State / Region

Senate OKs Pared-Back Vt. Gun Bill

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Montpelier — The state Senate took a key vote Wednesday to advance a bill that would set new restrictions on firearms ownership but that lacks what had been its most hotly debated provision — expanded background checks for gun buyers. The bill won preliminary approval on a 20-8 roll call vote, with all six senators representing the Upper Valley voting in the affirmative. It’s expected to win final Senate passage …

N.H. House Pumps Brakes on Gas Tax

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Concord — Unable to gather enough support within their own party, House Republican budget writers on Wednesday backed off a proposed increase in New Hampshire’s gas tax aimed at keeping the state’s highway fund afloat. The House Finance Committee will reconvene today to discuss other ways to avoid an $88 million cut that transportation officials say will result in nearly 700 layoffs and …

Democrat Faces State Lawsuit

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Montpelier — The Vermont Attorney General’s Office filed a civil lawsuit Wednesday seeking fines against a publicly financed lieutenant governor candidate for alleged campaign finance violations. Attorney General William Sorrell said Dean Corren’s campaign solicited and facilitated a Vermont Democratic Party mass email sent to at least 16,000 people last October supporting his candidacy. “It’s clear that the Corren campaign solicited or requested …

N.H. Lawmakers Devise Plan to Avoid Transportation Cuts

Friday, March 20, 2015

Concord — Republican budget writers signed off on $88 million in cuts to the state highway fund Thursday, a move officials say will have devastating consequences on public safety and trigger nearly 700 layoffs at the state Department of Transportation. But now several of those same representatives are …

Vt. Dispatch Merger Criticized

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Montpelier — About 100 opponents of the Shumlin administration’s plan to close state police call centers in two rural areas voiced their displeasure at a public hearing Tuesday evening in Montpelier. The group, which included many Public Safety Answering Point, or call center, workers, told a joint hearing …

Vermont House Passes ‘Revenge Porn’ Crackdown Bill

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Montpelier — The Vermont House passed a bill Wednesday cracking down on “revenge porn” — posting explicit photos or videos of an ex-partner on the Internet without permission. “The act of disclosing a private, sexually explicit image to someone other than the intended audience ... can accurately be …

N.H. House Delays Road Vote

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Concord — Top Republican budget writers in the New Hampshire House said Wednesday a tax or fee increase will be necessary to sustain the state’s highway fund, but they won’t propose the hike themselves as the House Finance Committee prepares to cut the transportation budget by more than …

1969 Water Bill Returned

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Brunswick, Maine (ap) — A bill for $1.40 sent out by a Maine water district almost a half-century ago has finally been returned. The Brunswick and Topsham Water District mailed the bill to a resident of Topsham in October 1969. The bill was supposed to be returned to …

Teacher Strike Ban Bill Gains Support

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Montpelier — The Education Committee of the Vermont House voted Tuesday to support a ban on strikes by teachers and contract terms dictated by school boards. The 8-3 vote on an amendment by Rep. Kurt Wright, R-Burlington, came five months after teachers walked off the job for a …

New N.H. Women’s Prison Delayed, $10 Million Over Budget

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Concord — The new women’s prison in Concord will open in September 2017, a full year later than expected because the project is running nearly $10 million over budget, officials said Tuesday. Contractors now estimate the prison will cost roughly $58 million, far higher than originally anticipated. Department …

Recycling Strains Town Dumps

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Thetford — The good news is that residents want to recycle, steadily increasing the amount of recyclable material coming into Thetford’s transfer station over the past three years. The bad news is that a number of factors, including …

N.H. House Road Cuts Protested

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Concord — A proposed $41 million cut to the state’s highway fund would make roads more dangerous and result in more than 300 layoffs, transportation officials said Monday. “Passing this bill is not passing a budget — it’s passing the buck,” Deputy Transportation Commissioner Patrick McKenna told the …

Bill to Bypass Vt. Health Site OK’d Committee

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Montpelier — The House Health Care Committee passed legislation last week that would allow individuals to purchase plans offered on the Vermont Health Connect exchange directly from participating insurers. Vermont is the only state that requires people purchasing health insurance in the individual market to go through the …