Government & Politics

Henry Epp / VPR

In Vermont, of all the deaths by gunshot wounds in the last six years, more than a quarter were suicides by current or former members of the armed forces. Even though Veterans Affairs knows that soldiers are at greater risk of taking their own lives, it’s difficult to intervene successfully.

Now, one Vermont mom who lost her son has made it her mission to end veteran suicide.

Gov. Phil Scott says he wants to be sure road safety concerns are dealt with before approving a legal recreational marijuana market in Vermont.
La_Corivo / iStock.com

Gov. Phil Scott says he’s about to convene a “blue ribbon commission” to study issues related to the legalization of marijuana.

Tristan Toleno, left, Annmarie Christensen and Rodney Graham serve in Vermont's House of Representatives.
Angela Evancie & Peter Hirschfeld / VPR

Vermont’s citizen legislators get paid about $12,700 for five months of work. So, if you have a career and/or a family, how do you pull it off?

Crews demolished Middlebury's Merchants Row rail bridge on July 28. A temporary bridge will open to traffic on Aug. 12.
Melody Bodette / VPR

Construction crews are installing two steel temporary bridges in downtown Middlebury, giving the town a taste of what the larger construction project will mean for the area.

A Vermont correctional facility with one of the highest per inmate costs in the state will be closing on October 31. The Southeast State Correctional Facility in Windsor is slated to shut its doors after Vermont lawmakers called for its closure in this year's budget bill.

FILE - Rep. Pete Welch, D-Vt., speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington. Welch won both the Democratic and Republican nominations in August 2016 for re-election that year to a sixth term.
Lauren Victoria Burke / AP

Congressman Peter Welch has positioned himself as a Democrat who wants to work with Republicans. Polls suggest that's what Americans want from Washington, but so far bipartisanship has been hard to find in a polarized Congress.

Sarah Launderville, executive director of the Vermont Center for Independent Living, says Medicaid funding is still in jeopardy, even though the Affordable Care Act has survived attempts by Republicans to repeal it.
Peter Hirschfeld / VPR

For supporters of the federal Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, last week’s failed vote to repeal the law was cause for celebration. But the future of federal funding for health care programs in Vermont remains uncertain, and advocates say they are not resting easy.

New Hampshire politicians on both sides of the aisle were quick to condemn comments President Trump reportedly made during a conversation with the President of Mexico earlier this year about the Granite State’s opioid epidemic.

Llewelyn Sherman Adams was a flinty Yankee born in Dover, Vermont, who lived most of his life in Lincoln, New Hampshire. And no one ever called him Llewelyn.

Sen. Patrick Leahy is sponsoring a plan to prevent the Trump Administration from cracking down on states that allow medical marijuana.
Taylor Dobbs / VPR

Sen. Patrick Leahy is leading an effort in the U.S. Senate to prevent the Trump Administration from cracking down on states that have legalized the use of medical marijuana.

All three members of Vermont's congressional delegation - Sen. Bernie Sanders, Rep. Peter Welch and Sen. Patrick Leahy - are critical of President Donald Trump's comments regarding the violence in Charlottesville, Va., this past weekend.
Toby Talbot / Associated Press File

Following the failure by Senate Republican leaders to repeal the Affordable Care Act last week, a group of 40 House members, including 20 Democrats and 20 Republicans, has emerged with a proposal to help strengthen the health care law.

A summer study committe set to convene in Montpelier next week will set the stage for a legislative debate next year over whether to increase the minimum wage in Vermont to $15 an hour.
Angela Evancie / VPR file

Supporters of a bill that would raise the minimum wage in Vermont to $15 an hour hope a new summer study committee will lay the groundwork for passage in 2018.

VPR/Steve Zind

The Vermont State Police has joined other agencies nationwide in responding to numerous reports of exhaust leaks in Ford Explorers. The vehicles are widely used by law enforcement.

Burlington Police Chief Brandon del Pozo, right, says remarks by President Donald Trump last week were "very unhelpful to hardworking police everywhere."
Taylor Dobbs / VPR file

Police in Vermont have joined law enforcement officials across the country in condemning remarks by President Donald Trump that appeared to condone excessive force by cops.

Sen. Patrick Leahy says he's been friends with Arizona Sen. John McCain since before McCain joined the Senate in the late 1980s. Leahy fought tears Friday describing McCain's return to the Senate this week after a brain cancer diagnosis.
Taylor Dobbs / VPR

There's no question the biggest political accomplishment of Sen. Patrick Leahy's week in Washington was voting along with his senate colleagues to successfully defeat the Republican plan to change the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare. But another event in Washington this week – Arizona Sen. John McCain’s return to Washington after a brain cancer diagnosis – also had a profound effect on Leahy.

Joby Feccia will be the last Waterbury village police chief. Villagers have voted to disband the village government, which includes eliminating the police department.
Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

Last month the Village of Waterbury voted overwhelmingly in favor of a charter amendment that would effectively eliminate the village government and turn authority over to the town. The biggest change will be the elimination of the village police department, which is the only police department in town.

The letter signed by Vt Gov. Phil Scott and nine other bi-partisan governors from around the country, voicing concern about repealing the Affordable Care Act.
Courtesy / Gov. Phil Scott's Office

Vermont Gov. Phil Scott joined nine other governors from around the country in urging the leaders of the U.S. Senate not to go through with the repeal of the Affordable Care Act. The bipartisan group of governors sent a letter to Senate leaders of both parties on Wednesday.

President Trump's Twitter announcement that transgender people will no longer be permitted to serve in the military has triggered a strong reaction in Vermont.

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