vermont house

Representatives Mitzi Johnson (left) and Linda Myers
Vermont House

The majority Democrats in the Vermont House are expected to choose their nominee for Speaker this weekend while Republicans picked their nominee on Wednesday.  The selections mean the chamber will choose its third female speaker in the body’s history.

Vermont House chamber
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The leader of majority Democrats in the Vermont House is dropping her bid to become the state's next speaker.

The Democratic Caucus plans to elect a nominee for speaker on Saturday. The entire House will then vote on that nominee in January.

Rep. Sarah Copeland-Hanzas tells The Burlington Free Press she's no longer seeking the position because Rep. Mitzi Johnson has more support among Democratic lawmakers.
Johnson, a Democrat from South Hero, is now unopposed in the election.

Vermont Statehouse
Photo by Pat Bradley

The Vermont Legislature adjourned its biennium just after midnight Saturday morning. Although lawmakers approved a spending plan that’s expected to raise $49 million in new revenue, they also failed to pass some major initiatives.

Young smokers
Valentin Ottone/Flickr

A bill that was before the Vermont House to raise the smoking age was sent back to committee Tuesday for fiscal review.

Vermont Statehouse
WAMC/Pat Bradley

The Vermont House passed a state budget late Thursday and sent the spending package to the Senate.

The Vermont House has given preliminary approval to a bill designed to help low-income drivers with suspended drivers' licenses get them back.

Vermont Statehouse
WAMC/Pat Bradley

This is “Crossover Week” in the Vermont Legislature, the annual scramble to clear bills out of committees and onto the floor so that they can move to the opposite chamber for completion.

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Vermont’s paid sick leave bill has received final passage in the legislature and the governor is expected to sign the measure into law.  Supporters say the state has made a critical move forward in economic justice.  But opponents contend it will hurt small businesses and the state’s economy.

Vermont Statehouse
Photo by Pat Bradley

The Vermont House has passed a Senate version of a paid sick leave bill and sent it to Governor Peter Shumlin, who supports it.

Photo of Vermont Statehouse in winter
Pat Bradley/WAMC

In a post-midnight vote Saturday, the Vermont House passed a bill to ease spending caps on local school districts.

Vermont House Chamber
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The Vermont Legislature begins the second half of the 2015-2016 biennium today.  There are a number of issues up for debate, including recreational marijuana legalization and the possible suspension of a senator.  But the focus according to legislative leaders must remain on fiscal issues.

Pat Bradley/WAMC

Governor Peter Shumlin has appointed a Waterbury woman to a vacant seat in the Vermont House of Representatives.

WAMC/Pat Bradley

Vermont lawmakers passed a $5.5 billion budget with $30 million dollars in tax increases before ending their 2015 session Saturday night. WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley has a wrap-up.

The Vermont House has passed a bill designed to keep guns out of the hands of convicted felons and people who are dangerously mentally ill.

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A resolution calling for more to be done to guard against suicides among veterans and military personnel was cause for some high emotion in the Vermont House.

WAMC/Pat Bradley

The Vermont House has killed legislation that initially intended to ban teachers' strikes and the imposition of contract terms by school boards. The measure, amended to merely mandate a study of collective bargaining between teachers and school boards, was defeated on the floor Thursday.

WAMC/Pat Bradley

Majority Democrats in the Vermont House are still divided over legislation that would ban teachers' strikes and the imposition of contracts by school boards on the eve of scheduled floor debate on the issue.

WAMC/Pat Bradley

Vermont House lawmakers have joined objections to the kind of religious freedom law that generated a firestorm of opposition in Indiana.

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

As experts and researchers debate the possible benefits and drawbacks of consolidation, the Vermont House has moved an education spending and governance bill that encourages school district mergers to the Senate.

Donkey Hotey/Flickr

A Vermont House committee has approved about $20 million in both new and higher taxes to pay for increasing Medicaid provider payments and other health care-related items.

WAMC/Pat Bradley

The Vermont House gave preliminary approval Wednesday evening to a measure designed to clean up pollution in all of the state’s waterways.

classroom
en.wikipedia.org

The Vermont House has endorsed a bill that would require many school districts in the state to merge with their neighbors.

WAMC/Pat Bradley

The Vermont House has advanced legislation to raise $35 million in new taxes by limiting deductions from the state income tax.

Vision to Action Vermont

A new political action committee has been formed in Vermont. Founders of the bi-partisan PAC plan to support candidates who will promote and advocate for fiscal responsibility.

WAMC/Pat Bradley

Some Vermont lawmakers are taking offense at comments made by one of their colleagues regarding African-Americans moving into the Rutland area.

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The Vermont House has given final approval to a bill to protect children from exposure to toxic chemicals.

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The Vermont House has passed a measure calling for a study of marijuana legalization, while a Senate committee looks at cracking down on drivers impaired by drugs.

WAMC/Pat Bradley

The Vermont House on Wednesday gave final approval to an increase in the state’s minimum wage to $10.10 per hour from the current $8.73, to take effect in January. But Governor Peter Shumlin prefers moving to $10.10 in stages by 2017.

WAMC/Pat Bradley

The Vermont House passed a bill Wednesday afternoon  that would make the state the first in the country to cross the $10 mark in its minimum wage.

WAMC/Pat Bradley

The Vermont House is going against the wishes of Governor Peter Shumlin by calling for an increase in the state's minimum wage to $10.10 per hour starting in January, rather than 2017.

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