Friday, September 12, 2014

WVTK Local & State News September 12, 2014

The budgets of Vermont's 14 hospitals are going to increase by an average of 3.1 percent in the next fiscal year. The Green Mountain Care Board approved the rate changes for the state's hospitals yesterday. Last year, the increase was 2.7 percent. In 2013, it was 7.1 percent.

Drivers, you may want to make sure you fasten your seat belts and pick a designated driver next week. State police will be conducting DUI sobriety checkpoints throughout the area starting Sunday. State police say drivers should plan accordingly.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced next week as Child Passenger Safety Week. A press release says the goal is to raise awareness and remind parents and caregivers to make sure they are properly using and installing their child safety seats. There will be free child car seat inspection station locations throughout the state.

During a visit to Burlington, the deputy secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture has announced $2.3 million in grants and loans intended to create jobs in rural Vermont. Krysta Harden said ealier today that 13 organizations will share the USDA funding. She says it will help small businesses, farmers and forestry enterprises buy essential equipment, gain access to affordable capital and seek expert advice on how to grow and create jobs.

It’s apple picking season and an upcoming festival at Shelburne Orchards has more than your normal picking experience. The Small Farms Food Fest will have more than 30 different small farmers at the orchard on Sunday. The farmers will be creating special dishes from what they grow on their farm, anything from ice cream to organic chicken. The orchard will, of course, allow you to pick some of their apples while you’re at the festival. The orchard is also teaming up with the Vermont Food Bank so you can also pick apples for them too, it’s called Feed Your Neighbor. Throughout the festival they will also be collecting non perishable items for the Food Bank.