• SCOV Law Blog: Late filing, missing paperwork grounds to dismiss suit

    Editor’s note: This piece from the SCOV Law Blog is by SCOV Law editor Andrew Delaney.
    Quinlan v. Five-Town Health Alliance, Inc., 2018 VT 53
    A medical malpractice complaint generally requires a certificate of merit. You might think this isn’t a big deal. After all, it’s just a one-pager (or so) that says the lawyer or plaintiff has consulted with a medical expert and the medical expert has said the case has merit. But it’s a big old deal. We’ve written about it bef
  • Howard Center opens registration for Zoe’s Race

    News Release — Howard CenterJune 20, 2018
    Contact:Martie Majoros(802) 488-6911mmajoros@howardcenter.org
    Zoe’s Race: Online Registration Open for 2018
    BURLINGTON, VT—Online registration is open for Zoe’s Race 2018. This annual fundraiser that helps make homes accessible for children and families will celebrate its 10th anniversary on Sunday, August 26, at Oakledge Park in Burlington.
    NEW THIS YEAR: To celebrate the anniversary, race organizers have added a 10K option to th
  • Con Hogan Award Winner Brings Research on Finland’s After School Programs Back to Vermont

    News Release — The Vermont Community FoundationJune 20, 2018
    Contact:Zoe PikeThe Vermont Community Foundationzpike@vermontcf.org802-388-3355 ext. 285Holly Morehouse, co-founder and executive director of Vermont Afterschool, Inc., used the $15,000 Con Hogan cash award she received last year to continue her research on youth programs in Finland that willinform her work here in Vermont. Finnish students have among the highest test scores in the world while having one the shortest school days.
  • Protect Our Power partners with the Institute for Energy and the Environment

    News Release — Vermont Law SchoolJune 20, 2018
    CONTACT:Ben Jerveyoffice: 802-831-1228cell: 802-282-3071bjervey@vermontlaw.edu
    Steve Kerekes703-508-2550skerekes@protectourpower.org
    Protect Our Power and Institute for Energy and the Environment Partner for a More Secure and Resilient Electric Grid
    SOUTH ROYALTON, Vt., June 20, 2018— The Institute for Energy and the Environment (IEE) at Vermont Law School has entered into an agreement to work with Protect Our Power on timely and critica
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  • New report suggests current standards for PFOA levels are unsafe

    Jenny Kelly, who lives about 700 feet from the former ChemFab site, believes PFOA contamination is the cause of her chronic health issues. File photo by Mike Polhamus/VTDigger
    BENNINGTON — Vermont officials are poring over a long-awaited government report on the toxicity of chemicals like PFOA, hoping it will lead to more effective regulation and environmental cleanup responses.
    The Environmental Working Group, also reacting to the release, said the report “concludes that the ‘
  • EPA sets new standards for PFOA contamination

    Jenny Kelly, who lives about 700 feet from the former ChemFab site, believes PFOA contamination is the cause of her chronic health issues. Photo by Mike Polhamus/VTDigger
    BENNINGTON — Vermont officials are poring over a long-awaited government report on the toxicity of chemicals like PFOA, hoping it will lead to more effective regulation and environmental cleanup responses.The Environmental Working Group, also reacting to the release, said the report “concludes that the ‘minima
  • Scott administration attempts to quell state workers’ shutdown fears

    Tax Commissioner Kaj Samsom, right, with Gov. Phil Scott. Photo by Mike Dougherty/VTDiggerAs concerns over the growing threat of a government shutdown swirl among state employees, heads of state agencies and departments are attempting to quell their fears.Top officials in Gov. Phil Scott’s administration who oversee thousands of employees are telling workers that an agreement on a spending package will be reached before a government shutdown would take effect on July 1. Get all of VTDigger
  • For second year, Sanders earns more than $1M

    Sen. Bernie Sanders. File photo by Mike Dougherty/VTDigger
    WASHINGTON — For the second year in a row, Sen. Bernie Sanders’ income topped six figures.
    A recent financial disclosure report shows the junior Vermont senator made nearly $1.06 million in 2017. Most of his income — $885,767 — came from advances and royalties, according to the report filed in May.Get all of VTDigger's political news.You'll never miss a political story with our weekly headlines in your inbox.Daily
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  • Senate sends ‘Budget 3.0’ to House with $19 million divide

