October 1, 2003 – News at a glance

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Interview: Jobs decline in Vermont
The latest news on the state’s overall economic front is not good: a net loss of jobs was recorded last year in Vermont for the first time in a decade. (Listen to the interview online.) (VPR)

Political parties anticipate negative campaign season
The head of the Vermont Republican Party says he’s concerned that the state’s 2004 gubernatorial contest “is shaping up to be the most negative campaign ever waged.” (VPR)

Dean nears $15 million in third fundraising quarter
Democratic presidential candidate Howard Dean is set to reach his goal of raising $15 million dollars in the last the months. The effort shatters the previous record for a Democratic candidate in the same time period by 50%. (Listen to the story online or read the transcript.) (VPR)

Bond program may support Lake Champlain cleanup
Vermont Governor Jim Douglas unveiled a new plan to clean up the state’s waterways on Tuesday. (Listen to the story online or read the transcript.) (VPR)

Some Vermont College buildings to be sold
The Union Institute will be selling off part of the Vermont College campus in Montpelier. The Institute’s Board of Trustees has approved selling eight of the 19 buildings that make up the campus. (VPR)

Sales tax rises to 6% October 1
The state sales tax will rise a penny to 6%with the start of business Wednesday. The extra money will go toward the state Education Fund – it’s intended to help reduce the reliance on the property tax. (AP)

Electricity transmission lines
About 200 people turned out Tuesday night for a public hearing on a proposal to upgrade electrical transmission systems in northwestern Vermont. Speakers at the meeting in Charlotte included business representatives who strongly supported the project, saying it is crucial to keeping Vermont’s economy running smoothly. (AP)

Dean campaign
Presidential candidate Howard Dean spent the Tuesday in California, where he was a guest on the Jay Leno show. And he ended the night with a big rally in Los Angeles. (AP)

EPA nomination
U.S. Senator Jim Jeffords says he wants more time to consider the nomination of Utah Governor Mike Leavitt to head the Environmental Protection Agency. Jeffords is ranking member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, which is considering the nomination. A vote on the nomination is scheduled for Wednesday. (AP)

Vermont State Hospital
State mental health officials are asking for help in fixing problems identified at the Vermont State Hospital. Officials promised on Tuesday to set up an advisory panel that will address short-term improvements and a long-term evaluation of the hospital’s role. (AP)

Tire burning proposal
Environmentalists in Vermont are concerned about an upstate New York paper plant’s plan to burn tires as fuel. But Michael Blumenthal of the National Scrap Tire Management Council says about 18 other paper mills around the country are already burning tires for fuel. (AP)

Bennington school vote
Bennington voters have overwhelmingly rejected a proposal to send the community’s sixth-graders to Mount Anthony Union Middle School. The advisory question was defeated on Tuesday by a 2-to-1 margin, likely killing the plan for at least a year. (AP)

Hancock woodworking plant
There’s some good news for workers in Hancock. The Vermont Economic Development Authority has approved a $640,000 loan for a local wood products manufacturer. Officials say the loan will keep Vermont Hardwood Products Corporation in business. (AP)

Drug sting
Eight Vermont and New Hampshire residents have pleaded innocent to various drug charges. The eight were among 15 people arrested Friday after a six-week Vermont State Police investigation into heroin and cocaine trafficking in Vermont and New Hampshire. (AP)

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