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Tom Bock: Vetoed issues expected to return to Montpelier

Tom Bock: Vetoed issues expected to return to Montpelier

By Rep. Tom Bock It’s been more than a month since I returned to the Vermont Statehouse to serve my 2nd term in the House of Representatives. It was great to get back where the place was abuzz with activity – greeting colleagues, discussing issues, and settling in for a busy 2019 session. One of […]

Rep. Pajala on school merger, abortion bills

Rep. Pajala on school merger, abortion bills

By Rep. Kelly Pajala This week’s legislative update is a tough one, as was the week itself. The first challenge was the vote on H.39, which was about delaying the forced mergers of school districts because of Act 46. I voted in favor of the amendment put forth by Rep. Scheuermann of Stowe because, in […]

Bill Schubart: It's time to ban plastic bags

Bill Schubart: It’s time to ban plastic bags

By Bill Schubart 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. Today, shoppers worldwide use 500 billion single-use plastic bags a year or a million bags a minute. A million sea birds and 100,000 marine mammals […]

Op-ed: Bipartisanship in Montpelier

Op-ed: Bipartisanship in Montpelier

By Sen. Dick McCormack Democrats, Independents and Republicans. In this bitter time in Washington, Montpelier is a light of hope simply because we get along with one another. Democrats and Progressives are a united team. Our Republican friends are true to their ideals, but they are not obstructionists. We negotiate agreements that all sides can […]

Sen. Clarkson: New session in Montpelier opens

Sen. Clarkson: New session in Montpelier opens

By Sen. Alison Clarkson It is always exciting to begin a new biennium in the Vermont Statehouse. And, the 2019 launch of the first year of that two-year legislative period was no exception. While our leadership remained unchanged – returning Gov. Phil Scott; Lt. Gov.  David Zuckerman; Senate President Pro Tem Tim Ashe and House […]

Op-ed: An open letter to Vermont legislators

Op-ed: An open letter to Vermont legislators

Dear Legislators, First, thank you all for your willingness to serve your constituents and all Vermonters. You are appreciated by most of us. But please remember, you serve both the special wants and needs of your constituents … and, of all Vermonters, whose needs sometimes differ. Foster the balance. The bill-drafting process is broken. You […]

Op-ed: Let stand historic language of Vermont Constitution

Op-ed: Let stand historic language of Vermont Constitution

By Sen. Dick McCormack When the Vermont legislature convenes in January, there will be an effort to amend the Vermont Constitution to alter the 1777 language prohibiting slavery, the first prohibition of slavery in North America. I think doing this is a bad idea. As I understand it, supporters of amending object to the anti-slavery […]

Commentary: The irony of the Phoenix

Commentary: The irony of the Phoenix

By Shawn Cunningham © 2018 Telegraph Publishing LLC Irony – As a literary device, irony is a contrast or incongruity between expectations for a situation and what is reality… It can also be a difference between what might be expected to happen and what actually occurs. — literarydevices.com If it weren’t for the loss of […]

Op-ed: In Vermont, accessible registration, secure voting

Op-ed: In Vermont, accessible registration, secure voting

By Jim Condos Election Day is fast approaching. On Tuesday, Nov. 6, Vermonters will head to the polls to vote for the people who will represent them, from Justice of the Peace all the way up to governor and members of Congress. Free and fair elections are the bedrock of our democracy, here in Vermont […]

Op-ed: Senate hopeful Zupan challenges Sanders as absent from votes, absent from Vermont

Op-ed: Senate hopeful Zupan challenges Sanders as absent from votes, absent from Vermont

Editor’s note: The Chester Telegraph reached out on Tuesday to the campaign of Sen. Bernie Sanders by email to also write an op-ed for The Chester Telegraph. The campaign is considering it. We will let you know of the decision. By Lawrence Zupan Next month, Vermont will elect a U.S. senator. Vermonters want a senator […]

Op-ed: Personal stories break stigma of addiction

Op-ed: Personal stories break stigma of addiction

By Kate Lamphere, LICSW Earlier this year, I attended the National Opiate and Prescription Drug Conference. I was inspired by  U.S. Surgeon General Jerome M. Adams, MD, MPH,  who shared his personal story of how addiction touched his family, resulting in a family member being incarcerated due to involvement with opiates. What made such a […]

Rep. Tom Bock: Government shutdown avoided

Rep. Tom Bock: Government shutdown avoided

By Rep. Tom Bock Windsor 3-1 Time was of the essence. Without a budget passed by July 1, Vermont government would be closed for the first time in history. After the biennium session ended on May 17 without a spending plan, a special session was reconvened, and over a period of four weeks the legislature […]

Bill Schubart: 'Vermont Life's' heedless death

Bill Schubart: ‘Vermont Life’s’ heedless death

By Bill Schubart This commentary first aired on VPR I grew up reading Vermont Life in the fifties and continued reading it until shortly after the turn of the century. It always had a prominent place in our home, moving quarterly from the coffee table to the bathroom magazine rack – where its continued perusal […]

Commentary: Rep. Bock highlights notable bills

Commentary: Rep. Bock highlights notable bills

By Rep. Tom Bock We’re into the last two weeks of the 2018 legislative session in Montpelier, always a chaotic time. Pressure is building to get bills through the before adjournment. The House and Senate need to reconcile differences on bills affecting funding for education and clean water as well as many other issues. Following […]

Commentary: Get to know Grace Cottage

Commentary: Get to know Grace Cottage

By Rep. Kelly Pajala The legislature meets Tuesday through Friday, so Mondays are often the one weekday during sessions when legislators have the opportunity to spend time back in their home districts. Last Monday, in the midst of my brain being consumed by the battle over gun control and school safety, I literally went out […]

Commentary: Rep. Clarkson on gun safety, tech security bills

Commentary: Rep. Clarkson on gun safety, tech security bills

By Sen. Alison Clarkson Both bodies of the Vermont legislature have now passed three major measures to improve firearm safety in our state. These bills: S.221, H.422 and S.55 are designed to keep guns out of the hands of those who intend harm to themselves or others, domestic violence abusers, and those with a serious […]

Commentary: Rep. Bock on gun, tax measures

Commentary: Rep. Bock on gun, tax measures

By Rep. Tom Bock The school shooting in Florida plus the incident at Fair Haven High School right here in Vermont has brought the need for immediate attention to be paid to gun violence. Gov. Phil Scott had already outlined an action plan to improve school safety and reduce gun violence. The gun violence prevention […]

Op-Ed: Open government is good government

Op-Ed: Open government is good government

By Jim Condos Vermont Secretary of State March 11-17 is Sunshine Week, a national celebration of access to public information and what it means for you and your community. All across Vermont new board members and other town and city officials are being sworn in and taking their seats for the first time. I am […]

Sen. Clarkson: Firearms, minimum wage hike among issues in state Senate

Sen. Clarkson: Firearms, minimum wage hike among issues in state Senate

By Sen. Alison Clarkson The arrest of a Poultney teenager who was allegedly planning a mass school shooting at the Fair Haven high school should be a game changer in Vermont. We can no longer justify inaction on enacting common sense firearm safety measures. Yes, Vermont is a safe state, but we now know that […]

Rep. Tom Bock: Early action on marijuana, more pressing issues await

Rep. Tom Bock: Early action on marijuana, more pressing issues await

This is the first of my periodic notes on happenings in the Vermont Statehouse during the 2018 legislative session. As a representative to the Vermont House for Windsor 3-1, I want to keep all of you abreast of the issues discussed and bills proposed and give you a sense of Vermont’s legislative process including how […]