Wednesday, July 7, 2010

WVTK Local & State News July 7, 2010

Despite the heat settling in across New England and the rest of the East, officials do not see power demand setting any records. Regional power grid operator ISO-New England says consumer demand is expected to peak at 27,000 megawatts -- below the 28,130-megawatt record set in August of 2006.

Fire destroyed a barn on Sand Hill Road in Castleton yesterday morning. Vermont State Police listed the cause of the fire that destroyed Robert Harris’ barn as undetermined, but not suspicious, saying it was still under investigation. A total of about 40 firefighters responded to the scene from Castleton, Fair Haven, Poultney, Hubbardton and West Rutland.

Rutland City Alderman voted last night to reconsider the 14.9 percent water and sewer rate increase. It does not, however, undo the votes that approved the water and sewer budgets. The action allows the board to consider new means for funding the budgets that were set.

Crown Point has formally created an organization to coordinate future plans. The Crown Point Revitalization Group was formed by the town board at its June meeting. Under its umbrella are three committees — an Events Committee, the Chamber Exploration Committee and the Binder Committee. The chamber committee has already held meetings as it attempts to determine whether a chamber is needed in Crown Point. Crown Point businesses are now members of the Ticonderoga Area Chamber of Commerce.

To get ready for their coming deployment to Iraq, Vermont National Guard helicopter crews will be making extra flights this week. The Guard says its Air Medical Evacuation Company will use seven different airports -- using them to simulate separated forward operating bases like the ones they will use overseas.

A federal judge has sided with the owners of the Killington ski resort, saying it does not have to honor lifetime ski passes that were given to people who invested in the record half a century ago. The Rutland Herald reports there were more than 1,200 passes outstanding, some of them issued in 1956.

Five major party candidates are vying for the open seat of Vermont secretary of state, with four facing off in primaries in August. Two minor party candidates also have been nominated to run. They hope to replace Deb Markowitz, who is seeking the Democratic nomination for governor.

The Burlington Electric Department is asking customers to conserve power. Officials say all the added air conditioners and fans are putting a strain on the power grid. Right now there is no power shortage, but officials are strongly encouraging people to cut back on their electricity usage by waiting until later in the evening for activities like doing laundry or running a dishwasher.

Two companies will be demolishing part of the old Plattsburgh Air Force Base making way for new development. The buildings that will be coming down have not been used since 1985. They are also loaded with asbestos and mold so it will be a tricky demolition. The project will start later this week and will be finished in a few months.

Senator Patrick Leahy is alive and well despite a bogus e-mail announcing his death. The e-mail hoax was sent yesterday to media outlets in Vermont and Washington, D.C., and was made to look official. The e-mail was similar to one that was sent out announcing the death of California Senator Diane Feinstein. She is also alive and well.

VSAC will have millions available for students later this month. The Vermont Student Assistant Corporation has raised $23-Million to create the "Vermont Advantage Loan". Due to changes in federal rules, VSAC can no longer administer federal loans. They have now turned to making private loans to students and families, which they can apply for later this month.

Police in St. Albans have now made 4 arrests relating to vandalism in the city over the past 2 weeks, and believe the suspects are operating as a group. The latest 2 are both women from St. Albans, 33-year-old Shannon Lussier and 31-year-old Felicity Richardson. Police say Lussier used a baseball bat to knock out windows at two churches, the county courthouse and several cars.