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Connecting Montpelier and nearby communities since 1993 | JANUARY 1023, 2013


Democrats in the Drivers Seat

With One-Party Control Stronger Than Ever, Not Everyone Is Happy

cour tesy Soren Pfeffer

Bagitos: a new home for the local music scene?

ILLUZZIS SENATE A look back at 32 years of Vermont politics

WRITING FOR JUSTICE Profiling local educator Eleanor Ott

ON THE SOUTH SIDE The force behind a Barre watering hole

Vermont House Member Paul Poirier: Once a Democrat, Now an Independent

by Nat Frothingham

PRSRT STD CAR-RT SORT U.S. Postage PAID Montpelier, VT Permit NO. 123

n the estimation of Paul Poirier, a longtime Vermont House member and an Independent representing Barre City, the Democratic Party has forgotten its workingclass roots and abandoned the marginalized people the party was once committed to serve. Poirier was first elected to the Vermont House as a Democrat in November 1980. He quickly rose in the (lower house) Democratic Party ranks, and from 1985 through 1988, he served as majority leader under Democratic Speaker Ralph Wright. He left the Vermont House in 1988 to run for U.S. Congress, a bid for higher office that was ultimately not successful. After an eight-year break, Poirier returned to the Vermont House in January 1997 and served for two terms. In 2000, he left the house again to take a position as a patient advocate in the federally supported disability rights organization, the Vermont Protection and Advocacy Group. In 2008, Poirier was elected to the Vermont House againagain as a Democrat from Barre. But he broke with the Democratic Party in June 2009. Explaining his decision to leave the Democratic Party and become an Independent, Poirier said, I felt the Democratic Party as constituted [in June 2009] was not the party that had worked tirelessly to protect the rights of workers, the disabled . . . The Democratic majority was more interested in cutting services instead of revenue enhancements. I decided to devote

the rest of my public service to see that those people dont become forgotten. We have a lot of poverty in our state. He noted that, in recent years, state government has cut over $200 million. Who do these cuts affect the most? he asked. The people who need the help of government for housing, for food. These people work at minimum wage. Looking ahead to the upcoming 2013 session, with the legislature facing a budget shortfall reckoned by some to be as much as $50 to $70 million or more, Poirier is clear about what he wants the Vermont General Assembly to do. I want us to raise revenue. I want to make the Vermont income tax more progressive. Referring to a bill that he and Chris Pearson, a Progressive, introduced last year, We could raise $28 million by our projections. It would be a simple surcharge on the top [income] tiers. When asked if the richest people in the state could handle more taxes, he said, Absolutely. Poiriers political convictions were tested during the 2012 legislative session, when the Vermont legislature reviewed the purchase of Central Vermont Public Service (CVPS) by Green Mountain Power (GMP). During the 1990s, CVPS skidded financially and turned to its own ratepayers to bail it out, to the tune of $21 million. At the time, CVPS agreed that ratepayers would be repaid if it had a profitable sale or windfall. That windfall happened last year when GMP purchased CVPS, but instead of paying back the ratepayers who had bailed CVPS out in hard times, under

Paul Poirier. Photo by Nat Frothingham. the merger agreement, the utilities adopted a number of efficiency measures instead. The ratepayers were assured that these efficiencies would save them money over the long term. Said Poirier about the controversy that ensued: Myself, Patty Komline [a Republican], Chris Pearson and Cynthia Browning, a Democrat . . . offered an amendment that GMP had to return the $21 million they had borrowed from the ratepayers. But the [Democratic] majority party would not allow that legislation to come to the floor. They tied it up and tied it up and tied it up . . . During that debate, GMP had the lobbying
see POIRIER, page 4

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PAG E 2 J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2013


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J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2 013 PAG E 3

Got Health? The next issue of The Bridge, January 24, will be the first of two issues focused on health and wellness. Limited color ad space will be available. Interested in advertising? Call us at 223-5112 or e-mail or Have a story idea? Call 223-5112 or e-mail

The Black Door Closes


Nature Watch
Nona Estrin

ow begin my eight or nine favorite weeks of the yearthe weeks of glorious light. The days are getting longer; the sun is stronger but still low enough in the sky to produce a golden, low-sun sort of light. And the snow! When its sunny, like now, the snowpack by the garden approaches peachy gold. And that snowpack is so reflective, illuminating everything, spreading out and intensifying whatever light there is, by day or by night. Add to that the lavender and blue shadows on sun-lit snow and the sound of dripping, trickling that comes on those blazing days or during a thaw. Sometimes I feel too busy to get outside or even stop and take notice, but really, its only a few weeks, so I try not to miss a day. Forget the to-do list, Im heading out for a half hour right now.

