January 30, 2003 – News at a glance

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Annual farm show
Every year, farmers from throughout the state make a mid-winter pilgrimage to Barre for the annual Vermont farm show. It’s a chance for farmers to look over new equipment, run into old friends, and check the pulse of the state’s farm economy. At this year’s 69th annual Farm Show, low milk prices have hurt other areas of the agriculture economy. (Listen to the story online or read the transcript.) (VPR)

Interview: public service commissioner
VPR’s Steve Delaney talks with the incoming commissioner of the Public Service Department, David O’Brien. (Listen to the interview online.) (VPR)

University budgets
Governor Jim Douglas told a group of educators on Wednesday that it’s critical for the Legislature to support his plan to increase state funding for higher education. (VPR)

Federal education plan
Vermont education officials are putting the finishing touches on a plan to implement key provisions of the No Child Left Behind Act. The plan has to be submitted to the federal government this week. State officials are more optimistic about the law than they were a year ago, but they still have serious concerns. (Listen to the story online or read the transcript.) (VPR)

Book interview: ‘The Rural Life’
VPR’s Neal Charnoff talks with New York Times editor Verlyn Klinkenbourg about the writer’s new book, “Rural Life.” (Listen to the interview online.) (VPR)

A group of business leaders joined with several labor unions on Thursday to urge lawmakers to reject Governor Jim Douglas’ plan to eliminate the Vermont Occupational Safety and Health Administration. (Listen to the story online or read the transcript.) (VPR)

Dartmouth cuts 50 jobs
As part of a money-saving campaign, Dartmouth College has cut 50 positions through attrition and reorganization, but has so far avoided layoffs. The school’s acting vice president for finance says budget cuts might require layoffs later this year. Adam Keller says some employees have been placed in other jobs. He said the administration is looking to cut 15 more positions. Dartmouth also is eliminating about 20 of its 1,500 courses and that will reduce pay and benefits of some adjunct faculty members. (AP)

VINS delays construction
The Vermont Institute of Natural Science is expected to delay construction of its planned $15 million nature center in Quechee. But the institute does plan to go ahead this spring with building its $2.4 million raptor center. The environmental group says it has run into fund-raising problems. The institute has raised about two-thirds of the money it needs to fund the full project. (AP)

Food shelf in need
A food shelf serving southwestern Vermont is facing a severe shortage of non-perishable food. The Bennington-Rutland Opportunity Council food shelf in Bennington needs donations of pasta, canned vegetables and canned meat. An official says demand has been high at the food shelf because many people are seeing their budgets stretched thin by high heating bills. (AP)

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