VPR News

A screenshot of the database of lawmaker disclosures put together by "Seven Days"
Screenshot by Sam Gale Rosen / VPR

Vermont legislative rules mandate that senators and representatives fill out forms to disclose information about their employment and finances. The idea is that the public should be aware of any potential conflicts of interest and be able to figure out what financial entanglements the lawmakers we vote for might have. 

Talk of changing the gubernatorial term of office from two to four years has surfaced again in Montpelier. We'll hear the pros and cons of making a change from former Vermont Governors Madeleine Kunin and Howard Dean.
Ric Cengeri / VPR

Back in 1870, Vermont made a bold move. It doubled the length of the gubernatorial term of office from one year to two. Is it time to double it again? And what would be the repercussions for the length of terms in the State House and Senate?

Looking into the empty interior of the Vermont Senate chamber. A chandelier hangs from the ceiling and green curtains adorn the windows.
Oliver Parini / For VPR, File

How are amendments made to the Vermont Constitution? And how many amendments have there been over the years? VPR's senior political reporter Bob Kinzel provides historical context around this process and a look at what amendments are proposed for this year.

Suzanne Spencer Rendahl

Unlike many who flock to ski resorts, I’ve always balked at the price of lift tickets as well as the crowds. Memories from childhood sitting on a chairlift while getting battered by the wind, and then ice skating down a steep slope also haven’t helped. So early in adulthood I learned the joys of cross- and back-country skiing, which allow me to fly through the woods under my own power.

M.T. Anderson accepts the 2006 National Book Award for Young People's Literature and speaks at a podium with the National Book logo.
Stuart Ramson / Associated Press

Vermont-based author M.T. Anderson is this year's winner of the American Library Association's Margaret A. Edwards Award. It's an annual honor recognizing an author's body of work in the area of young adult literature.

Lindsay_imagery

All of the plastic manufactured since Bakelite debuted during the Depression still litters the earth. The world is choking on an invention that’s barely a century old.

A group of four people stand together talking at Turning Point of Windham County in Brattleboro.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

When Justin Johnston was selling drugs around southern Vermont the cops were not his friend.

“The only interaction we got whenever I was on the streets and actively using was when we were getting in trouble,” he said recently.

The Vermont Ethics Commission was formed in late 2017. Now the commission is seeking to expand its oversight and power to investigate complaints of misconduct.
MicroStockHub / iStock

Vermont's ethics commission is supposed to keep state government accountable. But the commission can't investigate complaints of misconduct, nor can it enforce any penalties. We're looking at ethics oversight in Vermont and whether the commission should be able to investigate complaints on its own.

Amy Mulherin, a teacher in the Winston Prouty toddler program in Brattleboro, gets two of her students dressed to go outside and play in the snow.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

High-quality child care in Vermont can be tough to find and tougher to afford. And elected officials from the governor on down seem to agree that this is a serious problem for the state. So what's being done to address the issue? We're looking at the state of child care in Vermont. And going through some of the ideas on the table to make that care more accessible and affordable.

In the spring of 2015, before Bernie Sanders had a campaign office in New Hampshire, Elizabeth Ropp, an acupuncturist, was making homemade signs for the Vermont senator.

"Bernie inspired me because as somebody who's lived without health insurance for most of my adult life, I want there to be a single-payer health care system," she said.

She was disappointed Sanders wasn't the nominee and is convinced that if he had been, Donald Trump would not be president.

"I want to see Bernie run again in 2020," said Ropp. "We need Bernie to run even if the field is crowded."

Jacquelyn Martin / AP

It seems that the President is again considering a national emergency declaration as a way of circumventing Congress to secure funding for his border wall. And while it may be technically legal, presidential use of national emergency power to secure funds without Congressional approval sets a dangerous precedent.

Watts: Bus Service

Jan 29, 2019
Watts

Of the many story-lines developing in the Vermont Legislature this session, one of the most interesting is the appointment of Curt McCormack as chair of the House Transportation Committee – because Representative McCormack doesn’t own a car.

Will Lambek, Jose Luis Cordova Herrera, and woman who identified herself as Olga, from left, testified in the Legisalture last week. They say migrant farmworkers fear that local police will out them to Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Jeb Wallace-Brodeur / The Times Argus

Civil rights groups say Vermont isn’t doing enough to prevent local police agencies from helping federal authorities identify and detain immigrants who are in the country illegally.

The U.S. Coast Guard Burlington station.
Meg Malone / VPR File

Federal employees in Vermont were back to work on Monday after President Trump signed a short term spending bill last week reopening government.

Andrea Astes / iStock

One of the most enduring fables about our first president, George Washington, is that he could not tell a lie about cutting down that cherry tree.

Marijuana plants.
gaspr13 / iStock

The Senate Judiciary Committee is quickly moving ahead with a tax-and-regulate marijuana bill, but the plan could face an uncertain future with the Scott administration because it doesn't include the driver impairment measures that the governor says must be part of the bill.

Riad Hamade (left) and Alwayne Lawrence (right) ride a crowded Stowe Mountain Road Shuttle. Hamade is in town for a ski vacation and Lawrence works at the resort.
Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

Green Mountain Transit recently said it may cut routes and raise fares to stay afloat. The announcement surprised both riders and representatives from the state and towns that subsidize the bus service.

Steve Zind / VPR

Concerns that Chinese technology may threaten U.S. cybersecurity have surfaced in Vermont.

A group of students gather around a laptop computer
Meg Malone / VPR

The historical novel Refugee weaves the stories of three refugee families fleeing their homes in different parts of the world and during different time periods: Germany in the 1930s, Cuba in the 1990s and Syria just a few years ago.

Pages