owntown Montpelier lost a restaurant and music venue with the new year, when The Black Door Bar & Bistro unexpectedly closed. The restaurant had reopened as a Spanish/Mediterranean restaurant serving tapas in May 2011, and as recently as New Years Eve, it hosted live music, but announced its closing via its Facebook page on January 2. The restaurants general manager, Rhonna Gable, told The Bridge that the restaurant was a victim of the current economic downturn. We just couldnt weather the financial storm, Gable said. We tried as hard as we could as long as we could but just couldnt make it work. Gable said that the owners have no plans to reopen and have not discussed opening another venue and that the space is currently available for lease from Montpelier Property Management.

A New Years resolution you can keep:

Alleged Union-Busting Tactics at Kellogg-Hubbard Library

he staff union at Kellogg-Hubbard Library has filed a complaint with the Vermont Labor Relations Board, alleging that three employees whose job duties and titles were changed by the library were illegally shifted out of the union. The complaint alleges that the library shifted two librarian positions and one financial assistant position to nonunion positions, while the library argues that the three positions are new midlevel management positions outside of the union and that the previous three positions have not been eliminated, according to an article in the Times Argus. The two sides met with the labor relations board in December, and another meeting is scheduled for this month. A source familiar with the labor situation at the library, e-mailing The Bridge on condition of anonymity, wrote that the atmosphere at the library is so dispirited: union-busting, hours cut. Among those working fewer hours are library pages, with the result, according to our source, that carts of book lie around unshelved for days . . . which means when the catalog says a book is in, a patron cant find the book because it is unshelved on a cart. Meanwhile, the library decided to increase fine amounts and reduce loan period times in November, a decision which coincided, according to our source, with a decision to stop date-stamping materials in favor of a printed receipt. This is insanity, but a great way to raise fine revenue.


We have lots of great discounts, packages and special issues in store for the new year. For more information, contact our sales representatives: Carolyn, 223-5112, ext. 11, or, or Gabriela, 223-5112, ext. 12, or

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For a one-year subscription, send this form and a check to The Bridge, P.O. Box 1143, Montpelier, VT 05601. Name___________________________________________________________ Address_________________________________________________________ City____________________________________ State_____ Zip____________ I have enclosed a check, payable to The Bridge, for: $50 for a one-year subscription An extra $____ to support The Bridge. (Contributions are not tax-deductible.)

Onion River Exchange Changes

ith the new year, the Onion River Exchange Time Bank has undergone several changes. The time bank has moved from its old location at 138 Main Street in Montpelier to what it calls a shared, co-creative workspace in Local 64, on the second floor of 5 Main Street in Montpelier (above Delish candy store). The time bank hopes to set up a one-day-a-week satellite office in Barre and a twice monthly office at the Montpelier Senior Center. According to the time banks press release, A new workshop series is in the making and we are looking towards Barre as the venue. We have taken steps towards making our Time Bank more sustainable as well as creating time, space, and honor for those members who may need assistance. It may take a few weeks until we get our sea legs with the change in our base operations but we know you are a patient crew. For more information, please use the time banks new phone numbers: 552-3050 or 552-3040.

Progressives Challenge Dems, GOP on Money in Politics

ollowing up on a Progressive Party resolution from November, the Vermont Progressive Party has challenged the states Democratic and Republican party chairs to refuse corporate donations and eliminate SuperPACs from the Vermont electoral process. Corporations such as Monsanto and Fairpoint donated money to both parties, and according to Progressive Party chair Martha Abbott, companies who may be affected by health care reform, including Pfizer, Northeast Delta Dental and HealthDirect, gave generously to many candidates in both parties, including both parties gubernatorial candidates. Abbott called this link worrisome and called on Vermont campaign donors to donate only to candidates and parties who have pledged not to accept corporate donations. Vermonters can set an example for the nation about how to work together to level the playing field even as we compete for votes.

