Kristen is a 16-year-old girl from Vermont who set a goal at age 9 to reach the highest point in each of the lower 48 states. Today, seven years later, she’s honing in on her quest, but the high points are getting harder to summit and the risks that much greater.
Oh, how I love Mondays.
This is a change; I used to look forward to weekends, a time for relaxation and respite from the hectic workweek.
But after spending yet another Saturday and Sunday preserving endless bushels of produce from the yard and garden, the thought of going back to work and sitting in a chair like a slug for five straight days makes me happy all over.
News that Middlebury business leaders, town officials and Middlebury College are combining forces to spur economic development (job growth) and economic activity among existing businesses should be embraced enthusiastically by all who value a healthy commercial center with the amenities needed to serve a vibrant community.
The challenge facing those community leaders, as selectboard chair John Tenny aptly noted, is how to allocate appropriate resources within a limited budget. (See story on Page 10.)
When politicians say they will cut taxes and give Americans the hard-earned dollars they’ve earned rather than fuel higher government spending, most American voters stand up and cheer — even though that very policy measure is against their personal interests.
Republican gubernatorial candidate Brian Dubie’s economic blueprint for the state calls for reducing the state income tax from its current 9 percent to 6 or 7 percent over an undetermined time period — but presumably during the time he is in office, if elected.
Based on conservative estimates, that would mean reducing $200 million of the $600 million — 33 percent — projected to be raised by the state’s income tax in fiscal year 2013.
The past couple of weeks have brought on quite a few changes for this young reporter who is trying her best to transition from being a college student in Middlebury to being a full-fledged member of the community. And it hasn’t been easy, let me tell you.
Health care will be a major issue in the election for governor. Peter Shumlin says on his website that “if I am elected governor, creating a single-payer plan will be my top priority. It will be a very difficult task. There are many forces arrayed against a single-payer plan. … It will take very strong, committed leadership to get this job done.”
Vermonters will be asked to choose between two very different gubernatorial candidates this fall, and two different visions of Vermont.
But at least along the way, we can be assured of some laughs.
Republican Brian Dubie sees a state imperiled by high taxes, anti-business sentiment and wasteful education spending. He’s against reproductive choice and gay marriage.
Democrat Peter Shumlin sees a state that has made great progress on gay marriage while also defending reproductive choice, but that now needs single-payer health care.