Friday, October 10, 2014

WVTK Local & State News October 10, 2014

The Vermont Public Service Board announced earlier today that they are not reopening their decision on the Vermont Gas Pipeline last December, despite the new cost estimate. The Public Service Board says they concluded that the new cost information is not enough to change previous approval of the project. The construction of the pipeline will run approximately 43 miles in Chittenden and Addison county.

A Vermont man is being accused of threatening to kill a man over a disagreement regarding horse yesterday. Vermont State Police say 51-year-old Jeffrey Brandish of Orwell, fired a 0.45 cal hand gun at 41-year-old Clifford Casavant of Salisbury, and his daughter's general direction. Both Casavant and his daughter were not harmed in the incident. Police say Brandish also threatened to kill Casavant if he didn't return his horse. Brandish is charged with aggravated assault & reckless endangerment. Bradish was taken into custody without incident and was transported to the Chittenden County Correctional Center for lack of $15,000 bail.

The head of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says cleaning up Lake Champlain and other lakes is critical to the future of the region and the country. EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy was in Burlington today where she kicked off a "Call to Action" with representatives of more than a dozen federal agencies that are working to reduce pollution and harmful algae blooms in the lake. She says similar algae blooms across the country are becoming an ever-greater problem that is made worse by climate change and the warming waters of many of those lakes, including Lake Champlain.

It seems as if Vermonters are split on legalizing marijuana almost evenly. In a new poll, 49 percent of voters support legalization, while 43 percent oppose making pot legal. Eight percent are undecided. Previous polls have shown stronger support for marijuana legalization in the past. A recent general survey of all Vermonters, including those too young to vote showed nearly 2/3 in favor.

U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) is investigating rising prices for prescription drugs. His investigation includes new treatment for Hepatitis C that costs more than $1,000 per pill and "staggering" price hikes for generic drugs. Senator Sanders say, “My goal is to help the VA provide the best quality care to our veterans. But when the VA has to spend an enormous amount of money on prescription drugs, money that has not been budgeted for, other important services are put at risk.”