P.O. Box 1143, Montpelier, VT 05601 Phone: 802-223-5112 | Fax: 802-223-7852; Published every first and third Thursday
Editor & Publisher: Nat Frothingham General Manager: Bob Nuner Editorial Associate: Max Shenk Production Editor: Kate Mueller Sales Representatives: Gabriela Balboa, Carolyn Grodinsky, Rick McMahan Graphic Design & Layout: Dana Dwinell-Yardley Calendar Editor: Dana Dwinell-Yardley Bookkeeper: Kathryn Leith Distribution: Kevin Fair, Diana Koliander-Hart, Daniel Renfro Website & Social Media Manager: Dana Dwinell-Yardley Advertising: For information about advertising deadlines and rates, contact: 223-5112, ext. 11, or Editorial: Contact Bob, 223-5112, ext. 14, or Location: The Bridge office is located at the Vermont College of Fine Arts, on the lower level of Schulmaier Hall. Subscriptions: You can receive The Bridge by mail for $50 a year. Make out your check to The Bridge, and mail to The Bridge, PO Box 1143, Montpelier VT 05601.
Copyright 2013 by The Montpelier Bridge

Want to Serve on City Council?

etitions for Montpelier City Council seats are due at the city clerks office no earlier than Thursday, January 24, and must be submitted no later than Monday, February 4. Current council member Angela Timpone has announced that she will not run again for council, while Zachary Hughes has announced his candidacy. I have a very demanding [schedule] as a organizer for the American Federation of Teachers, Timpone said. It is important work, and it needs my full attention right now. However, dont count me out of politics. I look forward to continue to serve Montpelier on committees and again, perhaps, in elected office. all items by Max Shenk
Looking for the school board report? Because the Montpelier school board meeting is scheduled for Wednesday evening, January 9, as The Bridge goes to press, our report of that meeting will be covered in our online edition (, shortly after this issue is published.

PAG E 4 J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2013
POIRIER, from page 1

being elected were strong. He thought he might poll as many as 60 votes in a chamber with 150 House members: I thought I had a half of 1 percent [chance] of winning. But I thought the issues needed to be raised, and basically they are the grievances of the minorities. On or about December 20, Poirier decided to withdraw from the race. Before withdrawing, he met with Speaker Smith and told him that [t]he right to debate and the right to amend is the only power that the minorities have. I told Shap thats what bothers me. I believe you and your leadership team stifled that part of our work. Why [did I] pull out? said Poirier anticipating this question. Ill tell you why. Shap took my challenge very seriously. He called members from both parties. House minority members later told Poirier that Shap had reached out to them. They were getting paid attention to and getting heard. You know what my new years wish is? asked Poirier. That Speaker Shap Smith will become the conscience of the Democratic Party. He is the only line of defense that can stand up to the big lobbyist trend, the [Vermont] Senate and a very assertive governor.

firm of MacLean, Meehan & Rice, John Hollar [from Downs Rachlin Martin] and Kimbell Sherman Ellis. They had the three biggest lobbying firms in the state to stop poor people and middle-class workers from getting their loans paid back. We had all the arguments on our side. And [house Speaker] Shap [Smith] said, I dont want you interfering with the Public Service Board. So the utilities got what they wanted: an efficiency fund instead of paying back the ratepayers for their loans. Said Poirier, One of the arguments that was used by the utility corporations and their lobbyists . . . was that the repayments, on average, were only $100. Poirier said he found that totally disgusting. They live in a world far removed from what Democrats traditionally fought for. After the November 2012 general election, Poirier looked at the composition of the newly elected Vermont House and decided to make a run for house Speaker, challenging the incumbent, Democratic Speaker Shap Smith. In making a run for house Speaker, Poirier said he never felt that his chances at

Comments from House Speaker Shap Smith and Democratic House Member Janet Ancel

oncerning a bill or amendment that would have required Green Mountain Power to make direct payment to ratepayers who loaned money to CVPS during a hard financial time for CVPS in the 1980s, house Speaker Shap Smith said there was no attempt to kill the amendment through continuous postponements. The bill or amendment got a hearing in committee, then went back to the floor. It came to the floor and got an up or down vote. It was not delayed procedurally so it would fail, said Smith. What they [the amendments proponents] wanted was a vote on the amendment. I thought it was important enough so that it would go through the regular committee process. We had about a week of hearings in [the House Commerce Committee]. Smith added: I was against the amendment. There had been a process set up through the Public Service Board [PSB] by which you would decide how the money would be returned [to the ratepayers]. I did not think it was appropriate to interfere with that process. And I felt we would wind up being involved in any public service board matter where there were disputed terms. Why have a PSB if that is going to be the case? As to Rep. Poiriers contention that minorities (Independents, Progressives, Republicans) have been neglected during his tenure as Speaker, Smith said, I disagree with that assessment . . . Only last month, I talked to members of the Republican and Progressive caucuses, and many of them said they would support me for Speaker. Even though they didnt agree with me at all times, they thought Id been fair to them. House Democrat Janet Ancel, who is chair of the House Ways and Means Committee, had a career as a legislative draftsperson before she was elected to the Vermont House and has seen the legislature in action over a number of years. Based on her experience, she made this observation about Smith: Ive watched a lot of speakers. I think that Shap is one of the best, if not the best. I think hes incredibly fair. She went on to say, His door is always open. I dont feel that as committee chair I have greater access than any other [House] memberif other members have a concern and can get his ear. About Poirier, she said, I know Paul and like him.


