The post appeared first on Mississippi Today.

The permanent contraceptive Essure went off sale December 31—a relief to the activists known as “E-Sisters,” who came together around symptoms they linked to the device via a Facebook group called Essure Problems in 2011 and celebrated with New Year's Eve online toasts. The controversial product won't soon be forgotten for the thousands of women who complained that it caused long-term and extremely serious side effects. But it's also not entirely gone: while physicians and clinics can no longer order new devices, they may continue to use them until the end of this year. The device had developed a following as the only non-surgical permanent contraceptive device on the market. And not everyone is happy it is disappearing.

The post appeared first on Type Investigations.

‘Beyond Despair and Denial: Facing Climate Change With Moral Urgency and Hope’

Tuesday, March 12, 2019 - 6:00PMAtlanta, GAUnited StatesJon Sawyer, Mary Evelyn Tucker, Codi Norred , Clifton GranbyPulitzer Center Executive Director Jon Sawyer joins public conversation focusing on climate change and how to address it now. Event partners include the Yale Divinity School and Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. For more information

‘Bhutto’: first woman elected leader of Pakistan

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, April 5, 2011 - "Martyr, accused, scandal, savior." All of these terms and more flash on the screen at the end of a trailer for the documentary "Bhutto," which will be screened Thursday at the Missouri History Museum. The film by directors Duane Baughman and Johnny O'Hara depicts the life and politics of Benazir Bhutto, the first Muslim woman elected to lead an Islamic nation.

‘Brave, Not Perfect’ Speaks To The Scarcity Of Women In Tech

Last year was, without much doubt, the year of Big Tech. One Facebook scandal after another (and yet, the ubiquitous social media platform is raking in record breaking profits ). Amazon joined Apple in becoming the second trillion-dollar company publicly listed in the U.S. New tech campuses were announced in New York, D.C., Texas, and California. With those, came the promise of tens of thousands of new jobs. And the follow up question from many locals: Exactly who will those jobs go to?

‘Contested Lands’ Photo Exhibit in California at World Affairs

Monday, January 28, 2019 (All day) to Friday, March 01, 2019 (All day)San Francisco, CAUnited StatesJonas Bendiksen, Chien-Chi Chang, Stuart Franklin, Thomas Dworzak, Susan Meiselas, Emin OzmenThrough a collaboration involving Magnum Photos, Pacific Standard and the Pulitzer Center, six photographers shed light on indigenous communities around the world waging battles against governments and commercial interests to remain on their ancestral lands. Learn more

‘Different Face’ Of Addiction Has Led To ‘Long Overdue’ Shift From Criminal Justice To Public Health

When David Patterson Silver Wolf refers to the U.S. opioid epidemic as part of a “disease of despair” and “a tough disease to treat,” he's speaking from experience both professional and personal. He experienced substance-use disorder firsthand after growing up in a troubled home that quickly led him toward drugs and alcohol. “I was young and I was also suicidal – which, a lot of folks, when we talk about [overdosing], it's hard to separate out what is an OD and what is just taking of your life,” the Washington University faculty member recalled on Monday's St. Louis on the Air . “And I was also full of despair.

‘Incredibly Concerning’ And Growing Number Of US Teens Are Vaping, Says Wash U Researcher

A recent study of American teenagers showed a big jump in nicotine vaping among young people in 2018 . Even as many steer clear of other substance-related activities such as binge drinking and drug use, the number of teens who are vaping has more than doubled since 2017. “The data shows that one in five middle schoolers are using these products and one in three high school [students] are using these products, so those are incredibly concerning numbers,” Dr. Patricia Cavazos-Rehg said during Tuesday's St. Louis on the Air . Cavazos-Rehg, who is an associate professor in the Washington University School of Medicine's Department of Psychiatry, told host Don Marsh there's a need for more education about vaping – and its risks – among both teens and their caregivers.

‘Acting’ officials: Another way Trump gets around Congress is detailed in WaPo article

If I were writing articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump, I would certainly include one that accuses him of violating his Oath of Office. Other members of the federal government take oaths when they are sworn in. But the president is the only one who repeats an oath that is actually part of the text of the Constitution itself:
Article 2, section 1, Clause 8: Oath or affirmation:
“Before he enters the Execution of his Office, [the president-elect] shall take the following Oath or Affirmation:—‘I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.'”
I don't know if Donald Trump had his fingers crossed when he took that oath. But he acts like it. He doesn't protect or defend the Constitution.

‘Afflicted not addicted’: Chronic pain sufferers rally for access to opioids

Debra Hickey, who has lived with chronic pain for two decades, recently went to her medical specialist for her regular dose of 30 milligrams of oxycodone. The doctor told her she had to reduce the dosage because of state regulations to decrease the number and dosage in patients' opioid prescriptions. Hickey, 63, of Phoenix, was appalled. And scared.

‘Beautiful legislation’ fails to protect PNG’s environment, landowners

Papua New Guinea is a canopy-covered country, with a substantial chunk of the world's third-largest rainforest and some 7 percent of global biodiversity. It is home to many endemic species, from legless lizards to the amber-plumed Raggiana bird-of-paradise (Paradisaea raggiana), immortalized on the nation's flag. These natural wonders are ostensibly safeguarded by laws that include the Land Act of 1996, the Environment Act (2000), Forestry Act (1991), Mining Act (1992) and the Oil and Gas Act (1998). Regulations also cover everything from marine pollution to timber exports, to gaining free, prior and informed consent (FPIC) for land acquisition. The laws “look good on paper,” says Evelyn Wohuinangu, principal lawyer at PNG's Centre for Environmental Law and Community Rights (CELCOR), an NGO.

‘Devaluing Black Bodies’: How Police-Shooting Videos Can Thwart the Search for Justice

On July 5, 2016, Alton Sterling, 37, died after police in Louisiana tackled and shot him outside the convenience store where he was selling CDs. The following day, Philando Castile was shot and killed by police in Minnesota during a traffic stop. The horrific eyewitness videos of both shootings immediately went viral on social media. One social media post of the leaked video of the 2016 death of Delrawn Small, shot by an off-duty New York City police officer in a traffic dispute, has been viewed more than 70,000 times. Historically, such searing images have helped gather support for legal reforms against racial discrimination and state violence against African American people.

‘El Chapo’ Jurors Said to Have Followed News Coverage of Trial

In an exclusive interview with VICE News, a juror in the trial of Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán claimed that at least five fellow jurors violated the judge's orders by following the case in the media during the trial, which ended in a guilty verdict Feb. 12. Judge Brian Cogan routinely admonished the jurors to avoid news coverage and social media, and to refrain from discussing the case with each other, so that the verdict could be decided only on evidence from the courtroom. Those rules were routinely broken, according to the juror: “You know how we were told we can't look at the media during the trial? Well, we did.

‘El Chapo’ Wrapup: Glimpses Into Workings of a Drug Cartel

The 12-week trial of notorious drug lord Joaquín Archivaldo Guzmán Loera — known as “El Chapo” — has shown in meticulous detail how the cartel smuggles drugs from Mexico into the United States, along with tales of gruesome murders, diamond-encrusted pistols and betrayal, the Washington Post reports. Closing arguments concluded Thursday. The jury in federal court in Brooklyn is scheduled to begin deliberating Monday. The billions of dollars' worth of heroin, cocaine, methamphetamines and marijuana came through elaborate tunnels and stashed in trucks and trains, rolling through official entry points, and on container ships docking at Pacific ports. The proceedings were filled with drama: Guzmán's mistress wept on the stand, his wife at one point coordinated outfits with him in court, and the man who managed the cartel's computer networks betrayed his old boss in public testimony.

‘Excessive Fines’ Ban Applies to States, High Court Rules

The Constitution's ban on excessive fines applies to the states, the Supreme Court ruled unanimously on Wednesday, the Associated Press reports. The ruling will support efforts to limit police confiscation of property belonging to someone suspected of a crime (police and prosecutors often keep the proceeds.)
In the case decided Wednesday, an Indiana man may be able to recover the $42,000 Land Rover police seized when they arrested him for selling about $400 worth of heroin. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote the opinion in an appeal from Tyson Timbs of Marion, In. Ginsburg read a summary of her opinion from the bench. She missed arguments last month, but returned to the bench Tuesday after an operation for lung cancer.

‘First Amendment Auditor’ Shot by Guard in L.A.

An armed security guard shot a YouTube personality outside a Los Angeles synagogue last week as the confrontation was live-streamed to thousands of followers. Zhoie Perez, “Furry Potato” on YouTube, was filming the guard in a “First Amendment audit,” reports the Washington Post. A video shows the guard standing behind a gate with his weapon drawn for several minutes, before he tells Perez to “get away” and fires his gun. “First Amendment auditing” and “copwatching” dates from at least the mid-2000s. The practice has morphed into a YouTube subculture, with self-styled “auditors” seeing how police react to a camera lens.

‘First Amendment Auditor’ Shot by Guard in L.A.

An armed security guard shot a YouTube personality outside a Los Angeles synagogue last week as the confrontation was live-streamed to thousands of followers. Zhoie Perez, “Furry Potato” on YouTube, was filming the guard in a “First Amendment audit,” reports the Washington Post. A video shows the guard standing behind a gate with his weapon drawn for several minutes, before he tells Perez to “get away” and fires his gun. “First Amendment auditing” and “copwatching” dates from at least the mid-2000s. The practice has morphed into a YouTube subculture, with self-styled “auditors” seeing how police react to a camera lens.

‘Frozen,’ ‘Mean Girls’ in next Broadway on Hennepin season; flower show at the arboretum

In a Facebook Live stream Thursday morning, Hennepin Theatre Trust announced its 2019-20 Broadway on Hennepin season. Eclipsing all other theater news until Lin-Manuel Miranda pens his next musical, “Hamilton” will return … in 2020-21. You can guarantee your seats by subscribing to 2019-20, which will give you first dibs on 2020-21. We're not saying this is a plot, um, strategy, but if it is, it's a good one. Let's call it smart marketing.

‘Goofy’ proposal for giving Minnesota’s major parties veto power over primary candidates gets a rewrite

Backers of legislation to liberalize Minnesota's rule for minor political parties thought they had something in the bills to attract the support of the major parties. They were wrong. A MinnPost article on two companion bills, House File 708 and Senate File 752, outlined a provision that would give state Republicans and DFLers a veto over which candidates could run in the state primary under their banner. Rather than interest the parties, it attracted opposition, at least from DFL Chair Ken Martin, who called the idea “goofy” and perhaps unconstitutional. State Sen. Scott Jensen, a Republican from Chaska, said he also heard from Senate colleagues who called the section of the bill “klutzy.”
“I'm gonna guess that what we're gonna do is excise that entire section,” Jensen said, “because that's not really the heart of the bill.” The heart is to make it easier for minor parties to get candidates on the ballot by lowering signature requirements, allow them to seek lower office like state House and Senate without first having to run statewide races, and even to let them gather signatures on 8½-by-11 paper instead of 14 inches, as current law requires.

‘He was full of humor, and he was brilliant’: World-renowned composer Dominick Argento remembered

Pulitzer Prize-winning composer, University of Minnesota professor emeritus and longtime Minneapolis resident Dominick Argento has died. The news broke softly, on a warm personal note, in an article written by his nephew, Mike Argento, and published Thursday morning in the York (Pennsylvania) Daily Record. Argento died Wednesday in Minneapolis. He was 91. Argento was the son of Sicilian immigrants who settled in York.

‘I Became Their Voice’: Survivor Reflects On Holocaust, Preservation Of Stories

Sunday marked the international community's commemoration of lives lost and tragedy caused during the Holocaust. Although it took place more than 70 years ago, its lessons continue to resonate today. “Those [lessons] are not bound by time,” Dan Reich, curator and director of education at the Holocaust Museum & Learning Center, told host Don Marsh on Monday's St. Louis on the Air . “I hope that the Holocaust will continue to be commemorated,” he said.

‘I can’t afford to have children:’ Denver teachers on verge of strike plead with district to raise pay

As Colorado's governor weighs whether to intervene to head off a teacher strike in the state's largest school district, Denver teachers packed a school board meeting Thursday night to press their demand for higher pay. They marched on the sidewalk in front of district headquarters, chanted in the lobby, and took turns giving sometimes emotional testimony to the board. “I'm striking because I spend 182 days a year supporting and helping raise other people's children, but my husband and I can't afford to have children of our own,” said Bridget Stephenson-McKee, a third-grade teacher at Force Elementary, as she fought back tears. Meanwhile, the district continues to prepare for how to keep schools open if teachers walk out. Denver Public Schools Superintendent Susana Cordova sent a letter Tuesday to employees who work in the central office making clear the expectation that they will be deployed to schools to work as substitute teachers or in non-instructional roles, such as hall monitors.

‘If the government shuts down, we’ll do it again’: Vicksburg military park kept open, and 19,000 visitors showed up

Carol M. Highsmith, Library of CongressCannons at the Vicksburg National Military Park in Vicksburg, Mississippi. A 35-day tug-of-war in Washington D.C. would have kept over 19,000 tourists out of one of the world's jewels for military history. The Vicksburg National Military Park, however, kept its forts manned during the federal government's partial shutdown thanks to the support of a local non-profit, Friends of VNMP, as well as the City of Vicksburg. Friends of VNMP released new figures last week showing only a slight decrease in visitation. “The park is obviously the centerpiece for tourism in Vicksburg,” said Bess Averett, Executive Director of Friends of VNMP, which raised over $50,000 to keep the park operating.

‘It Was a Mess’: Sheryl Sculley on Changing San Antonio’s Trajectory

When Erik Walsh takes over as San Antonio's City Manager on March 1, he will inherit a very different city than the one his predecessor Sheryl Sculley took over 13 years ago. The post ‘It Was a Mess': Sheryl Sculley on Changing San Antonio's Trajectory appeared first on Rivard Report.

‘It’s time’: How the politics of addressing Minnesota’s opioid crisis changed at the Capitol

Supporters of bills to fight opioid abuse and addiction think they have the votes at the Minnesota Legislature to pass a comprehensive response to the crisis. That, in itself, isn't new. Back in 2018, a similar bill failed to get through the Minnesota House after easily making it through the state Senate, even though the basics of the legislation had widespread support. At the time, the measures included treatment, education and grants to local governments for expenses related to opioid addiction — provisions for which it is hard to find opponents. Yet lobbying by the pharmaceutical industry blocked passage of increased registration fees for drug makers and distributors that would have raised $20 million a year to pay for the programs. Those lobbyists argued that prescription drugs that are vital to many people in the state should not be taxed for health-related programs.
Last year, such opposition mattered.

‘Key To Progress’: How St. Louisans Are Using Community Organizing And Engagement To Make Change

On Wednesday's St. Louis on the Air , host Don Marsh explored how community organizing has evolved in the St. Louis region over the past 40 years. Joining the discussion was Kevin McKinney, executive director of SLACO – the St. Louis Association of Community Organizations – which is anticipating its 23rd annual Regional Neighborhoods Conference set for this Saturday.

‘Medicare for All’ can mean at least two different things

The slogan “Medicare for All” can mean two things. Well, at least two. One of them would be a much bigger, and, to some people, much scarier change than the other. But the two meanings are both out there, which isn't really helpful but makes it necessary to clarify the two ideas. Sen. Kamala Harris, D-California, who is considered a top contender for the Democratic nomination for president in 2020, gave a CNN televised town hall forum Tuesday night.

‘Mississippi School Safety Act’ on the way to House floor, requires active shooter drills

A bill lawmakers say is necessary to keep Mississippi children safe in school passed the first hurdle of the legislative process Thursday. House Bill 1283 would create the “Mississippi School Safety Act of 2019,” something Gov. Phil Bryant urged the Legislature to pass in his State of the State address earlier this year. Eric J. Shelton, Mississippi Today/Report For AmericaGovernor Phil Bryant delivers the State of the State address in the House of Representatives Chamber of the Mississippi State Capitol Tuesday, January 15, 2019. “Our schools, which once were a haven of security, have become a place of potential violence,” Bryant said. “To help protect our students and those who teach them, I will ask you to pass a comprehensive plan to keep our school children safe.”
In addition to fire drills and emergency drills which already occur, schools would be required to conduct active shooter drills within the first two months of each semester.

‘New Dude’ highlights opening weekend of DI baseball

WeirThis rendering shows rebuilt Dudy Noble Field/Polk-Dement Stadium, which opens this weekend in Starkville. Mississippi's Division I college baseball season begins Friday, and the star will be what Mississippi State fans are calling “The New Dude.”
No, we're not talking about J.T. Ginn, the freshman right-handed pitcher from Brandon, who turned down $2.4 million from the Los Angeles Dodger to pitch for the Bulldogs. We're talking about re-built Dudy Noble Field/Polk-Dement Stadium, the sparkling, $67 million facility where Ginn presumably will pitch for the next three seasons. The new stadium features every bell, every whistle imaginable for a college baseball stadium, including three stadium clubs, 20 luxury suites, 96 outfield lounges, a new two-tiered grandstand, a capacity of upward of 15,000, and 12 lofts (rented condos) beyond the Left Field Lounge area. “We think, overall, we will have the best facility in college baseball,” said athletic director John Cohen, who played and coached baseball at State.

‘Next thing you know, he left me’: After an unusually deadly month, loved ones reflect on the lives of Jackson homicide victims

Eric J. Shelton, Mississippi Today/Report For AmericaMississippi's capital has had 12 shooting in January alone. Jackson's Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba and Gov. Phil Byrant have offered various proposals to combat crime, including Credible Messenger Mentoring, Violence Interrupter Training and a Real Time Crime Center. First row from left: Rev. Anthony Finch Longino, Evan Henry, George Robinson, and De'Anthony Snell; Second row: Mack Pope, Kameron Cortez, Christopher Collins, 25 and Calphrion Vardman, 19; Third row: Demarcus Harris, 32, Julian Smith, Elizahown Burns and Quinvarus Devon Parker. In January, there were 12 homicides in Jackson. This continued a trend from the previous year when the number of homicides reached 84, making 2018 one of the deadliest in recent memory for the capital city.

‘Nightmare’ at NYC Federal Jail Without Heat, Power

Inmates in the Metropolitan Detention Center, a federal jail in Brooklyn, were in cramped cells on Saturday that had no electricity and were frigid cold. Vents in the ceiling were stuffed with clothing or cardboard to keep out icy air. At 2 p.m., the jail population had not yet been fed. Those were the conditions described by elected officials who visited the jail, where more than 1,600 inmates have been largely confined to their freezing, dark cells for nearly a week, since an electrical fire partially cut off power to the jail, prompting management to cancel visits and place inmates on lockdown, reports the New York Times. “The situation is really, really a nightmare,” said Rep. Nydia Velázquez (D-NY), whose district includes the jail.

‘Nightmare’ at NYC Federal Jail Without Heat, Power

Inmates in the Metropolitan Detention Center, a federal jail in Brooklyn, were in cramped cells on Saturday that had no electricity and were frigid cold. Vents in the ceiling were stuffed with clothing or cardboard to keep out icy air. At 2 p.m., the jail population had not yet been fed. Those were the conditions described by elected officials who visited the jail, where more than 1,600 inmates have been largely confined to their freezing, dark cells for nearly a week, since an electrical fire partially cut off power to the jail, prompting management to cancel visits and place inmates on lockdown, reports the New York Times. “The situation is really, really a nightmare,” said Rep. Nydia Velázquez (D-NY), whose district includes the jail.

‘Parents Are Children’s First, Best Teachers’: How Home-Visiting Model ‘Adds Value’ To Development

Constance Gully 's first encounter with the home-visiting Parents as Teachers (PaT) program was 24 years ago, when she became pregnant and experienced complications and preterm labor. “I was afraid,” Gully explained to host Don Marsh on Wednesday. “Every parent wants what's best for their child; and regardless of their economic or educational status, every parent can be a great parent, but we don't always have the confidence to know that. Parents as Teachers is great to provide parents with the affirmation to just let them know you can take these particular steps to help add value to your child's development and let parents know that they play a role.” Fast forward to the present day, Gully is now the CEO of the organization. She joined Wednesday's St.

‘Parker’s Law’ would charge dealers, friends for drug overdose deaths

Ever since her son Parker died of a drug overdose four years ago, Cordie Rodenbaugh has spent her time talking at town halls and college campuses about addiction and drug use among students. Rodenbaugh, a Madison resident, has even sponsored a workshop in her own living room to teach people how to use Narcan. And this year, she began lobbying at the state capitol for Parker's Law, a bill named after her son that would make it easier for prosecutors to go after anyone who provides drugs that lead to an overdose — a bill she believes would help prevent deaths like Parker's. “I feel so good about it (the bill),” Rodenbaugh said. “You have to be accountable for what you do.

‘Parker’s Law’ would put drug dealers behind bars for overdose deaths

David Maialetti/The Philadelphia Inquirer via AP, FileUnder Parker's Law, people charged with sale or intent to sell drugs could face an additional 20 years to life without parole in prison and a fine of up to $1 million for each person who dies or suffers serious bodily injury. Ever since her son Parker died of a drug overdose four years ago, Cordie Rodenbaugh has spent her time talking at town halls and college campuses about addiction and drug use among students. Rodenbaugh, a Madison resident, has even sponsored a workshop in her own living room to teach people how to use Narcan, a drug that can reverse opioid overdoses. And this year, she began lobbying at the state capitol for Parker's Law, a bill named after her son that would make it easier for prosecutors to go after anyone who provides drugs that lead to an overdose — a bill she believes would help prevent deaths like Parker's. “I feel so good about it (the bill),” Rodenbaugh said.

‘Queens Of The Board’ Take Center Stage In St. Louis Chess Club’s First All-Female Tournament

The St. Louis Chess Club is currently hosting its first international all-female chess tournament in an effort to expand opportunities for women to enter the male-dominated sport. Jennifer Shahada, a two-time U.S. women's chess champion, commentator and analyst explained the excitement behind the Cairns Cup tournament on Wednesday's St. Louis on the Air . “It's really a chance for the queens of the board to take center stage,” Shahade told St.

‘Seasoned Bureaucrat’ Rosen Tapped as Deputy AG

As predicted, Jeffrey Rosen, the No. 2 official at the Transportation Department, was nominated as deputy attorney general, “putting a seasoned bureaucrat in charge of the day-to-day operations of a Justice Department battered by political storms and suffering strained morale,” the Wall Street Journal reports. Pending Senate confirmation, Rosen will replace Rod Rosenstein, who tried for two years to steady the department and its tumultuous relationship with the White House. Rosenstein will leave in mid-March. In the Transportation Department, Rosen is known as a sharp and apolitical lawyer familiar with the levers and gauges of government.

‘Speaker’s Soiree’ skirts law against legislators soliciting from lobbyists

House Majority Leader Jill Krowinski speaks Thursday night at a Vermont Democratic Party fundraiser. Photo by Colin Meyn/VTDigger
At the bottom of the emailed invitation to Wednesday night's Speaker's Soiree at the Capitol Plaza Hotel in Montpelier, there's a note in small print: “House members are not soliciting funds from lobbyists or lobbyist employers for this event.”
That's because it would be illegal if they were. And perhaps it needs to be said, because you could be mistaken for thinking that's exactly what's happening. Get all of VTDigger's daily news.You'll never miss a story with our daily headlines in your inbox. Daily
Sundays only (Weekly Wrap)

Email me stories on these subjects...

‘The innovation economy and its growth in this state is critical’: a Q&A with new DEED Commissioner Steve Grove

Steve GroveSteve Grove, the new commissioner of the Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED), traveled a somewhat unusual path to his job in Gov. Tim Walz's administration. Born in Northfield, Grove spent a few years as a reporter before joining YouTube and creating a division that worked to bring news and political content to the video site. He later directed the Google News Lab, which runs projects aimed at boosting local journalism around the country, and co-founded a nonprofit with his wife Mary, Silicon North Stars, which flies high-schoolers to Silicon Valley for tech camps. (Full disclosure: He was also formerly on the MinnPost board.)
Grove moved back to Minnesota from California last year before being picked as DEED commissioner. He's inheriting an economy with low unemployment rates, but one that faces challenges.

‘The Invisibles,’ A Video Series

In this video series, titled “The Invisibles,” Oklahoma Watch profiles individuals whose quiet struggles in life reflect some of the larger issues facing the state. The series is made possible by a sponsorship from the Chickasaw Nation. Out of Prison and Reconstructing a Life
Every month, hundreds of Oklahoma inmates who've served their time are released from prisons across the state – often given bus fare and sent back to the communities from which they came. But rebuilding a life is challenging. In this video, Robin Wertz, who spent years in prison, talks about her experiences and how, as site director at Exodus House in Oklahoma City, she helps former inmates re-integrate into society.

‘The whole thing is goofy’: Proposal to liberalize rules for minor party candidates in Minnesota would also block some major party candidates from primary ballot

Maybe it should be called the Richard Painter Bill. Or the power that no one wanted. A set of proposals filed in the Minnesota House and Senate would give the state's political parties the authority to block some candidates from appearing on state primary ballots with party affiliation. House File 708 and its companion Senate bill, Senate File 752, make several changes to state law governing how candidates from both major and minor political parties get on the ballot. But a new section of law would also change the current procedure for major party filing.

‘This Funny Thing Called Love’ and other Valentine’s Day fun

Valentine's Day is Thursday. You know that, right? If you already have plans – or you just don't care – you can skip ahead to Michael Christie's Grammy win below. If you're looking for ideas, we can help. Wednesday, Feb.

‘This is why people are leaving the state’: How state aid rules hinder college access for low-income families and middle class

Andrew Krech, The Citizens' Voice via APMany outdated regulations written into state aid laws create barriers for lower and middle-class Mississippians trying to get a higher education for their kids or themselves. It started with her husband's injury at work. His doctor prescribed him opioids; taking them for pain morphed into a full-blown addiction and later, a controlled substance arrest. After 18 years of marriage and middle-class living, Joyce Blankenship found herself kicking her husband out of the house, and along with him, her family's only source of income. That same year her twin daughters were seniors in high school and preparing to go to college.

‘This was wrong,’ says Denver schools chief of email threat to immigrant teachers

Less than three weeks into her tenure as Denver schools superintendent, Susana Cordova stood in the lobby of the district's downtown headquarters Friday afternoon and apologized. Ringed by television cameras, Cordova said she was shocked the evening before to learn that a district human resources employee had sent an email to schools on Tuesday that said immigrant teachers working in Denver Public Schools on visas would be reported to immigration authorities if they participated in an impending teacher strike. “This was wrong,” said Cordova, flanked by three Denver school board members. “I cannot begin to express how shocked I was to learn of this message, and how deeply sorry I am for the anxiety and fear this has caused our educators, our families, and our community.”
The district will not report to authorities the names of any employees who walk off the job, Cordova said. Of the district's approximately 5,600 educators, 128 of them are here on H-1B and J-1 immigrant visas, a district spokesperson said.

‘Uma banda de punk rock’: como o The Intercept ergueu um abrigo para o jornalismo investigativo no Brasil

The Intercept Brasil recently published an investigation that traced the downfall of one of the most powerful drug gangs in Brazil. Desde que o jornalista Glenn Greenwald lançou o The Intercept cinco anos atrás, na esteira da sua série de reportagens sobre o caso Edward Snowden, o site tem crescido de forma rápida. Vários furos foram publicados nos Estados Unidos, muitos deles centrados nas agências americanas de inteligência. Mas uma consequência um pouco inesperada na época da criação do site nos EUA foi o lançamento de uma versão brasileira, o The Intercept Brasil, baseado no Rio de Janeiro, onde Greenwald vive desde 2005. Ele considerou que o Brasil, com toda sua turbulência política e desafios envolvendo os direitos humanos, seria um bom local para experimentar um braço do The Intercept fora dos Estados Unidos.

