Vermont Edition

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Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Monday, April 22, 2019

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More than 80,000 barrels of maple syrup are stored in the Laurierville facility. They make up half of the world strategic maple syrup reserve's current supply.
Jane Lindholm / VPR

In the tiny town of Laurierville, deep in the heart of Quebec, sits a former furniture warehouse that has been converted to hold half the world's reserve supply of maple syrup. This strategic reserve is designed to stabilize the price and supply of maple syrup for a growing global market, and all commercial maple producers in Quebec are required to deliver part of their crop to the reserve each year.

An increasing amount of the state's revenue - now roughly 40 percent - goes toward pension obligations. We're talking about Vermont's retirement liabilities and how they affect state spending on other projects.
sorbetto / iStock

Live call-in discussion: Vermont owes $1.5 billion in unfunded teacher pensions. After years of underfunding and low returns, paying for these pensions and other retirement obligations takes up a growing portion of the state budget. We're talking about ways Vermont is addressing these retirement liabilities and how it all affects the state's ability to pay for new projects.

Coyotes infected with rabies are rare in Vermont. But two cases of rabid coyotes were recently reported in Addison County.
Bill_Dally / iStock

Since 2005, just over 800 animals in Vermont have tested positive for rabies. But no coyotes. Until recently, when two coyotes in Addison County were found to be rabid. We'll take a full look at rabies in Vermont and the threat it poses to humans.

Mourners lay flowers on a wall at the Botanical Gardens in Christchurch, New Zealand, Monday, March 18, 2019.
Vincent Thian / AP

Last month, the Addison Independent published a poem by Narges Anzali, a 13-year-old eighth grader who attends Middlebury Union Middle School. The poem is titled simply: "To All The People Who Hate Muslims."

Special counsel Robert Mueller's redacted report on Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election was released Thursday, April 18, 2019.
Jon Elswick / AP

A redacted version of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's report on the Trump-Russia investigation was released Thursday, April 18. We're talking with Vermont journalist and author Garrett Graff, who's reported on Mueller for more than a decade and followed the Special Counsel from the beginning, on what we've learned from reading Mueller's own words and seeing the redacted report.

Lt. Gov. David Zuckerman in the House Chamber in 2016. Lt. Gov. Zuckerman joins "Vermont Edition" to discuss the current legislative session and the status of certain priorities so far in Montpelier.
Angela Evancie / VPR

The Vermont legislative sessions has passed its midpoint, and we’re talking with Lt. Gov. David Zuckerman about where some of his key priorities for the session — like paid family leave and a tax-and-regulate plan for marijuana — stand in the legislature.

The long and winding road for Act 46 is nearing its final deadline. But questions and court decisions are still in play that could change the final outcomes.
ErikaMitchell / iStock

Four years after it was signed, the Act 46 school district consolidation law is nearing its final deadline on July 1. But there are court cases, refusals by school districts to merge and many questions swirling around the remaining mergers. We get updates and answers on these issues.

A child looks on as a duo play the 1988 "Operation Thunderbolt" arcade game during the April 7, 2019 opening of the "Dream Machine II Arcade Exhibit" in Rutland.
Nick Grandchamp, courtesy

You're just as likely to run into a game of Pac-Man or Street Fighter II today in the basement of a diehard collector of retro 1980s arcade games as you are to play one in the corner of a pizza parlor or bowling alley. But one Rutland collector is putting more than a dozen of the machines together in a pop-up exhibit showcasing the games, their history and the value of playing together.

We're talking about the science of fentanyl and its effects on the body.
Rick Bowmer / AP

The synthetic opioid fentanyl is causing deadly overdoses to spike across the country. But while concerns have been raised about accidental exposure, it is incredibly unlikely that chance contact with the substance through skin or inhalation can be toxic. We're talking about the science behind fentanyl and how it acts on the body, plus which dangers are real and which are overblown.

Bernie Sanders standing against a blue sky
Paul Sancya / Associated Press

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders released nearly a decade of his tax returns Monday, from 2009 through 2018. Sanders is running for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2020, and he'd been promising to release his returns for several weeks.

