April 29, 2004 – News at a glance

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Internet tax ban
State officials are concerned about a new report, released by the National Governor’s Association, that indicates that Vermont could lose as much as 30 million dollars a year if Congress enacts a new ban on Internet taxes. (VPR)

Sex offender registry bill
Governor Jim Douglas pressed the Legislature on Wednesday to make it easier for community members to have access to information about convicted sex offenders. The Senate has passed legislation that would create an online registry of sex offenders and the governor says the House should do the same. (VPR)

National Guard recruitment
Political and military leaders are talking about the need for more troops in Iraq and elsewhere. But the increasing death toll and violence in Iraq has not dampened Vermonters’ interest in serving in the National Guard. (VPR)

Vermont Yankee waste exemption
The Vermont Senate has decided not to proceed on the fate of a key legal change for the Vermont Yankee Nuclear power plant. (AP)

High-speed police chase policy
Vermont State Police have new guidelines for deciding when to pursue high-speed chases. The policy puts limits on when tire-deflating spikes can be used and requires closer radio supervision of chases by senior officers. (AP)

New 911 call answering center open
Another call answering center for 911 emergency telephone calls is now online in Vermont. The tenth public service answering point began operations on Tuesday at the state police barracks in Derby. (AP)

Backstage: King Lear
The role of Shakespeare’s King Lear is often seen as the crowning achievement of a serious actor’s career. In Brattleboro this week, an all-youth cast takes on Lear. (VPR)

Senate approves state budget
The Vermont Senate has given final approval to a $951 million budget for the fiscal year that begins July first. The Senate’s bottom line number is very close to that approved by the Vermont House. Both are about $4 million more than the amount Governor Jim Douglas wanted to spend. The budget passed on Wednesday by 24-to-4 on a roll call vote. (AP)

Adult education funding
The Vermont Senate narrowly rejected an effort on Wednesday to pay for some of the cost of adult education by docking schools when students drop out. Republican Senators Mark Shepard of Bennington and Bernier Mayo of Caledonia County wanted schools to be penalized $10 a day for each student that drops out. (AP)

Milk processing plant
Governor Jim Douglas doesn’t want the state to pay half a million dollars to help a group of dairy farmers buy a milk processing plant. Douglas said on Wednesday that with several projects competing for the limited funds in the $40 million capital construction bill, money for the plant should be found elsewhere. (AP)

Maple Tree Place fines
The company that is building the Maple Tree Place development at Taft Corners in Williston is being fined $200 a day for failing to make changes to the building that houses the Best Buy store. As of Thursday, Starwood Ceruzzi owes almost $18,000. (AP)

Marshfield neighborhood watch
A group of Marshfield homeowners has formed what is believed to be the first rural neighborhood watch group in Vermont. The neighbors decided to band together after a string of break-ins, including an armed robbery, in their area. (AP)

Student dies in airport accident
A 19-year-old student at the Burlington Technical Center died in the hospital on Wednesday after he was hit by a huge aircraft door while he was in a class. Police say Martin Prince suffered extensive internal injuries after he was hit by a large metal door that weighs several tons. (AP)

Drunken boating trial
A man accused of drunken boating in an accident that killed two children is on trial this week in Middlebury. Forty-eight-year-old George Dean Martin has pleaded innocent to two counts of boating while intoxicated with death resulting. Police say he was drunk when the boat he was piloting capsized. Nine-year-old Melissa Mack and four-year-old Trevor Mack drowned in the accident. (AP)

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