vermont

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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North Country News
6:43 am
Thu June 14, 2012

Nurses at VT’s Largest Hospital Dislike Offer

Unionized nurses at Vermont's largest hospital say they don't like Fletcher Allen Health Care's latest contract offer.  WAMC’s Tristan O’Neill reports…

The main dispute between the nurses at the Burlington hospital and the administration is over staffing levels and shift schedules.

The hospital wants to save money by having nurses work flexible schedules, but the nurses say the hospital's proposals will lead to inadequate staffing and unsafe conditions for patients.

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North Country News
9:34 am
Mon June 11, 2012

Students Helping VT Recover from Irene

Keene, NY August 2011 Irene Damage
WAMC

Thirteen students from six Vermont colleges and universities are spending their summer working on long-term recovery projects from storm Irene.

The group in charge is the Vermont Campus Compact's Statewide Internships for Vermont Recovery. The program is starting today.

The undergraduate and graduate students will take on a variety of projects that range from working with flood survivors to improving emergency response plans. They will take part in the continuing cleanup effort and assess environmental damage following the storm last August.

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North Country News
12:41 pm
Fri June 8, 2012

Sanders, Cummings Introduce Dental Care Bill

Senator Bernie Sanders

Vermont U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders says America is experiencing a crisis in dental care, and has introduced legislation to address the issue.

Sanders and Maryland Congressman Elijah Cummings have introduced Senate and House bills that would expand dental coverage to millions of Americans through Medicare, Medicaid, and the Department of Veterans Affairs.

The measures would authorize funding to increase access to dental services at community health centers and boost support for mobile clinics and dental clinics in schools.

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North Country News
7:06 am
Mon June 4, 2012

Vermont Opts Out of ‘No Child Left Behind’ Waiver

After applying for a waiver for flexibility from the Bush-era No Child Left Behind law, Vermont has changed its mind and will not pursue the application.

The U.S. Department of Education announced this week that it has approved waivers for another eight states. A total of 19 states have gotten waivers to date in exchange for providing their own plans to improve student outcomes and teaching quality.

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North Country News
7:39 am
Fri June 1, 2012

VT Hospital Closes Rehab Unit to Save Money

Officials at the Rutland Regional Medical Center have narrowly voted to close the hospital's inpatient rehabilitation unit, one of only three in Vermont.  WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley reports…

Hospital President Tom Huebner said the vote was 8-to-7 on Wednesday. The board had to choose between closing the hospital's unit or finding another way to cut $3.5 million out of next year's budget.

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North Country News
8:04 am
Wed May 30, 2012

Welch to Host VT Phone Meeting on Student Loans

Vermont Congressman Peter Welch says he wants to hear from residents about their struggles with student loans.  WAMC’s Tristan O’Neill reports…

Congress is at loggerheads over how to avoid a July 1st doubling of interest rates on some Stafford Student Loans, and Welch and the head of the Vermont Student Assistance Corp. will be holding a telephone conference call Wednesday evening with people concerned about the issue.

Welch will be joined on the 7:30 call by VSAC's Don Vickers.

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North Country News
7:52 am
Wed May 30, 2012

Vermont National Guard Chief to Talk of New Job

Vermont National Guard Adjutant General Michael Dubie is getting ready to take a new job.  WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley reports…

Last week the U.S. Senate confirmed Dubie's promotion to the rank of lieutenant general and his naming as deputy commander of the United States Northern Command.

The Northern Command was created following the 9/11 attacks to protect U.S. territory and provide military support for civil authorities in the event of a national emergency.

The new job means Dubie will leave the National Guard post he's held since 2006.

North Country News
8:15 am
Fri May 25, 2012

VT Governor Backs Fighter Jet Plan for Burlington

Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin

Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin says he supports a plan to bring F-35 fighter jets to the Air National Guard base at the Burlington International Airport.  WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley reports…

Shumlin says Vermont should be honored to host the F-35. He calls it a commentary on the quality of the Vermont National Guard.

The Air Force is considering a proposal to base between 18 and 24 of the planes in South Burlington.

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North Country News
7:58 am
Thu May 24, 2012

Quebec Premier Postpones Vermont Visit

Quebec Premier Jean Charest is postponing his visit to Vermont where he had planned to meet with Governor Peter Shumlin and other business and government leaders.  WAMC’s Tristan O’Neill reports…

Charest planned to sign a trade and environmental protection agreement with Shumlin on Thursday and then attend events with the state's business community and at the University of Vermont.

Shumlin's office says Charest will remain in Quebec City so he can attend debates in the national assembly.

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