    The Vermont Senate debates legislation in March. Photo by Mike Dougherty/VTDigger
    Senators unanimously approved the third budget proposal of the session on Thursday, leaving a $19 million gap between the Legislature’s proposal and the governor’s plan to keep property taxes level.The deadline to avoid a government shutdown is nine days away. Get all of VTDigger's political news.You'll never miss a political story with our weekly headlines in your inbox.Daily
    Sundays only (Weekly Wrap)
  • Randy Brock: Vermont’s dysfunctional tax system

    Editor’s note: This commentary is by Sen. Randy Brock, a Republican from Swanton who represents Franklin County and Alburgh in the Vermont Senate, and is a member of the Senate Finance Committee. He previously served as Vermont state auditor and two terms as a member of the Senate.
    On Thursday, the ongoing battle between the governor and the legislative leadership moved to the Senate floor. A new budget and tax bill, H.16, passed unanimously. It contains the Senate’s latest compromis
  • Supreme Court decision clears way for state tax on internet sales

    The nine justices of the Supreme Court of the United States. Photo by Franz Jantzen/SCOTUSWASHINGTON — A decision handed down by the United States Supreme Court Thursday clears the way for Vermont to collect taxes on internet sales from companies that do not have a physical presence in state.
    In a 5-4 ruling, the high court overturned a decades-old case that had barred states from requiring companies without a brick-and-mortar presence to charge sales tax.
    The Vermont Tax Department estima
  • Christine Hallquist: Scott is not leading

    Editor’s note: This commentary is by Christine Hallquist, a Democratic candidate for governor who is the former CEO of Vermont Electric Cooperative.
    For the second time, Phil Scott has vetoed the budget passed by the Legislature. The original budget presented to the governor had near unanimous tri-partisan support. I do not believe that the governor is striving for compromise — his opposition to a budget bill that was so overwhelmingly supported by the Legislature puts the responsibi
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  • Christine McGowan: Vermont’s new working landscape

    Editor’s note: This commentary is by Christine McGowan, who is the Forest Program director of the Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund. 
    Sawmills were East Burke’s first industry, bringing brave and adventurous souls to the northern reaches of Vermont to work, establish farms and, eventually, build the local school, church and meeting house that would become the village of East Burke. It wasn’t until the mid-1900s that residents began to think about building a tourism industry ar
  • John Klar: Preserve sensible slaughter traditions

    Editor’s note: This commentary is by John Klar, a Vermont grass-fed beef farmer, and an attorney and pastor who lives in Westfield.
    Vermont’s Agency of Agriculture Food and Markets faces difficult times, as anemic milk prices and public outcry over water pollution from dairy farms converge upon the agency responsible for regulating both. But after a period of wrangling over the extent Vermont should regulate the sale of meats slaughtered on-farm, Vermont’s small farmers appear
  • Judge says fraud sentence will have deterrent effect

    U.S. District Court Judge Geoffrey Crawford said there must be consequences in financial fraud cases, including jail time. File photo
    RUTLAND — A Stowe man is heading to prison for two years despite his pleas for leniency after the judge told him it’s important in financial fraud cases that a message be sent to others considering it that there will be consequences, including time behind bars.
    Judge Geoffrey Crawford handed down the sentence to Daniel Burgess, 51, on Wednesday in fede
  • Campaign 2018: Brenda Siegel On Her Run For The Democratic Nomination For Governor dlvr.it/QY5CcM https://t.co/6MNpPzR4sb

    Campaign 2018: Brenda Siegel On Her Run For The Democratic Nomination For Governor dlvr.it/QY5CcM https://t.co/6MNpPzR4sb
  • Brookfield Farmer Brings You Along On His Trip From Farm To Market dlvr.it/QY58Fh https://t.co/MJLMVkXm8J

    Brookfield Farmer Brings You Along On His Trip From Farm To Market dlvr.it/QY58Fh https://t.co/MJLMVkXm8J
  • Ehlers’ social media posts prompt questions

