Monday, June 7, 2010

WVTK Local & State News June 7, 2010

The school budget in Benson goes up for a third vote this week. The School Board will hold an informational meeting at 7:30 p.m. tonight at the Community Hall on the proposed budget. Polls are open there Tomorrow from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

The Ticonderoga Central School board of education has cut more than a quarter-million dollars from the proposed 2010-11 budget rejected by voters last month. The revised spending plan will go back to voters Tuesday, June 15th at the Hague Community Center and at Ticonderoga High School. If the budget is again rejected, law requires the district to go directly to a contingency budget, a level set by the state that limits spending. The proposal calls for a 4.77 percent increase in the tax levy.

Police in Rutland have arrested 3 people the allegedly ran a cocaine ring out of local daycare. Police say they seized cocaine and a handgun at the daycare run by Kelly Vitagliano. She was arrested, along with Anthony Petit and Morey Clark. The Department of Children and Families has been notified about the bust at the daycare. No kids were there at the time.

Several mailboxes were destroyed and signposts were pulled up from the ground in Charlotte. The most damage was on Spear Street and Sheehan Green Road. Vermont State Police say troopers are investigating the incidents as cases of vandalism. The vandalism caused hundreds of dollars in property damage.

Vermont's Catamount Health Insurance Program is facing a funding crisis. According to officials, the 4-year-old program will need at least $3.8-Million just to stay a float this year. The program is receiving less than expected funding from the federal government this year and one of the private insurers offering Catamount Health is requesting a rate increase.

Divers have recovered the body of a UVM Student that jumped off a bridge into the Winooski River. Police say 26-year-old Sasi Kunta was swimming with some friends Saturday Night when he jumped into the river and never resurfaced. His body was found yesterday morning around 8:30. Police do not suspect fowl play.

The Vermont Health Department is urging people to avoid contact with bats they find inside their homes. People who find bats inside should call the Vermont Rabies Hotline to determine if exposure has put someone at risk of rabies.

Gov. Jim Douglas has signed a bill designating Canadian utility Hydro Quebec as renewable energy. It may have been the last bill of the Republican's tenure in office. Friday's action also makes Vermont the first state to call Hydro Quebec green. Vermont's utilities pushed for the bill. Now that Hydro Quebec has the renewable label, they can buy power for less as part of a 26-year contact they're still working on.

The former tenants of Castleton's Parsons Hill apartment project may have to settle with little more than a moral victory from a court decision against the development's landlords. A Rutland jury decided last year that the Parsons Hill Partnership was liable for toxins in the water system. But a Vermont Supreme Court decision released on Friday closed the door on liability claims against one of those parties. The high court's decision comes as a blow to the former tenants who hoped to receive significant settlements from the insurance company.

The Rutland Herald's fight for access to Rutland City disciplinary records will be heard and possibly decided by a superior court judge next month. The newspaper went to court in March seeking access to records regarding internal investigations of pornography found on the computers of three police officers and two public works employees dating back to 2004.

A 17-year-old Plattsburgh woman escaped a fire in her home by crawling out a second story window. Rebecca Duquette was woken up by the smoke detector Saturday Morning and called 911. She reportedly smashed a window with a musical instrument and then police were able to help her to escape with only minor injuries. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

The National Weather Service says an EF-1 Tornado touched down in Craftsbury yesterday. The tornado created a 2 and 1/2 mile path of destruction including a dairy farm. A number of houses lost shingles and debris were spotted swirling around. Some trees were also ripped up and Golf ball sized hail fell in several communities.

New York is joining 22 other states in creating an electronic waste recycling law. Under the bill signed by Governor David Patterson, all manufacturers that sell electronic equipment in the state must have a free recycling program in effect by April 1, next year. The law covers TVs, VCRs, DVD and mp3 players, game consoles, fax machines, and computers.

A faulty fourth-floor fire detector forced the evacuation of hundreds from the Bloomer state office building in Rutland Friday morning. For the second time in little more than a week, the four-story building was unexpectedly emptied. But unlike the propane gas leak that closed the building for half a day last month, workers and customers were able to return after a 15-minute review by city firefighters.

The Boys & Girls Club of Rutland County won a $500 grant. This was one of six totaling $4,000 awarded last week from the Downtown Rutland Partnership. Their application outlined a plan to host a series of enhanced open houses at the Merchants Row facility. But rather than just show off their own programs and building, they had the idea of incorporating downtown restaurants and local artists.