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Vince Illuzzi Takes a Then-and-Now Look at the Vermont Senate

by Nat Frothingham

hat was the Vermont Senate like 32 years ago? How has it changed for better or worse? These questions were discussed in an early January 2012 phone interview with longtime State Senator Vince Illuzzi, who has represented Essex and Orleans counties under the Republican banner for more than three decades. Illuzzi was born in Montpelier in 1953. His father was a granite sculptor at a time when the Montpelier granite industry was still very much alive. During high school and college, Illuzzi worked for radio station WSKI, with studios in downtown Montpelier. As a college student, Illuzzi worked for the Burlington Free Press, covering Washington County news. While still in his 20s, Illuzzi won election for the first time to the Vermont Senate. I was elected the same night as Ronald Reagan in November 1980, he remembered. I was 27 when I took my seat. At 27, Illuzzi was the youngest serving member of the Vermont Senate in the history of that body, which was created in 1836. I was really nave and inexperienced, said Illuzzi about those early days. According to Illuzzi, the Vermont Senate was a very different place in 1980 than it is today. At that time, the senate was very much Republican. Said Illuzzi, The average age was much older than it is now. [Most of] the people who served . . . came from the business sector . . . or were at a point in life where they were able to take four or five months off and serve in Montpelier. Among his mentors in the senate were Stewart Smith, a successful car dealer and

Vince Illuzzi. File photo. campaign chair for George H.W. Bush, Robert Bloomer, a successful attorney from Rutland, and Henry Manchester, a sawmill operator from Lamoille County. According to Illuzzi, these Republican members of the senate were, on the whole, both fiscal conservatives and social moderates. They didnt think that Vermont should be on the cutting edge of social issues, but they wanted to be sure that the neediest were taken care of, and they instituted preventative programs, such as the tooth fairy dental program for kids. Illuzzi remembers a 1980 party split in the Vermont Senate of about 14 Democrats and 16 Republicans and 64 Democrats, 84 Republicans and two Independents in the house. Now, said Illuzzi, its a younger group. Its overwhelmingly Democrat. Illuzzi characterizes 1980 state congressmen as serving out of a sense of duty and wanting to give back to the state. Todays

younger (more Democratic) group has, according to Illuzzi, a cutting-edge agenda on social issues: death with dignity, single-payer health care, legalizing marijuana. These things are not going to make or break the state, Illuzzi contends. Before, it was go to Montpelier, get a balanced budget and help people who cant take care of themselves. In 2012, after 32 years of service in the Vermont Senate, Illuzzi decided not to run again, citing the senates growing dysfunction and disorganization. In the last couple of years, said Illuzzi, it was very difficult to have legislation considered in a timely and orderly fashion. Major bills received 30 minutes of testimony in the committee when they should have received two or three weeks. We passed the health care bill last year with 30 minutes of testimony. I think the public expects that when legislation has been enacted, it has been thoroughly vetted and unintended consequences have been avoided. That was not the case. After leaving the senate, Illuzzi ran a hard campaign for state auditor during the summer and fall of 2012. Though during his 32 years in the Vermont Senate, Illuzzi believes that no one worked more closely with the two parties than I did, he found in the campaign that no one cared about that. It was difficult to distinguish himself as a Republican with a history of working across the aisle with Democrats and others. Those who hadnt followed what I had done identified me with the Republican Party, Illuzzi said. Ultimately, he lost his election bid as part of a general Democratic sweep. Of all the Republicans on the ticket, only Lt. Gover-

