Over the past 10 weeks, churches like mine all over the country have scrambled to use technology to connect with their people. Terms like “livestreaming,” “Zoom,” and “upload speed” have caused more than a few pastors to lose sleep.

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I’ve always loved Vermont’s state motto: Freedom and Unity. We Vermonters take our freedom and independence seriously. It gives us the kind of true grit required to withstand snowstorms in October and May. But our independence has never been challenged like it is being challenged now. In the…

The political picture is a lot less clear than most people believe, and that applies to Vermont as well as it does nationally, the reason being that the havoc wreaked by Covid-19 is not fully understood and voters are, by nature, fickle. States are just now budgeting for the next year and wh…

College presidents are sitting on the edges of their financial seats fervently hoping the students already enrolled will return and that today’s high school seniors will commit to their schools in numbers sufficient to keep them solvent. In a state like Vermont, it’s a billion dollar-plus worry.

There is no hiding from Covid-19. This virus has no borders and travels at will, menacing people and businesses in every sector of society. The pandemic threatens agriculture and with it our food security, as farmers work to produce the food on our tables. Our farmers, producers and those ma…

This Mother’s Day, Girl Scouts of the Green and White Mountains would like to thank all the moms (and mom substitutes!) who step up to volunteer for our organization across New Hampshire and Vermont.

Vermont State College Chancellor Jeb Spauding resigned his position Wednesday. Karen Scolforo, president of Castleton University, resigned Thursday. Northern Vermont University President Elaine Collins is a finalist for a job in her home state of Michigan. To call the exodus a challenge to t…

I call it engineered chaos with an essential outcome and a timeline that had to be completed before it begins. The outcome is to “flatten the curve” and provide a space for healing and recovery for the homeless, those who have no home to go to safely and are covid positive. They do not need …

This piece was written in response to the prompt: COVID-19—the coronavirus has seized the world, attacking our health, our economies, our everyday life. Write about this new invader and how it's changing our lives.

Jeb Spaulding, chancellor of the Vermont State Colleges, needs to tender his resignation. Mr. Spaulding is not the leader the state college system needs to weather the crisis before it. At this point he is more of a liablity than an asset.

The protesters came, as expected. The affected communities rose up in anger, as expected. The people whose jobs would be affected, expressed their indignation, as expected. And the students, whose futures were made uncertain, let it be known they were none too happy, also expected.

It seems as if Vermont has struggled with tight budgets since the dawn of time. Every legislative session begins with the affordability sermon and every year we pat ourselves on the back for how flinty we are with a buck, knowing deep down we’ve not been tested, that we’ve not had to choose …

This letter is to clarify the purpose and workings of the Economic Stimulus Payment coming from the federal government. If lots of numbers and technical language snares your thinking, skip to the last paragraph. And don’t worry, this payment is a good thing.

For most of the last month — it seems like years — there has been a single national narrative, which has been the COVID-19 pandemic and its almost biblical wave of destruction, both in loss of life and loss of economic health, of which we’re reminded each passing minute. As humans, we’re not…

Perhaps no system has experienced more fundamental disruption during the pandemic than health care. Hospitals have focused almost every shred of their capacity preparing for, or dealing with the coronavirus, and the cost to the system has been horrific. Revenue has dried up and costs have so…

During these challenging times, postal employees are working hard to ensure residents stay connected with their world through the mail. Whether it’s medications, a package, a paycheck, benefits or pension check, a bill or letter from a family member, postal workers understand that every piec…

Nothing is more dispiriting to a dairy farmer than dumping the day’s work into the manure pit, which is happening in Vermont and throughout the nation. The pandemic has had a cascading effect on dairy farmers, disrupting their supply channels and destroying the markets. They dump their milk …

In every crisis there is a point when the leader says to those being managed, “Don’t tell me why it can’t be done, tell me how it will be done, and it would be best if it happened yesterday.”

I enjoy the old books that have advice, recipes, old hacks on how to do just about everything you might

This month has proven itself a challenging and unprecedented one. With the spread of COVID-19 through our world, nation, state and community, we’ve had to rethink our lives as we know them. For those who have adhered to social distancing guidelines we applaud your efforts and thank you for d…

When I was a kid I didn't quite get the term “rock bottom.” Pretty much everything I knew had rock bottoms – cellars, foundations, sills were all stone in my experience. The fields also must have been rock bottomed, for every single year the frost brought new ones up from below and they had …

First off, I hope everyone is staying safe and healthy during these trying times related to COVID-19. Please remember to continually wash/sanitize your hands, stay home if possible, keep social distancing if you’re out in public and if you are able to, help those who are in need.