‘Very emotional and very impossible’: the struggle for survival at Wildwoods wildlife rehabilitation center

The chipmunk lies in the middle of a large steel work table, it's only movements the quick rise and fall of its midsection that comes with each breath. Standing in this basement-turned-clinic, Tara Smith is holding a plastic cone over the animal's snout. Smith, the head of animal care at Wildwoods wildlife rehabilitation center in Duluth, watches the chipmunk's respirations as anesthesia flows into its nostrils. Globs of white pus cling to the animal's skin. “What is that?” Smith wonders out loud.

‘We can’t nickle-dime this thing.’ Water Congress comes up dry on funds for Colorado River Plan

When Gov. Jared Polis took office in January, he took responsibility for ensuring that Colorado doesn't run out of water. Many in the water community were thrilled when Polis said in his State of the State address that he wants to find a “sustainable funding source” to finally implement the far-reaching Colorado Water Plan. But, weeks later, many of those water experts are still wondering where the money will come from. Some hope that Polis, who has made funding all-day kindergarten and health care programs a priority, still cares about water. The opening day luncheon at this year's Water Congress in Westminster was dedicated entirely to the subject of how to fund the water plan, a lengthy manifesto finalized in 2015 intended to prevent projected water shortfalls in 2050.

‘We can’t nickle-dime this thing.’ Water Congress comes up dry on funds for Colorado Water Plan

When Gov. Jared Polis took office in January, he took responsibility for ensuring that Colorado doesn't run out of water. Many in the water community were thrilled when Polis said in his State of the State address that he wants to find a “sustainable funding source” to finally implement the far-reaching Colorado Water Plan. But, weeks later, many of those water experts are still wondering where the money will come from. Some hope that Polis, who has made funding all-day kindergarten and health care programs a priority, still cares about water. The opening day luncheon at this year's Water Congress in Westminster was dedicated entirely to the subject of how to fund the water plan, a lengthy manifesto finalized in 2015 intended to prevent projected water shortfalls in 2050.

‘What happens in this house stays in this house’: Black women sound the alarm about domestic violence in the African American community

LAUREL — On a windy afternoon in March 2002, Ishaunna Gully hoisted her young son onto her hip and listened intently as her grandmother presented her case. The grandmother had a bad feeling about Ishaunna's ex-boyfriend, Sammy, who had been controlling and verbally abusive during their year-long relationship. In the last few days, he was behaving erratically and making violent threats towards Ishaunna and her son from a previous relationship. The first time Sammy attacked her, he only escaped arrest because Ishaunna declined to press charges. Days after that incident, fearing he might try to kidnap her son, Ishaunna sought a restraining order at Hattiesburg police headquarters but was told she needed to come back the following week.

“Political” Police Reforms Embolden Criminals, Union Official Charges

The head of Cleveland's police union blamed gunfire involving police and gun-related arrests near the scene Sunday on an ever-expanding anti-police narrative that will make officers targets, reports the Northeast Ohio Media Group. Steve Loomis, head of the Cleveland Police Patrolmen's Association, said federally mandated police reforms, a Cleveland judge's finding of probable cause for charges against the officers involved in the Tamir Rice shooting and the Cuyahoga County prosecutor's release of the investigation materials in that case were "politically motivated." "What it's doing, and what all these sideshows and unprecedented events are doing, is emboldening the criminal element," Loomis said. "It absolutely is going to get somebody killed; one of us or one of them. Neither is a good thing."

“Someone did not do their due diligence.” How an attempt to review Texas’ voter rolls turned into a debacle

“What they have set in motion is going to disenfranchise U.S. citizens and it's going to infringe on their right to vote,” said state Rep. Rafael Anchia, D-Dallas. State Rep. Rafael Anchia had been alarmed by the actions of the Texas secretary of state's office for days by the time the agency's chief, David Whitley, walked into the Dallas Democrat's Capitol office on Monday. The Friday before, Whitley's staff had issued a press release calling into question the citizenship of 95,000 registered voters in Texas. In the days since, advocacy groups and Democratic lawmakers were raising serious questions about whether the majority of people on that list would soon be proven to be eligible voters. But before those doubts emerged, Whitley, the top election officer in the state, had handed over information about those registered voters to the Texas attorney general, which has the jurisdiction to prosecute them for felony crimes.

“This is very personal to us”: Santa Fe survivors are expecting results from the Texas Legislature

Flo Rice, 56, was wounded in both legs during a shooting at Santa Fe High School that left 10 dead and 13 injured. She now advocates for more school safety and emergency training for substitute teachers. Pu Ying Huang for The Texas Tribune
Flo Rice remembers when she could run 30 miles a week as a way to get rid of stress. But after a shooter opened fire at Santa Fe High School on May 18, killing 10 people and wounding 13 others, the former substitute teacher hasn't logged her usual five to six miles a day. When Rice first heard a fire alarm go off that morning, she assumed it was a normal drill.

“Alien/Angel” is a stage retrospective of a performer lost too soon

Devin Bannon plays avant garde performance artist Klaus Nomi in a show at Cafe Nordo. (Photo credit by Bruce Clayton Tom.)Klaus Nomi opened his mouth to sing and all eyes turned to him. All eyes probably already were on the performance artist, who rose to fame in the 1970s. His costumes looked like what alien eyes might make of Western evening wear. His dress shirt, bow tie and black tails all fitted, but they all stretched out much larger than understood limits.

“Doubling Down”: With Private Care Push, Trump’s VA Bucks Lawmakers and Some Veterans Groups

by Isaac Arnsdorf

When Congress passed a bill last year to transform the Department of Veterans Affairs, lawmakers said they were getting rid of arbitrary rules for when the government would pay for veterans to see private doctors. Under the old program, veterans could go to the private sector if they would have to wait 30 days or travel 40 miles for care in the VA. Lawmakers and veterans groups, including conservatives, criticized those rules as arbitrary. The new law, known as the Mission Act, was supposed to let doctors and patients decide whether to use private sector based on individualized health needs. On Wednesday, the Trump administration proposed new rules, known as access standards, to automatically make veterans eligible for private care.

“Fake Tin Can” Held Ounce Of Weed

East Shore cops conducted 58 motor vehicle stops in a week — and caught an erratic moped driver and a woman who allegedly fled the scene of a Valentine's Day crash.

“Good Faith” Fights Fire With Words

At the end of Good Faith, three firefighters and a lawyer stand on stage.“We fight the fire,” they tell the audience, one after the other.By then the fire is a metaphor, the play moving from the concrete to the abstract. “Who will save you? Who will you save?”

“Like a Punk Rock Band”: How The Intercept Built a Home for Investigative Journalism in Brazil

The Intercept Brasil published an investigation that traced the downfall of a powerful drug gang in Brazil. Since journalist Green Greenwald co-founded The Intercept five years ago, on the heels of his series of reports about the Edward Snowden case, the news site has grown rapidly. It has published numerous scoops in the United States, many of them centering on US intelligence agencies. But a less well-known development is that it launched a mirror site in Portuguese, The Intercept Brasil, based in Rio de Janeiro, where Greenwald has lived since 2005. He found that Brazil, with its political turmoil and human rights challenges, would be a good fit for a local branch of The Intercept.

“Mi Presidente Es Guaidó!”

Hours after hundreds thousands of protestors took to the streets of Venezuela, 30 protesters gathered in front of New Haven City Hall's Amistad Memorial in New Haven to take up their chant: “¿Quiénes somos? Venezuela! ¿Qué queremos? Libertad!”

“People’s Budget” Pitch Targets Empty Lots

Nobody likes vacant lots. But publish an online map showing where those lots are and which are owned by the city, and maybe more residents will come forward to buy, build, and put that property back on the tax rolls.That was one of a handful of land management recommendations that neighborhood leaders suggested during a conversation with city staff about boosting revenue and cutting costs.

“Responding To Trump Is A National Emergency”

There is a national emergency at the border.But it's not caused by illegal immigration. It's caused by a president circumventing Congress to spend billions of public dollars on an unnecessary wall.

“Urban Miner” Tackles Recycling Challenge

Hangers? Can't recycle them — but a nearby business might want them.And as for that new toter — maybe you can reduce how much you throw out instead.Those questions came into Hamden Town Hall — and got quick answers from the new man on the job.

$100,000? Or None?

A proposal that promised to spark controversy at Monday night's Hamden Legislative Council meeting was pulled from the agenda at the last minute — to make changes to the mayor's office that some say could cost around $100,000 next year.

$21 Million Changes Hands In 2 Days

New Haven's apartment market continued sizzling, as a Wooster Square-based developer dropped over $15 million on six Dwight properties, including an 84-unit apartment tower and an adjacent surface parking lot near Yale; and the Feldman brothers shelled out $6 million-plus on two historic East Rock apartment complexes that hadn't changed hands in over three decades.

1,000 Books Laid Path For Reentry

Jeffrey Abramowitz read over 1,000 books and taught over 50 classes while behind bars.Now out of prison but still on probation, the trial lawyer-turned-criminal justice reformer still sees the best route to successful reentry coming through a combination of self-improvement, adult education, and more and better job opportunities for the recently incarcerated.

1,400 central office employees will be deployed to Denver schools in a strike

Denver Public Schools is preparing for a teacher strike Monday, even as district administrators and union teachers plan to return to the bargaining table Friday to see if they can find a last-minute deal. What does that preparation look like? The district is hiring more substitutes and deploying central office staff. Here's a breakdown, by the numbers, of who might be striking, who will be working, how many kids will be affected, and what it will cost. All numbers come from the school district.

10 reasons U.S. must hold Peru to trade deal and protect Amazon (commentary)

Confiscated timber at the regional government's forestry office in Ucayali, Peru. Image by David Hill. The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) has reportedly just done something for the first time. Almost exactly 10 years after the U.S. Trade Promotion Agreement with Peru (PTPA) entered into force on 1 February 2009, the USTR requested – and recently held – “environment consultations” with the Peruvian government. The reason?

10 things you can do right now to help immigrants and refugees in Minnesota and beyond

At last week's “Immigrant Moral Witness, Moral Action” forum at First Universalist Church of Minneapolis, Michelle Rivero wrapped up her presentation by talking about the importance of speaking out with love. Given her experience as an immigration attorney and as Minneapolis' first-ever director of the newly created Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs (OIRA), Rivero said it was an emotional but necessary bit of information shared amid the rest of the night's topics. Rivero expanded on her comments for MinnPost, and provided some nuts-and-bolts information for anyone interested in helping out in the face of how the federal government is treating asylum seekers and would-be new Americans. “I think it's easy to feel a great deal of anger when you see injustice, especially when you are coming from a position where you recognize a wrong, or multiple wrongs, and you feel like there's very little you can do as an individual to right those wrongs,” said Rivero. “I think anger only gets you so far, as an emotion.

10 Visualizations About Criminal Justice

Criminal justice is a perpetual focus of media coverage, but last year was especially ripe with stories in the United States. From the massive reform bill passed in Massachusetts to the debate over gun rights following the massacre of 17 at a Parkland, Florida, high school, journalists and data experts have been kept busy in their attempts to quantify and analyze the criminal justice machine in the US. Storybench cut through the noise and pulled out these 10 visualizations that best explain criminal justice in America today. How Many People are Locked Up in the United States? (Prison Policy Initiative)
The Prison Policy Initiative published a report in March titled “Mass Incarceration: The Whole Pie,” and this mammoth chart appropriately heads it.

10 Ways to Push the Climate Change and Conflict Agenda, Despite the Deniers

From the White House, Donald Trump announced the withdrawal of the United States from the Paris climate agreement on June, 1, 2017, claiming, among other misleading information, that the pact could impinge on America's sovereignty. THE HAGUE — It is now well documented that global warming is a multiplier of insecurity and conflict, but holding debates on the topic presents ever-more complex challenges as multilateralism and climate change are increasingly questioned if not dismissed by some of the world's top leaders and biggest polluting nations. In that light, here are 10 political game plans to push and prod discussions on how climate affects security in countries where those in power make climate-skeptical or ignorant statements. The strategies draw inspiration from the fourth annual Planetary Security Conference, happening this week in The Hague and focused on tackling security risks from climate change and other environmental stresses. A bonus tip is thrown in, too.


Beacon modified boys' team goes undefeated10-0 was first posted on February 9, 2019 at 11:29 am.

12 Days of Giving Wrap Up

Annual holiday campaign raises over $152,000.

13 Long-Awaited New Cop Cruisers Arrive

Some relief has arrived for cops used to responding to calls in cars that have holes in the floor or steering wheels that come off. Thirteen new cars are parked in the city's police car garage, but it will be up to alders to decide how much more relief might come before the year is over.

13-year cicadas swarm to their own special love song

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, June 6, 2011 - For better or for worse, the St. Louis area is witnessing one of nature's most bizarre phenomena, one that only comes around every decade or so. That's right, it's time to put in the earplugs and turn down the hearing aids. The cicadas are back.

14 States Now Have ‘Red Flag’ Laws Allowing Gun Seizures

In the year since the Parkland, Fl., school shooting, more states have passed laws making it easier to take guns away from people who may be suicidal or bent on violence against others, reports the Associated Press. Courts are issuing an unprecedented number of seizure orders. Advocates say “red flag” laws are among the most promising tools to reduce the nearly 40,000 firearm suicides and homicides each year in the U.S. Gun advocates protest that the laws undermine their constitutional rights and can result in people being stripped of their weapons on false or vindictive accusations. Nine states have passed laws in the past year allowing police or household members to seek court orders requiring people deemed threatening to surrender their guns, bringing the total to 14. Several more are likely to follow in the months ahead.

16 Years For A Crime He Didn’t Commit

Jeffrey Deskovic was playing whiffleball with a friend the night his high school classmate was raped and murdered.Despite DNA evidence to the contrary, the state still thought he did it. So did a jury.Deskovic spent 16 years behind bars, until the actual killer's DNA finally helped clear his name and set him free.

2 Democrats headed to runoff in race to replace former state Rep. Carol Alvarado

Melissa Noriega and Christina Morales. Jan 29, 2019. Melissa Noriega/Twitter and Christina Morales/Facebook
Democrats Christina Morales and Melissa Noriega are headed to a runoff in the special election to replace former state Rep. Carol Alvarado, D-Houston. With all precincts reporting Tuesday night, Morales received 36 percent of the vote and Noriega 31 percent in the eight-way race, according to unofficial returns. The sole Republican candidate, Martha Fierro, secured 25 percent of the vote.

2 Minneapolis artists named USA Fellows; ‘A Little Night Music’ to open at the Ritz

United States Artists has announced the winners of its coveted 2019 USA Fellowships, $50,000 unrestricted awards “recognizing artists for their contributions to the field, and allowing them to decide how to best support their lives.” In other words, no strings. Photo by Emily BaxterLesley Nneka ArimahTwo Minneapolis artists are among the winners. Painter and mixed-media artist Dyani White Hawk is a new USA Fellow in visual art, fiction writer Lesley Nneka Arimah in writing. Other names on the 2019 list will be familiar to fans of the SPCO's Liquid Music, the Walker's Performing Arts series and Icehouse, because the artists have appeared thanks to them: avant-pop musician and performer Helado Negro, multi-instrumentalist and composer Roscoe Mitchell and vocalist and composer Jen Shyu. Previous Minnesota USA Fellows are Frank Big Bear, Jonathan Muecke, Toni Pierce-Sands and Uri Sands, Ranee Ramaswamy, Mary Ellen Childs, Morgan Thorson, Carlyle Brown, Siah Armajani, Michael Sommers, Dominique Serrand, Sandra Benitez and Susan Power.

20 Years Before Virginia Blackface Scandal, Mel Carnahan Navigated Similar Revelation In Missouri

On Friday's St. Louis on the Air , host Don Marsh delved into a local parallel to the current controversy involving Virginia's top leaders – Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam, Virginia Senate Majority Leader Tommy Norment and Democratic Attorney General Mark Herring – who recently admitted to appearing in blackface decades ago. Joining him for the conversation was longtime political reporter Jo Mannies, who discussed her coverage of a similar case in Missouri in 1999, when a photo of then-Gov. Mel Carnahan in blackface – taken in 1960 – surfaced during Carnahan's campaign for a seat in the U.S. Senate.

2018 was the fourth hottest year on record

According to independent analyses of the latest global temperature data by the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), 2018 was the fourth hottest year on record for planet Earth. “Earth's long-term warming trend continued in 2018 as persistent warmth across large swaths of land and ocean resulted in the globe's fourth hottest year in NOAA's 139-year climate record,” the agency said in a statement. Separate analyses of global temperature data performed by scientists at the United Kingdom Met Office and the World Meteorological Organization reached similar conclusions, NOAA said. Global temperatures in 2018 were 1.5 degrees Fahrenheit or 0.83 degrees Celsius warmer than the 1951 to 1980 mean, scientists at NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) found. The average global surface temperature has risen about 2 degrees Fahrenheit or 1 degree Celsius since the 1880s.

22 San Antonio Public Housing Facilities to Receive Air Conditioning Units

Roughly 2,500 public housing units do not have air conditioning. State Rep. Diego Bernal led an effort to purchase window air conditioners for all of them. The post 22 San Antonio Public Housing Facilities to Receive Air Conditioning Units appeared first on Rivard Report.

242 people, including families & children, cross into U.S. near Lukeville

In the last week, more than 400 people from Central America have turned themselves over to Border Patrol agents in Arizona after crossing the U.S.-Mexico border, part of a dramatic shift that began last fall and has continued throughout the fight over new border barriers in Washington.

25 Ways Community Members Can Support Your Newsroom

In October 2018, Chicas Poderosas' Mexico chapter hosted a 100-person gathering about fact-checking, digital security and cartography for journalists. Chicas Poderosas, a movement to train and connect women working in data and investigative journalism across Latin America, has a lot of jobs to be done. The five-year-old organization wants to foster communities of practice in 13 countries, teach practitioners through technical trainings in underserved regions of the world and manage a new ventures lab for independent media projects. It also manages collaborative investigations like this one about the decriminalization of Latin American abortion, which involved the work of 27 reporters in 18 countries. Even with a 10-person board of directors, it's a major undertaking for a small crew: the four-person paid staff includes a community developer, communications expert, operations director and executive director.

25 Years of African-American Artists

Howland opens its latest exhibit in annual series25 Years of African-American Artists was first posted on February 1, 2019 at 10:13 am.

25th Annual Basura Bash Banishes Trash From the Banks of San Antonio Waterways

About 200 signed up to participate in the 25th year of Basura Bash along Salado Creek at Tobin Park. More than 2,500 signed up to volunteer citywide. The post 25th Annual Basura Bash Banishes Trash From the Banks of San Antonio Waterways appeared first on Rivard Report.

3 Candidates, 3 Questions, 3 Answers In Race For St. Louis Board Of Aldermen President

On Wednesday's St. Louis on the Air , host Don Marsh talked with three Democratic candidates seeking to serve as St. Louis Board of Aldermen president. Joining the discussion were incumbent Lewis Reed , who has held the seat since 2007, along with two key challengers: Alderwoman Megan Green , who currently represents the city's 15th Ward, and state Senator Jamilah Nasheed , whose 5th District includes the eastern half of St. Louis.

3 Candidates, 3 Questions, 3 Answers In Race For St. Lous Board Of Aldermen President

On Wednesday's St. Louis on the Air , host Don Marsh talked with three Democratic candidates seeking to serve as St. Louis Board of Aldermen president. Joining the discussion were incumbent Lewis Reed , who has held the seat since 2007, along with two key challengers: Alderwoman Megan Green , who currently represents the city's 15th Ward, and state Senator Jamilah Nasheed , whose 5th District includes the eastern half of St. Louis.

3/15/19 – Amy Goodman Coming to Denver KFFR 88.3 Benefit

Event Links

Join Amy Goodman at a benefit for KFFR 88.3 FM, Colorado's newest full-power community radio station, serving Winter Park, the Fraser Valley, and the Headwaters of the Colorado River. General Admission tickets to the 7pm talk are $15. There will be a special VIP reception with Amy Goodman at 5:30 pm, which includes refreshments, reserved seating at the talk, and a copy of Amy's latest book, Democracy Now!: 20 Years Covering the Movements Changing America. Tickets available online here:
Amy Goodman is the host and executive producer of Democracy Now!, the award-winning global news hour that broadcasts on over 1,400 public radio and TV stations around the globe. This talk is her only Colorado speaking engagement this Winter/Spring!

3/21/19 – Denver Mayoral Candidate Forum


The Denver mayoral election is in May! Do you know who is running? What they stand for? Join us on Thursday, March 21, at The Alliance Center for a forum featuring the candidates for Denver's next mayor. This forum will this forum be sustainability-focused, covering the environmental, economic and social aspects of sustainability.

30-30-30 is feasible

With the collapse of yet another high-speed-rail megaproject, this time in California, and with pension and debt obligations in Connecticut stretching to the horizon, no one could blame the public or state legislators for doubting Gov. Ned Lamont's announced goal, dubbed 30-30-30, of 30-minute travel times by rail between paired cities: Hartford and New Haven, New Haven and Stamford, Stamford and New York City.

4-H All Stars announce new projects

Projects include making socks for seniors and repairs at Bolado Park.

4th Graders Connect On World Read Aloud Day

Have you ever had to do something scary?Two sisters who work in the city's high schools asked that question to a class of Ross-Woodward's fourth-graders on World Read Aloud Day, which took place across the city's elementary schools on Friday morning.

5 Breaks Led To Serial Rape Arrest

A serial rapist was preying on prostitutes on New Haven's west end. The cops couldn't get any leads on him. Until one of his alleged victims turned on her new phone — and saw her attacker's face pop up in her Google Cloud photos.

5 Questions: Daniel Gilbert

Founder and CEO of Philipstown's CloudVisit Aviation5 Questions: Daniel Gilbert was first posted on February 2, 2019 at 10:09 am.

5 Questions: Joel Schlemowitz

Filmmaker and magic lantern enthusiast5 Questions: Joel Schlemowitz was first posted on February 16, 2019 at 10:41 am.

5 Questions: Mark Bittman

Food writer, who lives at Glynwood, has a new cookbook5 Questions: Mark Bittman was first posted on February 9, 2019 at 10:28 am.

5 Questions: Shauna Ricketts

Haldane grad is Fulbright scholar in Bulgaria5 Questions: Shauna Ricketts was first posted on January 27, 2019 at 11:21 am.

50 Candidates File for 21 School Board Trustee Positions on May Ballot

Fifty candidates filed for the school board races across seven local school districts. Only three of the 21 races will be uncontested. The post 50 Candidates File for 21 School Board Trustee Positions on May Ballot appeared first on Rivard Report.

50 Factory Jobs Coming To Fair Haven

From electrical insulation to custom art frames.A Fair Haven factory is about to make that transition as a Brooklyn-based frame manufacturer moves to town and a heavy industrial manufacturer rolls out, in the city's latest property transactions.

6 of 7 police oversight board nominees confirmed, next steps include setting policies

Update with confirmation - Six of the nominees to the Civilian Oversight Board for the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department, sailed through Board of Aldermen confirmation Friday. The seventh, DeBorah Ahmed, withdrew her name from consideration.Ahmed is an executive director at Better Family Life, which has received thousands in city money over the last decade. Her nomination had been criticized for possible conflicts of interest. This means that the mayor will have to find a new nominee for the third district, in north-central and northwest St.

6-10 inches of snow expected; Minneapolis, St. Paul schools cancel classes

The Star Tribune's Paul Walsh writes: “Not only is the Twin Cities area assured of its snowiest February on record by Wednesday night, but the metro also is in store this week for its deepest single accumulation of the season. That's the latest word from the National Weather Service (NWS), which is alerting millions of people in parts of Minnesota and western Wisconsin of a winter storm hauling 6 to 10 inches of snow their way Wednesday morning. … Minneapolis and St. Paul schools called off classes for Wednesday, setting off a wave of other school closures.”
Says Paul Huttner for MPR: “You can thank a speedy jet stream for our relentless barrage of winter storms this month. The jet stream continues to race high above the Midwest this month.

7 choses que j’ai appris en réalisant mon premier podcast d’investigation

Comme de nombreux autres journalistes à travers le monde, j'ai été fasciné par le phénomène Serial. Sans doute parce qu'à l'époque je travaillais beaucoup sur les erreurs judiciaires. Donc quand l'affaire Anthony De Vries est arrivée sur mon bureau à Johannesburg, où je suis basé, j'ai pensé qu'elle pourrait me permettrait d'explorer le même format: celui du podcast d'investigation. Quand je l'ai rencontré pour la première fois, Anthony avait une quarantaine d'années et avait passé 17 ans en prison pour un crime qu'il affirmait ne pas avoir commis. Il s'agissait d'un cambriolage en plein jour en 1994, à peine un mois avant la première élection démocratique.

7 cosas que aprendí al producir mi primer podcast de investigación

Al igual que muchos otros periodistas de todo el mundo, me fascinó el fenómeno que fue Serial, en particular porque mi trabajo en ese momento se centraba en las condenas. Así que cuando la historia de Anthony De Vries llegó a mi escritorio en Johannesburgo, donde resido, pensé que ésta me permitiría profundizar en este formato. Cuando lo conocí, Anthony era un hombre de unos 40 años que había cumplido 17 años en la cárcel por un crimen que, él insistía, no cometió. Fue un robo brutal a plena luz del día en 1994, menos de un mes antes de las primeras elecciones democráticas de Sudáfrica, que terminó en el asesinato de dos guardias de seguridad. Lo que salió de mi investigación de 18 meses fue una serie de ocho partes —la primera serie de investigación en Sudáfrica cuando se publicó en marzo de 2017— que ganó un premio nacional y fue celebrada por ser “singularmente sudafricano” sin dejar de capturar una modesta audiencia internacional.

7 Takeaways From President Trump’s State Of The Union Address

President Trump delivered a wide-ranging State of the Union address Tuesday night that went an hour and 21 minutes. That's the third-longest ever. So what should we make of Trump's third address to Congress, and in a year when Democrats are gearing up for a crowded primary to decide who will face Trump in 2020 ? 1. Trump did not acknowledge the new political reality in Washington Each of the past four presidents, including Trump, had lost the House at some point during their presidency.

88-year-old man dies in train accident

An 88-year-old man who was clearing snow with a tractor near railroad tracks in Fairlee was struck by a train and killed on Wednesday afternoon. Lloyd Raymond was apparently clearing a private driveway and moving snow across the tracks when his John Deere tractor was struck by a Vermont Rail System train, according to the Vermont State Police. The accident occurred near Hodges Farm. Get all of VTDigger's daily news.You'll never miss a story with our daily headlines in your inbox. Daily
Sundays only (Weekly Wrap)

Email me stories on these subjects...

