Government & Politics

Vermont's two U.S. senators, Patrick Leahy and Bernie Sanders both strongly oppose the new GOP Senate health care plan
crazydiva / iStock

In many respects, the new health care bill proposed in the U.S. Senate follows the framework of a  GOP plan that passsed in the House last month.

Eleven year old Katherine Stevens, right, and nine year old Austin Anderson, listen to arguments in Vermont Superior Court, in Hyde Park, Oct. 22, 1997. The two children were part of a lawsuit challenging Act 60, by schoolchildren in Stowe.
Toby Talbot / AP

Live call-in discussion: Twenty years ago, Act 60 reshaped Vermont's education system. Designed to tackle inequality in education spending among towns, the legislation divided communities and made national headlines. Vermont Edition looks back at that debate, and at Act 60's legacy in today's battles over education and equity.

Angela Evancie / VPR file

Lawmakers could have overridden two vetoes when they returned to Montpelier on Wednesday. The governor's veto of a pot legalization bill stands, but legislators did strike a deal to approve the state budget. However, their compromise with Gov. Phil Scott puts school boards on the hook to find cost savings.

Gov. Phil Scott, seen here at a press conference in Montpelier in late May, says he didn't ask House Republicans to support a rules suspension during the veto session that would have allowed a new marijuana legalization bill to be debated on the floor.
Bob Kinzel / VPR file

Gov. Phil Scott says he didn't encourage lawmakers to support the marijuana legalization bill during this week's veto session because passage of the legislation was not a high priority for him.

A legislative panel has deferred action on a proposal that could have significant impacts on the future of ridgeline wind energy in Vermont.

In J-Unit at Camp Hill prison in Pennsylvania there are 252 units, which doesn't leave enough room for the 269 Vermont inmates housed at Camp Hill. Advocates say 17 inmates being separated from the rest could put them in harm's way.
Marc Levy / Associated Press

Earlier in June, 269 Vermont inmates moved from a private prison in Michigan to a Pennsylvania prison called Camp Hill, but the unit they were placed in can only hold 252 inmates. Advocates say that could be bad news for the 17 Vermont inmates who are now separated from the rest.

Districts that have already negotiated employee health care plans, like the one that includes Stowe Middle and High School, will face some tough financial choices as a result of the budget compromise in Montpelier.
Ian Noyes / For VPR

Democratic lawmakers and Republican Gov. Phil Scott finally got a budget compromise on Wednesday, but in doing so, they’ve created a whole new set of financial dilemmas for school districts across Vermont.

I’ve often wondered about the standards we expect political candidates to meet. Not the formal requirements of age, citizenship, or length of residence; but the intangibles – a kind of “litmus test” of qualities that candidates must pass before we entrust them with public office.

Many House Republicans and some Democrats voted to block consideration of a new marijuana bill.
Ted S. Warren / AP

Backers of a new marijuana legalization bill say they’re very disappointed that many members of the House Republican caucus and a number of Democrats voted to block consideration of the legislation in Wednesday’s veto session.

Gov. Phil Scott and legislative leaders announced details of a compromise Wednesday that will require school districts across Vermont to cut spending by $13 million over the next two years.
Jeb Wallace-Brodeur / Times Argus

School districts across Vermont will be forced to reduce spending by $13 million over the next two years as part of a compromise in Montpelier that has cleared the political logjam holding up passage of the state budget.

When Governor Phil Scott made his last minute Hail Mary pass to the legislature with a proposal to move local teachers’ insurance to the state level, his staff claimed that a statewide insurance contract would save $26 million that the state would use to reduce property taxes.

Every time I hear the word “leak,” as in “surreptitiously disclosing information,” I cringe. It’s not that I oppose the practice itself - as a former reporter, I occasionally relied on leaks to start stories, or get facts. But lately, “leaking” information has taken on a negative connotation it shouldn’t have.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Christina Nolan has been recommended by Sen. Patrick Leahy and Gov. Phil Scott to be the next U.S. attorney for Vermont, according to a release from Scott’s office.

A deal between Democratic lawmakers and the Scott administration has paved the way for passage of critical budget and tax bills.
Doug Kerr / Flickr

A tentative compromise between Democratic lawmakers and Republican Gov. Phil Scott over the issue of teacher health benefits appears to have resolved a weeks-long political standoff that had threatened passage of the budget and a key tax bill.

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