VPR News

The Vermont Gas pipeline to Addison County has been completed, but state regulators are looking into allegations of shoddy construction.
John Van Hoesen / VPR File

The Vermont Public Utility Commission wants an independent investigation into allegations of shoddy construction of the Addison natural gas pipeline.

Attorney General TJ Donovan says he backs legislation that would soften criminal penalties for simple drug possession.
Jeb Wallace-Brodeur / The Times Argus

As Vermont looks for new ways to combat the problem of opioid addiction, House lawmakers are considering legislation that would soften criminal penalties for possession of heroin and other drugs.

An empty wooden desk facing a chalkboard.
Miatagirl / iStock

Legislative leaders say they will stick to the schedule for continuing the Act 46 school district consolidation process.

Secretary of Natural Resources Julie Moore, left, says a federal rollback of fuel efficiency standards for vehicles sold in Vermont could thwart the state's push to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
John Dillon / VPR file

Vermont state officials say they'll vigorously oppose a move by the Environmental Protection Agency to roll back fuel efficiency standards. 

Screenshot of https://bit.ly/2GB2kHZ / National Weather Service

The National Weather Services is forecasting high wind gusts for Vermont, especially in southern counties, this afternoon and into early Thursday morning.

Blue-green algae blooms, like this one photographed in the summer of 2014 in Lake Champlain, have many in the state concerned. A new draft plan proposes funding sources for water cleanup efforts.
Taylor Dobbs / VPR FILE

Vermont’s phosphorus pollution problem is almost a century in the making and persists today, as the nutrient contained in fertilizer and animal feed continues to accumulate in watersheds.

The golden dome of the Vermont Statehouse in December 2016
Meg Malone / VPR File

Legislation creating paid family leave in Vermont has gotten a big boost at the Statehouse, as the head of the Senate Committee on Economic Development, Housing and General Affairs says the proposal is a top priority for the panel.

However, the outlook for the bill is still uncertain because Gov. Phil Scott opposes the legislation.

Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

A group of Upper Valley residents has taken up the call to “bring the cows, back” to Norwich Farm.

New York state is leading a group of 17 states, seven cities and the U.S. Conference of Mayors in a lawsuit against the Census Bureau and Commerce Department to try to remove a new citizenship question from the 2020 census questionnaire. It comes more than a week after California filed a similar lawsuit in San Francisco federal court against Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, who oversees the bureau, and Census Bureau officials.

Jacques Rainville farmed in Highgate Center but low milk prices forced him out of business.
John Dillon / VPR

While Vermont dairy farmers are experiencing some of the hardest times in recent memory, their counterparts in Quebec are thriving. The reason is a complex system that regulates the supply of milk  and sets the price farmers receive.

Chandler Matson, left, and Russell Barr, standing, are suing the state of Vermont for its alleged complicity in the largest fraud in Vermont history.
Peter Hirschfeld / VPR

The deadline by which a Stowe attorney promised to substantiate allegations of sexual misconduct by a Vermont government official has passed, but Russell Barr has yet to produce any evidence of the alleged crime.

Members of Congress have said they want to loosen rules for health savings accounts. Did they do it in the latest spending bill? Do people who were uncovered for one month in 2017 owe a tax penalty? And how can immigrants who move to the U.S. to retire get insurance? These are the questions I'm tackling for readers this week:

I heard that health savings account rules would be loosened under the new spending bill passed by Congress last month. Did that happen?

No. In fact, the standards have become slightly tighter this year.

The Roman goddess of Agriculture, Ceres, has been weathering the winter storms for over 70 years atop Vermont’s Statehouse in Montpelier. Monday, she decended (with the help of two cranes.)
Bob Kinzel / VPR

The 14-foot goddess of Agriculture was removed from the top of the Statehouse dome by crane Monday as the first step of a $2 million renovation campaign.

Rosina Wallace, center, and her brother K. Alan Wallace are pictured here on Monday at their family's dairy farm, following Sunday's destructive fire at the farm.
Lisa Rathke / Associated Press

The Wallace Farm, which has been in the same family for more than 150 years, was destroyed by a fire Sunday.

Desks in a line in an empty classroom. Up close of one with books in it.
GlobalStock / iStock

Gov. Phil Scott said in a letter to the State Board of Education that experience with the public school system should "not necessarily" be a requirement for Vermont’s next secretary of education.

Screenshot from The Winooski

"Locally sourced, organic Vermont satire" — the goal, of The Winooski, according to founder Adam Hall.

An empty school hallway with a row of lockers and a door at the end.
Halbergman / iStock

In light of recent school shootings, there’s been a renewed push for more gun control and more mental health care. And while Vermont lawmakers have passed gun control measures, mental health experts say the problem is more complex than simply more resources.

Justin Turco of Ira came to Montpelier to deliver a message to Gov. Phil Scott after the Legislature approved sweeping gun control legislation.
John Dillon / VPR

A day after the Legislature passed a sweeping gun control bill, supporters of gun rights held a rally on the Statehouse steps to call the legislation unenforceable and unconstitutional.

Two metallic silhouettes of heads, one with a brain inside and one with computer imagery.
onurdongel / iStock

Vermont lawmakers are considering legislation to create an artificial intelligence task force. If the bill wins final approval, Vermont will be the first state in the country to take this step.

Milo Cress, a junior at Champlain Valley Union High School, went to the Vermont Statehouse this winter to testify in favor of this bill.

Gov. Phil Scott tells reporters that he "fully intends to sign" the gun control bill passed by the Senate
Bob Kinzel / VPR

Moments after the Senate passed the gun control bill, Gov. Phil Scott met with a group of reporters in the lobby of his office in the Pavilion Office Building.

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