April 26, 2002 - News at a Glance

04/26/02 12:00AM



Jeffords on Air Pollution
Steve Delaney interviews Senator James Jeffords on the president's "Clean Skies" pollution abatement program, announced earlier this week. Jeffords is critical of the president's proposal. (Listen to the interview online.) (VPR)

Floor Debates
As the legislative session nears an end, lawmakers are debating the bills that have been hammered out in the past few months. The debates can consume hours of lawmakers' time. Steve Zind looks at the role of the floor debate in the legislative process. (VPR)

Transportation Bill
The House late Thursday gave its preliminary approval to next year's transportation bill. The legislation contains a controversial provision that authorizes new business information signs on the Interstate. (VPR)

Pay Equity Law
Lieutenant Governor Douglas Racine signed the "equal pay for equal work" bill into law Thursday. The legislation requires employers to give the same salary to a woman that it offers to a man for comparable work. (VPR)

Illicit Drug Use
Republican gubernatorial candidate Jim Douglas proposed a three-point program Thursday that Douglas says will help reduce the state's growing drug problem. (VPR)

Highway Signs
The House has proposed erecting signs to help motorists find gas, food and lodging off the Interstates. Revenue from the signs would offset federal cuts in transportation spending. Opponents claim that it's a return to the billboards banned in Vermont three decades ago. (AP)

Federal Farm Bill
Details should emerge today on the outlines of new subsidy payments to dairy farmers, as part of the farm bill being negotiated in Congress. (AP)

Murder Suspect Pleads Innocent
Tashia Beer of West Burke has pleaded innocent to murder charges. She's accused of talking her foster brother into shooting her step-mother two years ago, when she was 15. (AP)

Medicinal Marijuana
A bill to legalize medical marijuana in Vermont is another step closer to passage. The bill heads to the Senate Judiciary Committee, where the chairman is ambivalent about it. (AP)

Senator's House Burns
State Senator Hull Maynard's 207-year old home in Shrewsbury burned down while he was at the Legislature in Montpelier. Police haven't discovered the cause of the fire. (AP)

Cigarette Tax
The Senate wants to increase the cigarette tax by 67 cents a pack, in spite of recent action by the House, limiting that increase to 36 cents. (AP)

OMYA Ruling
OMYA, the calcium carbonate company, has lost another round in its effort to appeal an adverse Act 250 land-use ruling that limits its truck traffic between Middlebury and Pittsford. (AP)

Caregiver Protection
The Senate has unanimously approved a bill that would require caregivers to be notified when a potentially violent person is placed with them. (AP)
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