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When House Democrats gathered a week ago in a pre-session caucus the outlines of a new legislative session began to take shape. This is when legislators and their leaders being to share their thoughts of what could be.
The process is basic to the institution, but its significance rests with the fact that the Legislature is essentially a one-party body — the Democratic Party — with Gov. Peter Shumlin of the same persuasion.
And it’s the governor who will find himself the person responsible for applying the brake more than the accelerator.
I encountered my first ever compostable, “this-cup-is-made-of-100%-corn” item a few years ago at Boloco (“globally inspired burritos”) in downtown Burlington. Little did I know that my smoothie to-go order would influence my thinking for years to come.
VERGENNES — Addison Northwest Supervisory Union residents on Feb. 5 will face a two-tiered bond vote on plans to upgrade Vergennes Union High School’s building and grounds.
The VUHS board on Monday agreed to put before voters a $4.2 million plan that would fund building repairs and upgrades, most notably including new roofing in some areas and major improvements to the school’s auditorium, kitchen and cafeteria.
MIDDLEBURY — The Addison Central Supervisory Union has narrowed its search for a new top executive down to two finalists: Burlington School District Superintendent Jeanne M. Collins and John W. Johnson, director of education information services for the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction.
Collins and Johnson emerged as the top two choices from among a dozen applicants in what is the ACSU’s third effort in recent months to vet and hire a new superintendent.
MIDDLEBURY — They’re not jams because they’re savory, and they’re not quite chutneys because there is not much spice. So what exactly are the sauces that Suzanne Calhoun has been cooking up for the last eight months?
Calhoun, the Middlebury College student and Vermont native who last summer introduced the delicious, all-natural products as Suzanne’s Sweet Savories, is an avid gardener who began exploring sauce-making to preserve tomatoes from her family’s Jericho garden.
MIDDLEBURY — The Middlebury selectboard on Tuesday formally adopted the community’s updated town plan, a weighty document that local officials and residents expanded, tweaked and sometimes heatedly debated over the course of more than two years.
The board voted 6-0 in favor of the document, with Selectman Travis Forbes unable to be present. The town plan describes the community’s assets and its growth priorities for the next five years.
MIDDLEBURY — Rep. Willem Jewett, D-Ripton, will have an even higher leadership profile in the Vermont House of Representatives during the next two years. The five-term incumbent lawmaker representing Addison-2 was unanimously elected by his fellow Democrats at their Dec. 8 caucus to serve as House majority leader when the Legislature reconvenes this January.
Jewett, 49, takes over from former House Majority Leader Lucy Leriche of Hardwick, who did not run for re-election. Jewett served the last two years as House majority whip.
MIDDLEBURY — Middlebury’s 1-percent local option tax on rooms, meals, sales and alcohol continues to deliver more-than-adequate revenues to pay debt service on the Cross Street Bridge, according to the latest figures released by the Vermont Department of Taxes.