    James Ehlers speaks at a launch event for his campaign for governor in Barre. File photo by Mike Polhamus/VTDigger
    Democratic gubernatorial candidate James Ehlers is facing questions about his pro-choice views and liberal credentials after a series of social media posts surfaced on Twitter Thursday.
    Lachlan Francis, a recent graduate of the University of Vermont, tweeted several screenshots of Facebook posts made by Ehlers on abortion, with some of the comments made as recently as 2015.Get all o
  • Gervais farm to host 1,000+ visitors for breakfast and farm tour

    News Release — Gervais Family FarmJune 23, 2018
    WHAT: Vermont’s Breakfast on the Farm comes to the Gervais Family Farm this Saturday June 23rd in Enosburg Falls. This free, public event includes a Vermont-style pancake breakfast featuring local products, a self-guided tour of the farm including 15 educational stations, and a peek into the life and business of dairy farming in Vermont. Media are invited to see first-hand how the farm cares for their cows, enhances their community, sup
  • LISTEN: Bienvenue! Touring Québec's Eastern Townships dlvr.it/QY4kk6 https://t.co/8kvvZlzzhA

    LISTEN: Bienvenue! Touring Québec's Eastern Townships dlvr.it/QY4kk6 https://t.co/8kvvZlzzhA
  • House candidate files suit over social media comments

    BENNINGTON — Comments on internet sites have touched off a firestorm of allegations and countercharges involving a candidate for the Statehouse, the chairman of the Bennington County Democratic Party and other residents.
    Kevin Hoyt, a Republican candidate in the Bennington 2-1 House district, is accusing the Democratic chairman, Aaron Sawyer, and two others of defaming him in social media comments and by word of mouth. He has filed a defamation suit against each person, and on Monday filed
  • Attorney General Donovan announces elder protection initiative

    News Release — Attorney General T.J. DonovanJune 15, 2018
    CONTACT:Jamie Renner(802) 828-5947
    AG DONOVAN LAUNCHES ELDER PROTECTION INITIATIVENew Effort Follows Statewide Listening Tour
    WINOOSKI – Attorney General T.J. Donovan has announced the launch of a permanent unit within his office known as the “Elder Protection Initiative.” This unit will focus on supporting and protecting Vermont’s aging population. The unit is the result of a listening tour that solicited id
  • Obeng shakes up leadership at Burlington schools

    Burlington School Superintendent Yaw Obeng takes reporters’ questions last year. File photo by Morgan True/VTDigger
    BURLINGTON — School Superintendent Yaw Obeng is shaking up the leadership at Burlington High School and Burlington Technical Center.
    Just days after the two schools conducted graduation ceremonies, Obeng announced that high school Principal Tracy Racicot is headed back to the technical center, which she directed at one time, and Assistant Principal Noel Green is moving
  • Lawson’s Finest expands distribution to New Hampshire

    News Release — Lawson’s Finest LiquidsJune 18, 2018
    Contact:info@lawsonsfinest.com802-496-HOPS
    Lawson’s Finest is excited to announce that Sunshine is coming to the Granite State! We are proud to have Vacationland Distributors deliver our flagship beer Sip of Sunshine IPA statewide to fans of the highly recognizable bright yellow cans. Sip of Sunshine is packed with juicy tropical fruit character, bright floral aromas and delectable layers of hop flavor.
    New Hampshire craft bee
  • Vermont Restaurant Week donates thousands to Vermont Foodbank

    News Release — Seven DaysJune 19, 2018
    CONTACT:Corey Grenier802-864-5684corey@sevendaysvt.com
    Vermont Restaurant Week Donates More Than $23,000 to the Vermont Foodbank
    June 19, 2018, Burlington, Vt. – A total of $23,165 was donated to the Vermont Foodbank as a result of Seven Days’ 9th annual Vermont Restaurant Week — $1,785 more than last year. This popular annual event was presented by Vermont Federal Credit Union and organized by Seven Days.
    “A wholehearted thank
  • Father who implicated son in fatal Northfield fire gets jail time

