Friday, February 8, 2013

WVTK Local & State News February 8, 2013

We won't get the blizzard conditions coastal New England is expecting, but plenty of snow is expected in our area.  Winter storm warnings cover the southern two-thirds of the state, with accumulations expected to pile up fast.  Nearly a foot is likely in southern Vermont, with lesser amounts in the north.  Snowfall will taper off, from west to east, early tomorrow.  Dozens of flights from Burlington, Plattsburgh, and Montreal have been cancelled, and Amtrak shut down Vermonter service to Springfield, Massachusetts.

Gov. Peter Shumlin has appointed a Ferrisburgh Republican to finish the 2-year term of the late Representative Greg Clark of Vergennes, who was struck by a car and killed late last year.  Warren Van Wyck has been appointed to the vacant seat.  Shumlin said that Van Wyck has big shoes to fill.  He says Clark's warmth and humor are missed in the Legislature.  District Republicans forwarded Van Wyck's name to the governor to replace Clark.

Expansion is planned for this summer at the Southern Vermont Regional Airport.  Nearly five-and-a-half-million dollars is coming from the transportation budget to help double the runway to six-hundred feet.  The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers still needs to approve a final permit, as the project includes work in wetlands.

The Empire State Winter Games are under way.  It's a multi-sport event in Lake Placid that has been around for more than 30 years. This year there are more than 1,100 athletes from across the state competing in a variety of winter sports.  This year's games kicked off last night and will continue through Wednesday.

Addison Northwest Supervisory Union residents on Tuesday voted down two Vergennes Union High School bonds totaling $6.2 million that would have paid for major improvements.  Some of the improvements included new roofing in several areas as well as improvements to the kitchen and cafaterria, the auditorium, and resurfacing one of parking lots.  He second bond would have funded an artificial surface for the school’s varsity soccer/lacrosse field and built a six-lane track to surround it.  The VUHS board is set to meet Monday night to discuss its next move. 

Brandon may be the site of the next medical marijuana dispensary in the state of Vermont.  Alexandra Ford of Rutland County Organics has been in negotiation with Chuck Mitchell Properties regarding the lease of a building on Lover’s Lane in Brandon.  The building in question recently housed a wood furniture manufacturing facility until late last year.

A bill that would allow doctors to help their patients end their lives is headed to the Vt. Senate floor without the support of the Judiciary Committee.  The committee wrapped up its review of the end of life bill this morning and voted to forward it to the floor with a negative recommendation.  The bill is again causing deep divisions at the Statehouse, with supporters saying people should have the right to end suffering from chronic illness and opponents saying doctors should not be in the business of killing people.