July 12, 2004 – News at a Glance

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Federal Rules Impact Fundraising for Governor’s Race
Both Republican and Democratic leaders say spending on this year’s gubernatorial race should be lower than two years ago because of new federal campaign finance reform legislation. But that doesn’t mean voters will be seeing fewer campaign TV ads this fall. (VPR)

Interview: Laurance Rockefeller Dies at 94
Billionaire Laurance Rockefeller, who invested some of his wealth in Woodstock, has died at the age of 94. Rockefeller was known as a conservationist, philanthropist and a leading figure in the field of venture capital. Mitch Wertlieb talks with historian Howard Coffin about Rockefeller legacy in Vermont. (VPR)

Cost of Veto Session Tallied
The Vermont Legislature’s special session last month to consider a bill vetoed by the governor lasted just 35 minutes but it cost $21,304. All but two of the 129 lawmakers who attended the special session asked to be paid their $105 per day, $32 in meal money and traveling expenses. (AP)

Bishop Robinson Speaks in Burlington
The Episcopal Church bishop from New Hampshire was featured speaker at this weekend’s gay pride celebration in Vermont. Bishop Gene Robinson gave a sermon to about 300 worshippers after the gay pride parade in Burlington. Robinson is the first openly gay bishop in his church. (AP)

Transportation Impacts Services to Elderly
Program cuts to public transportation in central Vermont and in influx of new patients have put a strain on the ability of seniors and the disabled to get to appointments. Social service agencies say they are having to cut services or turn away new clients who need transportation. (AP)

Assisted Living Shortage
The Brattleboro Housing Authority is using beginning to look into the need for more assisted living for the elderly. The group hopes to combine $10,000 from the town with an additional $30,000 state grant. (AP)

Gawet Mill Destroyed by Fire
Investigators are having a difficult time trying to determine what caused the fire that destroyed the Gawet Marble and Granite mill in West Rutland. The 80-year-old mill was destroyed in an inferno that began early Tuesday morning. (AP)

School District Consolidation
Three Chittenden County school districts are discussing merging. A proposal has been made for Essex Junction, Essex and Westford to join their operations. That would involve one school board and administrative staff. A decision is likely as early as Monday on whether to proceed with the idea. (AP)

Lake Champlain Islands Bike Train
Organizers are trying to promote a recreation trail running between downtown Burlington and the Lake Champlain Islands. Their goal is to improve the route of the Islands Line trail by developing amenities, a logo and signs along it length. In the past, residents and visitors have had trouble navigating the trail. (AP)

Mack Scholarship Fund
A Charlotte couple will be hosting a Lake Champlain cruise this weekend to raise money in memory of their children. Steve and Laura Mack established a scholarship fund after nine-year-old Melissa and four-year-old Trevor died in a boating accident two years ago. Money raised from the cruise will pay for sending children to athletic camps or enrolling them in sports leagues. (AP)

Milk Snakes
The number of sightings of milk snakes in Vermont seems to have grown over the past couple of summers. A herpetologist from Middlebury College says that may be a result of better breeding weather recently. (AP)

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