9 things to know about Amy Klobuchar

The self-proclaimed “senator next door” is officially hoping to walk through another door: that of 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. Democratic U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar is a popular politician in her state of Minnesota, gaining support and cash from both liberals and, to a lesser degree, conservatives. She smoothly sailed to a third term in her 2018 Senate race, raising more than 38 times the cash her Republican opponent raised — and winning 60 percent of the vote. (Her “Minnesota nice” persona hasn't worked on everyone: Back in 2011, Justin Bieber said Klobuchar should be locked up for proposing an anti-piracy bill concerning unlicensed online content.)
Before becoming the first Minnesota woman in the U.S. Senate, Klobuchar, 58, served as county attorney for the most populous county in Minnesota, Hennepin County. Her prosecutorial experience came into focus during the Supreme Court confirmation hearings of Brett Kavanaugh: Klobuchar's exchange with Kavanaugh about whether he ever blacked out while drinking — he retorted, “Have you?” — went viral and earned her a spoof on Saturday Night Live.

9 Things to Know About How a Virtual Private Network Works

Using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) is an efficient way to surf the internet without worrying about your personal information. VPNs are among the most trusted and reliable services when it comes to secure personal data and online privacy. Recent findings show that 1 out of 4 people around the world are using VPN servers, which means that more and more individuals as well as organization are counting on VPNs to keep their data secure. 1. VPNs are Untraceable Firewalls

Virtual Private Networks are using tunnel encryption in order to secure the information that travels between server, making it harder for viruses to reach your computer or your network.

A ‘Water Tax’ Is Looking Increasingly Likely

The Colorado River / Image via Shutterstock
This post initially appeared in the Feb. 8 Sacramento Report. Get the Sacramento Report delivered to your inbox. In the past five years, California voters have approved over $10 billion in statewide bonds to fund water projects, some in areas could not otherwise afford to improve their own water systems.
Now, faced with perhaps several million Californians who still lack access to safe and affordable water, the Legislature looks increasingly likely to impose a statewide tax to fund more water projects. In a legislative hearing last week, Wade Crowfoot, the new director of the state's Natural Resources Agency, said Gov. Gavin Newsom wants a solution this year to this “crisis” this year.

A “Bittersweet” Moment: Court Says VA Was Wrong in Denying Vietnam Veterans Benefits

by Beena Raghavendran

Tens of thousands of Navy veterans didn't set foot in Vietnam during the Vietnam War, but spent their time on ships patrolling the waters surrounding the country. And for decades, that distinction — exactly where they put their feet — made all the difference. Veterans with “boots on the ground” were eligible for benefits if they had an illness connected to exposure to the toxic chemical Agent Orange, which was sprayed as a defoliant during the war. Veterans on ships in inland waters, such as rivers, also could get benefits. But those who were on ships farther away weren't compensated, even if they had the same illnesses and believed they had the same exposure.

A brief timeline of Amy Klobuchar’s political career

Well, it's official. Sen. Amy Klobuchar is running for president. At a snowy rally on Minneapolis' Boom Island on Sunday Klobuchar confirmed what many had been speculating about for months: that she would seek the Democratic nomination for the presidency in 2020. To paraphrase Klobuchar musical favorite the Talking Heads: How did she get here? Below, a brief timeline of Klobuchar's political career in Minnesota.

A bright spot in dark times: Congress advances a major public-lands package

REUTERS/Zach GibsonThe U.S. Senate voted overwhelmingly last week to add nearly 700,000 acres to the people's recreation and conservation lands.As the news from Washington swirled around examples of political paralysis, the U.S. Senate voted overwhelmingly last week to add nearly 700,000 acres to the people's recreation and conservation lands. Also, to expand by 1.3 million acres the public lands designated for especially strict protections as wilderness areas. Also, to enlarge the nation's Wild and Scenic Rivers inventory by 620 miles of waterway in seven states. Also, to protect rivers in the Yellowstone ecosystem, as well in Washington and Oregon, from the ravages of hardrock mining drainage, by permanently withdrawing the right to extract minerals on adjoining federal lands. Also, to give permanent, rather than periodic, authorization to the Land and Water Conservation fund, in which revenues from offshore oil production — now running about a billion dollars per year — are to be reserved for projects like the foregoing.

A call to arms: Connecticut needs more primary care

In 2017 in Connecticut less than 31 percent of physicians in the state provide primary care. The generally accepted optimal percentage... 50-60 percent! It is well known that in the U.S. most of our quality indicators lag those of the other industrialized countries. What are we doing...?!

A Chinatown Matchmaker. An Immigration Crackdown. Who Decides What Love is?

Theodora YuMadam Lee
In New York City's hidden alleys and narrow corridors lay offices of matchmakers who weave the red thread of fate between couples. “Are you looking for a U.S. citizen? We have many candidates,” Ying Chen told a visitor at her office on 40th Road in Flushing, New York. A matchmaker from Taiwan, who goes by “Mrs. Lee” or “Madam Lee,” Lee always begins conversations with this question to potential clients. Around a thousand Chinese men and women have approached Lee since her matchmaking business started in 1980.

A Closer Look at Consolidating Bexar County’s Weakest School Districts

A single, countywide district is not a good solution, but consolidating certain school districts makes sense, Robert Rivard writes in a commentary. The post A Closer Look at Consolidating Bexar County's Weakest School Districts appeared first on Rivard Report.

A Cost Of Med School Debt: Poor Patients, No Doctors

Over the next decade, the American Association of Medical Colleges is projecting a drastic decrease in the number of primary care physicians in the US, which could result in a shortage of 15,000 to 50,000 doctors nationwide. Many suspect the sheer cost of medical school is driving students to choose higher-earning specialties over primary care. […]
The post A Cost Of Med School Debt: Poor Patients, No Doctors appeared first on Tiny Spark.

A cult on a global suicide mission

The Republican Party is a cult, much like the one Jim Jones led, only their agenda is suicide for the entire planet. According the latest UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report, ¨written by 91 authors and 40 review editors, it features 133 contributing authors, 6,000 scientific references, and was subject to over 42,000 expert and government review comments before publication.¨ we have 12 years left until the point of no return.

A cult on a global suicide mission

The Republican Party is a cult, much like the one Jim Jones led, only their agenda is suicide for the entire planet. According the latest UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report, ¨written by 91 authors and 40 review editors, it features 133 contributing authors, 6,000 scientific references, and was subject to over 42,000 expert and government review comments before publication.¨ we have 12 years left until the point of no return.

A Curtain Closing For The Rep’s Artistic Leader, Steven Woolf

For more than 30 years, Steven Woolf has been at the heart of the Repertory Theater of St. Louis. Since taking the helm as artistic director in 1986, Woolf oversaw three decades of productions and directed 47 shows That 47th show, however, will be his last as artistic director. Woolf is to retire at the end of The Rep's 2018-2019 season, after directing the theater's production of “Oslo” – which won the Tony Award for Best Play in 2017. On Friday's St.

A Family’s Choice: Struggle Together Abroad, or Live Comfortably Apart in the U.S.

Tami Couch reflects with her husband, Mateo Juan Juan Mateo, right, and their children, Mariano Juan Couch, 2, Matthew Juan Hudgins, 6, and Bella Marie Couch, 7, at their home in Tijuana, Mexico. / Photo David Maung
Mateo Juan Juan Mateo and his wife, Tami Couch, have a lot in common with members of the migrant caravan who traveled from Central America to Tijuana, Mexico in the spring of 2018. The couple and their three children lived in Guatemala for six years, and wanted to escape the country's violence and poverty to take advantage of better economic opportunities in the United States. And like many of them, they're staying in Tijuana working random jobs and trying to make ends meet. But their situation is also unique among members of the caravan.

A Fire District for Cold Spring?

Village Board, fire company discuss optionA Fire District for Cold Spring? was first posted on January 25, 2019 at 12:52 pm.

A former superintendent wonders: What’s missing from the discussion about the portfolio model?

I recently had the pleasure of visiting Sharif El-Mekki, the principal of a Mastery Charter School campus in Philadelphia. We walked the hallways and talked about how to infuse social justice, social-emotional learning, and other priorities into the everyday life of the school. As we popped into classrooms, it struck me that the teachers all seemed to share a vision for what students should be learning and how they should be learning it. The instruction that I saw was not just excellent but also consistent. The rest of our discussion focused on how specific practices in use at Mastery might be adopted successfully by traditional high schools.

A fossil fuel fan

I have to admit that I love fossil fuels and feel extremely grateful that I have lived my entire life as a beneficiary of their use. I can hardly imagine what life would have been like without them. The modern world that we know would have been impossible without fossil fuels and the related industries that enabled us to use them. Let me offer a couple of examples that might shed light on my affection.

A GOP senator in Colorado was just stripped of all committees after harassment claims

A Republican state senator in Colorado, Randy Baumgardner, has been stripped of all his summer interim committee assignments following a sustained pressure campaign by Democrats for Senate leadership to punish him over allegations of sexual misconduct. Today, the Senate's president, Kevin Grantham, announced the move in a letter that became public. “Please be advised immediately I am removing Senator Randy Baumgardner from Capital Development Committee, Transportation Legislation Review Committee, Water Resources Review Committee, and Wildfire Matters Review Committee,” Grantham said in a May 2 letter to Mike Mauer, the nonpartisan director of the Legislative Council. The hammer coming down knocks Baumgardner off his chairmanship of the Capital Development Committee. But some Democrats say it doesn't come down hard enough.

A Guest in a divided House: Mississippi’s newest congressman adjusts to life on Capitol Hill

Susan Walsh / Associated PressRep.-elect Michael Guest, R-Miss., left, watches as his wife Haley Kennedy Guest draws his number during the Member-elect room lottery draw on Capitol Hill in Washington, Friday, Nov. 30, 2018. Guest drew 75 out of 85, which determines the order in which he gets to select his new Capitol Hill office. WASHINGTON, D.C.—Five days after his swearing in, Mississippi's newest U.S. Rep. Michael Guest sat with two friends at a table in the back of The Monocle, the venerable Capitol Hill steakhouse favored by the city's political elite. Sitting under signed headshots of presidents and congressional leaders dating back decades, Guest sipped beer from a slender pint glass.

A Journey Into Terror and Truth: My Travels Alone in Afghanistan

The author, an Australian who has been researching the lives of women and girls worldwide, risked traveling in Afghanistan by herself, yet she said she would return, despite the problems she met. Here, a woman heading into the village of Ishkashim, near the Tajikistan border. JOHANNA HIGGSISHKASHIM, Afghanistan — I entered the country from the northeast, from Tajikistan, where I had been traveling for a month, researching the lives of women, as I have been doing across the world for years. From the small town of Khorog in Tajikistan, I hired a taxi to drive me to the border crossing. As we drove over the dusty, bumpy road, the enormous snowcapped Pamir mountains surrounded us and a small green river marked the border.

A Kidnapping? No, Just ICE Agents ‘Doing Their Jobs’

In a frantic 911 call from the street outside the Brooklyn, N.Y., Supreme Court, a bystander reported that she had just witnessed a kidnapping. Several men in plain clothes had just appeared, slamming a man against a wall and separating him from his attorney. Refusing to identify themselves and claiming to be “doing their jobs,” they forced the man into an unmarked car with no plates and sped off. In fact, what she and others had just witnessed was a commonplace operation conducted by Immigration and Customs Enforce (ICE) agents. According to the Immigrant Defense Project (IDP), despite internal regulations to the contrary, ICE agents regularly refuse to identify themselves or provide reason for detentions.

A Little-Known History: German Immigrants In Missouri Were Anti-Slavery Allies

It's the early to mid 1800s in Missouri. The state's German population is seeing an increase, especially in the cities of St. Louis and Hermann. Many are traveling to the U.S. to seek a better life, free of injustice from Prussian rulers. Amongst those immigrants is Arnold Krekel.

A Look At The Evolving Role – And Shifting Spaces – Of Today’s Public Libraries

Want to check out a telescope – or maybe a fishing pole? To hear library director Steve Campbell tell it, the local library's probably got you covered. He's confident there's a library-related service or program for “any subject that you can think of that someone could have an interest in” these days, especially in smaller communities like the ones his Scenic Regional Library district serves in eastern Missouri. The examples Campbell gives range from learning to clean fish and deer – yes, in the library – to programming involving escape rooms for teens and quilting for adults. But it's not a variety show simply for the sake of variety – there's a community-driven rationale to the wide-ranging activities.

A Look At The Latest Scientific Research About The Moon In Light Of Lunar Eclipse

Although wintry skies in the St. Louis region didn't make for ideal viewing conditions Sunday night as the sun, Earth and moon aligned for a total lunar eclipse, the anticipated celestial event still had many people looking skyward. It also sparked renewed interest in human understanding of the moon. On Friday's St. Louis on the Air , host Don Marsh talked with space journalist Rebecca Boyle, lunar scientist Brad Jolliff and St.

A man, a plan, a canal: Yanks rout Canaleros 3 – 0 in Arizona

About 9,000 people got to see coach Greg Berhalter's debut as U.S. national team coach at Glendale's State Farm Stadium on Sunday night. The Yanks — captained by ex-FC Tucson player Aaron Long — beat Panama's national side, 3–0.

A Member Of The Satanic Temple Loses Her Challenge To Missouri’s Abortion Law

This story was updated to include the comments of Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt. An adherent of The Satanic Temple who challenged Missouri's informed consent law on abortion, claiming it violated her First Amendment rights, has lost her case in the Missouri Supreme Court. The law requires women seeking an abortion to acknowledge receipt of a booklet stating that life begins at conception and that abortion “will terminate the life of a separate, unique, living human being.” Mary Doe – not her real name – became pregnant in February 2015 and went to obtain an abortion at Planned Parenthood's clinic in St. Louis in May 2015. She told her doctors that she held religious beliefs contrary to those stated in the booklet and absolved them of responsibility to abide by the informed consent law's requirements.

A New Path for Reform: Fuse Social Justice with Criminal Justice

A “reimagined” justice system that shifts from punishment to social justice as its central operating principle can be the most effective long-term means of ending the harms inflicted by the current system on millions of Americans, according to one of the nation's leading experts on mass incarceration. Bruce Western
Bruce Western, a professor of sociology at Columbia University and co-director of the Columbia Justice Lab, argues that while the justice reform movement to date has moved many courts, correctional institutions and law enforcement agencies away from the hardline strategies of recent decades, fundamental change requires policymakers to “cut the connections between incarceration, poverty and racial inequality.”
That involves, in turn, thinking “outside of traditional justice agencies,” Western wrote in a paper released as part of Square One, a multi-disciplinary project aimed at generating new ideas about justice reform. “A reimagined justice system will concede some jurisdiction to other agencies—departments of housing, child services, public health, education and labor [so that] criminal justice becomes social justice, and the goals of promoting safety and reducing the harms of violence are continuous with providing order, predictability, and material security in daily life.”
Square One was launched last fall by Arnold Ventures (formerly the Laura and John Arnold Foundation) and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. Western's paper was the first of a set of papers released under the auspices of Square's One's “Executive Session on the Future of Justice Policy,” which has assembled about two dozen researchers, practitioners, policy makers, advocates, and community representatives to meet periodically and “generate and cultivate new ideas” for reforming the system. Western noted that despite the impressive reductions in incarceration rates—from a peak of 762 people per 100,000 in 2007 to 695 people per 100,000 in 2018—the U.S. still imprisoned more individuals than any other country in the world, with some 2.17 million behind bars and another 4.85 million on probation and parole (according to 2018 figures).

A Onetime Rising Democratic Star Faces Questions About Voter Privacy

by Jessica Huseman, ProPublica, and Daniel Desrochers, Lexington Herald-Leader

In an appearance on MSNBC in July 2017, Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes expressed her vehement opposition to giving voter data to President Donald Trump's voter fraud commission, which had requested it from election officials in all 50 states. The privacy risks were simply too high, she said. “There is not enough bourbon here in Kentucky to make this request seem sensible,” Grimes said. “Not on my watch are we going to be releasing sensitive information that relates to the privacy of individuals.”

But beginning months before she made that statement, Grimes' own staff had been looking up hundreds of voters in the very same registration system. One of her former staffers first revealed the practice last summer but provided little detail.

A Pesar de sus Duras Palabras Contra Traficantes de Migrantes, Trump Ha Socavado Esfuerzos para Frenarles

por Sebastian Rotella y Tim Golden

(Read in English.)

En su cruzada para construir un muro en la frontera, el Presidente Trump ha venido alertando sobre el robo de empleos a trabajadores estadounidenses, de barrios residenciales aterrorizados por criminales extranjeros, y de caravanas de migrantes en camino hacia el norte a la desesperada. Últimamente, sin embargo, ha encontrado un nuevo blanco preferido en los “coyotes despiadados” y “carteles crueles” que trafican con migrantes a los Estados Unidos. “La tolerancia con la inmigración ilegal no es compasiva — es en realidad muy cruel,” Trump dijo en su discurso sobre el Estado de la Unión. “Los traficantes usan niños migrantes como peones humanos para explotar nuestras leyes y ganar acceso a nuestro país.”

Stay Informed
Get ProPublica's Daily Digest. Join 100,000 discerning readers and get everything we publish by signing up for ProPublica's Daily Digest.

A Place Where You Can Speak Your Mind to That Foundation

Nonprofit professionals are often reluctant to speak candidly about their experiences and frustrations working with foundations. “There's definitely this power dynamic that exists,” Kari Aanestad tells us. “I think there's a real fear of retribution in the field.” Aanestad has been a professional grantwriter for seven years. She now co-directs GrantAdvisor, an initiative trying to […]
The post A Place Where You Can Speak Your Mind to That Foundation appeared first on Tiny Spark.

A Power Grab In Kentucky Sparks a Revolt

by Jessica Huseman, ProPublica, and Daniel Desrochers, Lexington Herald-Leader

The September 2018 meeting of the Kentucky State Board of Elections was strikingly contentious. There was shouting, cross-talk and threats to eject staff — all playing out in a public forum in front of TV cameras. But the most unusual moment, perhaps, was this: Two board members moved to rescind the votes they had cast at the previous meeting, only three weeks before. They claimed that Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes, whose position also makes her chairwoman of the State Board of Elections, or SBE, had essentially misled them into granting her unprecedented day-to-day power over the SBE. The board members' efforts to void the resolution failed.

A Sanctuary For Well Women Opens In Westville

Women of the Elm City have a new haven where they can take off their superwomen capes and draw from a “well” that aims to restore them to fight another day.

A Second Lindenwood University President Goes On Leave

Two weeks after the president of Lindenwood University-Belleville officially left his post after going on administrative leave, the president of St. Charles, Mo.-based Lindenwood University System has been placed on paid administrative leave. Michael Shonrock told the university's student publication Lindenlink that he was placed on leave Tuesday and not given a reason for the decision in a letter from Dr. J. Michael Conoyer, the chairman of the Lindenwood University Board of Trustees. Chris Duggan, director of marketing and communications for Lindenwood, said the school “can't comment on personnel matters.” Neither Shonrock nor Conoyer could be reached for comment Tuesday. On Jan.

A Slow Burn Over Burn Pits

‘Our generation's Agent Orange': When New York Times reporter Jennifer Steinhauer started covering the veterans affairs beat late last year, this was one of the first questions that popped up for her: “How was it that I had never heard of burn pits?” I had the same question last year as I sat on a friend's couch listening to her husband and a friend talk about the massive burn pits–burning landfills, really–that they lived alongside during deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan, and the many people who are suffering from pancreatic cancer and other illnesses they believe resulted from exposure. The issue is getting some attention in the new Congress. Since 2007, the Department of Veterans Affairs has denied thousands of disability claims citing at least one condition linked to burn pit exposure, citing insufficient evidence linking the illnesses to military service, Steinhauer writes. Tens of thousands of veterans have signed up for a national registry documenting their exposure to burn pits. Lawmakers have pledged to review the issue and to fund more research on possible health effects.

A snapshot of camera traps reveals user frustrations and hopes

Camera trapping has become an important conservation and research tool worldwide. Photos from remote cameras have afforded us insights into the lives of rare, shy, cryptic, nocturnal, or otherwise seldom-seen animals. Remote cameras can capture images of a variety of rare, cryptic, and shy animals that would otherwise be impossible to view in their natural habitat.These three cameras in a forest in Borneo found an orangutan, a pangolin, and a mousedeer. Images by Oliver Wearn. The idea is simple: Buy some cameras equipped with motion or heat sensors that automatically take an image or video when triggered by a passing animal, set the cameras out where you think the animal(s) will go, and let the animals take the images for you.

A spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down

At least that's what Gov. Lamont hopes as he prepares to offset tolls and sin taxes with lower property taxes on cars and other budget sweeteners.

A state report says a Texas inmate died from heat last year. Prison officials contest that finding.

Inmates shuffle down a prison hallway in July 2017. Jolie McCullough / The Texas Tribune
Last summer, Texas officials repeatedly asserted that sweltering temperatures inside uncooled prisons were being handled adequately and that all heat-related illnesses were minor. A recent state report on one inmate's death, however, says that he died from the heat. The prison system is contesting that report, claiming the cause of death is based on a preliminary autopsy finding by the medical examiner, and that the inmate was actually housed in an air-conditioned cell. According to the in-custody death report sent to the Texas attorney general's office in late December, Robert Earl Robinson, 54, died July 19 at the Michael Unit in East Texas from “environmental hyperthermia” — often referred to as fatal heat stroke.

A state task force wants self-driving cars on the road in Minnesota. Legislators aren’t so sure

Autonomous vehicles have largely been absent from Minnesota roads, even as fleets of driverless cars already patrol the streets in states like Arizona and California. State Sen. Scott NewmanBut after months of research by a state task force, Minnesota might finally take cautious steps toward fostering the industry. The panel has drafted bills that would allow driverless cars on private roads, and maybe public ones, too, as long as they pass scrutiny from the Department of Transportation. The potential economic upsides of such technology are well documented. Yet early in the 2019 legislative session, key lawmakers aren't exactly chomping at the bit to usher in a Silicon Valley-type vision of autonomous Ubers and hands-free commutes.

A Store Full of Surprises

You never know what you'll find at ArchipelagoA Store Full of Surprises was first posted on February 17, 2019 at 1:38 pm.

A Street-Level View of How Policing Can Fuel Segregation

When private security officers working for the Rockford, Ill.., public housing authority stopped and searched a 15-year-old boy without probable cause, they found the remains of a marijuana joint. The cascading effects of that discovery — threats to tear a family apart, and the family's loss of housing — provide one of several examples of policing tactics that feed a broader pattern of black-white segregation in the Midwest Heartland found in a six-month investigation by a reporting team from Governing. The intense scrutiny of the residents at the Rockford Housing Authority is common in areas where poor black people live, Governing points out. Heavy-handed enforcement tactics are often employed in the name of protecting residents from crime. But often they catch only low-level offenders, with dire consequences for the offender's ability to get a job or decent housing.

A tale of four famines.

Climate and conflict have left tens of millions with little to no access to food in South Sudan, Nigeria and Somalia. And across the Gulf of Aden, Yemen is also facing a shortage of food driven by war and the changing environment.

A Tale of Two Interviews: Chris Matthews Grills Bernie Sanders, Tosses Softballs to Hillary Clinton

Three weeks ago, a mere seven days from Super Tuesday, Bernie Sanders sat down with the host of MSNBC's Hardball, Chris Matthews, for a contentious interview about the viability of his policy platform and his readiness to be commander in chief. The interview was a great example of adversarial journalism at its best, with Matthews cornering Sanders and forcing him to get specific about how he would enact his ambitious platform, and how exactly his calls for “political revolution” would translate in practice. Rather than letting Sanders dodge and bloviate, as politicians are wont to do, Matthews repeatedly pressed Sanders and forced him to answer the questions at hand. Last night, on the eve of the March 15 primaries, Hillary Clinton sat down with Matthews and received a similar grilling from the MSNBC host, who put her feet to the fire and refused to let her wriggle out of any question he asked or dubious claim she made. Just kidding.

A trying week of presidentiality

It was a very presidential week, but not necessarily in a good way. President Donald Trump delivered his State of the Union Address on Tuesday to a divided Congress that reacted as a divided Congress would: Republicans applauded the call for national unity and a firm approach to immigration – including construction of a border wall. Democrats dismissed Trump's appeal for comity as an insincere pitch out of character with his regular use of insulting tweets and personal attacks.

A Voice From the Albany Hearings on Combatting Sexual Harassment

NYS Senate videoRita Pasarell testifies before a State Senate committee hearing on sexual harassment in workplaces on Wednesday, February 13. There needs to be a culture shift at the highest levels of power if New York is going to combat pervasive sexual harassment in workplaces—especially in public agencies and the offices of elected officials. But that is not all that's needed, says Rita Pasarell, a victim of a politician's abusive behavior who is now a leading advocate for change in how workplaces deal with sexual misconduct. Moments after testifying at the first Albany hearings on sexual harassment in a generation, Pasarell—who alleges late Assemblyman Vito Lopez harassed her, and received a settlement in that case—joined WBAI's Max & Murphy Show to talk about the legal and operational changes that also need to occur. “It sounds like the ‘severe or pervasive' standard that's currently applied by New York State to sexual harassment is something that needs to go.

A voter guide for people who care about Chicago schools

The week in review
An unprecedented data set: Two comprehensive reports — one external, one internal — shared with the school board this week detail the broad scope of sexual misconduct reports from students. Since a new awareness campaign launched in September, more than 900 sexual misconduct complaints have been logged. Chalkbeat has more. The call for smaller class sizes: It's getting louder. A new report from Parents 4 Teachers said that 13 Chicago elementary classrooms have more than 40 children, despite guidelines to the contrary.

AARP warns against online dating scams

News Release — AARP
Feb. 12, 2019
Dave Reville
Seeking Your Valentine Online? Beware: More than One-Quarter of Vermont Adults Confirm First-Hand Accounts of Relationship ScamsAARP Campaign Warns: ‘Protect your Heart and Your Money'
BURLINGTON, VT – As Valentine's Day approaches and millions of Americans meet others on matchmaking websites, dating apps and social media, 27 percent of Vermont residents polled in a new AARP survey reported that they, a family member or a friend have encountered attempted financial scams while seeking friendship or love interest online. To help empower people to take steps to protect themselves and their family members, the AARP Fraud Watch Network has launched an educational campaign to raise awareness of online-based relationship fraud schemes. Computer Keyboard with symbols is showing search for Dating onlineThe idea of going online to broaden one's social networks continues to gain in popularity.

Abortion access in Louisiana could soon be reduced to a single physician

A 2014 law set to take effect next month could leave only one clinic in the state. This week, lawyers seeking to overturn it tried to delay an appeals court ruling upholding. They were denied. Now, the only place for them to go is the U.S. Supreme Court.

Abortion bill backers and foes crowd Statehouse

Bridget Mount of Essex Junction speaks against a proposed abortion rights bill during a public hearing before a joint meeting of the House Human Services Committee and the House Judiciary Committee at the Statehouse in Montpelier on Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2019. Photo by Glenn Russell/VTDigger
" data-medium-file="" data-large-file="">

<img width="125" height="83" src="" alt="Abortion bill hearing" srcset=" 2000w, 125w, 300w, 768w, 610w, 1280w, 1920w" sizes="(max-width: 125px) 100vw, 125px" data-attachment-id="265453" data-permalink="" data-orig-file="" data-orig-size="2000,1335" data-comments-opened="1" data-image-meta='{"aperture":"1.8","credit":"GLENN RUSSELL","camera":"NIKON D750","caption":"Greg Darling of Littleton NH speaks against a proposed abortion rights bill during a public hearing before a joint meeting of the House Human Services Committee and the House Judiciary Committee at the Statehouse in Montpelier on Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2019. Photo by Glenn Russell/VTDigger","created_timestamp":"1549475735","copyright":"GLENN RUSSELL","focal_length":"20","iso":"6400","shutter_speed":"0.002","title":"20190206LEGIE8","orientation":"1"}' data-image-title="Abortion bill hearing" data-image-description="Greg Darling of Littleton, New Hampshire, speaks against a proposed abortion rights bill during a public hearing before a joint meeting of the House Human Services Committee and the House Judiciary Committee at the Statehouse in Montpelier on Wednesday, Feb.