nor Phil Scott survived the sweep. All other elected state constitutional officers were Democrats. Though he lost his race for state auditor, Illuzzi had the consolationafter Phil Scottof getting the highest number of votes cast for a Republican candidate. Im not like those Republicans who are a national embarrassment, said Illuzzi, referring to Todd Akin, Republican U.S. Senate candidate in Missouri, and Richard Mourdock, Republican U.S. Senate candidate in Indiana, who both made unfortunate remarks about rape and pregnancy. While Illuzzi originally endorsed Mitt Romney for president, he eventually withdrew that endorsement. Initially, he felt that Romney had been an effective moderate-to-liberal governor of Massachusetts. But the Republican primary process destroyed him, Illuzzi said. As the Romney campaign proceeded, Illuzi was left feeling, in his words, that he wouldnt vote for a Republican candidate for anything. Illuzzi said that before he announced for auditor, hed given serious consideration to running as an Independent but decided to run as a Republican. He feels a genuine connection to now-historical Republican moderates in Vermont, such as Ernest Gibson, Franklin Billings, George Aiken and Jim Jeffords. Illuzzi doesnt like what he sees in Washington, D.C. In the national Congress, you have to be a right-wing Republican or a leftwing Democrat to win in your district. The moderates are gone. They dont talk to each other. They cant pass a budget. That doesnt lead to good legislation. Instead it leads to gridlock. Thats why you see such problems at the national level.

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PAG E 6 J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2013


Staff Reductions Proposed for Both City and School Budgets

by Richard Sheir

he year 2013 may be remembered as the time when both school and city operating budgets began the process of bending the curveadjusting staff capacity downward to better reflect the population decline in the last decade. Both budgets also pay far greater attention to preventative capital maintenance, which had largely been ignored in the past to finance greater funding for staff and services. Both School Superintendent Brian Ricca and City Manager Bill Fraser operate in systems where approximately 75 cents of every dollar supports personnel. What Ricca refers to as the 26 cent budget line is far from frills: It includes things like books, school supplies, rock salt and road repair materials public works staff members need to do their jobs. Creating tight budgets, by definition, means personnel reductions. Staff reductions are proposed in both the city budget, which City Council has approved, as well as the superintendents recommendations, which the school board had not approved at the time this article was written. In operations as small as the city of Montpelier and particularly in the city schools, the reductions are often measured in 0.2 to

0.5 of a position. The city plans to eliminate four full-time positions and one part-time position. With four anticipated retirements and two resignations, the city will not lay off employees. Planning will lose one position as a half-time GIS position leaves, and the citys zoning coordinator position will become half time. For the sake of continuity, other planning staff will perform more of the screening functions that the zoning coordinator previously performed. Staffing of the Development Review Board and scheduling for those appearing before the board will not be affected. Complex GIS mapping will likely take longer, though staff is being trained in the rudiments of mapping. The police department anticipates a oneperson staff reduction as a present police officer is transitioned into the position held by Mark Moody serving in the citys public school. That position would not be backfilled. This does not affect everyday police coverage but makes coverage at major events, such as the July 3 celebration, marginally more challenging for the remaining officers. A full-time firefighter/EMT position is also eliminated. This position provides required shift backup and does not reduce the needed number of firefighters on a given shift, but leaves the citys fire department

thin should there be illness or a sudden resignation. Public works loses a truck driver position, which marginally might slow down snow-removal efforts on particularly inclement days. A full-time administrative position will also be reduced, with duties reassigned to others. School Superintendent Brian Ricca is recommending numerous reductions in personnel. The superintendent frames his budget as an attempt to adjust personnel and facilities to address realitiesthe realities being a district that had few measures in recent years to downward adjust to the declining student population and that had neglected budgeting for annual preventative maintenance to support continued staffing. He asked every part of the district to contribute to the effort. His charge was that everyone is going to have to do more with less including my office. Ricca has proposed reductions in the central office as well as at all three schools and in special programs, including special needs education. Proposed staff reductions would eliminate the 0.8 student assistance program position. Duties would be shifted to counselors, the police officer in the schools and others. There would be 0.2 reductions for both the intern coordinator and independent study coordinator at Montpelier High Schools. They would

become 0.8 positions instead. Due to declining enrollment at the high school, Ricca recommended that 0.8 of an English teacher position be eliminated. This would not have an impact on advanced placement offerings. Due to fewer students requiring services, an ELL (formerly ESL) position would be reduced from 0.4 to 0.2. Adjusting to the districts declined enrollment, Ricca recommended that a full 1.0 physical education position be eliminated as well as a 1.0 music teacher position. Montpelier High School would downward adjust a math teacher by 0.2 from 1.0 to 0.8, and a social studies slot would go from 0.6 to 0.4. Creating larger per-staff-person caseloads would allow for the reduction of a 1.0 special education administrative position at Union Elementary and a 1.0 social work position at Union as well. Also proposed is a 0.2 reduction of a special education office assistant. Union would also see a 0.7 speech language pathologist reduction to adjust to a decline in demand. The central office creates one position out of two when the director of technology position is merged with the director of curriculum, instruction and assessment position. One database manager position in the central office is also targeted for elimination.


