January 23, 2004 – News at a glance

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State unemployment rate up but still below national average
4% of the Vermont work force was unemployed last month, up 1/10 of one percent over November. In December 2002 the rate was 3.7%. (AP)

Gov. Douglas interested in power dam purchases
Although cautioning there are still many hurdles to overcome, Governor James Douglas is sounding upbeat about the possible purchase by the state of a series of dams on the Connecticut and Deerfield Rivers. Douglas told a news conference there’s a good chance the state will make a proposal to buy the dams. (AP)

Howard Dean makes multiple television appearances
Howard Dean was all over the television screen last night, all part of an effort to get his presidential campaign back on track after a disappointing finish in Iowa. The television push came after appearances in New Hampshire in which he said his enthusiastic shout during his Iowa concession speech was designed to rev up his volunteers after his third place showing. (AP)

Leahy concerned about Scalia-Cheney trip
Senator Leahy has concerns about Supreme Court Justice Scalia going on a hunting trip with his friend Vice President Dick Cheney after the court agreed to review a lower court ruling on a requirement that the White House identify members of the vice president’s energy task force. (AP)

Emergency fund to help Guard families
The Vermont senate wants to create a $50,000 emergency fund to help families of Vermont National Guardsmen headed to the Middle East. About 200 Guard members are leaving Vermont today for training before heading to Iraq later this winter. (AP)

Dissent over vehicle emission standards
The Douglas administration is moving too fast to try to get Vermont to match California’s vehicle emission standards. That’s the view of the Legislature’s Administration Rules Committee, which says the rules should go through the regular rule-making process. (AP)

Grand list use under review
A bill is under review in the House that would ban the use of municipal or education property tax grand lists for commercial purposes. (AP)

Tire chip burn plan
New York’s Department of Environmental Conservation says International Paper in Ticonderoga must revise its federal air and water permits before conducting any experimental burn of tire chips. New York officials say it would require a scientific review and public comment. (AP)

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