Abortion bill critics offer litany of amendments. Democrats aren’t interested.

House Speaker Mitzi Johnson, left, and House Judiciary Committee chair Maxine Grad discuss abortion rights bill H.57 before Wednesday's floor debate. Photo by Mike Dougherty/VTDigger. " data-medium-file="" data-large-file="" src="" alt="Mitzi Johnson and Maxine Grad" width="610" height="407" srcset=" 610w, 125w, 300w, 768w, 1280w, 1920w, 2000w" sizes="(max-width: 610px) 100vw, 610px" data-recalc-dims="1">House Speaker Mitzi Johnson, left, and House Judiciary Committee chair Maxine Grad discuss abortion rights bill H.57 before Wednesday's floor debate. Photo by Mike Dougherty/VTDigger. Lawmakers opposing a bill that would protect abortion as a fundamental right under Vermont law, without qualification, are pushing a litany of amendments that would limit the legislation that is expected to advance in the Vermont House Wednesday.

Abrams Rocks State House Alt-“State” Crowd

The State of the Union address is about how the president sees the country. For a crowd gathered gathered at the State House Tuesday, it became about a picture painted from a different view.

Abstract Meets Concrete At City Gallery

Hidden Mysteries 6 and Hidden Mysteries 7." alt="Tom Peterson">At first, artist Tom Peterson's images, entitled Hidden Mysteries, could be abstract textures of black and white, possible rendered by computer, a pattern of repeating fractals. Then it becomes clear: they're actually photographs of the surface of water in low light. They're natural patterns made into more intentional shapes by the act of photographing them and processing those images.

Achievement Gap, Absenteeism Targeted

In response to test results and other metrics of district performance, the Hamden Board of Education has drafted five new goals for the next three years, including equity and high school achievement.

ACLU sues to halt ‘Remain in Mexico’ asylum policy

Three civil rights groups filed a federal lawsuit Thursday challenging the Trump administration's plan to send asylum-seekers back to Mexico while their cases wind through the U.S. immigration system.

Activist poster artist Ricardo Levins Morales: ‘It’s always about supporting resilience’

Walk into Ricardo Levins Morales studio and shop in South Minneapolis and you'll see posters you've seen before — in friends' work cubicles, above bars, and on the walls of living rooms, kitchens, offices, and many other lifeless spots in need of a decorative reminder that all is not lost. To be sure, given the state of the political, spiritual, environmental, and technological world, it might be easy to stamp Morales' activist poster work with a “now more than ever” headline. But the fact is, Morales, creator of some of the most popular inspirational posters on the planet, has been creating at the same pace for over 40 years. “My work has stayed on a pretty steady course for decades,” said Morales, sitting in the back room of his art store and studio in South Minneapolis. “I grew up understanding both from my parents and having grown up in a place with no televisions or beeping lights or fast-forward buttons … I grew up playing on the mountains, so I knew things happen in cycles, they happen according to their own pace.

Addison County Chamber of Commerce welcomes new members

News Release — Addison County Chamber of Commerce
Jan. 25, 2019
Rob Carter
P: 802-388-7951
E: rob@addisoncounty.comGet all of VTDigger's daily news.You'll never miss a story with our daily headlines in your inbox. Daily
Sundays only (Weekly Wrap)

Email me stories on these subjects... Business News
Courts & Corrections News
Education News
Energy News
Environment News
Health Care News
People & Places News
Politics News

Email me stories for these regions
Windham County

The Addison County Chamber Sees Flurry of New Members
Middlebury, Vermont – January 25, 2019 –The Addison County Chamber of Commerce welcomes eighteen new members in less than three months. The Addison County Chamber has been a flurry of activity with a surge of new members at the end of 2018 (see full list below).

Administration pitches partnership between VTC and tech centers

Vermont Technical College in Randolph. VTC photo
Gov. Phil Scott would like to see associate and certificate degree programs from Vermont Technical College made available to high school students — and offered in the state's career technical education centers. State officials believe such a partnership could help plug workforce shortages, make college more accessible and affordable, and create a stronger pipeline of students into the state's public colleges, which have seen their enrollments decline steadily over the past decade. The state already has an early college program that pays for high school students who want to attend Vermont colleges in their senior year, and some lawmakers think they could use that same mechanism to help fund, at least in part, the VTC-CTE partnership. VTC president Pat Moulton told the Senate Education Committee the idea could be a “win-win” for all involved, decentralize the delivery of some of the college's programs, and help address “screaming” workforce needs.

Adult migrant from Mexico dies in Border Patrol custody

A segment of the border fence in the Rio Grande Valley. Callie Richmond for The Texas Tribune
An adult migrant has died after being taken into U.S. Border Patrol custody this month in Texas' Rio Grande Valley. The 45-year-old undocumented immigrant from Mexico died Monday morning after being diagnosed with congestive heart failure and cirrhosis of the liver. The immigrant's death was first reported by USA Today. According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection news release, the immigrant was encountered by the police department in Roma, Texas, a small border community between Laredo and Mission, on Feb.

Adults sleep more soundly in ‘rocking beds,’ study finds

As any parent knows, rocking a baby often helps the child fall asleep. But would adults reap a similar benefit from being rocked to sleep? Yes, according to a small but intriguing study published last week in the journal Current Biology. The study found that sleeping in a gently swaying bed affects adult brain activity in a way that promotes deep sleep. The rocking motion also appears to help consolidate and strengthen memory.

Adventures in polling: more than 95 percent of the Patriots Trump polled are patriotic, or something

In one of his most recent emails to the “Trump Pence Make America Great Again Committee,” the current occupant of the Oval Office, or whoever it is that communicates with the committee members over Trump's signature, divulged that:
“Last week, more than 95% of the Patriots I polled demanded a wall.”
If true, of course, that would change everything, politically, at least, in the big argument over wall funding that now threatens to bring about a major constitutional crisis. Or maybe it depends on what kind of screening Trump's pollster used to identify who among us are patriots. The most recent Gallup Poll, which asked in a poll taken Jan. 21-27: “Please tell me whether you strongly favor, favor, oppose or strongly oppose significantly expanding the construction of walls along the U.S.-Mexico border?” found that 60 percent of respondents (that's up from 57 the last previous time they asked the question, in June 2018) say they opposed or strongly opposed building or expanding border walls. But Gallup's results may have been distorted since they didn't screen for the patriotism of the respondents.

Advised to be vigilant, Minnesotans maintain Paris plans despite attacks

The terrorist attacks that shook Paris Nov. 13 week aren't stopping Minnesotans from traveling to the City of Light, according to local travel experts.Sandy Lovick, owner of several Travel Leaders locations throughout the Twin Cities, noted Wednesday that her own associate was on her way to Paris, which has been nursing its wounds since the Nov. 13 attacks that claimed the lives of at least 130 people.“They certainly had problems in Paris, but not necessarily in the very midst of the most popular tourist spots,” said Lovick, speaking of the reason travelers are still packing for France.She added: “But certainly, there are people who are going to think about going, and we would tell them to be most vigilant to their surroundings.”Agency sees no cancelationsLovick, who has nine travel-agency offices in Minneapolis and St. Paul, sent messages to her employees after the attacks, checking to see if clients wanted to change their flight dates. So far, the agencies have not heard a word from people wanting to cancel or delay their plans.“While there are people who probably hesitated [to travel to Paris], we — at our own offices — have not had any changes from any of our clients,” she said.Lovick added: “We have not had on any reports of any delays on our flights to Europe.

Advocacy Group Aims to End Prison Gerrymandering in CT by 2020 Election

In the first lawsuit of its' kind, the The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) won a key ruling yesterday that allows their federal lawsuit challenging the State of Connecticut's discriminatory practice known as “prison gerrymandering” to proceed. The NAACP together with the NAACP Connecticut State Conference and individual NAACP members aims to end prison gerrymandering–the practice of counting incarcerated people as residents of the legislative districts where they are held, rather than in their home districts–by the 2020 election. The complaint alleges that prison gerrymandering violates Connecticut residents' constitutional rights to one person, one vote by inflating the power of predominantly white rural districts, where many prisons are located, to the detriment of urban districts, where many incarcerated persons maintain a permanent residence. The lawsuit contends to “equalize the voices of the Connecticut people,” according to Alaa Chaker, a law student intern with the Yale Law School Rule of Law Clinic, counsel for the NAACP and other plaintiffs. “Someones vote shouldn't count less because of their prison district,” she said in an interview.

Advocate describes China’s growing movement for LGBTQI rights

Ping “Hoping” Hou, foreground, is an activist for the LGBTQI community in China who was a featured speaker at OutRight Action International's recent fundraiser. (Photo by Jack Storms courtesy OutRight Action International)Advocate Ping “Hoping” Hou believes one of the biggest obstacles for equal rights for the LGBTQI community in China is visibility — the acknowledgement that their lives have value. “You're treated like you didn't exist at all,” Ping said. “That's very bad because we can fight with each other, but if you're treated non-existent, it's like, reject all your value.”
Ping was one of the keynote speakers for OutRight Action International‘s fundraiser in Seattle last week, which raised $65,000 for the organization. OutRight Action International focuses on advocacy for LGBTQI human rights outside the United States.

Advocates critique budget, education process

As a powerful House committee nears completion of a draft state budget this week, leaders of a movement to transform New Mexico education through multicultural, bilingual education reforms say crucial funding to achieve their vision could go missing from the soon-to-emerge spending plan. And they say it's already gone missing from a House omnibus education […]

Advocates want protections for farmworkers

Workers rights advocates are planning rallies across the state for a bill that would give farmworkers access to labor protections they don't have. Advocates are rallying in Rochester for rights and protections for farm workers. Right now, in the U.S., federal law states that all workers have the same basic rights -- including overtime pay, the right to unionize, and a day of rest -- except for farmworkers. West Crosgrove is with Rural and Migrant Ministries. They're advocating for a state bill that would extend those protections to farmworkers.

Advocates: Policymakers are starting to get the message about housing

Rep. Tom Stevens chairs the House Committee on General, Housing, and Military Affairs. File photo by Mike Dougherty/VTDigger
" data-medium-file="" data-large-file="" src="" alt="Tom Stevens" width="610" height="407" srcset=" 610w, 125w, 300w, 768w, 1280w, 1920w, 2000w" sizes="(max-width: 610px) 100vw, 610px" data-recalc-dims="1">Rep. Tom Stevens chairs the House Committee on General, Housing, and Military Affairs. He has introduced a bill that would prohibit the diversion of property transfer tax funds from the Vermont Housing and Conservation Trust Fund. File photo by Mike Dougherty/VTDigger
When large Northeast Kingdom companies hire new workers, they often suggest they look for housing near Burke Mountain, 15 miles away, says St. Johnsbury's town manager, Chad Whitehead.

Affordable Housing Is Not Going to Finance Itself

A woman waits to use a public restroom in downtown San Diego. / Photo by Adriana Heldiz
In early 2016, the San Diego City Council — due to a wave of community pushback — reversed course and removed the last of downtown's two portable public toilets. A year later, San Diegans watched in horror as we faced the largest person-to-person hepatitis A epidemic on record in U.S. history. No one should have been surprised. Since 2000, four grand jury reports had tried to raise awareness of the likelihood of such a crisis, pointing to the shortage of toilets for use by the city's growing homeless population and the related serious health risks.

Afghan and Pakistani Women Against Extremism

Alice Su, Sara HyltonWhat do Afghan and Pakistani women see as the roots of violent extremism, and how are some of them working together to build peace? Who are the women who are fighting to be more than mere victims?

Afghan Migrants Flee Iran as US Sanctions Damage Iran’s Economy

Afghan migrants in Iran are leaving in droves for urban areas back home as US sanctions squeeze Iran's economy. The influx could further destabilize Afghanistan, with young male returnees vulnerable to recruitment by insurgents. A Kabul bazaar, above. FARDIN WAEZI/UNAMA After fleeing violence and unemployment in their home country for the relative stability of neighboring Iran, hundreds of thousands of undocumented Afghans are now returning home. The mass reverse migration is taking place just as the United States, eager to withdraw from Afghanistan, holds its most concerted peace talks with the Taliban in years.

African-American Soldiers Share Experience Of U.S. Military Service Over Generations

On Wednesday's St. Louis on the Air , host Don Marsh talked about the contributions and enduring legacies of African-American doughboys who served in World War I. The topic will also be the subject of a panel discussion Sunday at the Soldiers Memorial Military Museum in downtown St. Louis. Joining the Wednesday's discussion were Marshall J. Phillips, a 100-year-old World War II veteran; Kim Chamberlain, a U.S. Air Force veteran; and Marvin Alonso Greer, the education and visitor experience lead for Soldiers Memorial Military Museum. Phillips and Chamberlain, who will both play a role in the weekend event, shared some of their experiences in the military with Marsh and listeners – and also described how they overcame some of the challenges they faced.

After a pretty below-average December and January, February is close to setting a Twin Cities snow record

MinnPost photo by Jana FreibandHave you noticed it's been snowy lately?It's starting to feel like we're stuck in a snowglobe. One that someone picks up and gives a good shake every couple days, leaving messy piles of snow tumbling down to wreak havoc on school, work and travel plans. In the last three weeks, the Twin Cities have seen double-digit windchills, freezing rain, 4 inches of snow followed by 6 inches of snow, another 6 inches, and then another nearly 6 inches more before the roads were even clear from the last weather event. By the end of Tuesday, the 22 inches of snow that fell in February in the Twin Cities put the region inches away from a February snowfall record. And we're only halfway through the month.

After clearing hurdle, Padilla hopes for quick work on early childhood dept.

A proposed early childhood department got its start-up funding cut in half and even its name was reconsidered, but it survived the sausage making in the Senate Rules Committee on Wednesday morning, earning a unanimous vote to move on to the next legislative committee. The biggest bone of contention in the hearing over SB 22 […]

After El Chapo: Ignore Drug ‘Kingpins’, say Experts

A verdict is expected soon in the trial of notorious Mexican drug boss Joaquin Guzman, nicknamed El Chapo. Illustration by Diario Presencia via Flickr
Over the past 11 weeks, federal prosecutors unveiled the inner workings of Mexican drug lord Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán Loera's drug empire. Tales of elusive tunnel escapes, of corruption potentially reaching the highest levels of the Mexican government, and a sprawling and violent international drug network—details so dramatic they could come straight out of a blockbuster film, or at least a Netflix series. Jurors began deliberations Monday after a case that featured 56 witnesses and some 200 pages of testimony. For prosecutors and international law enforcement agencies that have been chasing the former leader of the Sinaloa Cartel for years, a jury conviction may be hailed a victory.

After Parkland, States Acted on Guns, Congress Didn’t

In the year since the Parkland, Fl., school massacre, both Republican- and Democratic-controlled state legislatures passed 76 gun control laws in the past year, including bans on bump stocks, caps on magazine sizes, minimum-age requirements for buying guns and expanded background checks, the New York Times reports. Among victories for gun control advocates was a bill in Florida that raised the minimum age to purchase a firearm to 21 and extended the waiting period to three days. More than half the states passed at least one gun control measure in 2018, with Washington and New York joining the trend in 2019. There were significantly fewer new state laws expanding gun rights in 2018 than the year before, according to an end-of-year report by the national advocacy group Giffords. The National Rifle Association said the number of enacted gun control measures outnumbered pro-gun measures for the first time in at least six years.

After Rape Increase, NYPD Adding 35 to Sex-Crimes Unit

The New York Police Department is adding 35 investigators to its sex-crimes unit in response to an increase in reported rapes, reports the Wall Street Journal. Chief of Detectives Dermot Shea said he will add 15 investigators to the adult sex-crimes unit in the Special Victims Division, bringing the head count to 129. An additional 20 investigators will aid units investigating child and transit sex crimes. The division, which was criticized last year about its handling of sexual-assault complaints, had been expanding its ranks. In 2018, its adult sex-crimes unit rose to 114 investigators from 74.

After snow, more snow on the way for Minnesota

MPR reports: “The Twin Cities metro area is included in a winter storm watch from 6 p.m. Monday to 6 p.m. Tuesday. It's for the possibility of 5 to 8 inches of snow. A winter storm watch starts at 3 p.m Monday in portions of south-central and southeastern Minnesota. The winter storm watch starts at 9 p.m. Monday in Chisago and Pine counties, plus northwestern Wisconsin and west-central Wisconsin.”
Klobuchar announcement reax, part 1: For The New York Times, Mitch Smith and Lisa Lerer say, “On a snow-covered stage in Minneapolis along the banks of the Mississippi River, with the temperature barely above single digits, Ms. Klobuchar said that as president she would ‘focus on getting things done' and reverse some of President Trump's signature policies. On her first day in office, she said, the United States would rejoin the Paris climate agreement.”
Part 2: For The Huffington Post Marina Fang and Jesselyn Cook write, “In addition to serving as a foil to Trump, Klobuchar hopes to capitalize on her Midwestern roots as an asset, given how Trump's 2016 victory hinged on narrow victories in nearby states like Michigan and Wisconsin.

After state leaders’ unified rollout, 2.5 percent rollback rate on property tax bill looks unlikely to stick

From left: Sen. Paul Bettencourt, R-Houston; Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick; Gov. Greg Abbott; House Speaker Dennis Bonnen, R-Angleton; and Rep. Dustin Burrows, R-Lubbock, speak at a Jan 31, 2019, news conference addressing property tax reform. Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / The Texas Tribune
Three weeks ago, Gov. Greg Abbott convened state state leaders to announce an achievement he hailed as “unprecedented”: The governor, lieutenant governor, House speaker and Republican tax committee chiefs in both chambers had come together on a proposal to curb property tax growth. Two identical bills filed in the Texas House and Senate would trigger automatic local elections when a local government's property tax revenue grew more than 2.5 percent in a given year. The consensus proposal marked a drastic departure from the current rollback rate of 8 percent, and even from the numbers the two chambers backed last session. In the wake of a House pitch for 6 percent and a Senate pitch for 4 percent, the governor proposed a compromise at 2.5 percent — a show of “real leadership,” joked Sen. Paul Bettencourt, the Houston Republican who chairs the Senate's property tax committee.

After Texas’ second Supreme Court loss in a death penalty case, reform bill lands key GOP support

Texas' high court building, which holds the Supreme Court and the Court of Criminal Appeals. Rachel Zein for The Texas Tribune
One day after the U.S. Supreme Court once again invalidated a Texas death sentence and bashed the state's highest criminal court for its method of determining intellectual disability in death penalty cases, two key Republican lawmakers have signed on to a Democrat's bill that would create a uniform process. On Wednesday, state Reps. James White and Jeff Leach became co-authors to Rep. Senfronia Thompson's House Bill 1139, which would establish a pretrial procedure to determine if a capital murder defendant is intellectually disabled and therefore ineligible for the death penalty. White chairs the House Corrections Committee, and Leach leads the House Judiciary and Civil Jurisprudence Committee.

After Tijuana debacle, the Mexican government changed tactics for the latest migrant caravan

From left, Elmer de la Rosa, Orlando Jose Reyes and Carlos Lanza stand at the fence of the migrant shelter in Piedras Negras, Coahuila. The trio hopes to reach the United States via Eagle Pass. Feb. 9, 2019. Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / The Texas Tribune
PIEDRAS NEGRAS, Mexico — On Monday morning, Iris Portillo wasn't sure where she would end up later in the week.

After traveling the world, reporter joins InvestigateWest

From APRIL 2018 Sidebar newsletter for InvestigateWest members. (Miss it? Join now to start receiving Sidebar.)
Sergio Olmos
This year [2018] we welcomed reporter Sergio Olmos to InvestigateWest to participate in our just-launched project on concussions among high school athletes. Sergio's resume' and writing samples were the first to arrive when we advertised this position back in December. His cover letter and samples exploded with eagerness.

After years of inaction, Delta teacher shortage reaches ‘crisis’ levels

Kaitlyn Barton takes her dog, Olive, out of her apartment and watches as she runs around before getting dressed and prepared to work her second job at Yazoo Pass in Clarksdale Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2018. Barton, a High School English teacher at Clarksdale High School, works a second job as a waitress to supplement her income due to her low salary as a teacher. / Photo by Eric J. Shelton for Mississippi Today

This is the first story in a three-part series about the teacher shortage in Mississippi, produced by The Hechinger Report, a nonprofit, independent news organization focused on inequality and innovation in education, in partnership with Mississippi Today. Sign up here for the Hechinger newsletter and here for the Mississippi Today education edition newsletter.

AG probing Northfield police chief over allegation of untruthfulness

Northfield Police Chief John Helfant. Photo from Northfield Police website
The Vermont Attorney General's Office is investigating allegations the Northfield police chief was “untruthful” in court records he submitted for a search warrant and later in support of charges in the same drug case. Washington County State's Attorney Rory Thibault asked Attorney General TJ Donovan to conduct the probe last month into Northfield Police Chief John Helfant. David Sleigh, a St. Johnsbury attorney representing Helfant, said Friday that his client “vehemently” denies wrongdoing.

Airbnb Hosts Form Group To Oppose Proposed Regulations

Although St. Louis Airbnb hosts brought in more revenue and more guests than anywhere else in the state last year, some are worried a proposed city bill could hurt business. A group called the Saint Louis Metro Airbnb Hosts has formed to oppose new regulations introduced in the Board of Aldermen in December. The bill , sponsored by Alderwoman Christine Ingrassia, D-Ward 6, would limit short-term rentals to 30 days per stay and 120 total days a year. The proposal also calls for annual city inspections and for violators to receive a maximum $500 fine, up to 90-days in jail, or both.

Airport Officials: Air Canada and Frontier Airlines Canceling Routes

The nonstop flight between San Antonio and Toronto that began in 2017 will be discontinued April 28, as will several Frontier Airline routes. The post Airport Officials: Air Canada and Frontier Airlines Canceling Routes appeared first on Rivard Report.

Alamo Heights Taps New City Manager, Discusses Rules for E-Scooters

The Alamo Heights City Council unanimously voted Monday to pick Buddy Kuhn, the municipality's assistant city manager and fire chief, for the top job. The post Alamo Heights Taps New City Manager, Discusses Rules for E-Scooters appeared first on Rivard Report.

Alamo Reenactments Set to Begin as Alamo Plaza Redevelopment Unfolds

As the 183rd anniversary of the Alamo seige approaches, plans are on track for the selection of an architectural firm to design the new Alamo museum. The post Alamo Reenactments Set to Begin as Alamo Plaza Redevelopment Unfolds appeared first on Rivard Report.

Aldermen debate grassroots-led bill on surveillance technology

This story originally appeared in The St. Louis American. There's a surveillance camera at corner of Arsenal Street and S. Grand Boulevard, and it appears to be pointed at MoKaBe's Coffeehouse, where Black Lives Matter activists and other human rights protestors are known to meet, said Kendra Tatum, an organizer with Organization for Black Struggle. “We are concerned that police are using surveillance cameras as an intimidation tactic on First Amendment rights,” testified Tatum at the Jan. 24 aldermanic Public Safety Committee meeting, speaking in support of Board Bill 219.

Alders Sign Off On $3M Budget Transfer

With a mixture of resignation, frustration, and cautionary instruction, alders unanimously signed off on spending over $3 million reserved for debt service on shoring up the police and fire overtime budgets instead.

All Aboard!

Model train club offers challenges, camaraderieAll Aboard! was first posted on January 25, 2019 at 12:49 pm.

Alleged dealer arrested, but drug house drama continues

Chyquan Cupe
BRATTLEBORO — Police have arrested a 21-year-old Hartford, Conn., man on a half-dozen charges including aggravated assault some two months after they raided his former residence here and seized a cache of illegal drugs and weapons. Chyquan Cupe was allegedly squatting at 33 Oak St. — a drug house between a special needs school and residence for single mothers and children — when he held two women at gunpoint Christmas Day and forced them to physically fight over a $200 drug debt. When Brattleboro police arrived with a search warrant Dec. 28, Cupe was gone — prompting an alert that he was “considered armed and dangerous and should not be approached by members of the public.”
Authorities went on to arrest Cupe this month — a fact they hadn't publicized until Wednesday — and are holding him without bail on charges that also include unlawful restraint, reckless endangerment and possession of cocaine and narcotics, court papers show.

Almost 70% of Mississippians support restoring voting rights to some ex-felons, poll finds

R.L. Nave, Mississippi TodayThe Southern Poverty Law Center filed a lawsuit in federal court over the state's voter disenfrachisement laws. From left: Attorneys Jonathan Youngwood and Jody Owens with plaintiffs Dennis Hopkins, Walter Kuhn and Byron Coleman in Jackson. A new poll of 200 Mississippians finds majority support for restoring voter rights to most people with felony convictions who have completed their sentences, the Southern Poverty Law Center announced Tuesday. Conducted by Tulchin Research, the poll of registered voters was released on the last day to pass bills out of committee before they die, as Senate Democrats pushed for a bill that would re-enfranchise people with felony convictions upon the completion of their sentences. “What's exciting about it, in all honesty, is that for far too long, the proposition has been, that people should be punished forever,” said Jody Owens, managing attorney of the SPLC, which is currently suing the state over the constitutionality of of its disenfranchisement laws.

Alumni Match-Up

Two former Blue Devils -- a coach and player -- square offAlumni Match-Up was first posted on January 28, 2019 at 11:42 am.

Alumni, parents and students rally to save Green Mountain College

Founded in Poultney in 1834, Green Mountain College launched it environmental liberal arts curriculum in 1995 and now is one of the Princeton Review‎'s top “green” schools. " data-medium-file="" data-large-file="" src="" alt="Green Mountain College" width="610" height="332" srcset=" 610w, 125w, 300w, 768w, 150w, 1000w" sizes="(max-width: 610px) 100vw, 610px" data-recalc-dims="1">Founded in Poultney in 1834, Green Mountain College launched it environmental liberal arts curriculum in 1995 and now is one of the Princeton Review‎'s top “green” schools. Calling themselves “radical optimists,” a group of Green Mountain College alumni, parents, and students say they want to save the school from closing in the spring., which launched this weekend, reports that it has already received more than 100 pledges worth a little over $25,000. Kheya Ganguly, a Wallingford resident and parent of two GMC grads, said the group has been at work basically since the administration made its announcement two weeks ago.

Amazon at risk: Brazil plans rapid road and rail infrastructure expansion

Brazilian Minister of Infrastructure Tarcísio Gomes de Freitas. Image courtesy of Agencia Brasil. “We are going to create a second revolution in Brazilian agribusiness,” declared Tarcísio Gomes de Freitas in a 2018 interview with Mongabay. “Mato Grosso state produced 62 million tons of grains on 9 million hectares (34,700 square miles) of land in 2017. There are another 14 million hectares (54,000 square miles) of land, currently used as pasture, available for arable farming.

Amazon Drops Plans For New York Headquarters

Updated at 1:57 p.m. ET Amazon will no longer build new headquarters in New York City after weeks of local politicians, union leaders and community organizers protesting the financial incentives promised to one of the world's most valuable companies. The decision to abandon the planned New York HQ is a big reversal of its much-hyped decision to build a campus in Queens after a highly publicized nationwide search that lasted over a year. On Thursday, an Amazon spokeswoman told NPR that the company plans no further negotiations with city and state officials in New York, where the firm has faced scathing criticism in recent City Council hearings. One key issue was the almost $3 billion in state and city tax incentives Amazon was slated to receive in exchange for creating some 25,000 jobs. Local union leaders had organized protests against the company and have accused it of anti-union behavior.

