February 12, 2004 – News at a glance

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Sanders vs. Greenspan
Federal Reserve Board Chairman Alan Greenspan appeared before the House Financial Services Committee on Wednesday to present his semiannual report on monetary policy. The Greenspan appearances provided committee member Vermont Congressman Bernie Sanders with a chance to spar with the nation’s leading economic soothsayer. (VPR)

Power line alternatives
Vermont utility regulators opened hearings Wednesday on a $128 million power line project planned between West Rutland and Chittenden County. Opponents won an early legal victory. The Public Service Board decided to hear testimony related to alternatives to the huge transmission project. (VPR)

Distribution of tax revenues
House Democratic leaders have unveiled a tax plan that includes a new revenue sharing proposal for all towns in the state. Republican leaders said they would oppose the measure because it represents additional state spending. (VPR)

Memorial Day bill
The Vermont House gave preliminary approval on Wednesday, to legislation that changes when the state of Vermont celebrates Memorial Day. The measure passed with very little debate. The federal government and most other states recognize Memorial Day as the last Monday in the month; while the state of Vermont observes the holiday on its traditional date of May 30. (VPR)

Presidential debate Sunday
Democratic presidential front-runner Senator John Kerry will participate in presidential debate in Wisconsin on Sunday. A campaign spokesman says Kerry waited to commit to the debate until it was clear his schedule would allow it. (AP)

Transportation funding
Vermont Senator Jim Jeffords is urging the passage of a transportation bill that could bring one billion dollars in funding to the state’s roads, trails and bridges. The federal spending plan represents an increase of 37 percent over funding from 1998 to 2003. (AP)

Clyde River dams
A New Hampshire company is expected to buy the hydroelectric dams on northeastern Vermont’s Clyde River. BayCorp Holding wants to acquire the dams from Citizens Energy Services. (AP)

Date-rape drug
Vermont authorities are confirming the state’s first medically documented case of a date-rape drug. Recent tests show that a young woman tested positive for the date-rape drug GHB after having a drink at a Chittenden County bar three weeks ago. (AP)

Democratic campaign
John Edwards isn’t the only Democrat who thinks he’d be a tougher opponent for President Bush than John Kerry would be. Howard Dean also thinks Edwards would be more likely to beat Bush than Kerry would be. (AP)

Hearing on school choice
School choice advocates are urging lawmakers to advance a proposal to offer school choice to all students while teachers and school officials are warning legislators not to act hastily. The testimony came Wednesday night at a hearing sponsored by the House Education Committee. (AP)

Deer season limits
The House Fish, Wildlife and Water Resources committee will continue to take testimony on Thursday on a bill would put some limits on deer hunting. The bill is one of many measures aimed at improving Vermont’s deer herd, which has suffered in recent years. (AP)

House bill revises drinking restrictions
The Vermont House has advanced a measure to allow bar patrons to possess two drinks at once. The law also would allow Vermonters to take an alcoholic drink to any part of an establishment. Vermonters currently are banned from bringing alcoholic drinks onto a dance floor. (AP)

Helmet contract
A Newport helmet manufacturer will continue to make headgear for the U.S. Army will be making more of its combat headgear thanks to a new army contract. MSA Gallet has been awarded a new $17 million contract to make 50,000 helmets. (AP)

UVM parking garage
A new parking garage near Gutterson Field House at the University of Vermont is going to cost more than originally thought. Last week UVM trustees approved an additional $4.5 million for the project, bringing the total cost to $12.5 million. (AP)

UVM basketball
The University of Vermont men’s basketball team is continuing to roll. Taylor Coppenrath scored 17 points last night as UVM rallied for a 67-60 victory over Stony Brook. The win extended UVM’s winning streak to a school-record 13 games. (AP)

Kimmick in custody
A Vermont man in custody in Taiwan on suspicions that he killed his wife last month in Bethel is refusing to discuss the case with Taiwanese police. Police say William Kimmick turned himself in after he learned his passport had been revoked. (AP)

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