Friday, March 13th was our last day physically working within the Statehouse due to the Coronavirus, also known as COVID-19. Representatives have been working from home. Legislative committees have been meeting via conference calls to take up COVID-19 related measures, such as changes to our…

In response to COVID-19 and to encourage recommended social distancing, all in-person Milton Recreation programs and events have been cancelled through April 6, as well as the Egg Hunt scheduled for April 11. We have been in contact with program participants, and will issue refunds for those…

Vermonters are very protective of the Vermont brand, maybe especially when it comes to maple syrup. Adulterate it, disrespect it, say you can’t tell the difference in taste and you can expect Vermonters, old and new, to jump on you like ducks on a June bug. You have been warned!

There’s no way to sugarcoat it: If you’re an investor, you haven’t liked what you’ve seen in the financial markets recently. The effects of the coronavirus triggered a market “correction” – a decline of 10 percent or more – and more volatility is almost certainly on the way. But instead of f…

Lots and lots of activity at the State House last week. As you probably have heard by now, the State House is closed until March 24th. There will be a deep clean of the whole building. The building is a petri dish to potentially spread any sort of virus back to each of the 180 members distri…

Here we are, trying to get our bearings while we turn our clocks to try to get the most out of their days. The date has changed all my life, except for once in the 70s when we had it all year around to save energy. I hated getting up with hours of darkness to follow; I went around turning on…

As I write this month’s Manager’s Message, Town Meeting 2020 is a recent memory. We are pleased that our FY21 budget proposal passed by a large margin. I want to welcome returning Selectboard (SLB) member Brenda Steady and newcomer John FitzGerald. I also want to thank longtime SLB Member Da…

It was a busy week in the State House leading up to the Town Meeting Day break. Lots of bill were passed out of committee and voted on the floor.

While I was writing this piece last week, my younger daughter was busy having my second grandchild! I got this sent off, and then went to check my messages and the little guy was already born, so it was quick work. He’s adorable, but of course you’d expect me to say that. My older daughter w…

In light of the continued worldwide spread of a novel coronavirus called COVID-19, the state of Vermont has moved to form an interagency task force to develop a public response, health officials announced Friday.

Every two minutes someone dies from Sudden Cardiac Arrest…..many can be saved. Hands Only CPR is the Link to Survival. Milton Is a Heart Safe Community. This is because of our strategic placement of AEDs (Automatic Electronic Deliberator) throughout town and our CPR (Cardiac Pulmonary Resusc…

On Tuesday, March 3rd, the voters of Milton will be given the opportunity to vote for Brenda Steady for a three year seat on the Selectboard. Brenda’s experience as a public servant gives her incredible confidence in the capabilities of this community and a clear vision of what Milton could …

In several of the recent issues of the Milton Independent you have published several articles on Milton’s town and school budgets. All the stories mention that both the school and town budgets need to increase to level fund the system. I maintain that the school budget can be decreased by mi…

Food for Thought Lorinda A. Henry 02/2020There is an old, old saying that

It was terrific to see so many young people engaged in the workings of government this week. The 2019 class of Eagle Scouts were honored for their accomplishments with a House resolution. Congratulations to all the Eagle Scouts for their accomplishments and to their families, Scoutmasters, m…

The life of S.23 – an act relating to increasing the minimum wage continued last week. The Governor vetoed the bill on Monday. He cited in his veto message his concerns with a mandated increase to be projected job losses, decreased employee hours and increased costs of good and services. The…

It’s no secret that like many northeastern states Vermont faces difficult demographic challenges. In a state with an aging population, we’ll need more younger workers in the coming years to have a healthy tax base and to provide the services many older Vermonters rely upon.

Vermonters value our strong communities. We celebrate the good times with cheers and hugs, and we lend a helping hand when times are tough. Taking care of our neighbors – that’s what we do. During a power outage, we check in on our neighbors. After a heavy snow, we help shovel stoops and pus…

Republicans in Montpelier have once again made clear exactly where their priorities lie with a pair of vetoes shooting down two pieces of widely supported, impactful legislation: paid family and medical leave and a minimum wage increase.

Love Spreads... The morning of February 14, the residents of Milton were greeted with Hearts — EVERYWHERE. I was astounded that every turn — signs — store fronts — businesses — telephone poles — you get my meaning — there were symbols of love. I realize that there are many who think this was…

If you visit the Statehouse this time of year you won’t see many long debates in the House chamber. Instead, House committees are deep in the work of developing and refining proposals, some of which will make it to stage where those bills are voted on by the full body. About 1250 ideas in th…