Friday, October 11, 2013

WVTK Local & State News October 11, 2013

After 27 years, Rutland police officer Thomas Fuller has retired, according to his attorney, because he believed the department was improperly run.  But an internal investigation was launched because of an allegation of misconduct, and the investigation found that Fuller was in some trouble.  The investigation focused on two cases.  In the first, he arrested a woman and made a report that conflicted with his own dash cam.  In the second, he kicked a paramedic and shoved him backward violently.  He had been on administrative leave since that incident.

Town officials in Cornwall want the state to stop a plan to build a pipeline through the town to the paper mill in Ticonderoga.  The town Select Board recently sent a letter to Gov. Peter Shumlin condemning Vermont Gas Systems' plan for the pipeline.  A spokesman for Vermont Gas Systems says the project is good for Vermont because it will bring natural gas to the Rutland area 15 years sooner than planned.

A former Vermont State Police sergeant who pleaded guilty to padding his timesheets has been released from prison.  Jim Deeghan served nine months of his two-year sentence after earning reductions for his ‘‘work camp’’ duty while in prison and because he was a nonviolent offender with no prior record.  Deeghan, a 22-year police veteran, pleaded guilty in January.  He recently began paying back the $200,000 he owes the state.

The Green Mountain Care Board (GMCB) has approved Fletcher Allen Health Care's renovation project for a new maternity unit at the hospital.  The new facility will be moving to a renovated space on Baird 7.  A press release says the renovated space will provide patients with larger rooms for mothers and families, placing the new mother and baby unit closer to the birthing center, and reducing the number of double-occupancy rooms.  The new mother baby unit will feature 28 patient beds in 25 patient rooms plus 3 boarder rooms for discharged mothers whose babies remain inpatients.

The city council in Burlington will not be taking up a ban on semi-automatic rifles and large-capacity magazines after a committee voted to remove the provision from a larger gun control proposal.  The Charter Change Committee voted 2-1 on Wednesday to remove the assault weapons ban from the proposal, while retaining provisions related to concealed gun permits, safe storage of firearms, the seizure of weapons during domestic abuse incidents and a ban on firearms at bars.  The City Council is scheduled to consider the issue later this month.  Any changes would require a public vote and approval by the state Legislature.

Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin, who is also chair of the Democratic National Governors Association, is urging the president and Republicans to end the government shutdown.  Speaking at the Statehouse, Shumlin urged the president and the GOP to get the nation out of this "mess."  Until now, the governor had reserved his criticism.  Now, Shumlin is urging all sides, including the president, to end the standoff that has left some sections of the federal government shutdown.