Extended conversation with Dan Plumley on his visit to Standing Rock
On Sunday, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers denied the easement permit for the $3.8 billion Dakota Access Pipeline to cross under a Missouri River reservoir in southern North Dakota near the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation. The pipeline controversy has brought thousands of protesters to an encampment at Standing Rock. One Adirondack resident was at the encampment when the permit denial was announced.
The Obama administration has screened and admitted more than 12,000 Syrian refugees, and thousands more are due to arrive in the coming year. In what has been a controversial plan, the city of Rutland, Vermont is preparing to receive 100 refugees beginning early next year. The group that coordinates resettlement of the refugees in Vermont is opening an office in the city and is seeking staff ahead of the refugees’ expected arrival.
In November, incumbent Plattsburgh Mayor James Calnon was defeated in his re-election bid by Democrat Colin Read. Calnon did not formally concede until absentee ballots were counted on November 21st. The final result determined that Read had actually increased his lead by 84 votes, solidifying his win. Mayor-elect Read tells WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley that was a surprise, and he’s now deeply involved in transitioning the administration.
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.
In November voters elected Democrat D. Billy Jones to replace retiring New York state Republican Assemblywoman Janet Duprey to represent the 115th district. Jones, the current chair of the Franklin County Legislature, tells WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley that the transition is going well and he’s looking forward to tackling challenges in Albany that concern the North Country.
The first East Coast World Cup skiing event in decades was held over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend in Vermont. The successful women's giant slalom and slalom races have regional officials hoping more such events will occur soon.
Seven months after the Securities and Exchange Commission accused Jay Peak's owner and president of massive fraud, the ski resort is set to open for the season on Saturday with the federal receiver overseeing it saying there is a $6.5 million shortfall.
A branch of the U.S. Department of Agriculture is launching a new program that will help protect three rare species of turtles in Vermont, the other New England states and New York.
The Northeast Turtle Project of the Natural Resources Conservation Service is one of 11 new projects being added to the agency's Working Lands for Wildlife effort in 30 states from Florida to Alaska to protect habitat for a number of declining species on private agricultural land.
NRCS Chief Jason Weller is expected to announce the expansion of the project Tuesday in New Florence, Missouri.
Vermont State Police say four of 29 students on a school bus involved in a minor crash were taken to a hospital for evaluation.
Police say all injuries were considered minor in the crash, which happened at about 7:15 a.m. Monday in Newbury.
They say the driver, 65-year-old William Jones, of Piermont, New Hampshire, was traveling east when he tried to make room for an oncoming vehicle. He steered the bus toward the edge of the road, but his passenger-side tires traveled onto the soft shoulder, which began to give way from the bus' weight.
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.
A federal judge in the U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Texas granted a nationwide preliminary injunction Tuesday that blocks implementation of new overtime rules promulgated by the U.S. Department of Labor. They had been set to go into effect Dec. 1st. Mountain Lake PBS in Plattsburgh recently aired a forum on the controversial rule and what it might mean for employers and their workers throughout the region.
The Thanksgiving holiday is traditionally the opening weekend for most major ski areas across the region. Excitement peaked this week as multiple inches of natural snow fell, adding to the base of manmade snow already on the slopes. Snowmaking operations can be crucial throughout the season. WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley was at Whiteface Mountain this week to see what it takes to keep the mountain white.
The Carnegie medal for heroism was formally presented to a Vermont prosecutor on Monday. He was honored for trying to save the life of an employee of the Vermont Department of Children and Families who was shot and killed in the department’s parking lot in August 2015. The ceremony stirred up complicated memories.