Amazon HQ2: Texas Experience Shows Why New Yorkers Should Be Skeptical

Research on economic incentive deals found that companies often challenge public record requests and renegotiate renegotiated contracts, all while avoiding public scrutiny. The post Amazon HQ2: Texas Experience Shows Why New Yorkers Should Be Skeptical appeared first on Rivard Report.

Amazon’s HQ2 Sweepstakes Isn’t Over Yet

Nashville, Tenn.—County employee Richard Tippit approached the podium at a January Metro Council meeting. Behind him, workers from local public-sector unions held aloft a posterboard stamped “PAST DUE.” Tippit began, “We're here tonight to deliver you an invoice for services performed by the employees of Nashville Metro government.”

He and his fellow workers had come to collect $38 million in promised cost-of-living increases for 9,300 public employees that the city had reneged on. “You paid every other bill—you even added more bills,” Tippit said, “but you didn't pay one of the most important.”

“More bills” referred to a sore point: $15 million in subsidies that Amazon extracted from the city in November 2018 for a new logistics facility. Amazon had effectively jumped the line for public dollars ahead of Nashville's city workers. Amazon's proposed 5,000-employee “Operations Center of Excellence,” which received an additional $87 million in state subsidies, was announced the same day as Amazon's new “HQ2” headquarters in New York City and northern Virginia.

Ambassador Kelley Currie Is Leaving the US Mission to the UN

Kelley Currie, the No. 2 ambassador at the UN mission to the UN, speaking with reporters on Oct. 16, 2018, regarding Cuban political prisoners. Currie is leaving the US mission as it awaits a formal ambassador to arrive to succeed Nikki Haley, who resigned on Oct. 9.

Ameren Missouri Gets Green Light To Build Electric-Vehicle Charging Stations Along Highways

After a failed attempt and months of delays, Ameren Missouri has received approval from the Missouri Public Service Commission to install electric vehicle charging stations along highways in Missouri. The utility's $4.4 million pilot program, which will run for five years, aims to install fast-charging stations at rest stops and businesses near highway entrances. The company also will offer financial incentives to businesses that want to help install charging stations. The effort could ease the “range anxiety” that motorists feel when they're worried that their electric vehicle will run out of power before they reach a charging station.

Ameren Missouri to invest $5 billion to improve statewide electrical grid

Ameren Missouri is planning $5 billion worth of improvements to its energy grid, company officials announced Friday. The “Smart Energy Plan” includes 2,000 electric projects to be completed during the next five years, including a new substation in Hazelwood and upgrades to the underground grid that serves downtown St. Louis. The utility also plans to spend $1 billion on wind energy in 2020. “We're modernizing this grid to benefit customers today, as well as future generations to come,'' Ameren President Michael Moehn said.

America’s growing existential threat

President Donald Trump's recent public ridicule of the reports before the Congress by our nation's three major intelligence agencies is unparalleled in our nation's modern history... and utterly anguished our intelligence community writ large. Our intelligence leaders outlined that we face an unprecedented potential adversary -- the developing China-Russia axis. With a combined population of five to six times that of America, it has formidable industrial and military capabilities.

American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network releases statement on e-cigarettes

News Release — American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network
Jan. 24, 2019
Name: Marc Kaplan
Cell: (518) 796-1038
Email: Marc.Kaplan@cancer.orgGet all of VTDigger's daily news.You'll never miss a story with our daily headlines in your inbox. Daily
Sundays only (Weekly Wrap)

Email me stories on these subjects... Business News
Courts & Corrections News
Education News
Energy News
Environment News
Health Care News
People & Places News
Politics News

Email me stories for these regions
Windham County

ACS CAN Praises Governor's Leadership in Addressing E-Cigarette Issue In Budget
MONTPELIER, VT – January 24, 2019 – In his budget address today, Governor Scott proposed a tax on e-cigarettes at the same rate as on other tobacco products. American Cancer Society Cancer Acton Network (ACS CAN) Vermont Government Relations Director Jennifer Costa released the following statement:
“If enacted this tax can save lives and protect health.

American Violence: Myth and Reality

On an average day, 96 Americans are killed by guns. Mass shootings, such as the Parkland Fl., school tragedy and the October, 2018 massacre at Pittsburgh's Tree of Life synagogue, continue to make tragic headlines. But how violent is America? The toll of violence has underlined arguments made by officials in the Trump administration and others that violent crime and “carnage” have re-emerged as threats to Americans' public safety. The data, however, tells another story.

Americans and Guns: Are the Politics Changing?

Igor Volsky. Photo by Peter Dohan
Igor Volsky learned to tell the difference between what politicians say and what they do when he was growing up in the former Soviet Union. The lesson came back to him forcefully as a teenager exposed to the debates and controversy about gun control in the U.S.
After the mass shootings in San Bernardino, Ca., (2015) and Orlando, Fl., (2016), annoyed by what he called the “risk-averse” approaches taken by politicians, he decided to form Guns Down America, a nonprofit organization aimed at harnessing the national consensus that more regulation can help reduce gun violence. He turned his policy ideas into a forthcoming book as well: Guns Down: How to Defeat the NRA and Build a Safer Future with Fewer Guns. In a conversation with The Crime Report's Julia Pagnamenta, Volsky explains why he thinks the chances for meaningful gun control have improved, why firearms manufacturers are vulnerable to a concerted campaign, and what he thinks the Founding Fathers might have made of the current debates over the Second Amendment.

AmeriCorps VISTA’s grassroots structure threatened by Trump plan

AmeriCorps VISTA volunteers have been making a difference in our communities since 1965. A key to the program's success has been the staff working at the state and local level. Good relationships with community groups lead to good programming. Unfortunately, the Trump administration plans to close state Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) offices by May 1. The closure would also affect the Senior Corps (Foster Grandparents, RSVP, and Senior Companions).

Amid Freeze, Cops Scan Streets For Homeless

As temperatures dropped into the single digits on Wednesday night, beat cops fanned out across the city searching for anyone who might be at risk of freezing to death.

Amid Freeze, Cops Scan Streets For Homeless

As temperatures dropped into the single digits on Wednesday night, beat cops fanned out across the city searching for anyone who might be at risk of freezing to death.

Amid questions about equity grants, Walz administration focusing on different ways to address disparities in Minnesota

Months after police fatally shot Jamar Clark and protests roiled Minneapolis, former Gov. Mark Dayton released a $100 million plan to shrink Minnesota's stark divide in economic success between whites and people of color, a disparity that ranks among the worst in the country. State Sen. Jeff Hayden, a DFLer from south Minneapolis who helped shepherd the idea through the Legislature, said they chose to accomplish this by offering direct payments to organizations helping minority communities facing a “persistent gap” from their white counterparts in categories like unemployment and home ownership. Dayton didn't get his full request — lawmakers approved $35 million in 2016 and another $24.3 million in the two-year budget of 2017 — but supporters considered it a victory. Now, Gov. Tim Walz and his fledgling administration are contemplating the future of what have been dubbed “equity grants.” Though Walz offered to keep existing payments largely in place in a budget plan full of new spending, he has not chosen to significantly increase them as part of his strategy for reducing racial disparities. Steve Grove, the new commissioner of the Department of Employment and Economic Development, which administers the grants, also promised improved oversight in how the money is spent.

Amid State Scrutiny, Harlandale Extends Superintendent’s Contract

The district extends Rey Madrigal's contract through 2021 in the wake of a preliminary state report that accuses him of violating the Texas Education Code. The post Amid State Scrutiny, Harlandale Extends Superintendent's Contract appeared first on Rivard Report.

Amid Worker Safety Scrutiny, Kentucky Labor Secretary Proposes Merging Cabinets

The Kentucky Labor Cabinet is asking the legislature to do something bold — put it out of business. The Labor Cabinet would merge with the Public Protection Cabinet under a plan proposed Tuesday to the Senate Economic Development, Tourism and Labor Committee. Cabinet leaders said eliminating the Labor Cabinet would save money, streamline government and improve the functions of Kentucky's Occupational Safety and Health agency, which has been under federal scrutiny since a critical audit released in August. The federal audit, first publicized by the Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting in November, found that Kentucky had failed to properly investigate nearly every worker fatality in a two-year period. Inspectors often didn't interview eyewitnesses, missed worker safety violations and improperly blamed employees for their own deaths, according to the investigation, published in collaboration with the Center for Public Integrity and the Ohio Valley ReSource.

Amistad Principal: “We Will Be Better”

Beleaguered Amistad High now has a black woman at the helm — and she is promising to tackle the charter school's racial challenges with an honest communal reckoning.

Amplifying voices: The SEAD Project uses storytelling to capture history

In young Southeast Asian Americans' schools, the stories they heard from their parents and grandparents growing up were almost never noted in their history textbooks. The experiences of Southeast Asian communities are often forgotten, unknown or dismissed — particularly the history of the Vietnam War. “It seemed like, growing up, all of these stories that I heard were just something that was far off in a distant land, across the ocean and back in our home country,” said Tigana Le, a recent graduate of the University of Minnesota. “Seldom did I think growing up that this history was only just recent. It was only like 45, 50 years ago.

Amy Klobuchar may be Minnesota’s most popular politician. But how popular is she in Minnesota’s Trump country?

Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar's entrance to the presidential race Sunday turned presidential watchers' eyes toward Minnesota for the first time since the 2012 election, when the state had the distinction of having two politicians — Michele Bachmann and Tim Pawlenty — seek the office. There's a particular reason some are watching Klobuchar, though, amid a crowding field of Democrats looking to get the party's nomination next year: Her ability to run up big electoral wins in a Midwestern state that almost went for Donald Trump in 2016. Democrats routinely win statewide offices in Minnesota. But not by Klobuchar's margins. In three Senate elections, she's bested her Republican opponents by double-digit margins, and the ability to win big in an increasingly purple Midwestern state has made some pundits say she might be the Democrats' best shot to win votes in Trump Country.

Amy Wenger: Keep kids safe from cannabis edibles

Editor's note: This commentary is by Amy Wenger, RN, who is the practice administrator for Appleseed Pediatrics in Morrisville. On July 1, cannabis (aka marijuana) was legalized for recreational use for people over the age of 21 here in Vermont. An unintentional consequence of legalization, as seen in other states that have legalized cannabis for medicinal and recreational purposes, are higher instances of accidental ingestion of cannabis in young children. The Northern New England Poison Control Center reports that the rates of pediatric exposure to marijuana calls in legalized states increased to 30 percent when compared to those states who had not legalized. In Lamoille County, this trend in accidental cannabis exposures is occurring.Get all of VTDigger's daily news.You'll never miss a story with our daily headlines in your inbox.

An Economic Blueprint for Chicago Any Progressive Candidate Should Get Behind

When Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley left City Hall in May 2011, he was greeted with banners reading, “Chicago … A World Class City … Thank You Mayor Daley.” Many mayors before him had set out to turn Chicago into a world-class city, and with those banners, the city's political establishment was proudly proclaiming that Daley had accomplished this feat. When Rahm Emanuel succeeded Daley to the Mayor's office, he saw it as his mission to maintain this world-class status. But the vision of a world-class city that Daley and Emanuel have projected through their financial and budget priorities has been deeply incongruent with the needs of Chicago's communities. Their version of turning Chicago into a “world-class city” typically meant passing policies to attract wealthy, white professionals and big, multinational corporations to the city—at the expense of the city's communities of color. To these mayors, improving Chicago has included transforming the demographics of the city rather than improving the lives of the people who already live there.

An ignored epidemic in New Mexico’s prisons

The treatment was simple — three pills a day, best taken on a full stomach — and it cured Gabriel Serna of hepatitis C in eight weeks. He just had to wait eight years to get it. In theory, revolutionary medications have made the blood-borne, sometimes-fatal infection curable, so people with the disease need not […]

An Interview on Wheels!

Lou Ferreira, Ferreira's Auto Repair, BeaconAn Interview on Wheels! was first posted on February 3, 2019 at 12:50 pm.

Analysis: A green appointee’s harsh introduction to Texas election politics

Texas Secretary of State David Whitley, appointed by Gov. Greg Abbott, still must clear the Senate Committee on Nominations and a two-thirds vote in the full Texas Senate. Miguel Gutierrez Jr./The Texas Tribune
Editor's note: If you'd like an email notice whenever we publish Ross Ramsey's column, click here. When the appointed chief elections officer of the state of Texas can't define “voter suppression,” it's safe to say his appointment is in trouble. David Whitley's confirmation as secretary of state is in trouble. It's not just because of that voter suppression business, either: He was in hot soup before he testified at Thursday's meeting of the Senate Nominations Committee.

Analysis: A State of the State address that’s short on surprises, long on collaboration

Most notable about Gov. Greg Abbott's State of the State address Tuesday were the topics he didn't discuss, including voter rolls. Miguel Gutierrez Jr./The Texas Tribune
Editor's note: If you'd like an email notice whenever we publish Ross Ramsey's column, click here. Gov. Greg Abbott didn't make much news in his third State of the State speech, and that's a small victory for a guy hoping to keep everyone on track during a legislative session with big and relatively unrewarding work to do. Reworking the state's funding for public education and “reforming” property taxes — what you call it when you're trying to limit the growth of a tax instead of actually reducing taxpayers' bills — are hard things to do. They are not high-reward targets, though — not like real tax cuts or a solid promise that schools will improve.

Analysis: A Texas senator’s reputation, in a word

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick (right) swears in state Sen. Kel Seliger, R-Amarillo, as president pro tempore of the Senate on opening day of the 85th Texas Legislature on Jan. 10, 2017. Looking on are Seliger's sons Matthew (left) and Jonathan (hidden) and wife Nancy. Marjorie Kamys Cotera for The Texas Tribune
Editor's note: If you'd like an email notice whenever we publish Ross Ramsey's column, click here. What began as a political spanking has become a smear campaign.

Analysis: Eight ways Gretchen Whitmer vows to improve Michigan

The new Democratic governor outlined her policy priorities during her first State of the State address Tuesday. Bridge offers context behind the proposals and what Republicans and other skeptics had to say in response.

Analysis: Here’s your property tax cut, maybe. Heads up — it’s expensive.

State Rep. Drew Springer has proposed getting rid of some sales tax exemptions to pay for a cut in property taxes. Emree Weaver / The Texas Tribune
Editor's note: If you'd like an email notice whenever we publish Ross Ramsey's column, click here. Willing to give up some sales tax exemptions to pay for a cut in your local property taxes? That proposition, from state Rep. Drew Springer, R-Muenster, is the first serious stab at a property tax cut in the current Texas legislative session. Lawmakers in the House and Senate are already working on legislation designed to slow the growth of property taxes.

Analysis: It takes more than three high officials to make Texas laws

From left: Sen. Paul Bettencourt, R-Houston; Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick; Gov. Greg Abbott; House Speaker Dennis Bonnen, R-Angleton; and Rep. Dustin Burrows, R-Lubbock, speak at a Jan. 31, 2019, news conference addressing property tax reform. Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / The Texas Tribune
Editor's note: If you'd like an email notice whenever we publish Ross Ramsey's column, click here. The state's top leaders spent the beginning of the legislative session talking about unity, comity and how they were on the same track, ready to work and even filing identical copies of important bills in the House and the Senate. Now that the 20-week session is entering its second quarter — believe it or not, it's 25 percent complete — the other 180 elected officials in the building are starting to raise their heads and make their thoughts known.

Analysis: Need money for property tax cuts? Ask voters first

Illustration by Todd Wiseman
Editor's note: If you'd like an email notice whenever we publish Ross Ramsey's column, click here. Legislative efforts to lower property taxes could end up in the hands of Texas voters — that is, if the proposals don't die in the House or Senate. Whether it's a proposal to force the state to pay at least half the cost of public education or an attempt to raise the homestead exemption on school taxes to 50 percent, the Legislature alone might not be enough. Voters might have to change the Texas Constitution to get this done. It's no certainty that the Legislature will even give tax cuts a serious run.

Analysis: Political climate changes in Texas congressional districts

U.S. Rep Lizzie Pannill Fletcher, D-Houston, took the stage Nov. 6 after defeating Republican former U.S. Rep. John Culberson. Michael Stravato for The Texas Tribune
Editor's note: If you'd like an email notice whenever we publish Ross Ramsey's column, click here. When political consultants were scouring the state's 2016 election results two years ago, they found three Texas congressional districts where voters had kept Republican incumbents in office while also favoring Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. Those districts became targets, and two of those three incumbents are no longer in Congress.

Analysis: Skirting the rules in the Texas Senate — but doing it by the book

The Texas Senate even has rules on how to break the other rules. Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / The Texas Tribune
Editor's note: If you'd like an email notice whenever we publish Ross Ramsey's column, click here. Messing with rules in an unusual way is not the same thing as cheating, and working the rules might be the only way to get a property tax bill through a Texas Senate that just barely approves. There are 31 senators. It ordinarily takes 19 of them to bring up legislation for consideration.

Analysis: Something’s missing from the opening bid for property tax “relief” in Texas

From left: Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, Gov. Greg Abbott and House Speaker Dennis Bonnen speak at a joint press conference addressing property tax reform. Miguel Gutierrez Jr./The Texas Tribune
Editor's note: If you'd like an email notice whenever we publish Ross Ramsey's column, click here. State leaders are picking up property taxes right where they left the issue in mid-2017, proposing a requirement that voters approve any local property tax increase of more than 2.5 percent before it can take effect. Need a quick refresher on why this is still on the table? The House wanted a 6-percent limit in 2017.

Analysis: Texas election officials serve up a plate with lots of red meat, few veggies

Texas Secretary of State David Whitley is telling local election officials that some people on the state's list of potential noncitizen voters do not belong there. Bob Daemmrich for The Texas Tribune
Editor's note: If you'd like an email notice whenever we publish Ross Ramsey's column, click here. It seems like the people most likely to scream about “fake news” would be better than this: The state of Texas put out a misleading alert last week that convinced a lot of people — including the big fella in the White House — that thousands of noncitizens have been voting in Texas elections. That would be bad, if only it were true. It's not.

Analysis: The challenge of reining in property taxes at no cost to schools

Property Tax Committee Chairman and state Sen. Paul Bettencourt, R-Houston, during the Senate Property Tax Committee hearing on on Feb. 6, 2019. Emree Weaver / The Texas Tribune
Editor's note: If you'd like an email notice whenever we publish Ross Ramsey's column, click here. The Texas Senate's property tax fervor shouldn't come as a surprise. That's where state-imposed limits on local tax increases got traction two years ago, and the leaders there — Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and Paul Bettencourt, who replaced Patrick in the Senate — were both flying the property tax flag for years before they were elected to state office.

Anchini opens Vermont store

News Release — Anchini
Jan. 22, 2019
Heather Carey
Anichini.comGet all of VTDigger's daily news.You'll never miss a story with our daily headlines in your inbox. Daily
Sundays only (Weekly Wrap)

Email me stories on these subjects... Business News
Courts & Corrections News
Education News
Energy News
Environment News
Health Care News
People & Places News
Politics News

Email me stories for these regions
Windham County

Anichini, the Vermont-based luxury textile company, is taking a chance on a longtime dream. In January 2019, the company opened its one and only brick and mortar store in Quechee, Ver- mont, ANICHINI 802, a full-service home furnishings store like no other.

Ancient spirituality guides a Maya town’s conservation efforts

Links to other stories in this three-part profile of the Concepción Chiquirichapa community's stewardship of its sacred cloud forest will appear here once they are published: How a Mayan town restored its sacred cloud forest and water supply CONCEPCIÓN CHIRIQUICHAPA, Guatemala — It was Thursday, Nov. 8, but the Mayan calendar marked the day as Wukub' Q'anil, or 7 Rabbit, a good day to ask for the rebirth of sterile lands and the fertility of all living beings. Rumualdo López, a Maya priest and spiritual guide, was prepared to hike up to the top of Siete Orejas, a mountain sacred to the Maya Mam of Concepción Chiquirichapa, a town of roughly 18,000 in western Guatemala, to perform a fire ceremony. The purpose was to connect with the energies of the mountain and ask for wisdom and the blessing of the Creator, the Ajaw as the Maya Mam call it. “Nowadays there are many people who prefer to connect with the Ajaw through other rites, such as Christians or Catholics,” López had said the day before the ceremony, checking the Mayan calendar.

And Now A Return To Our Regularly Scheduled Programming

When a U.S. president schedules a Rose Garden announcement to talk about declaring a national emergency, it's a pretty safe bet that NPR will carry it live. That was the case this morning, when NPR started airing "special coverage" of President Trump's declaration of a national emergency in order to help finance a U.S.-Mexico border wall. But the president didn't make it easy for NPR and its member stations, and other news organizations that cut away from regular programming, to broadcast the remarks live. Trump started out at 10:39 a.m. ET talking about international trade for several minutes before moving on to the topic of why he was declaring a national emergency. NPR carried those remarks live for 20 minutes, during which the president repeated his rationale, as well as some of his past claims that have been proven untrue.

Andy Griffith won’t save us

I watched the dash-cam video of Albany County Sheriff's Corporal Derek Colling scuffling with Robbie Ramirez, attempting to taser him, then shooting Robbie to death, as soon as it was released. Upon hearing of Robbie's death, I had wept for a solid hour. When I learned that he had a variety of serious mental illness (schizoaffective disorder) similar to mine (severe bipolar disorder with psychotic features), I was frightened. A local grand jury declined to indict Colling, who has also been cleared of two on-the-job killings in Nevada. He will likely not face federal prosecution either.

Annotating Stitt’s ‘State of the State’ Speech: Proposals and Omissions

Whitney Bryen / Oklahoma WatchGov. Kevin Stitt speaks on the House floor at the Capitol during his first State of the State address on Feb. 4, 2019. In a 33-minute speech Monday to kick off the 2019 legislative session, Gov. Kevin Stitt filled in some details on how his administration intends to make Oklahoma one of the the nation's leaders in education and business recruitment, and improve government accountability and transparency. Stitt used his first State of the State address to call for an additional pay raise for teachers, a more modernized state government and greater control over state agency leaders' employment. What was absent, however, might be as important as what was included.

Another group of civil rights organizations sues Texas over voter citizenship review

The lawsuit is the third of its kind filed against the state of Texas since the citizenship review effort was unveiled on Jan. 25. Mikala Compton for The Texas Tribune
A group of civil and voting rights organizations is suing the state's chief election officers and local election officials in five counties, claiming Texas' voter citizenship review efforts are unconstitutional because they intentionally target naturalized citizens and voters of color. In a lawsuit filed on Monday in a Galveston federal court, the MOVE Texas Civic Fund, the Jolt Initiative, the League of Women Voters of Texas and the Texas NAACP allege that the state's move to flag tens of thousands of voters for review using faulty data violates the equal protection clause of the U.S. Constitution. They claim the effort places an undue burden on the right to vote and treats naturalized citizens differently than those born in the county.

Another path to primary health care

Nurse practitioners are part of the solution to the primary care shortage in Connecticut and across the nation, working within, and leading healthcare teams to keep Americans healthy.

Another UMD coach leaves position

A resignation that makes you say hmmmm: Annette Wiles, the University of Minnesota-Duluth women's basketball coach, resigned Monday and is the third female head coach to leave the university this year. Matt Wellens of the News Tribune reports that she was with the Bulldogs for seven seasons, taking UMD to the NCAA Division II tournament in 2010 and 2012, and finishing with a 109-86 record. She follows Shannon Miller, the former women's hockey coach, and Jen Banford, who served as women's hockey director of operations and head softball coach. Wiles cites an unhealthy work environment at the university. Miller and Banford have filed a complaint against the university with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the Minnesota Department of Human Rights and Wiles is expected to join them.The folks in Austin are taking a deserved victory lap after former TV and radio news director, Riverland Community College instructor and former mayor John O'Rourke has been named to the Minnesota broadcasting Hall of Fame.

Anticipated increase in ICE detainees puts Vermont out of state inmates in limbo

The Vermont Department of Corrections is having difficulty finding a new location for out of state prisoners because of an anticipated influx of immigrant detainees. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement is looking to lease beds in locations across the country, Vermont officials say. State prison commissioner Lisa Menard told the Senate Appropriations Committee this week that federal demand for prison beds is impacting the search for a new placement for Vermont prisoners held out of state. Lisa Menard, commissioner of the Department of Corrections. Photo by Elizabeth Hewitt/VTDigger
" data-medium-file="" data-large-file="" src="" alt="Lisa Menard" srcset=" 300w, 125w, 610w, 150w, 1024w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" data-recalc-dims="1">Lisa Menard, commissioner of the Department of Corrections.

App, Community Buy-In Can Help Decrease Litter in San Antonio

The Litterati app presents us with an opportunity to tackle our litter problem by turning environmental activism into a game that inspires sustainable solutions. The post App, Community Buy-In Can Help Decrease Litter in San Antonio appeared first on Rivard Report.

Appalachian Trail side trails in Norwich area under review

This story by Jared Pendak was published by the Valley News on Jan. 26
NORWICH — A potential crackdown on unauthorized side trails along the Appalachian Trail corridor in Norwich is forcing longtime users to contend with federally imposed regulations.Get all of VTDigger's daily news.You'll never miss a story with our daily headlines in your inbox. Daily
Sundays only (Weekly Wrap)

Email me stories on these subjects... Business News
Courts & Corrections News
Education News
Energy News
Environment News
Health Care News
People & Places News
Politics News

Email me stories for these regions
Windham County

As a designated National Scenic Trail, the AT is governed by the National Park Service and, in Vermont, is managed by the Green Mountain National Forest. According to a 2016 inventory of side trails in Norwich administered by the Appalachian Trail Conservancy — an organization that partners with NPS and the U.S. Forest Service to protect and maintain the AT — the approximately 6 miles of the AT that run along the southern boundary of Norwich contain some of highest density of unauthorized side trails within the 2,190-mile trail's entire corridor from Georgia to Maine.

Appeals Court Rules Key Anti-Age Discrimination Protections Don’t Apply to Job Seekers, Only Employees

by Peter Gosselin

In a decision last month, the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago has sharply limited a federal law that protects workers who are 40 and older from age bias by ruling that key provisions only apply to those who already have jobs, not those seeking them. The 8-4 decision, written by Circuit Judge Michael Scudder, a Trump administration appointee, said the “plain language” of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act shows that in enacting the measure, Congress aimed its sweeping prohibition against discrimination at employees but “did not extend that same protection to outside job applicants.”

The ruling prompted a fierce dissent from Circuit Judge David Hamilton, an Obama administration appointee, who accused the majority of taking a “deliberately naïve approach” to the law and “closing its eyes to fifty years of history, context and application.”

The ADEA's anti-discrimination language originally matched that of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which covers race, gender, religion and other categories. And for much of the last half-century, federal courts have treated provisions of the two laws as largely interchangeable. The ruling came in a lawsuit brought by an Illinois lawyer, Dale Kleber, who was 58 in 2014 when he applied for a senior attorney position with CareFusion Corp., a unit of medical device maker Becton Dickinson & Co., but was passed over for an interview. The job eventually went to a 29-year-old candidate.

Applications Open for Girls’ State

Philipstown legion will select one junior to attendApplications Open for Girls' State was first posted on February 2, 2019 at 8:41 am.

