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I manage a lodge in the Groton forest on behalf of Vermont State Parks. One warm fall day, while standing outside the lodge, I noticed movement inside one of the window wells around the basement. Realizing that something noteworthy was about to happen, I ran inside to alert our guests.
MIDDLEBURY — The Middlebury selectboard on Tuesday gave its legislative delegation a brief but sharply worded wish list for the 2015 session: Give us a rotary at the intersection of Route 7 and Exchange Street, along with education finance reform.
The board conveyed that message to the four Democratic lawmakers taking part in the meeting: Sen. Christopher Bray of New Haven, Sen. Claire Ayer of Addison, Rep. Betty Nuovo of Middlebury, and Rep.-elect Amy Sheldon of Middlebury.
BRISTOL — About 20 members of the Bristol Fire Department crammed into the basement of Holley Hall Monday evening to hear how the selectboard planned to fix their crumbling headquarters on North Street.
Firefighters expressed a general sense of frustration that the town has not yet approved a plan for a new firehouse structure, and that the current firehouse does not meet the needs of the department.
MIDDLEBURY — It was New Year’s Eve 1998 when Cheryl Barrows got her first taste of heroin.
“I met this ‘wonderful’ guy in Rutland who put a needle in my arm and said, ‘This is wonderful stuff,’” recalled Barrows. “I looked out of the window, saw a pink cloud and my pain was gone. I felt nothing.”
WEYBRIDGE — It’s not unusual for students in this day and age to be warned of the challenges they will face in heating their homes in the future as fossil fuels become more scarce and expensive.
Weybridge Elementary School students are not only being taught about the challenges; they are being asked to become a part of the solution.
BRANDON — Drug dealers are people, too. That is a cold, hard fact of law enforcement that is frustrating many Brandon residents as known drug dealers continue to operate locally.
With the Brandon Cares community group gaining momentum in the local fight against heroin and opiate abuse, Brandon residents are learning more about addiction and treatment challenges. But they also question why, if local police know who is dealing heroin in Brandon, more arrests aren’t made to combat the problem.
The explosion of solar arrays in Vermont, in particular Addison County, has spawned the twinkling of what could be the downside of any boom-bust cycle.
The upside of solar power is its sustainability and near-zero admissions into the atmosphere. In that manner, it is a fuel source to be developed and exploited.
The downside of its rapid deployment, however, is in the rush to cite the projects (sometimes in places that are less than ideal) as well as lax rules that govern the life cycle of any energy project.
As every politician reminded us in November, the hot topics as lawmakers return to Montpelier next month will be school funding and health care.
With that in mind, it’s time for some facts and figures, presented as context and without comment.
• Vermont in 2011 stood at ninth among U.S. states in the level of state and local taxes as a percentage of residents’ income, at 10.5 percent.