New England News

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Refugees could start arriving in Vermont in the next few weeks after a U.S. judge's temporary suspension of President Donald Trump's travel ban targeting those from seven Muslim-majority countries.

Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy
CT.gov

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy says his new budget proposal would significantly change the state's formula for funding local education to allow more aid to get to the neediest communities.

Massachusetts Health Connector

   A record number of people have signed up for health insurance through the Massachusetts Health Connector during the open enrollment period.

Facebook: Aetna

Connecticut and Hartford leaders say they're concerned healthcare insurance giant Aetna might downsize or relocate its corporate headquarters from Hartford to Boston.

crews work to repair a hole in a street
WAMC

A recent report puts a price tag on repairs required to local water systems in Massachusetts.  It also adds to a national political issue because President Donald Trump has promised to make a massive investment in infrastructure. 

Pipeline opponents rallied outside Berkshire Superior Court in Pittsfield, Massachusetts for a hearing on the land access in April 2016.
Jim Levulis / WAMC

On Monday representatives of the state of Massachusetts and Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company will meet in Berkshire Superior Court to discuss a proposed settlement for the Connecticut Expansion Project

Connecticut State Police are warning against drunken driving and betting in bars this Super Bowl Sunday.

wikipedia.org

Protesters in Connecticut temporarily shut down a highway, delaying an ambulance that was on the road and forcing workers to perform an emergency medical procedure on a patient.

Vermont's United States attorney is resigning. Eric Miller, who was appointed by former President Barack Obama, announced Friday that he would resign effective Feb. 10.

Photo of Vermont Statehouse in winter
Pat Bradley/WAMC

Vermont Governor Phil Scott has vowed to veto a bill recently proposed by legislators in the state House of Representatives that would establish a state-run paid family leave program.

    Most of the elected state officers in Massachusetts are turning down the higher pay checks they could get now that the state legislature has overridden Gov. Charlie Baker’s veto of the controversial pay package.

WAMC

     The new immigration ban is directly impacting many people, including a Greenfield, Massachusetts resident who was looking forward to a visit from her parents.

James Burton
Boston Symphony Orhestra

There is a new conductor of the Tanglewood Festival Chorus. James Burton will also assume the new position of Choral Director of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. 

A delegation delivered a letter to the office of the Springfield mayor Thursday. It was signed by 14 people representing community, faith-based, and labor organizations including Arise for Social Justice, Catholic Charities, the NAACP, and the Pioneer Valley Central Labor Council. It requested a meeting with Sarno be scheduled for Monday, and called on him to issue an executive order that would bar the local police from cooperating with federal authorities to identify and detain undocumented immigrants.

VW Passat with Vermont license plates
Bull Doser/Public Domain

The costs of motor vehicle safety inspections could go up in Vermont as inspection stations start using a new electronic system.

Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy
CT.gov

The executive director of the Connecticut Democratic Party says federal officials have ended a criminal investigation into fundraising for Governor Dannel Malloy's 2014 re-election campaign.

  

   A Massachusetts District Attorney said Thursday he cannot bring charges against off-duty Springfield police officers for their alleged involvement in a fight outside a barroom that left four men injured.

State police say a trucker from Vermont has died after his rig rear-ended another on the New York State Thruway in the Hudson Valley, shutting down northbound traffic for about eight hours.

A delegation delivered a letter signed by 14 people from community, faith-based and labor organizations to the office of Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno. It called on him to issue an executive order that would effectively make Springfield a so-called " sa
WAMC

       More than a dozen community, faith-based, and labor organizations in Massachusetts are calling on the mayor of the state’s third largest city to declare it a so-called “sanctuary jurisdiction.”

Vermont Conservation Voters Common Agenda 2017 cover page
Vermont Conservation Voters

Vermont Conservation Voters is an organization that works to elect environmentally minded individuals and advocates for environmental policy.  It works each year with a coalition of 10 groups to create a Common Agenda of environmental priorities to present to lawmakers each session. The 2017 agenda, which focuses on toxic chemicals and renewable energy policy, was released this week at the Statehouse.  Vermont Conservation Voters Political Director Lauren Hierl says as the agenda is crafted, pressing issues become clear.

A regional working group focused on economic development in Bennington County will hold its first meeting next week.

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

A bill has been proposed in the Vermont House that would make it legal for adults to possess and grow small amounts of marijuana.

An exterior view of the Massachusetts State House in Boston
wikipedia.org

       A pay raise package for elected officials in Massachusetts is expected to be finalized this week on Beacon Hill.   While pay raises for public officials are always controversial, this plan has drawn just token opposition.

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Burlington Electric Department

Two energy providers in Burlington are expanding an energy efficiency program to homeowners.

       President Trump’s nomination of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court is getting a lot of scrutiny today.

Vermont Statehouse
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The Vermont Legislature has approved a resolution that affirms abortion rights.

Prescription drug price panel
Pat Bradley/WAMC

Vermont Congressman Peter Welch held a roundtable in Burlington Monday with health officials and advocates to discuss the rapidly rising cost of prescription drugs.

Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey announces her office is seeking to join a lawsuit brought by the ACLU to challenge President Trump's Executive Order on immigration. She was joined by immigrant advocates, representatives of the state's health c
Massachusetts Attorney General's office

The Massachusetts attorney general is taking action to challenge President Trump’s Executive Order on immigration.

Vermont Congressman Peter Welch (right) discusses presidential executive order on immigration with Vermont ACLU Executive Director James Lyall (left)
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The debate over the constitutionality of President Trump’s immigration Executive Order flared last night when the acting Attorney General of the United States was fired after refusing to enforce the mandate.  The debate between the Justice Department and the White House was occurring as Congressional Democrats gathered in front of the Supreme Court to protest what New York Senator Charles Schumer called an “inhumane” order.  Among them was Vermont Representative Peter Welch, who earlier in the day was in Burlington condemning the president’s actions.

      Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker, during his State of the Commonwealth Address a week ago, touted a new education model called “school empowerment zones.” 

         The only one of its kind is in Springfield where the city’s nine middle schools operate in an Empowerment Zone Partnership. 

        WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill spoke with Chris Gabrieli, who chairs the independent board that oversees the schools.

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