Month: August 2017

Mother of monarchs

Artist raises eggs to butterflies The heart of Betsy Finstad’s home looks like most suburban living rooms. Unopened mail sits on the counter, family photographs adorn the walls and two lazy cats sun themselves near windows that Finstad, an artist of several trades, painted to mimic stained glass. But the very center of her kitchen hums silently with life. Inside 25 plastic containers organized into rows and columns are milkweed leaves, each nursing monarch butterflies through metamorphosis. Since mid-July, Finstad has raised 107 monarchs from egg to butterfly, doing her small part to save the threatened species. The population of...

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Forum addresses hazing, bullying, harassment

Milton School Board held a long-awaited community forum Monday addressing student safety, but the agenda omitted racism, a topic the public has demanded the district address over the last three months. “I’m disappointed,” Katrina Battle, Milton Inclusion and Diversity Initiative founder, told the Independent. “You can’t tell what brought us here by looking at the agenda.” Organized just before the new school year began, the forum addressed hazing, harassment and bullying. These topics have a history in Milton, Battle admitted, notably the 2014 football hazing scandal. Still, community members believed racism needed to be specifically addressed. This led residents...

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Eagle Scout improves River Walk

Milton’s Lamoille River Walk has recently become more, well, walkable, thanks to the efforts of local Boy Scout Spencer Lane. As part of his Eagle Scout project, 17-year-old Lane constructed four wooden footbridges over muddy, flooded patches that previously obstructed the path.  He also built a crude yet comfortable bench on a low bluff overlooking the Lamoille River. An Eagle Scout project is a community service effort led by a Scout from the proposal stage through completion, before he can ascend to the highest rank of his order. Lane’s Boy Scout troop, 658, is based in Winooski. But Lane,...

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State: MTSD must save $137K in two years

Amid Milton’s ongoing teacher contract negotiations and the state’s surge to save millions in school employee health insurance costs, the Vt. Agency of Education says the Milton Town School District can expect $137,000 less in state funding over the next two years. Currently at impasse and in the fact-finding process, this year’s contract negotiations are largely affected by Gov. Phil Scott’s deal with the legislature, school board and union representatives told the Independent earlier this summer.  Over the next two years, the statewide directive from Montpelier says school districts must reduce their budgets by $13 million. The AOE’s $136,853...

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Wednesday, Aug. 16 – Tuesday, Aug. 22

Police log WRITTEN WARNINGS 85 TICKETS 4 Driving with suspended license 4 Speeding 4 Uninsured drivers 3 Stop sign violations 3 Uninspected vehicles 2 Unregistered vehicles 1 Counterfeit plates, stickers, etc. 1 Inspection sticker not assigned to vehicle 1 Traffic control signals ARRESTS 2 Domestic assaults TOTAL CALLS 221 8/16, 12:27 p.m., Drugs, Bluejay Dr. Detective Cpl. Frank Scalise conducted a search of vehicle and recovered drug paraphernalia. There are no charges at this time. 8/16, 3:32 p.m., Public Assist, Cherry St. At the request of a juvenile’s parents, Officers Ed Larente and Noi Jones spoke with a juvenile...

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