At the New York State Capitol in Albany, legislators have been debating the budget, a plastic bag ban and funding for clean water projects.
Izumi Jones / Unsplash

The New York state legislature is dealing with many of the same issues as lawmakers in Vermont; in Albany there's been debate as lawmakers work on putting together a plastic bag ban and coming up with the right source for clean water funding. And then there's the budget that just passed and awaits a signature from the governor.

Blue-green algae blooms in the summer of 2014 in Lake Champlain.
Taylor Dobbs / VPR FILE

Vermont lawmakers agree the state needs millions of dollars' worth of clean water projects. But there's less agreement on where Vermont will get the roughly $60 million it needs to fund them. We're talking about clean water plans advancing in Montpelier and what the options are to pay for them.

Personal stylist Stasia Savasuk believes there must be congruency between who you are inside and what you project through what you wear.
Gorodenkoff / iStock

Do the clothes you wear really reflect the person you are? Are your sartorial choices dictated by your job or other outside factors? Stasia Savasuk is a personal stylist and founder of Stasia’s Style School and she joins Vermont Edition to discuss the role your clothes play in who you are.

Ballots using the ranked-choice voting system are prepared for recounting in Maine's 2nd Congressional District, Thursday, Dec. 6, 2018, in Augusta, Maine
Robert F. Bukaty / AP

Maine recently became the first state in the country to adopt a voting tabulation system known as ranked-choice voting. The goal is to ensure the winning candidate always receives at least 50% of the vote. We're having a discussion about the pros and cons of the system and whether it could work in Vermont

A prototype of the SheFly hiking pants shows the zipper that extends nearly to the back of the pants.
SheFly, courtesy

You’re out in the country when nature calls. For some people, dealing with that bodily function can be as simple as unzipping a fly. But for others, it’s a lot more complicated. Enter SheFly Apparel — a new company started by a trio of Middlebury College students that is bringing some much-needed enhancements to women’s hiking attire. 

A maintenance crew walks towards Vermont Air National Guard F-16 fighter jets in South Burlington in April 2010. The final four F-16s departed Vermont on Saturday, April 6, making room for a fleet of 18 F-35 jets set to arrive this fall.
Toby Talbot / AP

After more than 30 years, the last F-16 fighter jets flew out of Vermont Saturday, April 6. Now the Vermont Air National Guard is preparing pilots, mechanics and more for the arrival of a new fleet of F-35 jets this fall. We're looking back at the F-16s' years of service in Vermont and getting an update on the controversy and costs surrounding the coming F-35s.

A July 23, 2018 file photo from Greenfield, Mass.
Elise Amendola / Associated Press

A bill under consideration by the Vermont Legislature would decriminalize the possession of unprescribed buprenorphine, a drug used to treat opioid use disorder. Proponents say the bill would save lives; critics say it would send a dangerous message.

Chef Cara Chigazola Tobin looks over the bulk spices in the pantry at Honey Road.
Jane Lindholm / VPR

The James Beard Awards are known as the "Oscars of food," and this year Cara Chigazola Tobin was named a semifinalist, for the second year in a row, for Best Chef Northeast. She's the chef and co-owner of Honey Road, a restaurant in Burlington that's been serving eastern Mediterranean food for two years.

It can be tough to get a seat at the bustling restaurant, so Vermont Edition visited Honey Road before the dinner rush to talk to Chigazola Tobin about the ingredients she uses and her approach to running her own restaurant.

What does your life in Vermont look like in the year 2050? We're imagining Vermont at the mid-century and asking you to share what has - and hasn't - changed.
hanibaram / iStock

We're jumping ahead to the year 2050 to imagine what life will be like in Vermont by mid-century, and looking back from an imagined future to talk about how Vermont can address climate change and other challenges. 

David McMillan, Fred Morin and Meredith Erickson are authors of 'Joe Beef: Surviving the Apocalypse: Another Cookbook of Sorts.'
Jonathan Castellino

The iconic Montreal restaurant Joe Beef is known for excess. Now, the two chef-owners of the restaurant have embraced sobriety, and have written a new cookbook that's about food and the apocalypse. We're talking to them about working in the restaurant biz without drinking, and cooking for the end of the world.

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