February 16, 2005 – News at a glance

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Deer hunting regulations
Tuesday night, the first in a series of meetings on Vermont’s deer herd brought out a spirited crowd of hunters anxious to see changes in the state’s deer hunting regulations. (VPR)

Interview: Thin ice keeps rescue workers busy
It’s not an uncommon sight during a Vermont winter: trucks and other vehicles parked out on the ice of Lake Champlain. But people have had to be rescued recently when their trucks either fell through the soft ice or got stuck far from shore. Mitch Wertlieb talks with Burlington Coast Guard Petty Officer Eric Mosely, who says rescue personnel have been kept very busy this season dealing with the consequences of short-sighted lake excursions. (VPR)

Town Meeting advocates want a state holiday
The institution of Town Meeting in Vermont could be strengthened if lawmakers took steps to make it easier for workers to get time off to attend their local town meeting. That’s the opinion of UVM political science professor Frank Bryan, who’s the co-author of a new book about Town Meeting entitled, “All Those in Favor.” (VPR)

Senate committee passes Peeping Tom bill
The Senate Judiciary Committee has given its unanimous approval to the so-called “Peeping Tom” bill. Backers of the legislation say it’s needed because Vermont doesn’t have strong trespassing laws. But opponents argue the proposal could have unintended consequences. (VPR)

Utility says Vermont Yankee should pay for power outage
Vermont’s largest electric utility says Vermont Yankee must pay for a power outage at the nuclear plant last year. Central Vermont Public Service Corporation wants Yankee to cover the cost of replacement power purchased when a fire knocked the plant off line. (VPR)

Second school evacuation drill
Officials say they’re pleased with Tuesday’s school evacuation drill in the towns closest to the Vermont Yankee nuclear plant. The drill was a second try after an earlier exercise that left students waiting for school buses that failed to arrive. (VPR)

Morgan Horse museum
The National Museum of the Morgan Horse will be staying in Vermont, at least for time being. The non-profit American Morgan Horse Institute, which owns the museum, has postponed a decision on moving it from Shelburne to the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, Kentucky. (VPR)

Douglas won’t campaign against Jeffords
Governor Jim Douglas says he will not campaign next year against the re-election of U.S. Senator Jim Jeffords. The Republican governor says that he and Jeffords have been good friends for decades and that he believes Jeffords has done a great job as a senator. (AP)

Abenaki recognition
The Abenaki are urging legislators to pass a resolution that would recognize them as a tribe. About two dozen people gathered in St. Johnsbury on Tuesday to make their case to a Senate committee. The crowd also came to pay their respects state Senator Julius Canns, who has championed their cause for more than a decade. (AP)

Renewable energy bill
A bill that would require Vermont’s power companies to get set percentages of their electricity from renewable sources is rapidly making its way through the state Senate. The bill would require utilities to get a minimum amount of their power from such renewable sources as hydroelectric dams, wind farms, biomass and similar projects. (AP)

International Paper tire chip burn
The back-and-fourth is continuing between Vermont U.S. Senator Jim Jeffords and International Paper over the company’s plans to burn tire chips at its mill in Ticonderoga, New York. The company disputed Jeffords’ contention in a letter Monday to New York Governor George Pataki that the mill uses outdated anti-pollution technology. (AP)

National Guard deployment
Another 80 Vermont Army National Guard soldiers will be deployed within the next month, 40 each for duty in Iraq and Afghanistan. Those going to Iraq will replace soldiers who deployed for training last month but have been found unfit for duty. Those going to Afghanistan, from a Northfield-based unit, will assist a Florida Guard unit in training senior officers in the Afghan National Army. (AP)

White River Junction fire
Investigators are still trying to determine what caused a fire that destroyed several businesses in a downtown building in White River Junction. But police say the fire may have started spontaneously in materials left over from sanding and refinishing the floor. (AP)

Bellows Falls train tunnel
Railroad officials say the Bellows Falls Tunnel can accommodate larger, double-stacked railroad cars without being altered. A member of the Railroad Association of Vermont told Transportation Agency officials and lawmakers that bits of the track can be lowered instead of reworking the historic stone-tunnel. (AP)

91 closed after accident
A tractor-trailer accident on Tuesday in Brattleboro is going to result in part of Interstate 91 being closed Wednesday morning. Vermont state police say the road will be closed at Exit 2 southbound in Brattleboro while work gets under way to get the truck back on the road. Police say the road is expected to be closed from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. (AP)

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