Apply Now: City Limits’ Paid Internship for NYC High School Students

Jeanmarie EvellyFormer CLARIFY interns at work. City Limits is now taking applications for the spring semester of our youth journalism training program. CLARIFY, or the City Limits Accountability Reporting Initiative for Youth, is a 10-week internship that teaches students the the ins-and-outs of reporting and writing news stories, with a focus on how to successfully cover community board and other civic meetings. Under the guidance of City Limits staff, interns work on stories related to issues in their neighborhoods and have the chance to get their articles published. Applicants must be of high school age, and must live in New York City.

Arch revisions include some surprises

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Jan. 27, 2011 - Here's a rundown on some things that are in or out in the new scheme presented for the renovation of the Arch grounds and the reconnection of the grounds to downtown St. Louis and the East Side. First, however, here is the answer to a question many have been asking for months, and that is how much is this monumental renovation and reconnection project going to cost.

Architects offer pro bono input to Vermont communities

News Release — American Institute of Architects, Vermont Chapter
February 19, 2019
Sarah O Donnell
AIA Vermont
47 Maple Street, Suite 315
Burlington, VT
Burlington, Vt — The American Institute of Architects, Vermont Chapter (AIAVT) is partnering with the Constructions Specifications Institute, Vermont Chapter (CSI VT) to offer a new format for their annual ACX conference this year, which will take place on May 21st at the Hilton on Battery Street. in Burlington. As part of this year's event, ACX VT invites proposals from Vermont nonprofits, municipalities, and community- based groups for pro-bono design and planning input. The ACX conference is an annual design and construction expo, now in its sixth year. The conference theme for this year is Inclusive Design (design that considers the full range of human diversity with respect to ability, language, culture, gender, race, age, and socioeconomic status).

Are Fifth-Graders Ready for Middle School? Oklahoma City Public Schools Leaders Say Yes

Whitney Bryen / Oklahoma WatchStudents gather outside of Webster Middle School after classes on Jan. 24, 2019. Middle schools would include fifth-graders under an Oklahoma City Public Schools proposal. Fifth graders in Oklahoma City Public Schools will be joining older peers in middle schools across the district under a proposal unveiled this week. The fifth-through-eighth-grade middle school model isn't very common, especially in large districts.

Are mixed-use projects the right path forward for the Twin Cities?

Once upon a time, an office building was an office building, a hotel was a hotel, and an apartment building was an apartment building. But today, mixed-use projects combining different property uses are increasingly popular. While the most common mixed-use developments are apartments with ground-floor retail space, many developers are assembling a wide array of mixed uses, sometimes in unexpected combinations. Mixed-use development isn't the future of commercial real estate; in many cases it's already become the norm. But mixed-use projects are more challenging than a single-use development.

Are there restrictions on how U.S. Rep. Joaquin Castro can promote his brother for president?

Presidential candidate Julián Castro, left, has chosen his brother, U.S. Rep Joaquin Castro, to serve as his campaign manager, which is typically a volunteer position that involves managing big-picture tasks. Marjorie Kamys Cotera for The Texas Tribune
Hey, Texplainer: As a member of Congress, are there rules or restrictions on how much Joaquin Castro can promote his brother's run for president? The short answer is no. Members of Congress, almost always from the same party, routinely promote each other's campaigns. For his 2020 campaign for president, Julián Castro selected his twin brother, U.S. Rep. Joaquin Castro, D-San Antonio, as his campaign chairman.

Area Businesses Continue To Lend A Helping Hand As Government Reopens

Federal workers across the nation are taking a temporary sigh of relief as the government reopens for three weeks during negotiations over security along the southern border. But even with the shutdown on pause, there is still a lingering question of when the roughly 800,000 federal workers nationwide affected by the shutdown will get paid.

Arizona could add almost 166,000 jobs by mid-2020

Arizona is expected to add almost 166,000 jobs between the last quarter of 2018 and middle of 2020, the Arizona Office of Economic Opportunity said. Construction and manufacturing jobs will lead the way.

Arizona’s 54th Legislature: Smell the sanity (and/or fear)

The 54th Arizona Legislature is acting someone put two parts hydrogen and one part oxygen in their drinking water. Could it be they've read my work? Or do they just know a thing or two about elections and consequences?

Arizona’s 54th Legislature: Smell the sanity (and/or fear)

The 54th Arizona Legislature is acting someone put two parts hydrogen and one part oxygen in their drinking water. Could it be they've read my work? Or do they just know a thing or two about elections and consequences?

Armed With Tourniquet, Cops Saves A Life

Officer Gregory Dash saw bright red blood flowing from the leg of a shot man on a Newhallville porch. So he reached to the left side of his duty belt to retrieve the police department's latest weapon of choice.

Army Corps of Engineers Sizes Up Possible Defenses Against Coastal Storms

NYC ORRFlooding in Lower Manhattan after Hurricane Sandy. With sea levels around New York City expected to rise as much as six feet over the next nine decades, federal planners are considering what would have been unthinkable just a few years ago: a $120 billion network of defensive measures including seven miles of tidal gates and 26 miles of shoreline structures like floodwalls. And that's just the most extensive—and expensive—of five alternatives examined in an interim report released this week by the Army Corps of Engineers. In its long-awaited “New York-New Jersey Harbor and Tributaries Coastal Storm Risk Management Interim Report,” the Corps does not recommend a course of action. That recommendation will come sometime before the agency's initial environmental impact statement for its New York resiliency project is released for public review in March of 2020.

Aromas Progressive Action League plans panel discussion

Feb. 10 event to focus on local impact of November midterm election.

Around Town (Photos)

Calm after the storm, super wolf blood moon, elementary artAround Town (Photos) was first posted on January 25, 2019 at 12:45 pm.

Around Town (Photos)

Haldane smarts, road blockAround Town (Photos) was first posted on February 1, 2019 at 10:20 am.

Arson attack leaves activist in Indonesia shaken

MENEMENG, Indonesia — An environmental activist and his family survived an attack on their lives early Sunday morning after assailants barricaded them inside their home and set it on fire. Murdani heads a chapter of Indonesia's largest environmental NGO, the Indonesian Forum for the Environment (Walhi). At around 3 a.m., he and his wife woke to the smell of burning on the second floor of their home in Menemeng village on Lombok, an island next to Bali. Over the past few months, Murdani had noticed people watching his house. He had recently taken to sleeping on the front porch in order to keep guard, though on this night he slept upstairs.

As CPS irons out school budgets, charters will also get more cash

CPS is increasing the per-pupil funding provided to charter schools for this year in order to “equalize” funding between them and traditional schools. Charter school operators say that even with the slight increase, some of them are down so many students that they have had to shift spending around to create a balanced budget. CPS will spend an additional $7.8 million on charter schools, but spokesman Bill McCaffrey says he is not sure how much more per-pupil that amounts to. The decision is in response to the late September announcement that CPS would not cut traditional school budgets even if they had less than the projected number of students. Under student-based budgeting, schools get a stipend for each student, but ever since implementing the new strategy two years ago, officials have declined to take money away from schools that enroll fewer students than expected.

As debate rages on border wall funding, construction is already beginning

Nayda Alvarez painted this message on the roof of her home in La Rosita, Texas after receiving letters from the federal government stating that a portion of her land could be seized for the border wall. Marjorie Kamys Cotera
MISSION — Krista Schlyer saw the arm of a yellow excavator emerge from the treetops in La Parida Banco National Wildlife Refuge on Thursday morning. Soon, this tract will be bisected by roughly 30 feet of concrete and steel fencing. In the past week, the conservation photographer and writer has walked past the land multiple times and glimpsed the heavy machinery — but it was never moving. On Thursday morning, as she approached the site, she saw roughly a half dozen vehicles from local law enforcement agencies and Border Patrol surrounding the site.

As greenhouse emissions from power plants decline, a new focus on vehicles

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency recently released “The Air We Breathe,” a report to the state Legislature on air quality that state statute requires every two years. One item in the 27-page report that drew particular attention was the fact that for the first time, vehicle exhaust represented the single largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in Minnesota, exceeding emissions from power plants. While Minnesota is making progress in reducing emissions associated with global climate change, the state is still short of the goals it set for itself in when it passed the Next Generation Energy Act in 2007, which sought to cut emissions 30 percent by 2025 and 80 percent by 2050. Robert Moffitt

Nationwide, the news is even worse. U.S. carbon dioxide emissions rose an estimated 3.4 percent in 2018, according to a report issued this month by the Rhodium Group, an independent economic research firm.

As it ponders where to put a Confederate plaque, a Texas state board faces backlash for removing it

Dr. Alma Arredondo addresses the State Preservation Board at the Capitol on Jan. 25, 2015. Arredondo argued the state erred in removing a Confederate plaque that said the Civil War wasn't over slavery. Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / The Texas Tribune
What started Friday as a public State Preservation Board hearing on where to place a controversial Confederate plaque that was recently removed from the Texas Capitol quickly turned into a heated debate over whether the marker should've been taken down in the first place. Two weeks prior, the board voted unanimously to remove the “Children of the Confederacy Creed” plaque, which falsely states that the Civil War was “not a rebellion, nor was its underlying cause to sustain slavery,” from its location near the Capitol rotunda.

As jobs grow hard to fill, businesses join the drive to push rural residents toward college

This story about rural college-going was produced by The Hechinger Report, a nonprofit, independent news organization focused on inequality and innovation in education. When the Chemours chemical plant in New Johnsonville, Tennessee, needed workers to maintain its high-tech machinery, it advertised for them as far as 90 miles away in Nashville in one direction and 150 miles away in Memphis on the other. It still couldn't fill the jobs. “You just can't find anybody because people don't want to come that far,” said Gregory Martz, manager of the facility, which makes a quarter of the nation's supply of titanium dioxide used in everything from paints to plastics and paper. [cms_ad:x100]The problem isn't just that the plant is in a rural town with a population of less than 2,000.

As lawmakers file financial disclosures, House wants more

As lawmakers and officials filed their annual financial disclosure forms last week, Wyoming representatives passed a bill to increase what they must reveal. The 2019 disclosure forms required of the state's senators, representatives and five top elected officials are published below. The state's requirement seeks to protect the public from conflicts of interest arising from elected officials voting on issues that could benefit them personally. Lawmakers in the Wyoming House have meantime passed and sent to the Senate a bill that would make solons and statewide elected officials include, in many instances, how much they make from state contracts. Wyoming has not ranked well in nationwide analyses of elected officials' conflict-of-interest and disclosure requirements.

As lawmakers select a new leader of The Green Mountain Boys, candidates focus on treatment of women

Col. Greg Knight, candidate to be Vermont National Guard adjutant general, at the Statehouse in Montpelier on Tuesday, Jan. 22, 2019. Photo by Glenn Russell/VTDigger
" data-medium-file="" data-large-file="" src="" alt="Greg Knight" width="610" height="412" srcset=" 610w, 125w, 300w, 768w, 1280w, 1920w, 2000w" sizes="(max-width: 610px) 100vw, 610px" data-recalc-dims="1">Col. Greg Knight, candidate to be Vermont National Guard adjutant general, at the Statehouse in Montpelier last month.

As layoffs go into effect, Keurig closes Waterbury early production facility

Photo by Gordon Miller
Keurig Dr Pepper has followed through with its layoff announcement in October and shuttered the company's Early Production Center in Waterbury. The company shut down that operation at the end of December, following an announcement in late October that the company would lay off 118 employees across the company's three Vermont locations, with Waterbury workers taking the brunt of the cuts. The layoffs followed the July merger of Keurig Green Mountain and Dr Pepper Snapple Group to form Keurig Dr Pepper. The new company offers an array of potable products, from A&W Root Beer to Yoo-Hoo Chocolate Drink, and expects to generate $11 billion in annual revenue. The layoffs were among the largest in Vermont in 2018.

As Piedras Negras facility prepares to close, fate of hundreds of migrants remains unclear

People wait behind a barricade inside a migrant facility in Piedras Negras, Mexico, on Feb. 18, 2019. Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / The Texas Tribune
PIEDRAS NEGRAS, Mexico — They're the lucky ones — the hundreds of migrants who have moved out of the makeshift shelter in this town across the U.S.-Mexico border from Eagle Pass. But as Olvin Hernandez stood behind a fence that walled him off from the rest of the city, he realized he might face a different path. Hernandez, 21, is among the hundreds whose fate remained unknown Monday after more than 1,000 Central American asylum-seekers have been allowed to leave a former factory that's been a temporary facility for the group since they arrived earlier this month.

Asian banks give billions to firms linked to deforestation, study finds

Industries that cause the loss of rainforest and peatlands in Southeast Asia were bankrolled to the tune of $62 billion between 2013 and 2018, according to new data released by the Forests and Finance campaign of the Rainforest Action Network (RAN). Chinese, Japanese, Indonesian and Malaysian banks were the biggest funders of so-called forest risk activities and were least likely to have internal policies that restricted damage to the environment from the activities they funded, RAN concludes. According to the Forests and Finance campaign director, Tom Picken, eliminating or restricting the financial support for forest-risk businesses – defined as unsustainable palm oil, pulp and paper, rubber and timber developments – is the most significant action that can be taken to reduce their impact. The campaign is a collaboration between RAN, the NGO TuK Indonesia, and a Netherlands-based not-for-profit called Profundo. “Step back for a second and think about recent efforts to address deforestation in Southeast Asia,” Picken said in an interview with Mongabay.

Ask Curious Louis: What’s Happening With The St. Louis City-County Merger Plan?

After nearly 150 years of separation, will St. Louis and St. Louis County reunite in 2020? If Better Together has its way, the answer will be yes. The group has released a formal proposal to merge the city and county governments and police departments and plans to gather enough signatures to put the issue on the Missouri ballot.

Ask the Indy: How would a Denver teachers strike affect you?

Denver teachers are preparing to strike Monday, and we're turning the tables on our Ask the Indy project. Rather than you asking us questions, we have questions for you. If this weekend's last-ditch negotiations between Denver Public Schools and the teachers' union fail, how would a strike affect you or people you know? We'll take your responses — please make them as specific as possible — and put them together into a story. Here's an example: Rebecca Lovvorn, a Denver Public Schools English teacher and single mother of three, tells us she worries about the stress a strike will cause for her kids, especially her oldest son.

Asked to probe Bennington law enforcement, attorney general takes a pass

Attorney General TJ Donovan, right, appears before the House Democratic Caucus at the Statehouse in Montpelier on Tuesday, Jan. 22, 2019. Donovan explained his decision not to prosecute the people who harassed former representative Kiah Morris of Brattleboro. Morris chose not to run for re-election after her family was subjected to racial harrassment. Donovan, basing his explanation on First Amendment grounds, said the fact that Morris was a public official raised the bar very high when it came to distinguishing harassment from an actual threat of violence.

Asylum Seekers Getting Pushed Back Across Border

U.S. border officials finalized plans Thursday to require asylum seekers to remain in Mexico while their cases are considered in the United States, The Los Angeles Times reports. Border officers were set to start pushing asylum applicants back across the border as soon as orders became operational on Friday, beginning at the San Ysidro Port of Entry in San Diego, a Homeland Security official said on condition of anonymity to discuss internal planning. Until now, most migrants seeking asylum were released from detention into the United States while awaiting a court hearing, a process that can take years because of backlogs.

At Feb. 7 ‘Think Tank,’ Local Experts Will Seek Solutions to Missouri Teacher Shortage

Leaders in the field of education are sounding the alarm that a teacher shortage is hurting Missouri schools —and that it's about to get worse. Local education experts plan to put their heads together Thursday to try to combat the factors leading to the problem. The teacher shortage is a national phenomenon; and to be clear, it's not that qualified people don't exist—it's that they simply are deciding not to be teachers, or that they're getting out of the field early. Listen to the audio version of this story here. There are many factors, and Missouri stands out in at least a couple of areas.

At Hollister town hall, residents voice concerns about growth

While some see the current development projects as catching up post-recession, others fear traffic will get worse as a result.

At state’s first hemp conference, farmers told to ‘share the risk’

Thatcher Michelsen, center, and Colbey Daden of Eat More Hemp talk about their products at the 2019 Industrial Hemp Conference at the Hilton Burlington in Burlington on Friday, Feb. 8, 2019. Photo by Glenn Russell/VTDigger
" data-medium-file="" data-large-file="" src="" alt="Thatcher Michelsen, center, and Colbey Daden" width="640" height="427" srcset=" 2000w, 125w, 300w, 768w, 610w, 1280w, 1920w" sizes="(max-width: 640px) 100vw, 640px" data-recalc-dims="1">Thatcher Michelsen, center, and Colbey Daden of Eat More Hemp talk about their products at the 2019 Industrial Hemp Conference in Burlington last Friday. Photo by Glenn Russell/VTDigger
As he watches the hemp business take off, Jay Noller, head of the Oregon State University Crop and Soil Science Department, is reminded of the evolution of the modern sugar cane industry, but at high speed. Like hemp, sugar cane was grown and used domestically for centuries before it became a commodity.

At USM, Hopson, Bennett at odds over Briles, so what, if anything, happens next?

Southern Miss Sports InformationJay Hopson, shown here arguing a call, wanted badly to hire ex-Baylor head coach Art Briles as his offensive coordinator. Jay Hopson's job is to win football games at Southern Miss. He'll get fired if doesn't win enough. Never mind graduation rates and playing by the rules, the bottom line is the same as it always has been in college football. Just win, baby.

Attorney General backs legal cannabis market in Vermont

Attorney General TJ Donovan, left, testifies Thursday in favor of a cannabis tax and regulation mechanism before the Senate Judiciary Committee. Photo by Glenn Russell/VTDigger
Attorney General TJ Donovan voiced support Thursday for legislation that would establish a regulated market for cannabis in Vermont, after he had previously expressed reservations about legalizing sales of the substance. Donovan told the Senate Judiciary Committee that since Vermont moved to legalize limited possession and cultivation of the drug last year, his views on creating a market for the drug had “evolved.”Get all of VTDigger's daily news.You'll never miss a story with our daily headlines in your inbox. Daily
Sundays only (Weekly Wrap)

Email me stories on these subjects... Business News
Courts & Corrections News
Education News
Energy News
Environment News
Health Care News
People & Places News
Politics News

Email me stories for these regions
Windham County

“We have to have a regulated market,” he said.

Attorney General Donovan announces successful block of census question

News Release — Attorney General T.J. Donovan
Jan. 18, 2019
Julio ThompsonGet all of VTDigger's daily news.You'll never miss a story with our daily headlines in your inbox. Daily
Sundays only (Weekly Wrap)

Email me stories on these subjects... Business News
Courts & Corrections News
Education News
Energy News
Environment News
Health Care News
People & Places News
Politics News

Email me stories for these regions
Windham County

MONTPELIER – Attorney General T.J. Donovan announced that a court has blocked the federal government's decision to add a citizenship question to the 2020 U.S. Census questionnaire. In April 2018, the State of Vermont joined a coalition of 17 other states, the District of Columbia, 15 cities and counties, and the U.S. Conference of Mayors in filing a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York to block the federal government from demanding citizenship information in the 2020 Census.

Attorney General Donovan proposes legislation for immigrant communities

News Release — Attorney General T.J. Donovan
Jan. 23, 2019
Julio Thompson
802-828-3171Get all of VTDigger's daily news.You'll never miss a story with our daily headlines in your inbox. Daily
Sundays only (Weekly Wrap)

Email me stories on these subjects... Business News
Courts & Corrections News
Education News
Energy News
Environment News
Health Care News
People & Places News
Politics News

Email me stories for these regions
Windham County

MONTPELIER – Today Vermont Attorney General T.J. Donovan issued recommendations to the Vermont legislature to enable law enforcement agencies to better protect immigrant communities. Attorney General Donovan also called for robust trainings for law enforcement in hate crime and bias incident investigation and implementation of the Fair and Impartial Policing Policy (FIP).

Attorney General Donovan shares heating assistance information

News Release — Attorney General T.J. Donovan
Jan. 31, 2019
Charity Clark
MONTPELIER – With extreme cold hitting Vermont, Attorney General T.J. Donovan is warning that older adults and those with chronic medical conditions are especially susceptible to hypothermia. Hypothermia is a dangerous drop in core body temperature. It caused 16 deaths in Vermont last year. The Attorney General's message comes through his Elder Protection Initiative and the Vulnerable Adult Fatality Review Team.

Attorney General Donovan statement on protecting Vermont immigrant communities

News Release — Attorney General T.J. Donovan
Jan. 27, 2019
Charity R. Clark
STATEMENT OF ATTORNEY GENERAL T.J. DONOVANOn the Attorney General's Office's Work in Support of Vermont's Immigrant Communities
Since changes to immigration policies by the federal government began in early 2017, my office has taken many steps to protect Vermont's immigrant communities. I believe that no matter where you came from if you live in Vermont and call Vermont home, you are a Vermonter. It is incumbent upon all of us to do what we can to support all Vermonters, and I will continue to stand up for our immigrant communities however I can. My office has taken numerous steps, some of them unprecedented, to protect Vermont's immigrant communities.

Audio: Good news from Mexico monarch reserve despite looming deforestation, mine threat

On today's episode, we talk with Mongabay contributor Martha Pskowski, who recently traveled to central Mexico to report on threats to monarch butterflies in their overwintering grounds. Listen here: A large population of monarch butterflies migrates from the United States and Canada to central Mexico every year. Tourists typically arrive in droves to see the butterflies at the reserves set up in their overwintering grounds. Right now is a particularly good time to see the butterflies, as Mexico's national commissioner for protected natural areas has announced that, after years of declines, the number of monarchs spending their winter in Mexico is up 144 percent from last year. Scientists have cited a number of reasons why fewer monarchs might have made it to Mexico in recent years, including a more perilous migration route, the eradication of the milkweed the butterflies lay their eggs on in their breeding grounds in the US Midwest, and climate change, which is making milkweed too toxic for monarch caterpillars to eat.

Audio: The sounds of a rare New Zealand bird reintroduced to its native habitat

On today's episode, we speak with Oliver Metcalf, lead author of a recent study that used bioacoustic recordings and machine learning to track birds in New Zealand after they'd been reintroduced into the wild. In this Field Notes segment, Metcalf plays some of the recordings of the hihi, also known as the stitchbird, that informed his research. Listen here: Early this year, Zuzana Burivalova, the forest researcher behind Mongabay's Conservation Effectiveness series, together with co-author Rhett Butler, Mongabay's CEO and founder, published a commentary in Science arguing that bioacoustics could be an important tool in assessing what's working and what's not working in conservation. Oliver Metcalf has just published a study in the journal Methods in Ecology and Evolution that tested this potential by using bioacoustics to track birds in New Zealand known as hihis or stitchbirds after they had been reintroduced into the wild. Metcalf is a PhD Candidate at Manchester Metropolitan University in the UK, but he led the study as a masters student at Zoological Society of London's Institute of Zoology and Imperial College London.

Audit faults financial management at troubled Springfield hospital

A forensic audit discovered no illegal activity but found financial managers at Springfield Hospital were not forthcoming and made “material misstatements” the year before the troubled hospital almost closed. BerryDunn, a New Hampshire accounting firm, reviewed financial records for the hospital between Oct. 1, 2017 and Dec. 3, 2018, after the board discovered the hospital was months behind in payroll taxes and was facing penalties. The forensic audit highlighted a financial transparency problem at the troubled hospital the year before the state bailed out the hospital with an $800,000 loan.

Audit: Mental Health Administration failed to check patients’ eligibility and patient information is not secure

By Charlie Hayward
State auditors found that the State Mental Health Administration found that the MHA failed to:

Keep documentation showing patients who received over $16 million in mental health services were eligible
Assure timely reviews/audits of provider claims and perform regular bank reconciliations
Maintain adequate security over computers and sensitive patient data
Keep adequate internal control over cash receipts

The Mental Health Administration delivers comprehensive care, treatment, and rehabilitation of individuals with mental illnesses, either through a network of hospital facilities operated by MHA or through community service agencies. MHA spent $788 million during fiscal year 2013. MHA receives funding from multiple federal and state sources and each funding source can have different eligibility rules. Because of this, MHA must keep detailed records about patients so the funding source is correctly matched to each patient service. Eligibility documentation missing; important statistics not kept
MHA utilizes an Administrative Services Organization (ASO) to review its mental health services.

Auditor releases records predecessor said would cost $8,000

Two groups of transparency advocates suing former Wyoming State Auditor Cynthia Cloud won a surprising reversal Tuesday when the new auditor, Kristi Racines, released years of spending data. Racines also refunded the groups' thousands of dollars that Cloud had charged them under new rules that allow state agencies to bill the public for public records, according to a statement released Tuesday by the groups. Racines' actions cast fresh doubt on the new rules' validity as measures are taken in the Legislature to boost state transparency. Two groups, a national transparency organization called Open the Books and a Wyoming group called the Equality State Taxpayers Association, sued Cloud in July 2018 alleging she was slowly dripping out spending data even after the group paid her thousands of dollars to produce six-years' worth of information. In a statement Tuesday, the groups praised Racines' refund of nearly $8,000.

Auditors to Prosecutors: Hire Collection Agency to Recover Unpaid Fees From Offenders

Oklahoma district attorneys have more than $56 million in uncollected fees on their books and are being advised they should hire collection agencies to go after offenders to recover more of the debt. But district attorneys are balking at the recommendation, made by private auditors, because the prospect of collecting a lot of the money is uncertain – and aggressive collections could conflict with criminal justice reform efforts intended to shift their offices and the courts away from depending on fines and fees. Reform advocates say heavy fees and fines have trapped offenders in debt loads that are difficult or impossible to erase and can lead former inmates to re-offend and end up back in prison. A recent performance audit of the District Attorneys Council found more than $56 million in uncollected fees among just 13 of the 27 DA districts. The total could be much higher because it doesn't include Oklahoma and Tulsa counties, which track fees on different systems, and 14 DA districts that use another financial system.

Audubon makes case for $2.5 million in projects to restore Mississippi Gulf Coast

A Piping PloverThe National Audubon Society is recommending a $1.7 billion investment in the Gulf Coast through restoration and conservation efforts, including $2.5 million worth of projects in Mississippi. Tuesday's report, Restoring the Gulf of Mexico for Birds and People, highlights the challenges that birds and their habitats have faced since the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, which resulted in a $20.8 billion global settlement. Researchers say the damage has been compounded by challenges such as loss of habitat, reduced water quality, erosion, predation, and human disturbance. Of the settlement money, BP agreed to pay $750 million to Mississippi. Legislators decided to dedicate about 75 percent of the funds to the Gulf Coast in last year's special session.

Augsburg prof who used N-word in class suspended

Currently suspended over a “range of issues.” City Pages's Hannah Jones reports: “In October, during an honors seminar called ‘The Scholar Citizen,' Augsburg University history professor Phillip Adamo had his class discuss James Baldwin's The Fire Next Time. In the book, Baldwin, an African American man, attempts to convey the experience of living as a black person in 1960s America to white readers. … The way Adamo tells it, a student in the class quoted a sentence from the book: ‘You can really only be destroyed by believing that you really are what the white world calls a…' … You can fill in the blank from there. Baldwin did, and so did the student, according to Adamo. This, allegedly, took some other students aback, which prompted Adamo to ask whether it was ‘appropriate to use the word if the author had used it.'

