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McClaughry: School consolidation, charters and choice

Tue, 07/22/2014 - 1:31pm -- tim

by John McClaughry Vermonters moan about their steadily rising education property taxes, especially as the number of students continually decreases. Rarely do citizens focus clearly on the causes of rising school taxes, and the possible solutions.  That is, in part, because the “education stakeholders” are ever alert to control the agenda for “reform”.

US News names Fletcher Allen a 'Best Regional Hospital' for 4th consecutive year

Tue, 07/22/2014 - 11:50am -- tim

For the 4th year in a row, US News & World Report has designated Burlington-based Fletcher Allen as a “Best Regional Hospital” after a thorough review of quality indicators and a national survey of specialists. The US News rankings, now in their 25th year, recognize hospitals that excel in treating the most challenging patients. Only 14 percent of the 5,000 hospitals analyzed earned Best Regional status.

Vermont AG sues Dollar Tree for violating settlement designed to prevent sale of products containing toxics

Tue, 07/22/2014 - 11:40am -- tim

The Vermont Attorney General’s Office has filed suit against Dollar Tree Stores, Inc, a national discount chain based in Chesapeake, VA, for violating a 2010 settlement with the State to stop selling jewelry. The settlement, contained in an Assurance of Discontinuance under the Vermont Consumer Protection Act, resolved claims that Dollar Tree sold products containing high amounts of toxic lead and cadmium in violation of Vermont law, and was intended to protect Vermont’s children from exposure to those and other toxic substances.

Administration review of DCF delayed

Tue, 07/22/2014 - 7:20am -- tim

by Morgan True An administration report on ways to improve and reorganize the Department for Children and Families has been pushed back. In May Governor Peter Shumlin ordered the Agency of Human Services to develop a plan to reorganize DCF, following the deaths of two toddlers involved with the department. Doug Racine, the secretary of the agency, was required to release a report by Aug.

Dartmouth researchers study technology to restore memory function

Tue, 07/22/2014 - 5:42am -- tim

Researchers at Dartmouth-Hitchcock and the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth College are playing a key role in a multi-center $22.5 million, four-year effort to develop next-generation technologies to restore memory function in individuals who suffer from memory loss. The project, which is in support of President Obama’s BRAIN (Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies) initiative, will combine research on the basic mechanisms of memory function with the development of systems designed to electrically stimulate discrete regions of the brain.

Unions OK strike authorization in Vermont and Maine, wait on NH

Mon, 07/21/2014 - 4:49pm -- tim

by Timothy McQuiston Vermont Business Magazine At meetings across Northern New England last week, union members in Maine and Vermont voted to authorize union leaders to call a strike at FairPoint Communications, union representatives have said. Members in New Hampshire are expected to complete their voting process by Thursday, according to a union leader.

Vermont attorney general files suit against 5-hour ENERGY maker

Mon, 07/21/2014 - 4:03pm -- tim

The Vermont Attorney General’s Office has filed suit against Living Essentials, LLC and Innovation Ventures, LLC, the makers, marketers and sellers of 5-hour ENERGY®. The Complaint alleges that the companies repeatedly violated the Vermont Consumer Protection Act by making deceptive promotional claims about their product.

Vermont gained construction jobs for the month, year

Mon, 07/21/2014 - 2:06pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Vermont gained construction jobs between May and June and also over the last 12 months, according to a new report. The state ranked 14th for job gains for the month and 18th over the last 12 months, according to the Associated General Contractors of America. For the US, more states have gained than lost, but the recovery from the Great Recession remains choppy.

Welch tourism bill gets unanimous committee vote

Mon, 07/21/2014 - 1:19pm -- tim

Aboard the Spirit of Ethan Allen III on Burlington’s waterfront on Friday, Representative Peter Welch (D-Vermont) announced the advancement of his bipartisan legislation to boost Vermont as a destination for international visitors. Welch’s bill, the Travel Promotion, Enhancement, and Modernization Act of 2014 (HR 4450), reauthorizes the successful Brand USA tourism promotion program for five additional years. Cosponsored by Representative Gus Bilirakis (R-FL), the bill was unanimously approved by the House Energy and Commerce Committee last week.