Op/Eds

02/03/2020
I attended the Jan. 27 ACSD Facilities Master Plan meeting at the MUHS auditorium. I was truly disappointed with the turnout. I expected the room to be standing room only with concerned taxpayers from the seven affected communities. If there was 30-40% occupancy, I would be surprised. As I expected, the presentation was mostly a scare tactic. Our student population is declining. This is the taxpayers’ fault? Do not blame the Vermont Legislature and local officials who blatantly discourage any commercial or business growth in the state, which would encourage our young people to seek jobs in...
02/03/2020
We are so very grateful to everyone who came to our family fundraising concert on Sunday, Jan. 26, and for those people who were not able to come but let us know. The concert was a success on many levels, the greatest of which was the support we felt as a family from people throughout the community. We feel so fortunate to be part of this wonderful community. Thank you all. The Bolton/Munkres family Cornwall
02/03/2020
To the Addison Central School District School Board, Superintendent Burrows, editor of the Addison Independent and fellow residents of ACSD, Since I last wrote to the Addison Independent in May 2019, it seems that the emotions surrounding changes and decisions facing our school community have intensified, yet we still seem to be far from reaching any conclusions or definitive course of action. Our district faces many challenges: We must put taxation issues aside and engage with the future of ACSD. The first problem is that, financially speaking, we cannot continue as we are. We have a limited...
02/03/2020
Dear Governor Scott: I am proud of Vermont for being part of the Transportation and Climate Initiative of the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic States — an important program, still under development, for reducing climate-warming greenhouse gas emissions from transportation. However, I was dismayed to read in this morning’s Burlington Free Press that you won’t support the initiative “if it amounts to a tax on carbon.” Climate change has reached crisis proportions. Your potential opposition to the Transportation and Climate Initiative, which is expected to add a mere 5–17 cents to the price of a...
02/03/2020
Thank you for your Dec. 5 article about the Orwell Village School and the Orwell Town Hall. I encourage you to do further research on the “Slate Valley Innovation Project” (SVIP). Much of the SVIP proposed $60-million capital improvement construction is to add a middle school to the current Fair Haven Union High School complex. Does that mean that middle school students who would be enrolled in the Orwell Village School will go to Fair Haven? The $6.5 million for new construction at the Orwell school includes a middle school regulation basketball court and other dimensions that seems to...
01/30/2020
As a clarification to an editorial written this past Monday, the expectation for small schools to be able to have control over whether they will be able to remain open is that current fundamentals would have to change. At the district level, some of the rules of district unification (as in, how schools could be closed) would need to be revised. At the state level, perhaps the very essence of the Supreme Court’s Brigham decision would need to be explored, and school finance laws amended within that framework. At the district level, the petitions submitted to the Addison Northwest School...
01/30/2020
With the Legislature back in session and the governor putting the finishing touches on his budget proposal for the next fiscal year, it is a good time to remind ourselves why Vermonters deserve meaningful increases in funding for the Vermont State College System (VSCS).  The VSCS, which includes Castleton University, the Community College of Vermont, Northern Vermont University and Vermont Technical College, continues to be the in-state destination for two thirds of Vermonters attending college in Vermont, or over 9,500 students, with another 5,000 in continuing education programs.  However,...
01/30/2020
At the beginning of the millennium, I watched modernization take over the traditional nomadic culture in Mongolia at a fast rate and feared that the culture might be lost. In Vermont, we have had time to come to terms with industrialization, electronic technology, and globalization. We have had many decades to do this. We observed the rest of the country and often decided not to be glitzed by the newness that others adopted. We took our time becoming a state, the 14th one, not one of the colonies, so we have a tradition of independence. Because of this we have a character that other states do...
01/30/2020
National attention will be focused on Iowa and New Hampshire over the next two weeks, as Democratic voters begin to select the candidate who will oppose President Trump in November. How does delegate selection in those states work? Iowans will vote in an evening-long caucus on Feb. 3, not a primary where they simply go to a polling place and cast a secret ballot. Separate Democratic and Republican caucuses will be held in 1,681 precincts. Participation in these caucuses is limited to voters who have registered in advance as Democrats or as Republicans. National Democratic Party rules require...
01/30/2020
Editor’s note: This is the 44th in a series of essays on the history and meaning of the American political tradition. The best way to introduce readers to William Lloyd Garrison (1805–1879) is to allow him to speak for himself: “Assenting to the ‘self evident truth that all men are created equal,’ I shall strenuously contend for the immediate enfranchisement of our slave population … I am aware that many object to the severity of my language; but is there not cause for severity? I will be as harsh as truth, and as uncompromising as justice. On this subject, I do not wish to think, or speak,...

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Addison County Independent

58 Maple Street
Middlebury, VT 05753

Phone: 802.388.4944
Fax: 802.388.3100