VPR News

Sen. Patrick Leahy questioned Judge Brett Kavanaugh as the Senate Judiciary Committee considered his nomination.
Win McNamee / AP

Last week, Sen. Patrick Leahy played a central role in the testimony of Dr. Christine Blasey Ford and Judge Brett Kavanaugh. As the Senate continues to weigh Kavanaugh's confirmation to the Supreme Court, we're talking to Sen. Leahy about the nomination, the FBI investigation and what comes next.

Updated at 7:51 a.m. ET on Thursday

The FBI's highly anticipated supplemental background check on Brett Kavanaugh was sent to the White House and Capitol Hill overnight, with senators set to review the report on Thursday in the final chapter of what has become a deeply acrimonious confirmation battle.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., announced the planned arrival of the report on Wednesday night and said all senators would get a chance to review it ahead of the next procedural milestones in the chamber.

A meeting with Vermont Agency of Education staff facing State Board of Education members in Bethel.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

After an all-day meeting Tuesday in Bethel, the State Board of Education has adopted a set of guidelines to help steer its decisions about which school districts will be forced to merge under Act 46.

The 2018 general election is fast-approaching, and leading up to Election Day, we're featuring interviews with candidates seeking statewide offices. Jon Svitavsky is running as an independent for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Sen. Bernie Sanders.

Updated on Wednesday at 4:15 p.m. ET

Wednesday afternoon, at exactly 2:18 p.m. ET, million of Americans received a text headlined "Presidential Alert" on their cellphones.

But it wasn't exactly from President Trump. Rather, it was a test of a new nationwide warning system that a president could use in case of an armed attack by another country, a cyberattack or a widespread natural disaster.

A Keurig Dr. Pepper sign in Waterbury, Vermont.
Henry Epp / VPR

Over the last 20 years, the state of Vermont has authorized more than $10 million in payments to Keurig Green Mountain, Inc.

The company, known for its K-Cup pods, is just one of many Vermont businesses that have used state incentive programs aimed at creating jobs. But exactly how much money Keurig received and what the company did with it is shrouded in secrecy.

The NBC studios sign at night in Manhattan, that also says Rainbow Room and Observation Deck.
canbedone / iStock

Saturday Night Live made some fun of Vermont last weekend, with a sketch featuring a group of Southern white nationalists who discuss where to find a “Caucasian paradise.” The skit contrasts Vermont’s liberal, bucolic image with some uncomfortable realities, and was welcomed by people inside and out of the state.

The Vermont Ethics Commission says Gov. Phil Scott has violated the state’s code of ethics by maintaining an ongoing financial relationship with a company that does business with the state.

Bess O'Brien's latest film focuses on the lives of five Vermonts returning to their communities after leaving prison.
Kingdom County Productions, Courtesy

Filmmaker Bess O'Brien's new documentary, Coming Home, follows the lives of five Vermonters released from jail who enter a CoSA — Circle of Support and Accountability — to help with their transition back into their community. We learn about the program, the film and the lives of those involved in CoSAs.

A welcome to Island Pond sign outside by a road.
Peter Hirschfeld / VPR

Vermonters consistently rank jobs, the economy and cost of living as the biggest issues facing the state, which is why candidates running for political office right now spend so much time talking about them.

For people living in the most rural parts of Vermont, however, economic livelihood is even harder to come by

The VPR Vermont PBS Debates logo, with the text and a green border and two green microphones.
Kyle Blair / Vermont PBS

VPR and Vermont PBS have partnered to present a series of debates ahead of the 2018 general election — and we want to know what questions you have for some of the candidates running for statewide office.

Updated at 5:45 p.m. ET

Amazon will pay all of its U.S. employees a minimum of $15 an hour, more than double the federal minimum wage of $7.25. The retail giant, run by the world's richest man, was criticized earlier this year after revealing its workers' median pay was $28,446.

Amazon says the new rate will go into effect on Nov. 1, covering all of its full-time, part-time, temporary and seasonal employees in the U.S.

Garrison Keillor
Jim Mone / Associated Press File

Update 10:00 p.m. A fundraiser for the Burlington Book Festival featuring public radio personality Garrison Keillor has been cancelled after public backlash.

State officials say the proposed trade deal between the U.S. and Canada could boost milk prices for Vermont farmers, by opening up the Canadian market to increased U.S. dairy exports.
Ric Cengeri / VPR file

State officials say the proposed new rules for cross-border commerce between the United States and Canada could be good news for Vermont dairy farmers.

Former Rutland City Police Chief James Baker poses with Korrine Rodrigue at a community barbecue Rodrigue hosted for Baker on Sunday.
Nina Keck / VPR

In Rutland dozens of people came together Sunday to support former Police Chief James "Jim" Baker, who was diagnosed with cancer last year.

Teal, blue and orange speech, thought and chat bubble cut outs on a bright green background.
hunkmax / iStock

What are the main concerns of women in Vermont and which of their needs are not being met? Those are some of the central questions the Vermont Commission on Women is asking residents in a listening project that's been going on for several months.

Tony James stands holding a drink cup in front of some James Oil Company trucks.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

Vermont’s fuel dealers are having a hard time hiring drivers, and the Vermont Department of Labor is getting involved to get more people interested in driving the delivery trucks.

Updated at 3:45 p.m. ET

The U.S. and Canada reached a deal to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement, signed a quarter-century ago, with a new pact that the Trump administration says is easier to enforce.

In remarks in the Rose Garden formally announcing the agreement, President Trump called it "the most important trade deal we've ever made by far."

Ahead of a midnight deadline set by the White House, Trump approved changes that essentially revamp the 1993 NAFTA deal, bringing Canada on board after Mexico had already agreed in August.

Headshot of Kiah Morris in the Vermont House chamber.
Peter Hirschfeld / VPR File

Former Bennington Rep. Kiah Morris may be departing the Vermont Legislature, but she says her work on racial justice issues in Vermont will continue.

Members of the Senate Judiciary Committee seated in a semi-circle in the hearing room.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais / Associated Press

The Senate Committee on the Judiciary voted the nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court out of committee early Friday afternoon.

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