New England News

New England News
5:54 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

Mass DEP Recommends Shut Down of Wind Turbine

The study released Tuesday by the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection shows that the Wind One industrial turbine in the Cape Cod town of Falmouth produces noise louder than the state allows.

The report marks the first time the state has recommended a shut-off of a wind turbine.

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WAMC News, North Country News
5:19 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

Vermont Bans Hydrofracking

Courtesy Vermont Public Interest Research Group

Shortly after noon on Wednesday, Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin signed into law the nation's first statewide ban on the natural gas drilling technique known as hydraulic fracturing.

Governor Peter Shumlin signed H.464 to ban the drilling method. Lawmakers had considered a moratorium, but after testimony and debate, moved a bill forward to ban the practice.  Governor Shumlin says it’s a critical move to protecting a critical resource.

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New England News
3:30 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

Officials Seek Summer Jobs For Young People

Mayor Alex Morse of Holyoke, MA and young people at Hampden Co. REB 2012 Youth Summer Jobs Campaign kickoff
WAMC

Hoping to reverse what has been called a lost decade of employment for
young people, officials in western Massachusetts have launched a youth
summer jobs campaign.  WAMC's Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill
reports.

        Saying that government funded youth summer jobs programs will
not come close to meeting the demand, workforce development specialists,
and the mayors of the region's two largest cities appealed to the
private sector to offer work to teenagers this summer.

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New England News
8:21 am
Wed May 16, 2012

VT State Revenues Above Target, Surplus Possible

Vermont's top fiscal officer says the state's General Fund took in $10.6 million more than expected last month, making it possible for the state to end the fiscal year with a surplus.  WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley reports… 

Administration Secretary Jeb Spaulding said general fund revenues were 6.3 percent ahead of expectations.

So far this fiscal year, general fund revenues are four-tenths of one percent ahead of expectations.

Spaulding says the results were largely because of strong corporate income tax filings.

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New England News
6:25 pm
Tue May 15, 2012

Massachusetts Auto Insurance Rates Rise

Auto insurance rates in Massachusetts are climbing higher. Drivers are starting to see their premiums go up four years after rates dropped when the state partially de-regulated the auto insurance business.  WAMC's Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports.

        Many of the largest auto insurance companies doing business in Massachusetts have raised rates in each of the last two years.  The insurers are faced with rising costs for claims from car crashes, thefts and injuries, according to James Harrington, of the Massachusetts Insurance Federation.

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WAMC News, North Country News
5:22 pm
Tue May 15, 2012

Crowd Voices Opinions on Potential F-35's

F-35
DOD Joint Strike Fighter Program Department of Defense

The U.S. Air Force is considering five sites across the country to host their new generation of fighter jets.  One of its preferred sites is the National Guard base in South Burlington, Vermont. Both supporters and opponents packed a hearing last night to voice their opinions on the plan.

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New England News
12:50 pm
Tue May 15, 2012

Schools Of Education To Be Graded

The National Council on Teacher Quality, a non-profit policy and research center, is working on a project to  rate the country’s schools of education.  The report is to be published by US News and World Report.   WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill spoke with  the think tank’s president, Kate Walsh.

New England News
8:27 am
Tue May 15, 2012

Rhode Island Will Recognize Out-of-State Same-Sex Marriages

Rhode Island's governor has signed an executive order saying the state will recognize same-sex marriages performed out of state. WAMC’s Lucas Willard reports…

The order signed by Governor Lincoln Chafee on Monday directs state agencies to afford same-sex married couples the same rights as heterosexual ones. Chafee says some same-sex couples married outside Rhode Island have been denied rights because state law isn't clear on the subject.

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New England News
8:22 am
Tue May 15, 2012

MA Attorney General Wants to Toughen State’s Open Meeting Law

Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley wants to toughen the state’s open meeting law. WAMC’s Paul Tuthill reports…

Coakley on Monday proposed a new regulation that would allow state and local governmental bodies to be punished if they act with "deliberate ignorance" of the law, which requires most meetings to be accessible to the public.

Under current regulations, public entities can be fined up to $1,000 for violating the law, but only if the violation is found to be intentional after a previous warning from a court or prosecutor.

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New England News
6:00 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

Federal Cuts Force Massachusetts to Scale Back HIV Screenings in Jails

The state is plans to cut back HIV testing and education spending in jails. Over $1 million dollars have been eliminated from programs in houses of correction.

Kevin Cranston, director of the state Bureau of Infectous Disease, says that due to the tight budget, the state is making cuts they believe will have the least amount of impat.

State prisons will be spared the cuts. Cranston also says that not all HIV programs in county jails will be eliminated.  

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