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Top Ten 2010: New bridges take shape, school spending levels, economy shows spark

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Posted on January 3, 2011 |
By Addy Indy Staff



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It’s no surprise that one year can sometimes blend into the next. The Addison Independent staff’s picks for the Top 10 local news stories for 2010 contain four that were also on the list in 2009. Our top story for this past year — the Cross Street Bridge in Middlebury — was No. 4 for 2009.

The slumping economy was also in the top 5 this year, but after being the top story in 2008, and No. 2 in 2009, the economy appeared at No. 3 in 2010 and it’s showing some signs of life.

The other two repeats from last year are the Champlain Bridge (No. 1 story in 2009; look for it on the 2011 list, too) and the continued growth of alternative energy.

But things do change. While the dairy industry in crisis was a Top 10 story for 2009, in 2010 that story transformed into the diversification of local agriculture, our No. 6 story for this past year.

Our No. 2 story for 2010 is the struggle for schools to trim their spending in response to changes in state funding.

Another education story is fifth in the top 10: the continuing effort to unify school governance in the Addison Northwest Supervisory Union.

The No. 10 story of 2009 — Gov. Douglas’s announcement that he wouldn’t seek re-election — was a prelude to the No. 4 story of 2010 — the election. Not only was there a spirited five-way race for the Democratic nomination for governor, and then a lively general election race, but also the GOP resurfaced in Addison County with more competitive local races for the Statehouse than there was in 2008.

The two final top 10 stories of 2010 were also stories that are always hot topics: Middlebury College and how it weathered its financial storm, and development of the Vermont landscape, and in particular in this case, zoning in Bristol.

Things may move slowly in this part of Vermont, but they do change. We have a new bridge, with another one in the works, for better or worse we’ll have a new governor later this week, and come June we’ll certainly have a new crop of local graduates we will be proud of. Why, we may even see 2011’s Top list including a surging economy. Welcome to a new decade, have a great new year!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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