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J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2 013 PAG E 7

Shorter Library Hours, Degradation of City Services Are Possible Effects

by Steven M. Cliche

City Council Discusses Budget Cuts

from the citizens of Montpelier if the library were to go part-time. Hollar replied that he and the rest of the council would be willing to take the blame for the situation, but added that he hoped the library could make do with the current funding. Under Bidnicks proposal, Montpeliers contribution would be raised by 5 percent, while surrounding towns like Berlin would likely have to contribute up to 50 percent more in order to maintain the librarys current level of services. The petitions to get additional funding on the ballot for each town can be signed by visiting the library. The council then moved on to other budgetary discussions. Under City Manager Bill Frasers proposed budget, the city would cut five positions, four full-time and one parttime, through retirement and resignation. The chopping block includes a firefighter position, a police officer position and a public works position. Fraser has said that if the council adopts the budget, the city could see delays in response time and possible degradation in services from all the departments in question. The reaction of the council to the proposed budget was mostly positive. On the heels of the citys budgetary talks came the announcement that Councilor Angela Timpone will not seek reelection when her seat is up in March of this year. The one-term councilor has cited her increasingly busy full-time position as a union organizer for the American Federation of Teachers as

ellogg-Hubbard Library director Richard Bidnick warned the City Council that the library could be forced to go part-time if the council did not approve an additional $14,698 to be presented to voters on town meeting day. The city has already agreed to bond nearly $44,000 for the library in the coming year. Bidnick requested that the council waive the 600 signatures required to get the additional funds on the ballot. The council, spearheaded by Mayor John Hollar, refused the request, stating that, while council members were all in support of the library, they would not make an exception. Things grew heated as Bidnick asked the mayor if he was willing to risk the fallout


part of the decision. The other is her growing frustration with the current councils budgetary decisions. Timpone does not believe there is a mandate to cut city jobs in order to lower the tax rate. She cites the overwhelming support of citizens who voted for past budgets and claims that the people of Montpelier would rather keep their services intact, even if it means a slight increase in the tax rate. Timpones liberal views were often at odds with her colleagues, who have opted for a more conservative approach to city issues. Her departure will leave newly appointed Anne Watson as the only woman serving on the council.

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The State of the Budget: Local Legislators Weigh In

by Robert Nuner

he governors address to the legislature has been delayed a week, and a shortfall in Vermonts tax revenue is widely anticipated. Cuts are expected in the states aid from Washington. We reached out to Montpeliers legislators to ask about the fiscal situation, in particular about priorities and, if cuts were needed, the criteria for cutting. Legislators we reached agreed, as Representative Warren Kitzmiller said, that the most vulnerable citizens must be protected. Kitzmiller allowed that I am extremely grateful that I do not have to make these choices . . . The people on those [appropriation-related] committees have my sympathy. I honestly think it would break my heart. Things are slowly turning around and slowly getting better. We dont have the absolute numbers yet. Ive heard an estimate of a $10 million shortfall in tax revenues. My job is to vote on the total package. Kitzmiller noted that the committee is already at work, even though they havent been sworn in yet. Only one person retired, and his replacement has already been named. Representative Mary Hooper, similarly, said her highest priorities were protection of essential services. Health, safety and welfare should not be cut, especially areas around the mental health community and developmental disabilities. She expressed concern about proposed cuts there. Additionally, she wants to see continued progress in health care reform and global-warming issues. Asked about the strength of the economic recovery,