    Richard Hoisington was sentenced to more than a year in federal prison. Police photo
    BURLINGTON — A 70-year-old father who gave a statement to authorities implicating his son in a fatal blaze in Northfield two years ago has been sentenced to more than a year in a federal prison on a charge of conspiring to deal crack cocaine.
    After Tuesday’s sentencing, Richard “Dickie” Hoisington of Berlin will now be joining his son, Howard “Howie” Hoisington, 34, behind pri
  • FDA reconsiders ‘added sugar’ label on maple, honey

    Attorney General TJ Donovan, center, talks about new FDA maple syrup labeling guidelines at Slopeside Syrup in Richmond earlier this month. Photo by Xander Landen/VTDigger
    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is reconsidering a proposed rule that would require pure maple syrup and honey products to be labeled as having ‘added sugar’ contents.
    The requirement would affect all producers – including those whose goods are made with 100 percent pure ingredients such as natural syru
  • Preservation award in hand, Santa’s Land prepares for season opening

    David Haversat, owner of Santa’s Land, polishes the slide Wednesday in preparation to open for the summer season. Photo by Kristopher Radder/Brattleboro Reformer
    This story by Bob Audette was published in the Brattleboro Reformer on June 21.
    PUTNEY — Santa’s Land is reopening for the season Friday, and people are sitting up and taking notice, and not just those who don’t want to wait 187 days until Christmas.
    On June 8, David Haversat, who purchased the Christmas-themed p
  • Sen. Leahy calls for hearing on family separation policy

    News Release — Sen. Patrick Leahy
    Press Contact:David Carle(202) 224-3693
    Leahy Leads Judiciary Democrats In Letter To Grassley Calling For Hearing On President Trump’s Family Separation Policy
    WASHINGTON (MONDAY, June 18, 2018) – On Monday, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), a senior member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, led all Judiciary Committee Democrats in sending a letter to Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), calling on him to promptly hold a hearing o
  • Ehlers: Potential government shutdown is unwise

    News Release — James EhlersJune 19, 2018
    CONTACT:Sarah AndersPress@JamesEhlersForVermont.com
    Ehlers Slams Potential Scott Shutdown as Penny Unwise and Pounds More Foolish
    Winooski, VT — In response to the potential state government shutdown that was not averted today, Democratic Candidate for Governor James Ehlers said:
    “Governor Scott’s actions show disregard for the working people of Vermont in an attempt to save money for corporations and the most affluent. These extre
  • Burlington to host Motor News Great Race stop

    News Release — Lake Champlain Regional Chamber of CommerceJune 19, 2018
    Contact:Susan Smithsusan@vermont.org802-860-0606 ext. 230
    Burlington to Host Overnight Stop on 2018 Great Race
    BURLINGTON, VT.- will host an overnight stop on the 2018 Hemmings Motor News Great Race presented by Hagerty, Monday, June 25, race organizers have announced. The event will kick off with the Grippo Funk Band performing the National Anthem on the south end of Church Street at 5:00 p.m.
    The Great Race, the worl
  • Bennington Arts Weekend to return in August

    News Release — Bennington Chamber of CommerceJune 19, 2018
    Contact:Matt Harrington802-447-3311matt@bennington.com
    Bennington Arts Weekend Returns with First Fridays, The Southern Vermont Art and Craft Festival, and the Homebrew Festival.
    Bennington, VT – Bennington Arts Weekend returns this year Friday, August 3 to Sunday, August 5th, offering a variety of venues to get your arts and crafts on! The Bennington Area Chamber of Commerce, Bennington Downtown Alliance (BDA), 4Corners Nort
  • Green Mountain Transit to offer free rides for Dump the Pump Day

    News Release — Green Mountain TransitJune 18, 2018
    Contact:Mark A. Sousa802-864-2282msousa@ridegmt.com
    Green Mountain Transit Celebrates National Dump the Pump Day with Free Rides System-wide
    Burlington, VT — Green Mountain Transit (GMT) will join with other public transportation systems nationwide to participate in the 13th annual National Dump the Pump Day on Thursday, June 21. The slogan of this year’s National Dump the Pump Day is “Dump the Pump. Ride Public Transit.&
  • Gov. Scott releases statement to hold property taxes level

