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February 3rd, 2014
Editor’s note: The following is an open letter sent to the Vermont Public Service Board and Public Service Department.
MONTPELIER — On Tuesday, a delegation from Vergennes Union High School brought the banners from all nine of the school’s Sept. 21 Peace One Day celebrations to Montpelier, where they were hung for display in the Statehouse cafeteria.
In the midst of the current educational landscape, the number of reform issues is overwhelming. As new educational leaders enter the field, they find themselves struggling to know who to listen to and where to put their limited leadership capital. Am I pro-Common Core or a charter school proponent? Is this the year to focus on assessment or whole child? In education, we’ve been drifting along for quite some time shoring our rafts to large ideas that have risen to prominence and receded from view in disturbingly short windows of time.
Editor's note: This story was edited since it was originally posted to correct the Lincoln school spending plan number and the proposed increase in spending, and adjust the tax rates for the five towns.
BRISTOL — Proposed elementary school spending for next year is down in three of the five towns that comprise the Addison Northeast Supervisory Union. Nevertheless, all would see small increases in their tax rates, according to numbers supplied by district officials this week.
MIDDLEBURY — Middlebury Selectman Craig Bingham hasn’t shied away from the public spotlight during the past year, whether it be challenging the board’s policy on maintaining executive session material or speaking out against a proposal to build new town offices and a recreation center.
He will soon learn whether his positions have resonated with voters. Bingham is seeking another three-year term on the selectboard in one of the most hotly contested Middlebury elections in years.
MIDDLEBURY — John Freidin had been content to stay on the political sidelines since his last run for the Vermont House 15 years ago.
He’s now ready to jump back into the fray — as a Middlebury selectman. Freidin is one of eight residents in the running for a total of three spots on Middlebury’s top legislative panel that are up for grabs on March 4.
MONTPELIER — VPIRG has asked the Public Service Board to halt deliberations on Vermont Gas’ proposal to build a natural gas pipeline from Vermont to Ticonderoga, N.Y.
The environmental group filed a motion to dismiss with the board on Monday.
Bristol attorney James Dumont, representing VPIRG, argues the pipeline is under the jurisdiction of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission — not the Vermont Public Service Board — because the pipeline would cross state lines.
FERRISBURGH — Ferrisburgh will have a new town clerk and treasurer as of March — after nine years of the job, Town Clerk and Treasurer Chet Hawkins, 67, has decided to retire.
Hawkins said he only made the decision, although he had thought about it previously, on Saturday after a long talk with his wife.
“She kept saying maybe I should retire, she would really enjoy having me around,” Hawkins said.