From left, Senator Anthony Pollina, Representative Warren Kitzmiller and Representative Mary Hooper. File photos. she said, Generally what Ive observed about the 149 other people [in the House], the experiences are vastly different in Montpelier than in Barnet or Shaftsbury, and we need to pay more attention to that. Particularly in Chittenden County and the White River area, were doing relatively OK, but in the rural parts of the state, people are continuing to struggle. The legislature, she said, needs to pay attention to that rural/urban difference. Senator Anthony Pollina also questioned the recoverys strength: I dont think theres been much of a recovery. Median income is lower now than in 2001. A little while ago, the governor said it had risen in the last year, but the reality is that its still lower, as low as it was 11 or 12 years ago. You have close to a third of Vermonters qualifying for 3Squares [food stamps], many qualifying for heating assistance and a big increase in the caseload for the agencies. Pollina would prefer to budget for whats needed, rather than from available revenue, because the middle class and its spending are, he argues, what props up the businesses. That spending builds an economy, which, in turn, provides revenue to the state. One of the reasons for the shortfall, if we have less tax revenue coming in, its because we have less income coming in, on the part of all of us, said Pollina. [In order to grow], businesses need . . . customers for their services and goods. Incomes are down, but health care and gas prices are up. Regular people dont have money to spend anymore. This is why theres a revenue shortfall. He added, I dont buy that theres no money. Where did it go? Its been concentrated in the hands of fewer and fewer people. How is it that our parents built roads and bridges, and we dont have money to fix them? Im not willing to abandon Vermonters in need. In the short term, I think we need to raise revenue. In the long term, we need to build the economy from the bottom up and stop sending our money out of state (for example, hundreds of millions for energy and the states debt that goes to Wall Street). When we put people to work, we reduce the need for state services. Pollina wrapped up with a plug for a state bank, similar to the one in North Dakota, which can finance state borrowing, hold tax deposits and potentially finance entrepreneurial projects in partnership with area banks. That, he acknowledges, is a longerterm effort than the near-term budget choices the legislature faces in upcoming weeks.

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Yes, there is. We recommend California Paints Elements. Elements is Green Wise certied. It often used in hospitals, schools, and nursing homes because it contains Microban antimicrobial protection. Elements is available in at for ceilings, eggshell nish for walls, and satin or semi-gloss for trim or areas where you may what a little bit more sheen and washability. Elements is self priming, however, there may be certain situations where primer may be needed. No problem: Elements is available in a primer also. Because Elements is tinted with Trillium colorants it delivers excellent coverage. We recommend it for dark, hard-to-cover colors such as reds or yellows. Finally, theres a great self-priming zero VOC paint with excellent coverage and virtually no odor that wont break the bank! True Colors is Montpeliers only independent, locally owned paint dealer. We have been making your colors right since 1989!

True Colors

223-1616 141 River Street, Montpelier, VT


J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2 013 PAG E 9

Eleanor Ott: Writer, Educator and Activist

by Max Shenk

he poetry of Eleanor Ott, a local writer and educator, was recently published in Come Walk with Us, a 2013 calendar that also features photos of East Calais by Jane English. Otts writing reflects her lifelong mission: practicing the spirit of the phrase think globally, act locally. Otts work as an educator (at Goddard College, Vermont College and Union Institute & University) and as an activist (most recently with Food Works, Grandmothers for Peace and the Center for Circumpolar Studies) is, to her, inseparable from her work as a writer. The academic and creative work have always fed into each other, Ott told The Bridge. A teaching opportunity at Goddard College brought Ott to central Vermont from Pennsylvania in 1969, and she has lived here ever since. I think the central Vermont area has been deeply affected by the energy and creativity that has come out of Goddard, said Ott, and it has made this a very special area. So many Goddard people came to Vermont, fell in love with Vermont and stayed here, and now they have made important contributions to this area in so many ways. Like the calendar that links her verse to

pictures of the East Calais landscape, Otts teaching at Goddard endeavored to make students more aware of the history, science and sheer beauty of the familiar. One of the classes I taught was called Everything You Always Wanted to Know About a Stone Wall but Were Afraid to Ask. It made students aware of the story of a stone wall: the creatures in the wall, the plants, the history of the wall and the property, who built it. It turned out, when we researched this wall [on Goddards campus], and looked up the earliest deeds for the property, one of the corners of the property was in the middle of North Montpelier Pond! That was fun. Ott is currently involved with the University of the Arctics Center for Circumpolar Studies, which conducts research and education on Arctic cultures, people and science. The impact of climate change on the Arctic region is enormous, particularly in Greenland, Ott said. This time of year, the people in that region would traditionally be able to hunt and have a grand old time, but now the ice is gone. An average global temperature change of a single degree may seem insignificant, but as Ott put it, when you go from 32 degrees to 33 degrees, everything starts to melt. Through Food Works, Ott has worked to promote issues of food justice and food security. Food Works promotes local and

