Wednesday, November 18, 2009

WVTK Local News November 18, 2009

An official says construction could begin this week on a new ferry crossing between Vermont and New York that would take the place of the now-closed Lake Champlain Bridge between Addison and Crown Point. Vermont Transportation Agency spokesman John Zicconi says the first phase of construction will be to build access roads to the edge of the lake. Then the in-lake portion of construction can begin. Zicconi says officials are close to getting all the needed state and federal permits. The 80-year-old bridge was closed Oct. 16 after it was deemed unsafe. The two states are hoping a ferry can replace the bridge until a new one can be built. Zicconi says it's unclear how soon the new ferry could begin operating.

A group of about 15 people whose lives have been disrupted by the Oct. 16 closing of the Lake Champlain Bridge rallied on the Statehouse steps Tuesday, calling for faster work in establishing a temporary ferry and for Vermont to take a bigger role.

Over 100 people attended the Addison County Career Fair yesterday. Organizer John Vowles said 120 came through the door in the first hour of the event. The last job fair by his department, the Vermont Department Of Labor, in Addison County was 2 years ago. Yesterday’s fair was timed roughly to coincide with the last day of operations at Monahan Filaments, which closed the doors of its Middlebury plant on Friday. Roughly half of the job seekers at the fair were from Monahan.

Vermont State Police say a hunter in Shrewsbury has found the remains of a man reported missing more than four years ago. William "Mike" Hogan was last seen near Spring Lake Ranch, a residential treatment facility, in May 2005. Hogan worked at the ranch and had medical difficulties. Police are not treating the disappearance as suspicious.

Maine officials are reminding consumers to check their freezers for recalled ground beef after four people were hospitalized with E. coli poisoning. Fairbank Farms of Ashville, N.Y., recalled almost 546,000 pounds of fresh ground beef that had been distributed in September to stores from North Carolina to Maine.

The Vermont Health Department says more than 700 licensed emergency medical technicians across the state are eligible to administer the H1N1 flu vaccine. The state says that allowing more people including EMT's and paramedics to administer the vaccine, will help ensure people who need the vaccine the most can get it.

A Vermont jury has acquitted a police officer charged with animal cruelty for fatally shooting a neighbor's dog. The jury in Vermont District Court in Hyde Park deliberated yesterday after Michael Wootton described the April 30 dogfight that preceded the shooting. Wootton testified that he shot the dog to save the life of his own dog.