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Graff: 'The Vermont Way,' Jim Douglas’ memoir

Tue, 09/02/2014 - 9:38am -- tim

by Chris Graff Jim Douglas’ new autobiography offers up its share of news nuggets: We learn that in 2009 President Obama offered Douglas an ambassadorship, that Douglas stands by his veto of gay marriage, he remains a fan of George W Bush, and that he is really irked by the press. But those looking to best understand Vermont’s 80th governor will find a wealth of stories that taken together paint a very clear picture.

Take, for example, this almost throwaway comment tucked into the chapter on Douglas’ years as state treasurer:

Mike Smith, Jane Knodell to lead Burlington College through transition following president's resignation

Tue, 09/02/2014 - 10:03am -- tim

The Burlington College Board of Trustees has formed a transition team to lead the college while it searches for a new President to replace Christine Plunkett, who resigned last week. Michael Smith will serve as Interim President. He will be joined by Jane Knodell, serving as Interim Provost, and David Coates, who will serve at Interim Financial Advisor.

Christine Plunkett

Shumlin, New England governors urge HHS to reject Zohydro ER; support Canadian action

Tue, 09/02/2014 - 5:42am -- tim

Five New England Governors, including Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin, this week called on the federal Health and Human Services Department “to prevent easily abused and highly addictive painkillers, such as Zohydro ER, from entering the market.” In addition the group also wrote Canadian health officials to support their efforts to require abuse-deterrent measures for pain medications that too often lead to addiction.

Optum report says poor leadership kept state from holding CGI accountable

Tue, 09/02/2014 - 5:29am -- tim

by Morgan True A lack of leadership at Vermont Health Connect left the tech firm CGI unaccountable for work it was supposed to complete on the state’s health care exchange, according to a consultant’s report released August 22. The state “ceded” responsibility for the project’s success to CGI, says the report written by Optum — the firm now in negotiations to take over the project — and as a result, “CGI has not met its commitments.”


McClaughry: 'Your Doctor'… or 'Their Doctor'?

Tue, 09/02/2014 - 5:16am -- tim

by John McClaughry Six months ago Governor Peter Shumlin hailed the state’s progress on launching an essential ingredient of single payer health care: Accountable Care Organizations. ACOs are the device for moving Vermont from traditional fee-for-service medicine into the new era of “payment reform”. Under fee-for-service, the providers generate their revenue by adding up billable services (X-rays, EKGs, catheterizations, inpatient days, office visits, etc).

Spiny water flea confirmed in Lake Champlain

Fri, 08/29/2014 - 11:20am -- tim

The spiny water flea (Bythotrephes longimanus) is the first aquatic invasive zooplankton to be confirmed in Lake Champlain, bringing the known number of nonnative and aquatic invasive species in Lake Champlain to 50. These specimens were collected this August in the Main Lake segment of Lake Champlain as part of the Lake Champlain Long-term Biological Monitoring Program supported by the Lake Champlain Basin Program. Sample analysis by the Lake Champlain Research Institute at SUNY Plattsburgh confirms multiple specimens from two different monitoring stations.

GW Plastics graduates first internship class

Fri, 08/29/2014 - 11:02am -- tim

GW Plastics, based in Bethel, has announced the graduation of its first summer internship class. This year’s class included Tommy Zani, University of Maine ’16; Glen Rogers, Vermont Technical College ’16; Brendan Hackett, University of Vermont ’15; Griffin Thomas, University of Mississippi ’16; and Camden Houghton, University of Vermont ’15. All of this year’s graduates are pursuing degrees in mechanical or electromechanical engineering.

Shumlin names campaign manager, sets kick-off date Sept 9

Fri, 08/29/2014 - 10:46am -- tim

Governor Peter Shumlin today announced that he will officially launch his reelection campaign on Tuesday, September 9 and has hired Scott Coriell as his campaign manager. Coriell has served as a Special Assistant in the Governor's Office since September 2013, and is leaving state service immediately to help launch Gov. Shumlin's campaign. A Killington native, Coriell served previously as Communications Director for Congressman Peter Welch and worked on the 2012 Obama for America campaign in New Hampshire.