June 26, 2015
State officials are growing concerned that Congress won't pass a long-term federal transportation bill this year. They’ve developed a contingency plan to ensure that road and bridge construction projects in Vermont stay on schedule this summer.
June 23, 2015
The Legislature has adjourned for the year. But the work of one House committee isn’t over yet. A panel of lawmakers will meet this summer to determine whether the state should pursue an alternative to Vermont Health Connect.
It was with much fanfare earlier this month that Gov. Peter Shumlin announced the long-awaited arrival of a new piece of technology at Vermont Health Connect, the troubled health care exchange. Shumlin says the software will allow the state to process changes in customers’ insurance status more quickly. And he says it will alleviate a customer-service backlog that has caused accounting errors, wrongful policy terminations, and in some cases delayed access to care.
June 22, 2015
Rarely do longstanding incumbents face primary challenges from well-known candidates within their own party. But Chittenden County State’s Attorney T.J. Donovan is now taking on nine-term incumbent Bill Sorrell for the second time in four years.
June 16, 2015
The Legislature is about to spend $300,000 to figure out how much it should cost to educate Vermont students. It’s still an open question what they will do with the information once they have it.
Lawmakers dedicated a good chunk of the last legislative session to a fierce debate over education reform. Their deliberations yielded a piece of legislation that supporters say will lower costs and improve student outcomes.
June 11, 2015
There’s a change on the horizon for people who need help with alcohol and drug addiction. Starting in October, licensed counselors may accept Medicaid payments even if their clients do not have mental health disorders. That new state law is likely to expand access to treatment.
June 08, 2015
On Monday, Democratic Gov. Peter Shumlin announced he will not be seeking a fourth term in office. Shumlin still has about a year and half left in his current term, and he says he made his announcement now because he wants to spend the rest of his time in office focusing on his agenda.
June 03, 2015
Gov. Peter Shumlin has put his signature on an economic development bill designed to provide incentives to both businesses and workers.
The bill signing ceremony took place at Darn Tough Socks in Northfield, which is planning a major expansion.
June 03, 2015
When it comes to government ethics, Vermont is a national outlier. The state is one of just a handful that don't have any sort of statewide ethics commission to watchdog public officials, nor does it require state lawmakers to reveal anything at all about their personal finances in order to disclose possible conflicts of interest.
June 02, 2015
With the stroke of the governor’s pen on Monday, Vermont became the 14th state to allow same-day voter registration. Proponents say the measure will help improve low turnout rates in Vermont elections. Critics though say it could make it easier to sabotage the democratic process.
June 01, 2015
During the last legislative session, a group called Alliance for a Healthier Vermont pushed for an excise tax on sugar-sweetened beverages, like soda, that would raise an estimated $30 million for Vermont.
So some might call it a victory that lawmakers instead decided to apply the state's 6 percent sales tax to soda and candy. But advocates aren't convinced, and plan to continue to push for the excise tax.
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