Aurora is proposing to hire an external manager for two struggling schools

The Aurora school board will consider a pre-emptive move next month: whether to offer to hire an external manager to pull up two struggling schools — before the state decides to intervene and impose a solution. Under Colorado law, when schools continuously fail to improve student achievement, the state must order a solution. Aurora could seek to avert that. Aurora Public Schools would be the first district in Colorado to take advantage of a new state provision allowing schools and districts to request early state approval of a district-devised plan to improve. The benefit, as district officials told the school board, is that they get some say in the decision and stability.

Author, Social Justice Advocate Reginald Dwayne Betts to Speak at OLLU

Betts, who at age 16 was sentenced to nine years in prison, has since earned a law degree from Yale and now advocates on behalf of prisoners who face similar struggles. The post Author, Social Justice Advocate Reginald Dwayne Betts to Speak at OLLU appeared first on Rivard Report.

Authorities Find More Ways to Silence Women Human-Rights Experts

Protests against a new overtime law in Hungary, Dec. 12, 2018, Budapest. Women who defend human rights are subjected more than ever before to a range of threats, from online trolling to torture, a new Swedish report finds. More than two decades have passed since the United Nations General Assembly approved the Declaration on Human Rights Defenders, which encourages countries to protect people who fight for human rights around the world. So why has the situation deteriorated, especially for women who defend human rights?

Automated ‘platoons’ of trucks might soon be driving on Minnesota roads

MnDOTPlatooning is aimed at helping trucking companies save gas and improve traffic flow while preventing crashes.The future of vehicle automation in Minnesota doesn't just revolve around personal cars, like self-driving Ubers, or features built into the latest Tesla. New technology is also changing the state's long-haul trucking industry. Much of that technology, like automatic braking, is already being incorporated by private businesses. But industry leaders and a state task force have approached Minnesota lawmakers in an effort to legalize the latest wave of automation to reach local roads: a practice known as platooning, in which trucks follow each other closely on highways and synchronize their driving with the help of technology. Platooning is aimed at helping trucking companies save gas and improve traffic flow while preventing crashes.

Award Winners (Photos)

First responders, Beacon schools, Jean Saunders history, Farm BureauAward Winners (Photos) was first posted on February 9, 2019 at 10:50 am.

Baby & Dog

Not just a baby, not just a dog, but both ...Baby & Dog was first posted on January 26, 2019 at 11:01 am.

Baby & Dog

Not just a baby, not just a dog, but both ...Baby & Dog was first posted on February 10, 2019 at 11:12 am.

Back from Nowhere, Ride delivers at the Riv

If the primary measure for the validity of a band's reunion is whether the group left unfinished business in need of completion, a strong case can be made for the return of Ride, the groundbreaking Oxford quintet that was one of the most vital in the shoegaze/dream-pop scene of the early '90s.As dedicated manager Dave Newton noted in the balcony of the Riviera Theater Friday night, Ride only played Chicago twice in its first incarnation. When the band asked for a show of hands for how many had seen it back in the day, a mere handful in the packed crowd shot up. And as great as it is on the four albums it produced between 1990 and 1996, it was always louder, harder, and much more intense—almost overwhelming in the style of its peers and Creation labelmates My Bloody Valentine—onstage.The enormously talented Andy Bell, who fronted the group with fellow guitarist-vocalist Mark Gardener, went on to become a hired hand with Oasis, then Liam Gallagher's Beady Eye. He likely played to more people at some festivals than had seen Ride on the entirety of its first U.S. tour, and that just ain't right: Think of John Lennon joining Herman's Hermits.The influence of the group's swirling guitars, seductive harmonies, and driving rhythms looms large on the current rock scene, with Montreal's Besnard Lakes, which opened with a strong set on Friday, just one of a dozen worthy examples. And though Ride's last album Tarantula represented a bit of a retrenching, number three, Carnival of Light, is an unjustly overlooked gem that significantly broadened the trademark hazy sound, offering a dozen new directions that could still have been explored if Bell, Gardener, frenetic drummer Loz Colbert, and stoic bassist Steve Queralt hadn't gone their separate ways for a time.So, hell, yeah, it was great to have the original foursome back at the Riv.

Back on the bus: A civil rights struggle rolls on

For people of color, U.S. banks are shutting the door to homeownership. And for nearly a year, the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority has been fighting to keep this story off the streets of Philadelphia. Last year, we reported that African Americans in Philadelphia were far more likely to be denied a home loan than their white counterparts, even when they made the same amount of money, tried to get the same size loan and wanted to buy in the same neighborhood. We combed through 31 million mortgage records, covering nearly every loan application in America in 2015 and 2016. Even taking various factors – such as applicants' income, loan amount and the neighborhood where they wanted to live – into consideration, our analysis found some disturbing patterns.

Bad practice: What Mississippi doesn’t tell patients about doctors and sexual misconduct

Danielle's first visit went fine. She'd been referred to a well-respected OB-GYN in northwest Mississippi after a clinic examination determined she had abnormal cervical cells that needed scraping. The doctor's affable laid-back demeanor put Danielle at ease. The second visit raised Danielle's suspicions. A complication during the first procedure had left her bedridden with pain and caused heavy bleeding.

Bakk calls Walz’s Line 3 decision ‘absolutely ridiculous’

For the Duluth News Tribune, Dana Ferguson reports, “Hundreds of business owners and Duluth area local officials filled a hotel ballroom Thursday, Feb. 21, to learn more about the goings-on at the state Legislature and possible wins for the Duluth area. And they got an earful from Gov. Tim Walz, who hoped to win over broader support for his budget blueprint, and from another Democratic-Farmer-Labor leader, who blasted the governor's move to delay the Enbridge Line 3 oil pipeline project. … [Tom] Bakk on Thursday took the microphone after Walz left the breakfast and vented his frustrations about the Walz administration's decision to again delay the Enbridge Line 3 oil pipeline project in northern Minnesota. And the Iron Ranger… said the move to ask the Public Utilities Commission to reconsider its certificate of need for the construction project was ‘absolutely ridiculous.'”
The Star Tribune's Liz Sawyer reports: “St.

Baltimore’s Mosby and Police Divided Over Pot Policy

Baltimore joined other cities when State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby announced her office would stop prosecuting people for marijuana possession, but thus far she lacks a critical ally in the move: Baltimore police. The Baltimore Sun reports that after Mosby informed interim police commissioner Gary Tuggle, a former Drug Enforcement Administration agent, of the plan, Tuggle said his officers wouldn't quit making arrests unless state law changes. Maryland decriminalized small amounts of marijuana possession in 2014. Republican Gov. Larry Hogan has said he's not in favor of enacting broader legalization this year. Mosby's policy is to forgo prosecuting possession in any amount and regardless of the person's criminal history.

Bannon boosts ‘private’ border wall at Sahuarita event

Billed as a town hall, Friday's pro-border wall event in a gated community near Tucson, featuring former Trump strategist Steve Bannon, was every bit as much a pep rally and fundraiser — and maybe part dry run.

Barr Wants Jeffrey Rosen as Deputy Attorney General

The Senate confirmed William Barr as attorney general, putting the veteran of corporate and Washington legal circles in charge of a Justice Department that has been rocked by departures, political storms and Robert Mueller's Russia investigation, the Wall Street Journal reports. Democrats Doug Jones (AL), Joe Manchin (WVA) and Kyrsten Sinema (AZ) joined Republicans in a the 54-45 vote to confirm Barr. Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky was the sole Republican “no” vote. Wrestling with whether to release the Mueller probe's findings will be among Barr's first tasks. “He dodged questions, and left himself space to protect the president from potential consequences for serious wrongdoing,” said Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI).

Barrios granted two-year stay, but his case is ‘an exception’

Federal immigration officials have granted Luis Barrios, a Guatemalan native who has spent decades living in Derby, a two-year stay of his deportation, giving him ample time to formally pursue asylum in the United States. His reprieve may prove to be an outlier under new Trump administration deportation policies, however.

Basketball Round-up

Haldane and Beacon teams close out seasonsBasketball Round-up was first posted on February 15, 2019 at 12:10 pm.

Basketball Round-up (Updated)

Haldane and Beacon teams close out seasonsBasketball Round-up (Updated) was first posted on February 17, 2019 at 12:10 pm.

Beacon Boys Upset No. 6 Somers

Advance to Section 1 quarterfinals with 75-70 winBeacon Boys Upset No. 6 Somers was first posted on February 22, 2019 at 11:40 am.

Beacon Leaper

Beacon's Rayvon Grey talks about his goals on the LSU jump teamBeacon Leaper was first posted on January 27, 2019 at 8:41 pm.

Beacon Obituaries

Kenneth Hill, Jacquelyn Jones-BroughtonBeacon Obituaries was first posted on January 26, 2019 at 11:30 pm.

Beacon Obituaries

Raymond Fantauzzi, John Johnson, Calvin TomlinsBeacon Obituaries was first posted on February 6, 2019 at 10:23 am.

Beacon Obituaries

Ken Canary, Heriberto Chico, Mary D'Aprile, Robert Glover Sr.Beacon Obituaries was first posted on February 16, 2019 at 5:50 pm.

Beacon Obituaries

Mary Jordan, Helen Killmer, Thomas SherbanBeacon Obituaries was first posted on January 28, 2019 at 8:32 pm.

Beacon Obituaries

Barbara Jean Claudio, Jeanette Johnson, Susie Rende, Jack Sine, Alice Smith, Billy SmithBeacon Obituaries was first posted on February 1, 2019 at 10:43 pm.

Beacon Police Blotter

Selected incidents from Jan. 22 to Feb. 4
Beacon Police Blotter was first posted on February 9, 2019 at 3:48 pm.

Beacon Police Blotter

Select incidents from Jan. 3 to 21Beacon Police Blotter was first posted on January 25, 2019 at 5:45 pm.

Beacon Runners Qualify for State

Richardson, Cader will compete on Staten IslandBeacon Runners Qualify for State was first posted on February 22, 2019 at 10:36 am.

Beacon Will Have Warming Centers

No parking on city streets after 2 inches fallsBeacon Will Have Warming Centers was first posted on January 29, 2019 at 10:44 pm.

Beacon: Ready; Verizon: Mum

City prepares for influx of wirelessBeacon: Ready; Verizon: Mum was first posted on February 22, 2019 at 9:23 am.

Beacon’s Lost Bridge

The city took the Tioronda apart. Can it put it back together?Beacon's Lost Bridge was first posted on February 8, 2019 at 10:00 am.

Bees face yet another lethal threat in dicamba, a drift-prone pesticide

This article was produced by the Center for Investigative Reporting in collaboration with the Food & Environment Reporting Network, an independent nonprofit news organization. While soybean farmers watched the drift-prone weed killer dicamba ravage millions of acres of crops over the last two years, Arkansas beekeeper Richard Coy noticed a parallel disaster unfolding among the weeds near those fields. When Coy spotted the withering weeds, he realized why hives that produced 100 pounds of honey three summers ago now were managing barely half that: Dicamba probably had destroyed his bees' food. In October, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency extended its approval of the weed killer for use on genetically modified soybeans and cotton, mostly in the South and Midwest, for two more years. At the time, the EPA said: “We expect there will be no adverse impacts to bees or other pollinators.”
[cms_ad:x100]But scientists warned the EPA years ago that dicamba would drift off fields and kill weeds that are vital to honeybees.

Before Your Time: Built to last

Danny Sagan, an architecture professor at Norwich University, tours homes created during the design/build movement on Warren's Prickly Mountain. Photo by Ryan Newswanger
" data-medium-file="" data-large-file="" src="" alt="Danny Sagan" width="610" height="458" srcset=" 610w, 125w, 300w, 768w, 1376w, 1044w, 632w, 536w, 1280w, 1920w, 4032w" sizes="(max-width: 610px) 100vw, 610px" data-recalc-dims="1">Danny Sagan, an architecture professor at Norwich University, tours homes created during the design/build movement on Warren's Prickly Mountain. Photo by Ryan Newswanger
Before Your Time is a podcast about Vermont history. Every episode, we go inside the stacks at the Vermont Historical Society to look at an object that tells us something unique about our state. Then, we take a closer look at the people, the events, and the ideas that surround each artifact.

Behind the Front Lines: Reporting on Children in Conflict

Monday, March 04, 2019 - 5:30PMWashington, DCUnited StatesMarcia Biggs, Glenna Gordon, Jon Sawyer, Carolyn Miles, Arwa Damon, Christine RomoAttend this panel featuring humanitarian experts and journalists with first-hand perspectives from reporting in conflict zones. RSVP Today!

Behind The Lens episode 17: ‘Should a failure occur’

A failing wastewater reservoir threatens St. James Parish. The Orleans school district faces a budget shortfall at Harney elementary, and it can't access federal funds earmarked for the school. And a BGR report backs Mayor LaToya Cantrell's position on hotel taxes in New Orleans.

Behind the Scenes, Health Insurers Use Cash and Gifts to Sway Which Benefits Employers Choose

by Marshall Allen

The pitches to the health insurance brokers are tantalizing. “Set sail for Bermuda,” says insurance giant Cigna, offering top-selling brokers five days at one of the island's luxury resorts. Health Net of California's pitch is not subtle: A smiling woman in a business suit rides a giant $100 bill like it's a surfboard. “Sell more, enroll more, get paid more!” In some cases, its ad says, a broker can “power up” the bonus to $150,000 per employer group. Not to be outdone, New York's EmblemHealth promises top-selling brokers “the chance of a lifetime”: going to bat against the retired legendary New York Yankees pitcher Mariano Rivera.

Ben & Jerry’s co-founder among four chairs of Bernie’s 2020 campaign

Ben Cohen, speaking at a press conference in Montpelier, is among four co-chairs for the Sanders 2020 campaign. VTDigger file photo
Sen. Bernie Sanders is quickly assembling his team after announcing Tuesday that he is running for president. Hours after the announcement, the Daily Beast reported that Faiz Shakir, a progressive activist and political director for the American Civil Liberties Union, would manage Sanders' 2020 campaign. Today the campaign names its four co-chairs: Ben Cohen, the co-founder of Ben & Jerry's and a prominent Vermont progressive activist; U.S. Rep. Ro Khanna of California, who has co-sponsored a number of bills with Sanders in the past year; Nina Turner, the president of Our Revolution and a former Ohio state senator; and San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz. “To win this election and build a movement to defeat Donald Trump, we must bring together a team prepared to fight for economic, social, racial and environmental justice — and that's exactly what Nina, Ro, Carmen and Ben have been doing their entire lives,” Sanders said in a statement announcing the co-chairs.

Ben Carson’s small-dollar donors could keep yielding big money

Ben Carson's presidential bid has failed. But the retired neurosurgeon's campaign succeeded wildly at one thing: collecting personal — and lucrative — information from more than 700,000 donors and millions of fans. This database is a potential post-campaign money machine: The remnants of Carson's campaign could wring riches from a legion of small-dollar supporters for years to come, as other campaigns have done before it. How? By renting supporters' information to other candidates, political committees — even for-profit data brokers — that may, in turn, use it to raise money.

BenitoLink Content Manager proposes on Valentine’s Day

Cliché, we know.

BenitoLink Pledge of Champions raised $67,260 in donations

Thank you to all the individuals and local organizations who participated in our fundraising campaign!

Bennington agrees to police review, but says ‘we haven’t done anything wrong’

Max Misch inside the Bennington County courtroom Thursday afternoon. Pool photograph via Holly Pelczynski/Bennington Banner. " data-medium-file="" data-large-file="" src="" alt="Max Misch inside the Bennington County courtroom Thursday afternoon." width="640" height="546" srcset=" 1499w, 125w, 300w, 768w, 610w, 1280w" sizes="(max-width: 640px) 100vw, 640px" data-recalc-dims="1">Allegations that information had been withheld about whether Max Misch, shown here inside the Bennington County courtroom last week, had illegally possessed high-capacity magazines is at the center of the requested police probe. Pool photo by Holly Pelczynski/Bennington Banner.

Bennington County Regional Commission to host energy forum

News Release — Bennington County Regional Commission
Jan. 16, 2019
Madison Kremer
Phone: (802) 442-0713 x9Get all of VTDigger's daily news.You'll never miss a story with our daily headlines in your inbox. Daily
Sundays only (Weekly Wrap)

Email me stories on these subjects... Business News
Courts & Corrections News
Education News
Energy News
Environment News
Health Care News
People & Places News
Politics News

Email me stories for these regions
Windham County

Regional Commission Hosts Energy Forum to Support Formation of Municipal Energy CommitteesPublic event will help Bennington County residents start and support local energy committees
Arlington, VT— The Bennington County Regional Commission, in partnership with the Vermont Energy and Climate Action Network (VECAN) and Efficiency Vermont plans to host a Southwestern Vermont Regional Energy Forum, which will be held from 5:30 – 8 pm on Thursday, January 31st at the Martha Canfield Library in Arlington. Communities throughout Bennington County have a great deal of work ahead of them to reach ambitious energy goals and ensure their energy production and consumption is sustainable.

Bennington Museum to feature Battle of Bennington portrait

News Release — Bennington Museum
Jan. 15, 2019
802-447-1571 ext. 204Get all of VTDigger's daily news.You'll never miss a story with our daily headlines in your inbox. Daily
Sundays only (Weekly Wrap)

Email me stories on these subjects... Business News
Courts & Corrections News
Education News
Energy News
Environment News
Health Care News
People & Places News
Politics News

Email me stories for these regions
Windham County

New Finds about the Battle of Bennington
On Saturday, February 2 during FREE Community Day at the Bennington Museum, join the Curator of the Bennington Museum Jamie Franklin at 2:00 pm when he presents “A Battle of Bennington Veteran's Portrait Rediscovered – and Acquired.” Learn about the fortunate circumstances that led to Bennington Museum's acquisition of a tintype and miniature portrait of Lt. Jonathan Holton, a soldier in the Battle of Bennington.

Bennington Regional Chamber of Commerce to present Winter Homebrew Festival

News Release — Bennington Regional Chamber of Commerce
Feb. 6, 2019
Matt Harrington
Award-Winning “Winter Homebrew Festival” Returns to Southern Vermont! (Bennington, VT) –– The Bennington Regional Chamber of Commerce, in conjunction with Hopridge Farms, will be joining forces again to present the third annual Southern Vermont Winter Homebrew Festival! The festival, which has won a coveted Top 10 Vermont Winter Event award two years in a row, will be held on Saturday, March 9th at the former LaFlamme's Building (239 W. Main Street) in downtown Bennington, Vermont. The festival has invited the area's top home brewers asking them to bring their very best home brewed beer, cider, mead, braggot and wine for a chance to be crowned “Best Home Brewery.” In addition, the festival has also invited area restaurants to submit their best chicken wings for the chance to be crowned “Best Regional Wings,” a crown currently held by two-time champion Ramunto's Pizza.

Bernie Sanders Has Been the Most Influential Insurgent Candidate Since the 70s

Win or lose (hint: he's going to lose), Bernie Sanders should feel pretty good about his success in pushing Hillary Clinton to the left during the primary campaign. She's now against the TPP; she definitively favors a large hike in the minimum wage; and she supports expansion of Social Security. These may not seem like huge changes—and they aren't—but they're a lot more than most candidates accomplish. Dennis Kucinich ran twice without having any measurable effect at all on the Democratic race. Now Bernie can take credit for one more move to the left:

“I'm also in favor of what's called the public option, so that people can buy into Medicare at a certain age,” Mrs. Clinton said on Monday at a campaign event in Virginia.

Bernie Sanders’ 2020 Run Will Put Concentrated Wealth On Trial

Bernie Sanders, the independent democratic socialist senator from Vermont, is running for president. In an interview with CBS This Morning on Tuesday, Sanders told co-host John Dickerson that he planned to launch a massive grassroots effort to transform “the economic and political life of this country," adding: "We're gonna win." Unlike his last run in 2016, however, this time Sanders will join a large field of Democratic candidates who have expressed support for a suite of his signature policies: Medicare for All, tuition-free college, campaign finance reform and taxing the wealthy to improve the lot of the middle and working classes. Since 2016, the political gravity in the Democratic Party has shifted toward Sanders to an astounding degree. With his entry into the race, the Democratic field is likely to be the most left-wing in modern American history.

Best Video Keeps It Reel

The parking lot was full for Tuesday night's Black History Month-themed edition of Reel Life, a monthly comedy showcase at Best Video, hosted by New Haven comedian Kendra Dawsey.

Beto O’Rourke hits the road again with 2020 decision looming

Beto O'Rourke is expected to announce a decision about whether he's running for president this month. Ivan Pierre Aguirre for The Texas Tribune
Beto O'Rourke is on the road again as he nears a decision on whether to enter the 2020 presidential race. The former Democratic congressman from El Paso who ran for U.S. Senate in 2018 has at least two appearances scheduled this weekend across the Midwest. On Friday evening, he will visit the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he will hold a meet and greet with students and faculty. And on Saturday afternoon, he will speak at the United States Hispanic Leadership Institute National Conference in Chicago.

Beto O’Rourke keeps up suspense with days until anticipated 2020 decision

Former U.S. Rep. Beto O'Rourke speaks at the El Pasoan of the Year ceremony in El Paso on Tuesday. Photo courtesy El Paso Inc./Jorge Salgado
EL PASO — Beto O'Rourke could be a presidential candidate days from now — or not. O'Rourke kept the political world on the edge of its seat Tuesday with his latest outing, an appearance at Fort Bliss here to accept the El Pasoan of the Year award from the local publication El Paso Inc. Speaking with reporters afterward, he reiterated he is hoping to decide on 2020 by the end of the month — nine days away — and continued to not rule out going a different route, including running for U.S. Senate again. "I'm trying to figure out how I can best serve this country, where I can do the greatest good for the United States of America, so yeah, I'm thinking through that and it, you know, may involve running for the presidency, it may involve something else," O'Rourke said. He repeatedly expressed hope he could reach a decision by Feb.

Beto O’Rourke ran his 2018 campaign on his own terms – he’s looking at 2020 the same way

US Rep. Beto O'Rourke, D- El Paso, thanks the crowd of supporters as he leaves the stage during the Turn Out For Texas Rally with Willie & Beto held at Auditorium Shores in Austin, Texas, on Saturday, Sept. 28, 2018. U.S. Rep. Beto O'Rourke is running against Republican U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, in a one of the top U.S. Senate races nationally this year. (The Texas Tribune /Rodolfo Gonzalez)
The Texas Tribune
Beto O'Rourke is considering a 2020 presidential campaign much like he ran his 2018 U.S. Senate campaign: on his own terms.

Facing wide encouragement to join the White House race, the former Democratic congressman from El Paso is taking his time, giving few outward clues and keeping even close allies and supporters in suspense. The waiting game is unfolding as the 2020 field takes shape at a quickening pace, growing on a near-weekly basis and magnifying the spotlight on those whose intentions remain less clear.

Beto O’Rourke says he’s excited at the prospect of running for president. He’ll decide this month.

Talk show host Oprah Winfrey (left) and former U.S. Rep. Beto O'Rourke. REUTERS/Kamil Krzaczynski: Winfrey/Leslie Boorhem-Stephenson: O'Rourke
NEW YORK CITY — Beto O'Rourke said Tuesday he will decide whether to run for president by the end of the month. He made the comment during an interview with media mogul Oprah Winfrey, who pressed him on his long-awaited decision — and whether he's given himself a deadline. "The serious answer is really soon — before the end of this month," O'Rourke replied. Earlier in the interview, O'Rourke said he was "so excited at the prospect of being able" to run for president but suggested the potential toll on his family was still weighing on him.

Beto O’Rourke to march, speak against border wall during Trump rally in El Paso

U.S. Rep. Beto O'Rourke, D-El Paso, flanked by U.S. Sens. Tina Smith, D-Minnesota (left), and Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, spoke to the press after touring a tent city that held thousands of immigrant children in Tornillo on Dec. 15, 2018. Ivan Pierre Aguirre for The Texas Tribune
Beto O'Rourke is not shying away from the spotlight as President Donald Trump prepares to hold a rally in the El Paso hometown of the former congressman and potential presidential candidate. On Monday evening, O'Rourke will lead a march through the city and then speak at a local sports center at 7 p.m. local time — the same time Trump's rally is set to begin, according to O'Rourke's team.

Beto O’Rourke will lead a counter-march at the same time as Trump’s El Paso rally. Watch live.

Beto O'Rourke thanks a crowd of supporters during a campaign rally in Austin on Sept. 28, 2018. The Texas Tribune
Beto O'Rourke will lead a march through El Paso tonight and then speak at an event at 8 p.m. Central Time — the exact same time as President Donald Trump's El Paso rally. Watch it live here. The march, which will feature other speakers, is intended to highlight El Paso's strength as a binational community, and push back against Trump's long-sought border wall.

Beto O’Rourke says Ted Cruz has an attendance problem. Cruz has missed 14 percent of votes; O’Rourke has missed 3 percent.

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (left) and U.S. Rep. Beto O'Rourke, D-El Paso, at the first of their three debates, in Dallas, on Sept. 21, 2018. Leslie Boorhem-Stephenson for The Texas Tribune
As he has entered the homestretch in his quest to unseat Republican U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, U.S. Rep. Beto O'Rourke has honed an attack: Cruz spent too much of his first term running for president, and not enough time representing Texas in the U.S. Senate. “In 2015, he missed one-quarter of the votes in the United States Senate,” O'Rourke said in the candidates' first debate on Sept. 21.

Better Together Refiles City-County Merger Proposal With Minor Changes

A group seeking to merge St. Louis and St. Louis County sent a new version of their constitutional amendment to Missouri's secretary of state's office Monday that contains mostly minor changes. Better Together described the changes to the amendment as “technical,” dealing with the handling of pensions and existing debt. It also makes some clarifications to language creating a new fire protection district encompassing St.

Bexar County Couples Set Valentine’s Day Record at Free Midnight Wedding

Sixty couples were married shortly after midnight on Valentine's Day, setting a new record for Bexar County's annual tradition of offering free weddings. The post Bexar County Couples Set Valentine's Day Record at Free Midnight Wedding appeared first on Rivard Report.

Bexar’s Eye: A Vibrant Community Feels Like Home to Seniors

Living at Ventura Hills are about 50 residents and an equal number of staff aiming to make the seniors' time there as active as age and wellness allow. The post Bexar's Eye: A Vibrant Community Feels Like Home to Seniors appeared first on Rivard Report.

Bexar’s Eye: Spirit of Sound Fills Family Deaf Church

Wearing earplugs at a church celebrating God's love among the deaf and hard of hearing might be puzzling at first, but there's a very good reason. The post Bexar's Eye: Spirit of Sound Fills Family Deaf Church appeared first on Rivard Report.

Beyond The ‘Rhetoric’ – Reclaiming What’s Become Almost A Pejorative Term

While the art of persuasion and the study of public discourse have enriched human civilization for millennia, negative connotations frequently surround contemporary notions of rhetoric. Politicians are dismissed as “all rhetoric, no action,” and talking heads on TV make everyday people sigh over “all the rhetoric” of the 24-hour news cycle. But for those who conduct research in the academic field of rhetoric – and anyone interested in the work that words can do – the term “rhetoric” still holds great hope and possibility for society. On Monday's St. Louis on the Air , host Don Marsh talked with two local scholars about cultural understandings of rhetoric, its positive uses and the ever-shifting ways in which humans communicate.

Beyond volleyball, what else should be part of a re-imagined Rash Field?

