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February 16th, 2012
BRISTOL — The restructuring of the state’s mental health system post-Irene was the hot topic at Monday’s legislative breakfast in Bristol, a timely discussion that gave lawmakers some food for thought as they weigh options on how to replace the Vermont State Hospital.
ADDISON COUNTY — Last week’s release of the fall 2011 New England Common Assessment Program (NECAP) scores had state and local educators eyeing a decidedly mixed batch of results.
Locally, Vergennes Union High School was the only high school to post significant increases in proficiency in all four subjects tested over 2010 results. Others achieved proficiency levels that, for the most part, declined or stayed the same.
Statewide, results also remained fairly stable compared to 2010.
MIDDLEBURY — The Addison Central Supervisory Union (ACSU) is in the market for yet another senior administrator. Associate Superintendent Jan Willey has tendered her resignation in a move she said was fueled by what she described as ongoing “turmoil” in the ACSU central office.
Willey’s departure, effective at the end of this academic year, is one of several administrative positions within the district that will be, or already have been, vacated during the past year under some strained circumstances.
MONKTON — Monkton voters will decide the fate of a new unified planning document via Australian ballot at the Monkton Town Hall next Thursday, Feb. 23. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
In the works for more than two years, the proposed zoning bylaws, if adopted, would be the first zoning regulations enacted in Monkton since 1986.
Detailed in a report by the town planning commission, the primary reasons for the new bylaws are to:
MIDDLEBURY — A responsible hiker, hunter, angler or backcountry skier brings along a cell phone and appropriate gear, and lets his family or friends know where he’s going and when he’s expected back before heading into the wilderness. If he doesn’t make it back at the appointed hour, his family can call 9-1-1 and report that he is missing.
MIDDLEBURY — The Middlebury selectboard on Tuesday voted unanimously to spend $70,000 from the town’s conservation fund to beautify and improve public access to the riverfront area of the Marble Works that fronts the Otter Creek falls.
The riverfront area has long been targeted for improvements that would attract shoppers, tourists and locals who would have a safer, better-groomed area from which to view the spectacular Otter Creek falls from the Marble Works complex.
BRISTOL — The Bristol Planning Commission looks poised to move ahead with a proposed town plan at its meeting next Tuesday when it considers a compromise on the proposed gravel mining prohibition zone.
Since fall, commissioners have struggled to agree on a chief component of the proposed plan: a zone that prohibits resource extraction in and around Bristol’s downtown area. At the planners’ last meeting on Jan. 17, four versions of the no-extraction zone were discussed.
ORWELL — Michael B. King’s music ranges from blues to rock to reggae, but these days it’s taken on a different theme: Many of his new songs are about mothers and their children.
The 55-year-old Orwell resident spread his own mother’s ashes this past summer, around the same time that his band, The Jesters, broke up after an 18-year run. Both milestones made him step back and think about his next project.
“I knew I had to replace my music with something,” he said.