielded bushels of handmade stuffed animals and plenty of empathy.

Charlotte Albright / VPR

Like many small towns in Vermont, Norwich is trying to manage future development to meets the needs of all residents, not just the well-heeled. So town planners are inviting feedback about possible zoning changes in this Upper Valley community.

Town of Norwich

This week the Norwich Planning Commission is hosting two public forums on future development south of the village. The commission is hoping residents will turn out to one of two sessions Tuesday, May 5 to discuss the potential for sustainable development along Route 5 South and  River Road.

Skip Brown

Voters in Fairlee, West Fairlee and Thetford will decide next month whether to finance a new dam over Lake Fairlee. The old one is in bad shape and the owner, a Maine resident, can’t afford to replace it. The re-design process has hit a few snags but community leaders in charge of the project are confident it will go forward.

Engineers warn that if the dam fails, water levels would drop so much so much that lakefront property would border on mud flats.

Skip Brown

A month before three towns are set to vote on an $850,000 project to replace the Lake Fairlee Dam, its private owner is voicing objections that could call the deal into jeopardy.

In phone interviews this week, Bryan Gregory, 62, a Maine resident who plans to retire to a Thetford camp house perched on top of the dam that has been in his family for generations, called one of his concerns a deal-breaker.

Charlotte Albright / VPR

Believe it or not, bathing suit weather is coming. But for the fourth summer, residents in Norwich will not be cooling off in their popular natural swimming hole. After Tropical Storm Irene washed out the dam over Charles Brown Brook, Norwich began tangling with the state over a plan to re-make the pool.

Charlotte Albright / VPR

This week, children in the Upper Valley have been exploring the banks of the Connecticut River. It’s part of a multi-media collaboration between Dartmouth’s Hopkins Center and other non-profit groups celebrating a much more distant river: the Nile. One of the educational events  is a trek along the banks of the Connecticut River in an unlikely place, behind a shopping mall in West Lebanon.

The Dartmouth fraternity that inspired the movie Animal House will no longer be recognized by the College following allegations that members branded their skin.

Charlotte Albright / VPR

Voters in Norwich will get a chance to reverse a decision they made on Town Meeting Day. In March, they refused to borrow around $3 million to replace police and fire stations in disrepair.

But the debate lives on.

Charlotte Albright / VPR

A four-alarm fire in Fairlee has totally destroyed a  sawmill for a company that employs 50 people. At least 20 of those workers face an uncertain future.

The fire swept through Britton Lumber in Fairlee on Saturday night. Investigators are trying to determine the cause as owner Bob Moses surveys the rubble. He says the sawmill workers will be paid through this week.

“Yeah, they’re going to help if they can and if we don’t have work they can go home, because it’s very emotional for the sawmill employees, too,” Moses said.

Agency of Transportation

Work is beginning on the replacement of two Interstate 91 bridges over Route 5, near White River Junction.  But transportation officials say new technology and building methods will limit disruption to motorists.

Herb Swanson / swanpix.com

As news breaks about the possible destruction of cultural artifacts by the Islamic State — also known as ISIS — a Dartmouth College scholar is outraged. The college owns six monumental stone relief panels from Nimrud, Iraq, south of Mosul, where vandals claim to have been bulldozing sacred sites. While the videos released by the militant group cannot be verified, it’s clear that rare antiquities are ISIS targets.

Charlotte Albright / VPR

The U.S. Army’s Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory, or CRREL, sits on soil in Hanover, N.H. that's been contaminated by a toxic chemical no longer in use. Trichloroethylene, or TCE, was used for years as a coolant at the facility and has leaked into the soil. If it migrates into water and air it can cause serious health problems. So the Army Corps of Engineers has come up with a way to treat it – and, they hope, eventually to remove it.

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