New England News

Fire investigators say a fire in a dorm room at Vermont's Castleton University was caused by a computer that had been left on a bean bag chair.

Rail tracks
Tipiac-Alain Caraco/Wikimedia Commons

Opponents of a plan to replace two railroad bridges in downtown Middlebury with a tunnel say the old bridges can be replaced faster and for much less money than the project being promoted by the Vermont Transportation Agency.

Advocates claim momentum is building for banning disposable plastic bags from retail checkout counters in Massachusetts despite setbacks in the state legislature and in two of the state’s largest cities.

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker
Paul Tuthill / WAMC

      A lawsuit accuses the administration of Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker of denying emergency shelter to homeless mothers and children.

Vermont Attorney General Bill Sorrell
WAMC/Pat Bradley

In January, Vermont will have a new attorney general for the first time in a generation.  Incumbent Bill Sorrell announced in September 2015 that he would not seek reelection this year after serving in the post since 1997.  The longest-serving attorney general in the state’s history says that after nearly 20 years in the office it was time to let someone new take the post.

evanscutler.com

       Massachusetts on Thursday began a new era of legalized marijuana.

Picture of Bernie Sanders
Bernie 2016

Bernie Sanders' office says the Vermont senator had a small basal cell carcinoma removed from his cheek in an outpatient procedure.

F35
USAF

Earlier this week, President-elect Donald Trump tweeted criticism over the F-35 fighter jet program. It caused Lockheed Martin stock to fall 2.5 percent. It also raised some eyebrows in the Northeast. The Vermont Air National Guard is scheduled to begin receiving the fighter jet in 2019.  Supporters of the F-35 say they aren’t worried those plans will change because the tweet raises two very different issues.

medication tablets
wikipedia commons

Connecticut is leading a 20-state lawsuit against six generic drug-makers, alleging they artificially inflated and manipulated prices to reduce competition for an antibiotic and oral diabetes medication.

Congressman Peter Welch discusses Renewable Fuel Standard in Burlington
Pat Bradley/WAMC

Congressman Peter Welch was joined by a group of Vermont environmentalists Tuesday to highlight what they see as a need for revisions in the Renewable Fuel Standard, a national policy that requires corn ethanol be mixed into fuels.

Marijuana
flickr

Marijuana became legal in Massachusetts Thursday, but there are still some restrictions.

A Vermont man has been accused of using a stun gun on a 14-year-old boy after thinking the child had stolen a bicycle.

Screen capture from Governor Peter Shumlin's pardon PSA
Office of Governor Peter Shumlin

Vermont’s Governor has recorded a public service announcement to promote his plan to grant pardons to people convicted of possessing small amounts of marijuana.

Fairpoint Communications logo
Fairpoint Communications

Vermont's Senator Bernie Sanders and Representative Peter Welch want the CEOs of FairPoint Communications and the Illinois company that plans to buy it to reverse the planned layoffs of at least 110 workers across Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont.

Ashley Madison partner graphic
Federal Trade Commission

The Vermont attorney general joined the Federal Trade Commission chairwoman this afternoon to announce a settlement with the operators of Toronto-based dating site AshleyMadison.com after the company deceived consumers and failed to protect account information before a July 2015 data breach.

National Weather Service

Massachusetts authorities are urging people to take precautions during dangerously cold weather forecast for late Thursday night and early Friday morning.

WAMC

    In a first for a public school system in Massachusetts, the Springfield School Department is building its own food services center.

Senator Bill Doyle
Vermont Legislature

It’s a year of change in Vermont politics, with the governor, lieutenant governor and attorney general all stepping aside. And a mainstay in the legislature is leaving, too. Bill Doyle began serving in the Vermont Senate in 1969 and is the longest-serving senator in the state’s history.  But the 90-year-old Republican lost his re-election bid this year.  On November 30th, he withdrew his request for a recount and conceded the race.  Doyle says activity in the statehouse become more political over the years.

Tomas Castelazo/Wikimedia Commons

 An affordable housing advocacy group says Connecticut is making significant progress toward ending chronic homelessness.

Vermont Governor Phil Scott
Governor-elect's transition office

Vermont's governor-elect says he expects to sell his share of his business — a construction company that has won state contracts in the past — before he takes office in January.

New Hampshire Statehouse
Jared C. Benedict/Wikimedia Commons

New Hampshire's four Democratic electors have signed a letter asking for members of the Electoral College to receive an intelligence briefing explaining whether the government is investigating links between President-elect Donald Trump and Russia.

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Vermont's 911 emergency calling system — and state oversight of it — are coming under scrutiny after at least four outages in less than two years.

Picture of marijuana plant
wikipedia commons

Recreational marijuana is becoming legal in Massachusetts. Legal, but not readily available.

Picture of marijuana plant
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service/Wikimedia Commons Public Domain

It appears Massachusetts’ new recreational marijuana law can take effect next week after all.

A Hartford Police Department patch
Facebook: Hartford Police

Hartford police have charged nine juveniles in connection with a destructive flash mob robbery of a convenience store last month and say more will likely be charged. They were referred to juvenile court.

University of Vermont Medical Center
Fletcher Allen Health Care/University of Vermont Medical Center

A group of licensed nursing assistants and other employees at the University of Vermont Medical Center in Burlington are seeking permission from the hospital to establish a union.

handcuffs
wikipedia.org

Police in Vermont say two men suspected of taking property from a sheriff's department led authorities on a 30-mile chase on Interstate 89 and other roads and crashed into several cruisers before being stopped by a blockade of state plow trucks.

The logo of the Massachusetts Medical Society
Facebook: Massachusetts Medical Society

Voters in Massachusetts approved a ballot question on Election Day to legalize recreational marijuana and doctors in the state are concerned. At a recent meeting, the Massachusetts Medical Society passed resolutions on a number of issues including recreational marijuana, drug prices, aid-in dying and concussions. 

Picture of a Vermont School Bus
Jared C. Benedict/Wikimedia Commons

The teachers' union affiliate in Rutland, Vermont, has filed a complaint with the state labor board, saying school administrators are ignoring concerns about student-on-staff violence.  But the superintendent of schools is disputing the teachers' union complaint.

Picture of marijuana plant
US Fish and Wildlife Service/Wikimedia Commons Public Domain

In the closing days of his administration, Governor Peter Shumlin is inviting Vermonters to apply for pardons if they were convicted of possessing up to an ounce of marijuana.

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