Monday, June 3, 2013

WVTK Local & State News June 3, 2013

U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders says Social Security is not going broke.  Trustees of Medicare and Social Security reported Friday the programs have enough money to stay afloat until 2026 in the case of Medicare and 2033 in the case of Social Security.  Sanders says longer-term problems with the programs could be addressed by lifting the cap on payroll taxes on upper-income workers.  He says that currently, someone making $10 million a year contributes the same amount of money as someone making $113,700.

The Vergennes City Council last week got its first look at a draft 2013-2014 city budget, one that City Manager Mel Hawley prepared and said could mean the second increase since 2008 in the tax rate devoted solely to paying for municipal services.  Aldermen will make the final decision on the budget and the municipal portion of the tax rate by the end of June.  That portion of the tax rate does not support school spending.

The search has begun for a new principal in Shoreham.  Shoreham’s search comes in wake of Principal Heather Best’s recent announcement that she will step down this month to accept a teaching position at the Neshobe Elementary School in Brandon.

Champlain College notified parents and students of a data security incident this morning.  A press release says a portable storage device containing names, Social Security numbers, and other information provided to the college's admissions and financial aid offices was left in a computer lab on campus.  The drive was returned to Champlain College's IT department and the college has launched an investigation into the incident.  Champlain College says there is no evidence of any attempted or actual misuse of information that was stored on the device.  The device had over 14,000 social security numbers of students who applied for admission.  Students and parents potentially impacted are being offered one year of identity monitoring services by First Watch Technologies, Inc., paid for by the college.

Vermont agriculture officials say an invasive fly will be seen more often this summer.  The spotted wing drosophila lays its eggs in soft, ripe fruit and can damage raspberries and blueberries.  It was found in New England in small amounts in 2011; many more were found last year.  Officials are confident there will be more reports of the insect this year.  The female has a saw-like egg laying appendage that allows it to drill into the fruit and lay eggs in the small holes.  The larvae feed on the fruit for about 10-14 days before emerging as adults.

About 75 elementary school girls learned an important lesson recently. They can set goals and achieve them.  Girls from Ticonderoga, Crown Point, Moriah and Willsboro went to Ti’s Bicenentennial Park on Saturday to complete a 3-kilometer run.  It was the culmination of the “Accept & Appreciate Me” program held at area schools this spring.  The program, sponsored by the Prevention Team, is based on the national Girls on the Run effort.