Vermont


SINGER LINDA RADTKE and pianist Ernest Drown will perform Vermont songs from the sheet music collection at the Vermont History Center on Aug. 30, from 3:30-4:30 p.m., on the Vergennes green. Free.
VERGENNES — Round out your summer with an entertaining and enlightening program of Vermont songs on Aug. 30, from 3:30-4:30 p.m., on the Vergennes green. From the 1798 “The Green Mountain Farmer” to the 1923 campaign song “Keep Cool and Keep Coolidge,” singer Linda Radtke, accompanied by pianist Ernest Drown, will sing and talk about Vermont songs from the sheet music collection at the Vermont History Center. Of special local interest, the program will include Vergennes resident Edwina Flint’s contest winner, “Visit Vermont,” Pauline Arnold’s 1959 “Champlain Festival Song,” and other songs...
Editor’s note: The writer was the reporter/assistant news editor of The Reporter newspaper in Brandon, and a Bristol resident, until this past October. As a former Vermont resident who now resides in Texas, I often look back on my time in Vermont with fondness. Especially when I look at the growing coronavirus numbers in my current state or when I’m reminded of how Vermonters will go out of their way to help each other. I finally made it to the DMV to get my Texas driver license last month (the earliest appointment I could get back in April). After jumping through all the hoops to prove my...

Gov. Phil Scott ... Independent file photo
A $150 gift card could soon be sent to every household in Vermont, Gov. Phil Scott announced Friday, as part of an economic recovery package to spend the remainder of the $1.25 billion allotted to Vermont under the federal CARES Act. At his twice-weekly press conference on Aug. 21, Scott said that the Legislature had been holding off on spending about $200 million of the CARES Act funding with the hope that Congress might change the rules on how it can be spent, to give states more flexibility. But as the rules are currently written, the funds have to be spent by the end of the year. So on...
Of the many business sectors that reported COVID-19 losses to the state this summer as part of grant applications, lodging stands out. Average monthly losses during the height of the pandemic, which were used to calculate the emergency economic recovery grants, were reported at 96.6% for lodging businesses, state officials said in an Aug. 17 report to the Legislature. Food service businesses reported average monthly losses of nearly 87% in applications to the grants program. Because lodging and restaurants are still required to limit capacity in order to reduce the risk of COVID-19 infection...
MONTPELIER — Gov. Phil Scott on Friday, Aug. 14, announced that the COVID-19 State of Emergency has been extended to Sept. 15, 2020, as well as additional local discretion for gathering size limits and liquor sales. “We’ve made tremendous progress since this pandemic started and have suppressed the virus even as we’ve reopened much of the economy,” Scott said in a press release. “We should be proud of what we’ve done but given what the rest of the country is facing, every one of us must stay vigilant to protect the gains we’ve made. This means wearing a mask when around those you don’t live...
The Addison County Economic Development Corp. next week will host a video chat for business owners and other employers called “Conversation with Child Development Division.” The Child Development Division of the Department for Children and Families would like to meet with Vermont’s employers on Thursday, Aug. 20, to learn more about any child care concerns that employers may anticipate going into the fall. This sort of listening session will be helpful to the Child Development Division as it develops policies to support the needs of families. They would also like to take the opportunity to...

CALEB KENNA STANDS in his Middlebury home with a photo he made of three blooming crab apple trees in a Shoreham orchard. He captured the image using a drone equipped with a camera, which he uses daily to observe and meditate on the Vermont landscape. Independent photo/Alexa Lapiner
MIDDLEBURY — Caleb Kenna has been a professional photographer for 25 years, and like most good photo artists he makes many great images of events, landscapes and people. His work has long been praised for its quality and insights. But he has taken his craft to a new level…literally. Kenna has taken to the skies with a drone-mounted camera, with which he makes some stunning shots of Addison County. In “Behold Vermont, from Above,” a feature article published in the New York Times last month, Kenna writes that he had taken photos from airplanes, but using a drone opened up new creative...

EMILY ADAMS IS assistant attorney general in the Civil Rights Unit.
VERMONT — As three and a half years of Trump administration rollbacks of various rights and protections accumulated, one group of elected officials — state attorneys general — is receiving national attention for its role in holding the federal government accountable. The chief law enforcement officers in their states, state attorneys general also challenge the federal government and federal agencies for rules and regulations that the AGs believe violate the Constitution or pre-existing laws. In that role they serve as “the first and last line of defense” for many protections and civil...
MONTPELIER — Vermont’s municipal offices that have been effected by COVID-19 closures now have an opportunity to digitize their municipal land records, under a grant program created under a new law. The Vermont Legislature passed Act 137 of 2020 to distribute Coronavirus Relief Funds to various entities in Vermont. Sections 8 - 10 appropriate $2 million to assist municipalities in digitizing land records for online public access. The Agency of Administration, through the Vermont Department of Taxes, is responsible for distributing the grant funds. On Friday, July 31, the application for the...

GOV. PHIL SCOTT, shown earlier this summer, says wearing face coverings will help Vermonters protect the progress we’ve made against coronavirus as COVID-19 explodes elsewhere. Photo by Mike Dougherty/VTDigger
VERMONT — Maura Donnelly, who owns the Bristol children’s shop Simon Says on Main Street, was pleased that Gov. Phil Scott has mandated Vermonters to wear masks in public beginning Aug. 1. “I think it’s awesome,” she told the Independent on Monday. “Very late, but I’m glad to see it.” Earlier this month, a couple of Donnelly’s teenage employees were accosted by an adult customer who refused to wear a mask in the shop, even though a sign outside clearly indicated it was required. Donnelly detailed the incident, which had upset her employees, in a July 12 letter to the Bristol selectboard, and...

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Addison County Independent