"Vermont Army National Guard flatbeds are delivering emergency supplies to towns devastated by Tropical Storm Irene, while some of Vermont’s elected officials, accompanied by the Federal Emergency Management Agency administrator, fly overhead and survey the damage.
"At 12:18 p.m., two Blackhawk helicopters departed the Vermont Air Guard base in South Burlington with FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate, Gov. Peter Shumlin, Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt. and Rep. Peter Welch, D-Vt. among their passengers.
"The state agency responsible for overseeing investigations of abuse, neglect, and exploitation of elderly residents has agreed to eliminate by Oct. 1 a backlog of 300 cases awaiting investigation by hiring staff, responding to calls with 48 hours, and establishing new procedures to avoid future
"Vermont Legal Aid and two advocacy groups had threatened to sue the Department of Disabilities, Aging, and Independent Living if officials had not agreed to the corrective action plan signed Tuesday by advocates and Commissioner Susan Wehry..."
"In one of her last acts as governor in 1990, Madeleine Kunin nominated Denise Johnson as the first female justice on the Vermont Supreme Court.
"'It was a thrilling moment when she was appointed and sworn in,' Kunin recalled Wednesday. She had recommended Johnson for the top judicial post 'based on merit,' but argued as well that it was time for a woman to serve on the state’s highest court.
"Two decades later, as Johnson prepares to retire from the court Aug. 31, Kunin takes even more pride in her choice.
"Providers of civil legal services to the poor are having to furlough their staff, triage their clients, and turn away more people in need as a result of the Congressional budget compromised reached last month. Legal services may include defending low-income individuals dealing with predatory lending, domestic violence, landlord-tenant disputes, or foreclosure.
"MONTPELIER – Accompanied by advocates for disabled Vermonters, Gov. Peter Shumlin today signed S.90, a bill designed to ensure the state’s statutes, policies and other documents use respectful language when referring to people with disabilities.
The bill creates a working group to, among other tasks, identify words that should not be used in Vermont statutes and regulations, and suggest words that reflect a positive view of people with disabilities. In addition, the report will identify specific statutes related to respectful language that should be addressed by lawmakers..."