    News Release — Gov. Phil ScottJune 19, 2018
    Contact:Rebecca KelleyRebecca.Kelley@Vermont.Gov802-622-4047
    STATEMENT: IT’S TIME TO WORK TOGETHER TO HOLD PROPERTY TAX RATES LEVEL IN A YEAR WE HAVE A SURPLUS OF AT LEAST $55 MILLION
    Montpelier, Vt. – Governor Phil Scott today issued the following statement:
    “Vermonters elected me based on my vision to grow our economy, make Vermont more affordable and protect the most vulnerable. This came with a clear commitment to fiscal res
  • Burlington Electric earns national achievement award

    News Release — Burlington ElectricJune 19, 2018
    Contact:Mike Kanarick802.735.7962
    Burlington Electric Earns National Achievement Award as Outstanding UtilityAward Honors APPA Members that Have Enhanced the Prestige of Public Power Utilities through Sustained Achievement and Customer Service
    New Orleans, LA – The Burlington Electric Department today was one of three municipal utilities to be presented with an E.F. Scattergood System Achievement Award at the national conference of the
  • Before Your Time: Vermont libraries house more than books

    A souvenir vase in the Vermont Historical Society’s collection depicts the Brooks Memorial Library in Brattleboro. Photo by Ryan Newswanger
    Before Your Time is a podcast about Vermont history. Every episode, we go inside the stacks at the Vermont Historical Society to look at an object from their permanent collection that tells us something unique about our state. Then, we take a closer look at the people, the events, and the ideas that surround each artifact.Vermont’s 183
  • Senate pushes ahead with ‘Budget 3.0,’ but still no compromise in sight

    Sen. Jane Kitchel, D-Caledonia, chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee. Photo by Erin Mansfield/VTDiggerA joint Senate committee approved a third budget proposal of the session on Wednesday, but Gov. Phil Scott’s administration doesn’t appear to like it any more than the last one.
    With 10 days until a government shutdown, “Budget 3.0” does not look like it’s going to be the vehicle for a compromise to bring an end to a legislative session that has now lasted 1
  • Officer cleared in probe into misuse of sick days and on-duty workouts

    Chittenden County State’s Attorney Sarah George addresses the media during a news conference Wednesday. Photo by Cory Dawson/VTDigger
    A former Williston police officer was cleared on Wednesday following an investigation into his potential misuse of sick time and improperly working out a local gym while on-duty.
    Chittenden County State’s Attorney Sarah George said she reached her conclusion after reviewing an investigation into the matter she asked Vermont State Police to conduct.Get
  • As Trump dials back family separation, critics remain vocal

    Families at the southwest border were being separated under the Trump administration’s ‘zero tolerance’ policy. Creative Commons photo
    WASHINGTON — Amid a mounting outcry over a new border enforcement practice that has resulted in the separation of thousands of children from their parents, President Donald Trump abruptly signed an order that would keep families together.
    A new “zero tolerance” policy the administration implemented has resulted in thousands of
  • Tim Belcher: State shutdown lessons from Maine

    Editor’s note: This commentary is by Tim Belcher, of Barre, who is general counsel for the Vermont State Employees’ Association.
    Vermont is creeping towards a possible shutdown of state government come July 1. The governor is insisting on budget measures that the Democratic majority in the Legislature won’t support. The Democrats have proposed legislation that would keep the government open while the parties continue to negotiate. The governor doesn’t disagree with the su
  • Pattie McCoy: In the spirit of compromise

    Editor’s note: This commentary is by Rep. Pattie McCoy, of Poultney, a member of the Vermont House of Representatives who is House assistant minority leader.
    Regardless of how the political debate over whether to raise property tax rates ends, the education fund is going to spend nearly $1.7 billion next year on 76,000 students in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade. That is about $22,000 per student – the most in the nation and nearly twice the national average. Meanwhile, we have a
  • ACLU challenges Scott on social media censorship

    Gov. Phil Scott’s Facebook page
    The American Civil Liberties Union of Vermont is confronting Gov. Phil Scott for allegedly violating the First Amendment by blocking users from viewing his Facebook page and deleting some of their comments.
    The ACLU wrote in a letter to the governor on Wednesday saying they have been contacted by multiple constituents who have had comments deleted and profiles blocked by the administrator of Scott’s official Facebook page.Get all of VTDigger's politica
  • ACLU challenges Gov Scott on social media censorship

