vermont

North Country News
7:52 am
Thu July 5, 2012

VT Yankee Nuke Plant at Full Power after Repairs

Courtesy NRC and Entergy Corp.

The Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant is producing electricity at full power again after technicians completed repairs to one of two motor generators that vary the flow of cooling water to the reactor.  WAMC’s Tristan O’Neill reports…

Plant spokesman Rob Williams says the problem, discovered was caused by faulty electrical connections in the unit, which is about half the size of a bus.

On June 18, the plant's output was reduced to 38 percent after smoke was detected in the reactor building. The smoke was traced to the motor generator, which was shut down.

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North Country News
7:48 am
Thu July 5, 2012

Sanders Questions High Gas Prices in Burlington

Senator Bernie Sanders

Vermont U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders is asking if northwestern Vermont residents are getting ripped off at the gas pump.  WAMC’s Tristan O’Neill reports… 

The left-leaning independent is calling for a federal investigation of the fact that gas prices are higher in Chittenden, Franklin and Grand Isle counties than elsewhere in Vermont or New England.

Sanders says Vermont's gas prices tend to run higher than New Hampshire's. On Monday, regular unleaded averaged $3.55 a gallon in Vermont, versus $3.36 in New Hampshire.

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North Country News
6:49 am
Tue July 3, 2012

Farm Bill Has Market Stabilization Plan for Milk

WAMC

Vermont's congressional delegation says the farm bill passed by the U.S. Senate that includes a program aimed at stabilizing milk prices is a good step forward.  WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley reports…

A provision of the voluntary program is designed to stop the dramatic swings in prices, by discouraging the oversupply of milk and allowing farmers to buy insurance that pays out when prices plummet.

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North Country News
8:28 am
Wed June 27, 2012

US Appeals Court Says VT Late with Nuke Appeal

Courtesy NRC and Entergy Corp.

A U.S. appeals court has rejected an argument by the state of Vermont that the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant should not have been given a new operating license because its federal water quality permit was out of date.  WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley reports…

In a ruling issued Tuesday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia said the state had multiple opportunities to argue the Vernon plant lacked a valid permit under the Clean Water Act during the proceedings that led up to the plant's relicensing last year.

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North Country News
8:07 am
Wed June 27, 2012

Shumlin: VT Will Push Ahead with Health Overhaul

Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin
Vermont Governor's Office

Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin says the state will push ahead with an overhaul of its health care system, no matter what the U.S. Supreme Court does with the federal Affordable Care Act.  WAMC’s Tristan O’Neill reports…

Shumlin tells The Associated Press he's worried that if the law is struck down in its entirety, the state could lose up to $400 million a year in federal funding it had been hoping to use to subsidize universal access to health care.

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North Country News
7:42 am
Tue June 26, 2012

VT Health Care Changes Arrive in St. Johnsbury

Cancer patients in northeastern Vermont should be getting better coordinated — and maybe less expensive — care in the near future, if a program that's part of the state's health care overhaul is successful.

The Green Mountain Care Board is spearheading the state's push to make health care access universal while controlling costs, and on Monday it announced cancer care in the St. Johnsbury area will be brought into a new pilot program.

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North Country News
7:04 am
Thu June 21, 2012

VT Gets Grant to Improve Education Data Gathering

Vermont is getting a $5 million federal grant for a new automated system that will allow it to better gather and report on information from every school in the state.  WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley reports…

Officials say with the new system the state will be able determine, for example, how many students have taken geometry by ninth grade or attended full-day kindergarten.

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North Country News
8:04 am
Wed June 20, 2012

Petitioners Ask VT Council to Reconsider Jet Vote

Vermont Statehouse Montpelier
Photo by Pat Bradley

More than 1,600 people in the area of South Burlington, Vt., have signed a petition in support of locating new Air Guard jets at Burlington International Airport.  WAMC’s Pat Bradley reports…

The petition presented Monday urges the South Burlington City Council to reconsider its opposition to basing the new jets locally.

The Council voted last month against basing the F-35A at the Vermont Air Guard base. It sent questions to the Air Force related to a draft environmental impact statement related to elevated noise levels.

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North Country News
6:43 am
Tue June 19, 2012

VT Health Official Visits with NH Doctors

A leader of Vermont's efforts to reform its health care system says the state's efforts to provide insurance for nearly all of its residents likely will continue, even if the U.S. Supreme Court decides to strike down President Barack Obama's health care law.  WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley reports…

Anya Rader Wallack crossed the Connecticut River on Monday to meet with doctors at New Hampshire's Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon.

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North Country News
7:24 am
Fri June 15, 2012

VT Irene Recovery Bill at $733M, More Work to Do

A car sits half-buried after massive flooding swept through downtown Windham, N.Y. from Tropical Storm Irene.
Ryan Delaney/WAMC

Vermont officials say the total cost of recovering from Tropical Storm Irene is estimated at $733 million and the federal government is expected to pay about three quarters of that amount.  WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley reports…

Administration Secretary Jeb Spaulding says the state expects it will have to pay about $110 million for its share of the repair costs.

Spaulding and other top state officials gave a briefing Thursday on the efforts to recover from the biggest natural disaster in almost a century.

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