In 2013, when the Waterfront Partnership of Baltimore unveiled its Inner Harbor 2.0 makeover for the city's tourist waterfront, one aspect of it set off a howl of protest – moving beach volleyball off of Rash Field. Now, under a $3 million Rash Field renovation, which the Partnership promises will not spike volleyball, the group […]

Beyond worrisome: Trump-Europe rift ‘now open and angry’

Suppose you have a group of friends that has been together a long time — a really solid group that has demonstrated over years and even decades that the members will stick together and work together to help one another and solve mutual problems. That's a pretty big deal. You are lucky to have such a group of friends. And maybe, over time, you come to recognize the value of being a member of such a group so much that it helps you get through those times when you occasionally wonder whether you are doing more than your share of the helping. The NATO alliance, and various other big alliances to which the United States has been a member — and in many cases, the leading member — have been like that. Then Donald J. Trump became president.

Big push is on for early education funding from school permanent fund

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham is proposing $60 million more this year for early childhood education — part of a five-year plan to make access to preschool in New Mexico available to all 3- and 4-year-olds. Legislation has been introduced that expands the prekindergarten program in public schools and adds preschool classrooms to the school building […]

Bike ride memorial honors life of UVM student Connor Gage

University of Vermont students take part in a bike ride to honor the life of Connor Gage, who died earlier this month. Photo by Sophie MacMillan/VTDigger
[As] the afternoon snow began to fall, several dozen students pedaled their bikes across the University of Vermont campus in tribute to Connor Gage, a first-year student who had died earlier this month. The UVM Bike Co-Op, where Gage had volunteered, led the ride that culminated Tuesday in a memorial service inside the Old Mill building, where a crowd gathered to share their memories of Gage. “Connor was an amazing volunteer, he was everything our club looks for in a new volunteer,” said Connor Smith, president of the co-op. “He was motivated, he was dedicated, he came in for all his shifts, he worked late, and most of all, he really enjoyed and cherished what we do as a club.”
Smith announced an award that will be presented at the end of the spring semester to a volunteer who best embodies the spirit of the 19-year-old neuroscience major from Little Falls, New York, who died Feb.

Bilingual Family Story Time at the San Benito County Free Library

Children and their families invited to enjoy story time Thursdays from 4 p.m to 5 p.m. beginning Feb. 7.

Bill Agnew: A second look at gun control

Editor's note: This commentary is by Bill Agnew, of Charlotte, an arborist works with all manner of trees. It seems that articles in news media about guns and the need to do something about them are proliferating. Last week I read about a panel of experts examining waiting periods as a way to reduce Vermont's suicide rate. Today an editorial about the need to treat firearms as a public health hazard in order to reduce “gun violence.” And it was hard to miss the very first use of Vermont's “high capacity magazine” law — but not on someone threatening gun violence. Rather, this obnoxious individual was exercising his First Amendment rights in hurtful ways and there was seemingly nothing else the state's attorney could charge him with.

Bill banning sexual exploitation by law enforcement sails through House

Rep. Selene Colburn, P-Burlington, right, is congratulated by Rep. Robin Chesnut-Tangerman, P-Middletown Springs, after a bill that she sponsored to prohibit sex between law enforcement and those being detained passed the House of Representatives at the Statehouse in Montpelier on Thursday, Jan. 31, 2019. Photo by Glenn Russell/VTDigger
" data-medium-file="" data-large-file="" src="" alt="Chestnut-Tangerman, Colburn" width="610" height="428" srcset=" 610w, 125w, 300w, 768w, 1280w, 1920w, 2000w" sizes="(max-width: 610px) 100vw, 610px" data-recalc-dims="1">Rep. Selene Colburn, P-Burlington, right, is congratulated by Rep. Robin Chesnut-Tangerman, P-Middletown Springs, after a bill that she sponsored to prohibit sexual acts between law enforcement and those being detained passed the House on Thursday. Photo by Glenn Russell/VTDigger
The Vermont House on Thursday approved a bill that would forbid sexual conduct between a law enforcement officer and an individual being held in custody. A person convicted of the offense would face up to five years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines.Get all of VTDigger's daily news.You'll never miss a story with our daily headlines in your inbox.

Bill de Blasio Explains Why Encounters with Police Are “Different for a White Child”

In his call for Americans to begin an "honest conversation" about broken race relations in America, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio defended earlier statements he made explaining why his biracial son Dante needs to be especially careful in encounters with law enforcement. "What parents have done for decades, who have children of color, especially young men of color, is train them to be very careful when they have a connection with a police officer," de Blasio opened up to ABC's George Stephanopoulos on Sunday. "It's different for a white child. That's just the reality in this country. And with Dante, very early on with my son, we said, look, if a police officer stops you, do everything he tells you to do, don't move suddenly, don't reach for your cell phone, because we knew, sadly, there's a greater chance it might be misinterpreted if it was a young man of color."

Bill Ferris wins two Grammys for “Voices of Mississippi”

Steve Ledbetter, from left, Bill Ferris, Michael Graves, and April Ledbetter arrive at the 61st annual Grammy Awards at the Staples Center on Sunday, Feb. 10, 2019, in Los Angeles. Historian and Mississippi native William Ferris took home a Grammy Award on Sunday for a retrospective of his work as a Mississippi folklorist. “Voices of Mississippi: Artists and Musicians Documented by William Ferris” won the Grammy Award for Best Historical Album. The 120-page book that accompanied the recordings also received a Grammy for best album notes.

Bill Reversing Voter Decision on Lawmakers’ Records Advances in Missouri Senate

A bill that would change Missouri's open records law has made it through a Missouri Senate committee and is moving forward. The bill would reverse a decision made by voters in November when they approved a Constitutional amendment known as “Clean Missouri .” Senate Bill 132 is sponsored by Senator Ed Emery of Lamar. It would change the Sunshine Law, Missouri's open records law, to say that any record from either the Missouri House or Senate would be closed to the public if it “contains information regarding proposed legislation or the legislative process.” Senator Emery is the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Government Reform — that's the committee the bill was assigned to. Emery says he doesn't think his bill would hide the legislative process from the public. “We have a Senate website that has all Senate legislation posted there.

Bill Schubart: The KakeWalk of Morrisville

Editor's note: This commentary is by Bill Schubart, a regular commentator for Vermont Public Radio. This piece was first aired on VPR. It's hard for a veteran opinion writer to admit confusion. But the recent chaos in Virginia has humbled this writer and it has nothing to do with politics. Growing up in the '50s in Morrisville at People's Academy, our spring event was “KakeWalk,” a parody of a racist and humiliating amusement staged by slaves for their owners.

Bill Schubart: Time to ban plastic bags

Editor's note: This commentary is by Bill Schubart, a regular commentator for Vermont Public Radio. This piece was first aired on VPR. [Al]l of the plastic manufactured since Bakelite debuted during the Depression still litters the earth. The world is choking on an invention that's barely a century old. Today, shoppers worldwide use 500 billion single-use plastic bags a year or a million bags a minute.

Bill seeks to close an environmental gap, without quashing business

The methane hotspot in the northwest. The town of Mesquite, where residents worry about air quality while living adjacent to Helena Chemical, in the south. Albuquerque's South Valley and its air quality concerns. Proponents of the Environmental Review Act, HB 206, have a list of places where people and the environment could be better protected […]

Bill tackles child care ‘cliff effect’ by expanding eligibility

Most government safety net programs like welfare, Medicaid and food stamps have a “cliff effect.” It's when someone gets a raise at work that makes them ineligible for financial help from the government, and they lose benefits that are more valuable than that bump in salary. Most benefit cliffs are fairly small, but the one […]

Bill tackles child care ‘cliff effect’ by increasing eligibility

Most government safety net programs like welfare, Medicaid and food stamps have a “cliff effect.” It's when someone gets a raise at work that makes them ineligible for financial help from the government, and they lose benefits that are more valuable than that bump in salary. Most benefit cliffs are fairly small, but the one […]

Bill to increase political reporting, raise contribution limits clears Senate

An almost decade long saga may end this year if the latest effort to reform New Mexico's unconstitutional campaign reporting act makes it to the governor's desk. Senate Bill 3, sponsored by Democratic Sen. Majority Leader Peter Wirth of Santa Fe, would increase public disclosure of money spent to influence elections by requiring certain groups […]

Bill would boost scrutiny of ‘all-payer’ health care program

Doug Hoffer, Vermont State Auditor, attends Gov. Phil Scott's inauguration. Photo by Anne Galloway/VTDigger
" data-medium-file="" data-large-file="" src="" alt="Doug Hoffer" width="640" height="427" srcset=" 640w, 125w, 300w, 610w, 150w" sizes="(max-width: 640px) 100vw, 640px" data-recalc-dims="1">Doug Hoffer, Vermont state auditor. File photo by Anne Galloway/VTDigger
Proposed legislation would ramp up oversight of Vermont's all-payer experiment in health care reform. H.181 says the state auditor should have access to “all records” of an accountable care organization – the entity that coordinates hundreds of millions of dollars in payments and investments under the all-payer model. Auditor Doug Hoffer said he's “not making any judgments about what we might find” in an all-payer audit.

Bill would boost scrutiny of ‘all-payer’ program

Doug Hoffer is sworn in as auditor of accounts in early January. Photo by Glenn Russell/VTDigger
Proposed legislation would ramp up oversight of Vermont's all-payer experiment in health care reform. H.181 says the state auditor should have access to “all records” of an accountable care organization – the entity that coordinates hundreds of millions of dollars in payments and investments under the all-payer model. Auditor Doug Hoffer said he's “not making any judgements about what we might find” in an all-payer audit. But he wants clear statutory authority to evaluate the finances and performance of the program.

Bill Would Raise Tobacco Sales Age To 21

A new proposed city law would bump up the minimum legal age to buy tobacco products from 18 to 21 years old.If passed, New Haven would join six states and over 400 different municipalities around the country in an attempt to curb teenage smoking by pushing tobacco products a bit further out of reach of high schoolers.

Bills would expand Mississippi’s hate crimes law this session

Scott Crawford of the Mississippi Coalition for Citizens with Disabilities
Key committee chairs are not ruling out the possibility of taking up a bill on Tuesday – a key deadline day – to expand Mississippi's hate crimes law to cover crimes committed against people because of their sexual orientation, gender identity or disability. Under current Mississippi law, the penalties can be enhanced – as much as doubled – if it can be determined by a jury that the crime was committed against someone because of his or her race, ethnicity, nationality, religion or gender. On Monday, the Human Rights Campaign and others held a news conference at the state Capitol to say the penalty also should be enhanced if committed because of a person's sexual orientation, gender identity or disability. “When a person is targeted for who they are, it is not only a crime against (that person), but everyone like” that person, said Scott Crawford, of the Mississippi Coalition for Citizens with Disabilities. In the past few years, Rob Hill, chair of the state's Human Rights Campaign, said four transgender women have been murdered in the state.

Birks Dives Into The Nitty-Gritty

One parent asked if she could serve food at a high-school dance without violating the district's allergy policy.Another parent asked if community groups could hold events after school without paying a $340 fee for security.A third asked if he could touch up a building's paint job himself without violating any maintenance contracts.

Birks Sued Over Maternity Leave

A top school administrator who adopted an infant from the foster care system returned from a three-month maternity leave to find that her boss had stripped her of several job responsibilities.

Bitter cold to hit Minnesota next week

At MPR, Paul Huttner says, “This will be the week that Minnesotans remember this winter. A major Polar Vortex outbreak is likely next week across Minnesota and much of the eastern U.S. The massive upper air low-pressure system is forecast to drive bitterly cold Arctic air deep into America next week. … Temperatures next Tuesday through Thursday could run 20 to 50 degrees colder than average across the Midwest and Great Lakes.”
In the Pioneer Press, Ryan Faircloth says, “A DFL-backed bill introduced in the Senate on Thursday would allow police or family members to petition a court to temporarily seize someone's guns if they are deemed a threat. But here's the catch — the seizure could happen with or without the gun owner having a say. The Senate bill, which has a similar companion in the House, was authored by Sen. Ron Latz, DFL-St.

Blackface, Confederate reverence a decades old tradition at Mississippi universities and colleges

University of MississippiThe 1970 University of Mississippi yearbook shows a member of the Delta Psi fraternity dressed in full Ku Klux Klan robe and hat, holding two burning torches. The caption provided by the fraternity to the yearbook reads: “The leader of the ‘SECRET PSIs' prepares to open their chapter meeting.”
A photo in the University of Mississippi's 1970 yearbook shows a member of the Delta Psi fraternity dressed in a full Ku Klux Klan robe and hood, holding two flaming torches. “The leader of the ‘SECRET PSIs' prepares to open their chapter meeting,” the photo caption on the Delta Psi yearbook page reads. A photo in the 1979 Mississippi State University yearbook shows two shirtless members of Phi Gamma Delta fraternity with their faces, torsos and arms darkened. In the 1969 Ole Miss yearbook, two separate photos show members of two sororities — Chi Omega and Kappa Kappa Gamma — performing skits in blackface.

Blue Devils Roll to Victory 14

Hold off Westlake on senior nightBlue Devils Roll to Victory 14 was first posted on February 8, 2019 at 2:23 pm.

Blumenthal among targets of white supremacist terrorist

Connecticut Sen. Richard Blumenthal was among the targets of a U.S. Coast Guard lieutenant and self-identified white nationalist arrested with a huge cache of weapons in his Maryland home.

Board of Supervisors look ahead in two-day retreat

Discussion of the county's strengths and weaknesses give way to goal-setting.

Board Told: Keep Birks Report Card Secret

A consultant advised New Haven's Board of Education not to put any part of the schools superintendent's upcoming performance review on paper, other than a single summary sheet at the end.Otherwise, he warned, the public would find out what's really in it, through a public-records request.

Bob Stannard: America, time for some soul searching

Editor's note: This commentary is by Bob Stannard, an author, musician and former lobbyist. This piece first appeared in the Bennington Banner. “‘Stand up in the presence of the aged, show respect
for the elderly and revere your God.”— Leviticus 19:32Get all of VTDigger's daily news.You'll never miss a story with our daily headlines in your inbox. Daily
Sundays only (Weekly Wrap)

Email me stories on these subjects... Business News
Courts & Corrections News
Education News
Energy News
Environment News
Health Care News
People & Places News
Politics News

Email me stories for these regions
Windham County

I was raised by a middle class parents of Protestant faith.

Bob Stannard: Don’t get me Roger Stone

Editor's note: This commentary is by Bob Stannard, an author, musician and former lobbyist. This piece first appeared in the Bennington Banner. “These sores do not heal unless they are treated with anti-fungal medicine. They may last for years and can sometimes drain small amounts of pus.” – Dr. Adam Sheridan regarding embedded splinters. Odds are that at some point in your life you've had a splinter.

Bolsonaro government reveals plan to develop the ‘Unproductive Amazon’

Commodities on the move on the completed southern section of the BR-163 highway. A planned extension of the BR-163 could result in major new deforestation along a 300-mile corridor stretching northward from the Amazon River to the Surinam border. Image by Roosevelt Pinheiro courtesy of Agência Brasil. With Brazil's Bolsonaro administration not even a month old, the new president's Chief of Strategic Affairs last week announced plans to build a bridge over the Amazon River in Pará state in order to begin developing what he called an “unproductive, desertlike” region ­– a reference to the Amazon rainforest. Maynard Santa Rosa, a retired army general and one of seven military ministers in the new government, said the administration plans major construction projects centered on the Trombetas River, which flows into the Amazon from the north, so as to integrate the region into the “national productive system.” The projects to be built include a hydroelectric dam on the Trombetas River, a 1.5 kilometer (0.9 mile) bridge over the Amazon at the small town of Obidos, and an extension of the BR-163 highway from Santarem north to Brazil's frontier with Surinam, a distance of roughly 480 kilometers (300 miles).

Bolsonaro government takes aim at Vatican over Amazon meeting

General Augusto Heleno takes a dim view of the Catholic church's Amazon Synod, seeing it as interference in Brazil's sovereign affairs. Image courtesy of Agência Brasil. A special three-week synod focused on the Amazon region due to be held at the Vatican in Rome, Italy this October has antagonized the Bolsonaro government, who regard it as an interference in Brazil's national sovereignty. The Synod has a seemingly innocuous sounding name: “Amazonia: new paths for the church and for an integral ecology.” However, for the Brazilian president's National Security Adviser General Augusto Heleno, head of the Internal Security Cabinet, the GSI, “it's worrying and we want to neutralize it.” General Heleno worries that the progressive clergy will use the Synod to criticize the government's Amazon policies, which though still taking shape, are likely to include a ban on all further demarcation of indigenous reserves, the opening of indigenous lands to mining concessions, and the building of numerous infrastructure mega-projects, including roads, railways and dams – policies that could heavily impact conservation areas and indigenous reserves, and cause a big uptick in deforestation, putting Brazil's 2015 Paris Climate Agreement carbon reduction targets at risk. The synod arose out of Pope Francis' 2015 encyclical Laudato Si, “Caring for our common house” which called for action on global warming and pinpointed the pan-American Amazon region as an area of concern ­– the document caused considerable controversy in Latin America.

Book Launch: ‘Violence Against Women at the Frontiers of Globalization’

Wednesday, February 13, 2019 - 3:00PM to 4:00PMWashington, DCUnited StatesIndira Lakshmanan, Sarah Aziza, Alison Brysk, Mary Ellsberg, Susan MarkhamPulitzer Grantee Sarah Aziza will participate in a panel moderated by Pulitzer Center Executive Editor Indira Lakshmanan examining the impact of gender violence as a worldwide issue. RSVP Today

Book Review: Beijing Bastard

Beijing Bastard

By Val Wang


In her drifter memoir of leaving home in order to find it, Chinese American author Val Wang struggles between head and heart as she tries to make a living—and a life—in Beijing, burdened by the expectations of her forebears yet buoyed by the spirit of youth. In the process, she shows us a China full of contradictions: at once glamorous and grungy, ancient and modern, ambitious and loafing.

Booming Beacon

The latest on 13 developments underway in cityBooming Beacon was first posted on February 8, 2019 at 1:11 pm.

Boost Education for Youth in Solitary With Books, Workbooks, Graphic Novels, Audiobooks

Advocates often urge the dismantling of the school-to-prison pipeline. But for many of our youth, prisons are already their schools. In 1954, Brown v. Board of Education first demonstrated that “separate but equal” is an unacceptable doctrine within our school system. Yet the doctrine of separate and unequal continues today through the placement of a disproportionate number of minority students and students with disabilities in youth detention facilities, where they receive educational services that are often underfunded and inadequately staffed. Kristabel Stark
The most drastic “separate and unequal” of today is experienced by the many youth who are still put in solitary confinement on a regular basis, where they receive fewer individualized education services, fewer instructional minutes and fewer opportunities to learn important skills like speaking and writing — even compared to their incarcerated peers.

Border Deal Doesn’t Limit ICE Immigrant Detention

Democrats came up short in their quest to limit detention of immigrants as part of a bipartisan border deal reached this week, reports the Wall Street Journal. The arcane math left lawmakers citing different numbers and activists on both sides crying foul. A dispute over funding for Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention beds emerged as a sticking point in the negotiations. Democrats wanted fewer beds and sought to prioritize the detention of criminals over other immigrants, such as people who overstayed their visas. Republicans wanted more beds and no constraints on which immigrants ICE can detain.

Border Lands: The Wall’s Impact on Property Rights

Wednesday, February 13, 2019 - 9:30AM to 11:00AMWashington, DCUnited StatesKiah Collier, Yuliya PanfilPulitzer Center and New America program explores the political, legal and human dimensions of what a border wall might mean for thousands of families and organizations in the United States. RSVP Today!

Border Report: The Fight Against Cross-Border Sewage Slogs on

Signs warn of dangerous sewage contamination on a hiking trail near the Tijuana River. / Image via Shutterstock
Sewage from Tijuana continues to plague San Diego's border beaches. In early December, a ruptured pipe that was part of the Poniente Collector — a wastewater collector in southeastern Tijuana — began spewing as much as 7 million gallons of sewage into the Tijuana River. A diversion system was able to reduce the flow at the border days later, but the damaged collector pipe continued to spill about 4.4 million gallons a day into the river, the Union-Tribune reported at the time. Imperial Beach Mayor Serge Dedina said that according to current gauges of the Tijuana River, there is roughly 50 million gallons a day of sewage-polluted water flowing toward the Pacific Ocean.

Border Report: The U.S. Is Sending Asylum-Seekers Back to Uncertainty in Mexico

A girl peers out from an encampment at the U.S.-Mexico border where she and several hundred people waited to present themselves to U.S. immigration to seek asylum. / Photo by David Maung
Roughly two weeks ago, the Department of Homeland Security began sending asylum-seekers who came through the San Ysidro Port of Entry back to Mexico, where they will await their legal proceedings. Dubbed Migration Protection Protocols, the policy will eventually be expanded to whole families and to individuals who request asylum after crossing between ports of entry. There are also plans to expand it to other parts of the border, like El Paso. But there are still many questions in San Diego and Tijuana about how it will all play out.

Borneo study explores links between farm expansion and deforestation

JAKARTA — A slowdown in both the expansion of industrial plantations and forest loss across Borneo in 2017 provides strong evidence of a correlation between the two. The findings are laid out in a new study by scientists at the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), who used time-series satellite images to quantify forest loss, industrial plantation expansion and their overlap each year from 2000 to 2017 in Borneo. The island, home to half of the world's oil palm plantations, is shared by Indonesia, Malaysia and Brunei, but the study omitted the latter because of its negligible area of industrial plantations. The area of forest lost in the region studied amounted to 2,500 square kilometers (970 square miles) in 2017 — a sharp decline from the 2016 peak of 6,100 square kilometers (2,360 square miles). Also in 2017, industrial plantations expanded by 1,100 square kilometers (425 square miles) in Indonesian Borneo, also known as Kalimantan, and by 500 square kilometers (190 square miles) in Malaysian Borneo.

Boston Archdiocese, Catholic Parishioners Battle Over Church Eviction

When walking into the front vestibule of St. Frances Xavier Cabrini Church in the seaside town of Scituate, Mass. it doesn't look or sound like the average church."What the hell are you doing," an actor from The Young and the Restless shouts on a big screen TV. Two recliners are set up in front of it, all right next to a stained glass window.Nancy Shilts is one of more than 100 parishioners who have taken turns holding vigil in the church, night and day, since the Catholic Archdiocese of Boston announced nearly 11 years ago it wanted to close the church."We have a TV here.

Both sides now: The donors who gave big to Tim Walz … and to Jeff Johnson

In the course of the governor's race last year, at least 51 people and political groups made donations to both Republican candidate Jeff Johnson and his opponent, now-DFL Gov. Tim Walz. To the average political observer, that might be something of a head-scratcher: aren't most people who are into politics enough to donate to campaigns pretty firmly in either the Republican or the Democratic camp? And if you write a check to one politician aren't you cancelling it out by writing a check to his or her opponent? Not necessarily. Some of the people who are most into politics, in fact, donate to both sides.

Brattleboro Memorial Hospital and Community Community College of Vermont graduate medical assistants

News Release — Brattleboro Memorial Hospital
Jan 22, 2019
Gina Pattison
Phone: 802.257.8314
BMH/CCV Graduates Third Class of Medical Assistants
January 22, 2019 (Brattleboro, VT) – Addressing a room of new graduates at Brattleboro Memorial Hospital, Joyce Judy, Community College of Vermont President, asked Monday's class of new Medical Assistants to reflect on how they had felt 14 weeks ago upon entering their training program. Without hesitation, the responses echoed each other: “nervous,” said some; “overwhelmed,” replied others. And when Judy then asked them to describe their feelings upon graduating, the responses were equally unanimous: confident proclamations of “excited,” and “grateful,” were met all around with nods and smiles. Monday's celebration marked the third class of graduating Medical Assistants (MAs) from the College to Career certification program developed between Brattleboro Memorial Hospital (BMH) and Community College of Vermont (CCV). “Each year of CCV's partnership with BMH, I have seen the benefits for our students and for the community.

Brazil sees growing wave of anti-indigenous threats, reserve invasions

Illegal deforestation in the Awá Indigenous Reserve in Maranhâo state. Forests are illegally cleared by outsiders in preparation for cattle or crops. Image courtesy of Mário Vilela / FUNAI. In early February, one of Brazil's main indigenous leaders, Rosivaldo Ferreira da Silva, known as Cacique (chief) Babau, held an emergency meeting with government officials and human rights organizations to denounce a plot to kill him and his family. He called on authorities for urgent action to investigate the plot and provide protection.

Brazil wants to legalize agribusiness leasing of indigenous lands

Agriculture Minister Tereza Cristina and Environment Minister Ricardo Salles (both wearing glasses and indigenous headdresses), together with Special Secretary for Land Affairs Luiz Nabhan Garcia (to left of Cristina), Mato Grosso governor Mauro Mendes (to right of Salles), along with other officials, during their visit to the Hiriti-Paresi indigenous village in Campo Novo dos Paresis, Mato Grosso, February 13, 2019. Image by Noaldo Santos/MAPA. Since his time as a federal deputy, Jair Bolsonaro, has consistently advocated for the exploitation of indigenous lands (TIs) for agricultural purposes by non-indigenous people – a desire shared with ruralista agribusiness producers, but a proposition outlawed in the 1988 Brazilian Constitution. Now as president of the Republic, Bolsonaro appears to be urging the ruralistas and their congressional lobby to make aggressive moves in that direction. Seemingly to promote that purpose, a very well publicized event was held last week, known as the First National Meeting of Indigenous Farmers in the Paresi indigenous villages of Bacaval and Matsene Kalore, in Mato Grosso state.

Brenda Siegel: Do we pivot? Or do they win?

Editor's note: This commentary is by Brenda Siegel, who is the founder and director of the Southern Vermont Dance Festival, vice chair of the Democratic Committee and delegate to the Windham County Democratic Committee. She was a candidate in the Democratic primary for governor in 2018 and is an anti-poverty activist and single mom from Newfane. The week of Feb. 4, multiple places in Burlington were hit by flyers and stickers from a national white supremacist group named Patriot Front — Ohavi Zedek Synagogue, the Pride Center of Vermont and Outright Vermont. The stickers and flyers read “Better Dead Than Red” and “America First.” It's likely no coincidence that this group, and groups like them, were emboldened earlier this year as they were essentially given permission to continue to incite fear on people in Vermont without the risk of prosecution.

Brendan Towers Sold For $6M+

A Fairfield County developer sold a 60-unit Whalley Avenue apartment complex for $2.2 million more than he paid for it before fixing it up, in one of the latest land transactions in town.

Brewers and distributors reach truce in hopes of allowing take-home beer sales at breweries

A compromise between breweries and beer distributors would make it possible for people to buy beer to take home from breweries. Erika Rich for The Texas Tribune
Beer brewers and distributors and have been battling for years over what can be bought and sold at breweries across Texas. This week, two key groups in the fight finally signed a truce. The Texas Craft Brewers Guild, which represents the interests of local breweries, and the Beer Alliance of Texas, which represents the interests of beer distributors, have inked an agreement proposing that Texans be allowed to buy up to two cases of beer per person, per day in places where beer is brewed. Texas is the only state in the country where customers cannot purchase beer from local breweries to consume at home, according to the Texas Craft Brewers Guild.

Brewery Twenty-Five helps raise funds for Camp Fire victims

Proceeds from Resilience IPA go to the town of Paradise.

Brewing up a Baler partnership

San Benito High School Life Skills students develop business and leadership skills in cooperation with local coffee business.

Bridgeport Saw It And Fixed It

Municipalities need to adapt to changing technologies to keep up with their residents.