March 31, 2004 – News at a glance

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Interview: Student voter registration drive
Champlain College student Robert Demaine is hoping to keep young people involved in politics by running a voter registration drive called “Around Campus in Nine Days.” Mitch Wertlieb talks with Demaine about the effort. (VPR)

Capital gains revenue
Senate President Pro Tempore Peter Welch says he’d like to use part of Governor Jim Douglas’ tax equity package to bolster the state’s rainy day budget fund. (VPR)

Vermont Yankee safety review
There’s regulatory uncertainty surrounding Vermont Yankee’s plan to boost its power output by 20 percent. Federal nuclear regulators said this week that they won’t do an additional engineering assessment of the nuclear plant. But Vermont regulators required that assessment as a condition of a power increase. (VPR)

Howard Center cuts jobs, services The Howard Center for Human Services announced on Tuesday that it will cut up to 40 jobs and scale back a number of mental health services in Chittenden County. The cuts are a result of a nearly $2 million shortfall, which Howard Center officials say is due to years of state underfunding. (VPR)

Senate unanimously passes school harassment bill
The Senate has given its preliminary approval to legislation that backers hope will help schools deal promptly with incidents of student harassment. The vote on the bill was unanimous. (VPR)

DWI bill faces resistance in House
Legislation that’s designed to crack down on people convicted of multiple drunken-driving offenses has run into a road block on the floor of the Vermont House. (VPR)

Vermont attracts new residents
A new survey says more people are moving into Vermont than out of it. And a nationwide ranking puts Vermont first for that trend. (AP)

St. Albans permit fees
Officials in St. Albans say Vermont lawmakers didn’t act fast enough to reform the state’s land use law, and the delay cost the town almost $80,000. (AP)

Prison superintendents suspended
Two state prison superintendents have been suspended with pay following an investigation into the deaths of seven people who were in state custody. Corrections Commissioner Steve Gold plans to announce a plan on Wednesday to address concerns about the Corrections system that arose after a recent report blamed the department for three of the inmate deaths. (AP)

Vermont Guard in Iraq
The 200 Vermont National Guard members who arrived in Iraq earlier this month are getting settled in. Some have begun the convoy protection duties they were trained to accomplish while others are helping protect the U-S base at the Baghdad international airport. (AP)

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