    Gov. Phil Scott’s Facebook pageThe American Civil Liberties Union of Vermont is confronting Gov. Phil Scott for allegedly violating the First Amendment by blocking users from viewing his Facebook page and deleting some of their comments.The ACLU wrote in a letter to the governor on Wednesday saying they have been contacted by multiple constituents who have had comments deleted and profiles blocked by the administrator of Scott’s official Facebook page.Get all of VTDigger's political
  • Jim Masland: Scott’s true mission is not to lower taxes

    Editor’s note: This commentary is by Rep. Jim Masland, of Thetford Center, a Democrat who represents the Windsor-Orange 2 district in the Vermont House of Representatives.
    Twice since the 2018 special session began in June members of the House Ways and Means, Appropriations and Education committees heard from the senior members of the governor’s cabinet. Present were Adam Greshin, commissioner of Finance and Management; Kaj Samsom, commissioner of Taxes; Mike Pieciak, commissioner of
  • Deb Sherrer: ‘Be Best’ at the border, too

    Editor’s note: This commentary is by Deb Sherrer, a freelance writer with professional training in school and clinical psychology with a specialty in trauma recovery. She lives in Shelburne.
    It’s June 18 and Father’s Day in America. Imagine the families with little children eating waffles and sharing crayon-scratched cards, a new Best Dad coffee mug awkwardly wrapped as a gift. Imagine the babies brought into bed to snuggle between the parents. Imagine the visits to elder care
  • VTDigger Minute: Family separations, veto upheld, water quality dip

    
    VTDigger Minute is a weekly news digest from Vermont PBS. Tune in every Wednesday at 6 p.m. and Thursday at 6:30 a.m. to hear about the week’s top stories.
    This week on the Minute:
    Top Vermont law enforcement officials rebuff family separations
    Top Vermont law enforcement officials are urging the Trump administration to stop separating immigrant families who enter the country illegally. Attorney General TJ Donovan and two former US attorneys for Vermont have signed letters op
  • Condos backs election security bill in Congress

    Vermont Secretary of State Jim Condos, left,  testifies Wednesday before a U.S. Senate committee on election security. Photo by Elizabeth Hewitt/VTDigger
    WASHINGTON — Vermont Secretary of State Jim Condos urged a congressional committee to advance a bill that would bolster election security finances and practices Wednesday.
    The cybersecurity of election infrastructure has been in the spotlight after revelations that Russian hackers scanned the voter registration databases of nearly tw
  • Trump nominates new U.S. marshal for Vermont

    Brad LaRose has been named by President Trump to be the new U.S. marshal for Vermont. U.S. Marshals Service photo
    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump nominated former Essex Police Chief Brad LaRose to serve as the next U.S. marshal in Vermont Wednesday.
    If longtime police officer Bradley LaRose is confirmed by the Senate, he will head the operations of the U.S. Marshals Service in the state.Get all of VTDigger's political news.You'll never miss a political story with our weekly headlines i
  • Environmental groups fight mosquito spraying permit

    A child scratches a mosquito bite near the Long Trail in Vermont. File photo by Jess Wisloski/VTDigger
    Two environmental groups have joined forces to fight the spraying of mosquito-killing pesticides in parts of Addison and Rutland counties.
    The Toxics Action Center, an advocacy group, and the Environment and Natural Resources Clinic at Vermont Law School, have appealed the granting of a permit to spray in towns straddling the two counties on the western edge of the Green Mountain National Fores
  • Vermont Agency of Natural Resources to hold community forum

    News Release — Vermont Agency of Natural ResourcesJune 19, 2018
    Contact:Elle O’Caseyelle.ocasey@vermont.gov802-760-9967
    Vermont’s Agency of Natural Resources Secretary to Hold Community Forum on the Health of Vermont’s Moose Herd and other Environmental Topics on June 26
    MONTPELIER, Vt. – On Tuesday, June 26th at 4pm, Agency of Natural Resources (ANR) Secretary Julie Moore will host a gathering in Montpelier to discuss the health of Vermont’s moose herd and ot

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