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.
Vermont lawmakers sustained Governor Peter Shumlin's veto of a bill that some believed would have slowed renewable energy development in Vermont, but then replaced it with one that's more to the Democratic governor's liking.
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.
The Vermont Senate has passed and moved to the House legislation that would legalize possession of small amounts of marijuana for recreational use. The House Judiciary and Government Operations committees will take public testimony on the bill later this week.
Photos obtained from a whistleblower and published in a Vermont newspaper have renewed calls for stricter oversight of Entergy and its management of the fund dedicated to decommissioning the closed Vermont Yankee nuclear reactor.
The Vermont Senate Judiciary Committee recently voted to approve a bill that would legalize recreational marijuana in the state. The idea is so controversial that even members of the same party are divided over the issue.
Vermont legalized medical marijuana in 2004. Now, some legislative committees are taking testimony on the controversial idea of legalizing recreational marijuana. But there is considerable doubt whether the Legislature will actually approve a bill this session.
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.
World leaders are discussing the climate in Paris, but it’s very much on the minds of activists closer to home. Members of the Energy Independent Vermont Coalition delivered to the Statehouse what they claim were more than 25-thousand postcards calling for the creation of a carbon tax and Energy Independence fund in Vermont.
An oversight committee of the Vermont Legislature held a hearing this week on issues relating to the Department of Children and Families, which is under the microscope following child deaths last year and the murder of a social worker in August.
Staff at Vermont's Department for Children and Families received 85 threats from members of the public in the two months after a social worker was fatally shot in Barre. The statistics are being highlighted as a Vermont legislative committee looks at several aspects of the state's child protection system — including how to keep social workers working in it safe.
Vermont's chief superior judge says he believes a child protection bill awaiting Governor Peter Shumlin's signature will help courts respond better to child abuse cases by providing them with more complete information.
As the Vermont Legislature enters what are expected to be its final two weeks of the session, the House and Senate have yet to resolve several issues including taxes, water quality, education and vaccine exemptions.