June 22, 2004 – News at a Glance

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Vermont Yankee Fire
New details have emerged about a fire last week at the state’s only nuclear power plant. The blaze that started near a transformer caused cooling pumps that supply water to the reactor to stop working. (VPR)

Guantanamo Interrogation Tapes
Senator Patrick Leahy says he believes the Bush administration is stonewalling his effort to find out if cases of prisoner abuse have occurred at the U.S. detention center at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. For over a month the administration has ignored Leahy’s request to see videos of prison interrogations that were conducted at the detention center.

Mobile Methadone Plan
Officials in two Northeast Kingdom communities are cautiously supportive of a mobile methadone clinic proposed by the state, but they still have concerns. (VPR)

School Testing Collaboration
The state of Vermont has announced plans to team up with New Hampshire and Rhode Island on a school testing initiative that will affect most younger students in the three states. It’s believed that the regional collaboration is the first of its kind in the country. (VPR)

Injured Vermonters Treated at Walter Reed
Two Vermont Army National Guardsmen are being treated for injuries they suffered in Iraq. (AP)

Banknorth Expansion
Banknorth Group announced Monday its plan to buy the parent company of Boston Federal Savings Bank. The deal is worth $195 million in cash and stock. (AP)

Drug Re-importation
Vermont Governor Jim Douglas and seven other governors want a law changed to allow the importation of drugs from Canada and other industrialized nations. They sent a letter to congressional leaders Monday asking Congress to pass the necessary legislation. (AP)

Tourism Economy
Visits to the state’s 20 welcome centers are up 14 percent over last year. Tourism officials say 1.3 million visitors have been to the centers so far this year. Tourism Commissioner Bruce Hyde says reservations are also strong – a barometer of what may be to come this summer. (AP)

Made in Vermont
Some businesses are protesting new labeling rules being drafted by the Vermont attorney general’s office. The office is writing the rules to make it clear what products can use the name “Vermont” on their labels. They say the rules will cut down on consumer fraud. (AP)

School Mold Problem
A Springfield school that was closed because of concerns about mold is showing signs of improvement. Most of the rooms inside the Union Street Elementary School have been cleaned. (AP)

Randolph Teacher Investigated
State officials are still investigating an incident in which a Randolph High School French teacher served champagne to five of her students. Depending on the outcome of the investigation, Florence Tolbert could face five counts of furnishing or enabling the consumption of alcohol by a minor. (AP)

Highway Fatalities
The number of highway fatalities in Vermont is higher this year than at this time last year. So far, 39 people have died this year in highway accidents. That’s the highest number since 1999. By this time last year, only 26 people had died in highway accidents. That was the lowest number in 50 years. (AP)

Flower Burglaries
Someone is stealing flowers in Burlington’s South End. Homes and businesses in the area have been hit with a spate of flower burglaries in recent months. (AP)

Illegal Alien Smuggling
A man and woman from Quebec have been charged with smuggling aliens into the United States by boat. Kevin Beauregard and Chloe Grenier-Dufresne were arraigned Monday in federal court in Burlington. Prosecutors say the pair used a flat-bottomed boat to transport Indians and Pakistanis into Vermont on Friday. (AP)

Drunk Boating Trial
The Charlotte man convicted last month of causing a 2002 capsizing that killed two children wants a new trial. Lawyers for 48-year-old Dean Martin say his conviction should be thrown out because Judge Helen Toor allowed jurors to find Martin guilty of boating while intoxicated with death resulting. (AP)

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