Statehouse Tax Land

No Tax Relief for Nurses, Seniors, and Veterans

Democrats and their Allies took a swing at Republicans last week regarding tax relief and today we are swinging back. During his budget address Gov. Phil Scott outlines his proposal to provide tax relief to families using a child tax credit, seniors and veterans by reducing the amount of their taxable retirement income and nurses Read More…

Statehouse

Governor Scott Vetoes 16 and 17-Year Old Voting

Gov. Phil Scott yesterday vetoed H361, the Brattleboro charter change to allow municipal and school voting and office-holding for 16 and 17 year olds. Gov. Phil Scott In an explanatory letter to the House (below), he cited Vermont’s legal inconsistency on the question of legal adulthood, and the need to resolve the question on a statewide Read More…

Crime and Safety Health

The Coming Burlington Sex Trade – Higher Education With Benefits?

UPDATE: It passed. Tomorrow, Burlington City Meeting voters will vote on Ballot #5, to remove from the city charter all language making prostitution illegal. If approved by voters and (eventually) by the Vermont Legislature, Ballot #5 would ‘decriminalize’ prostitution within the city limits.  Supporters say the existing language is sexist, racist and no longer represents Read More…

Education Health

Vermont Students Protest…. For Mandatory Masks!

On March 2, students in Vermont’s capital plan a walk-out and march to demand that school mask mandates not be lifted. Vermont officials recently recommended that schools with an 80% vaccination rate need not require masks, but these students are irate and demand continued, even heightened, mandates. Titled “Protest Against Lifting Mask Mandates” on an Read More…

Education Statehouse

Passing Grade for Mascot Nondiscrimination Bill

A bill requiring the Vermont Agency of Education to stamp out racist, sexist, and repressive school mascots was approved 5-1 last week by the Senate Education Committee. Sponsored by Sen. Richard McCormack (D-Windsor), S139 will be up for review by the entire Senate on March 8, when the Senate returns from Town Meeting Week break.  The bill requires Read More…

Business & Economics Energy

Climate Plan Is All Pain, No Gain

The Executive Director of the Vermont Fuel Dealers Association testified before the House Energy & Technology Committee that if the “Clean Heat Standard” currently being contemplated becomes law, he expects it to drive ten to fifty Vermont home heating fuel dealers (oil, propane, natural gas, and kerosene) out of business. This would cost multiple hundreds Read More…

Business & Economics Property Rights Statehouse

House Approves Burlington Eviction Restrictions

H708, a Burlington charter change, passed in the State House of Representatives on February 18, 2022, by a vote of 98-49. The bill now proceeds to the Senate. Purpose: The purpose of H.708 is to restrict the circumstances in which Burlington landlords can evict tenants. Burlington voters passed an eviction ballot item in March 2021 with similar Read More…

Education Health

Bill Seeks To End Religious Exemption For Vaccines in Vermont Public Schools

Children and adults in schools and childcare facilities would not be able to use religion to avoid vaccination requirements under a new bill being considered in the State House. Here in the White River Valley, both clergy and legislators say they support the measure. Windsor District Senator Dick McCormack, who sponsored the bill, said the Read More…

Be Informed Statehouse

Race, Drug Bills Get Committee Review This Week

It’s the time of year when bills are being pushed through the committee approval pipeline ahead of the mid-March “crossover” deadline. Legislation getting committee time this week stands a fair chance of committee approval. Bills on House Committee agendas this week: In House General, Housing & Military Affairs: H96, creating the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Development Task Force to Read More…

Business & Economics Property Rights Statehouse

Housing Registry Veto Votes Postponed

Bills creating housing-related state registries are up against vetos by Gov. Phil Scott. Legislative voters may not have the votes they need to override.  Senate Rental Registry – Last year, Gov. Scott vetoed S79, “an act relating to improving rental housing health and safety.” As the name suggests, the Senate claims the S79 would let the State Read More…

Education Health

Orange County School Board Softens Vax Mandate / Rutland District Lifts Mask Mandate

An Orange County supervisory union board today rescinded a planned vote proposed requirement to vaccinate all employees for Covid-19. Instead, the Orange East Supervisory Union board adopted a more lenient vaccine mandate. Taking effect July 1, it would offer a testing option for those with religious or medical exemptions, and a testing requirement for other Read More…

Op-Ed

The Future of Agriculture Report

Earlier this month the Scott Administration released the Report of the Governor’s Commission on the Future of Agriculture. The Report is well-written and constructive, but for many people seriously concerned with this subject, it is likely to be a disappointment. The 33-page Report purports to chart a path forward to cope with today’s crucial challenges Read More…

Crime and Safety Statehouse

‘Criminal Threatening’ Bill Advances to Full Senate

The Vermont Senate today is scheduled to consider S265, the ‘criminal threatening’ bill that would impose prison sentences of up to two years for threatening public officials and others.  The bill was approved by Senate Judiciary this week by a 4-1 vote. Sen. Joe Benning (R-Caledonia) was the dissenting vote.  During committee discussions, Chair Dick Sears said Read More…

Statehouse

Two Branches of Government Try to Exempt Themselves From Code of Ethics

Over the past several years, Campaign for Vermont has worked with the legislature and the Ethics Commission to develop a Code of Ethics that would apply to all three branches of Government. As such, S.171 is currently being discussed in Senate Government Operations and is the product of several years of research and debate. But, lately the bill has Read More…

Education Health

Governor Won’t Back EUA Mandatory School Vaccines

Governor Phil Scott doesn’t support the vaccines under Emergency Use Authorization for mandatory use in schools.  At today’s press conference, Gov. Scott was asked by Vermont Daily Chronicle: “Is it ever appropriate for a vaccine under Emergency Use Authorization to be considered for mandatory requirement for public school enrollment?” Scott replied: “Not as far as I’m Read More…

Op-Ed

Dartmouth Republicans Secure Free Speech — by Fleeing Campus

In an ongoing embarrassment for Dartmouth College, the once-venerable institution has repeatedly demonstrated that it is unable – or more likely, ideologically opposed – to allow students the free speech that once breathed air on its “Live Free or Die” campus. The school’s student Republican organization has found the Dartmouth doors increasingly closed to any Read More…