WVTK Local & State News – February 9, 2018

The mayor of Vergennes has resigned.  Yesterday afternoon, Mayor Michael Daniels sent his resignation letter to members of the City Council.  In the letter, he says it’s been an uphill battle with the Council and a complaint that was filed against two city employees.  Daniels also questioned whether the complaint was addressed properly and says he will “no longer be a puppet.”  He added he will no longer volunteer for any city project.  Daniels has been mayor for less than a year.  Senior Alderman Renny Perry will now assume the mayoral responsibilities.


An Orwell man is receiving a seven year federal prison sentence for the armed robbery of a Maplefields store in Fair Haven.  Matthew Hinton admits that he pointed a gun at the convenience store clerk and demanded cash during the 2015 robbery.  Hinton stole 80-dollars and two cartons of cigarettes during the robbery.  Police say the crime has left the clerk with post traumatic stress disorder.


The administration of Governor Phil Scott is lending its support to a major project to bring renewable electricity from Canada under Lake Champlain to southern New England.  In a letter to Massachusetts regulators, Vermont officials says in the wake of the Northern Pass project’s inability to get approval in New Hampshire, the New England Clean Power Link has strong support in Vermont.  The 154-mile cable would run under the lake from Alburgh all the way to Benson, then underground across Vermont to Ludlow where it will connect to a transmission system.  TDI New England, the company behind the effort, has also pledged millions of dollars for Lake Champlain cleanup efforts.  The company hopes to complete the project by 2021.


Hannaford is trying again to build a supermarket in Hinesburg.  The chain has been trying to open a store on a five acre piece of land in the center of town since 2010.  The proposal has been opposed by many town residents since the beginning, saying the store will harm town wetlands and cause traffic problems.  The Hinesburg Development Review Board is meeting April third to discuss the new proposal.


Senator Bernie Sanders sent a letter urging President Donald Trump to fund the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) at no less than $5.1-billion in his upcoming budget.  Last year, President Trump proposed eliminating LIHEAP.  The letter comes at a time when the state of Vermont has used or obligated all LIHEAP block grant funds it has received to date, and when home heating oil prices have risen 36 percent over the last two years.  


The Middlebury Highway Department will be performing downtown snow removal on Monday and Tuesday nights (February 12 & 13) from 9 pm through 5 am.  Officials are asking to have all the town streets and parking lots empty so they can do the cleanup as fast as possible.  Once the area you normally park in has been taken care of you can park there.