fresh food choices, provides produce to food shelves and other organizations and operates Two Rivers Center, which is, in Otts words, a demonstration farm where we teach food self-reliance. We want to ensure that the people who are most underserved in our culture have the same quality and kind of food that everybody else has, and that they can afford the same healthy foods as someone with more money and resources, Ott said. In addition to her teaching and activism, Ott also has made a tangible physical contribution to the preservation of the areas natural beauty, donating a 400-acre parcel of land in Middlesex to the Vermont Land Trust for creation of Middlesex Town Forest. The land was a legacy from my parents, Ott said, and Im happy to be able to pass it along. I think I had always considered [donating the property to the township for preservation], but I didnt know about the process of doing it. But Vermont has a wonderful way of making that possible. In the introduction to her book Nature Diary, Ott asks readers the following question: What do you want to remember so you


can retell your story as it unfolded before you? Hopefully, weve not given you enough blank pages for your words and drawings. But heres a start, an inspiration. Make it a beginning. Through her teaching, activism and writing, Eleanor Ott has told her story on the blank pages of central Vermont, ensuring that others will enjoy the beauty of her adopted homeand their place in it and the world at largefor years to come. The Center for Circumpolar Studies will be presenting a program entitled Musica Borealis: Music of the North on the fourth Friday of every month at Kellogg-Hubbard Library, beginning on January 24. More information is available from the library or at events-2. Information on Food Works at Two Rivers Center is available at, or by calling 802-223-1515. Come Walk with Us, the 2013 calendar, published by Earth Heart, is available through the Earth Heart website (, and also as a thank-you gift for donors to Food Works at Two Rivers Center, for which Ott serves on the board of directors.


All classes half off January 1020. Thats $7/class! Come try the variety of tness options in the beautiful Studio Zenith. (The noon classes are the best for your lunch break!) See you in the Studio! Call 802-598-5876 with questions, or e-mail Amy at

PAG E 10 J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2013


In Search of a New Vermont Economy

Conference at College Explores Local Currencies, Employee Ownership and Energy Cooperatives
unemployment and lowest foreclosure rates in the country. Estimates are that with a Vermont state bank, $72 million could be reinvested in Vermont rather than channeled into Wall Street, preventing forced austerities and eventually lowering taxes for everybody. Bills for public banking have been introduced in 20 states. Globally, countries with public banking have managed to escape the credit crises plaguing countries like Greece and Spain. Other topics explored during open space sessions throughout the day were food and energy cooperatives; credit unions and employee ownership models, like the worker cooperatives and employee stock ownership programs described by Don Jamison of the Vermont Employee Ownership Center, with a particular concern about how to make cooperative ownership more democratic; crowd funding, like Kickstarter; new investment options, such as local stock markets, as well as USDA low-interest community loans; complementary currencies, including local time banks like Onion River Exchange; and measuring what matters in the form of the Genuine Progress Indicator (GPI) and Gross National Happiness (GNH), alternatives to the Gross Domestic Product indicator, or GDP. The GPI was passed by the legislature last year as a new way for Vermont to measure economic progress. As explained by Eric Zencey, of the Gund Institute for Ecological Economics at the University of Vermont, GPI measures more than just productivity and wealth accumulation as markers of economic and social security. GNH was inspired by a yardstick for sustainable economic and social progress used in the country of Bhutan and applies markers such as psychological wellbeing, health, leisure time, democratic governance, community vitality, education, a clean environment, culture, affordable housing, job security and equitable income distribution. Local leaders for GNH are Linda Wheatley and Tom Barefoot. According to Joseph Stiglitz, Nobel laureate in economics, Producing better, truer ways of measuring economic, environmental and social performance is a critical step in making progress toward building a better world. This conference was planned by Global Community Initiatives, the Donella Meadows Institute and the Public Banking Institute. Gwendolyn Hallsmith, whose book Creating Wealth: Growing Local Economies and Local Currencies (with Bernard Lietaer) describes most of the topics addressed during the conference, is the founder of Global Community Initiatives, a Montpelier-based organization for community resilience and sustainability.

by Margaret Blanchard

n abundance of creativity and innovation enlivened Vermont College of Fine Arts College Hall on December 7 for Vermonts new economy conference. Among the discussion topics were public banking and economic resiliency, ownership models, new finance and investment opportunities, complementary currencies and measuring what matters. One hundred twenty participants came from throughout New England. After a welcome from Montpelier mayor John Hollar, keynote speaker Ellen Brown of the Public Banking Institute offered an illuminating overview of the advantages of a state bank. This idea is now being studied in the Vermont legislature, thanks to the efforts of State Senator Anthony Pollina, with funding from the Donella Meadows Institute. A lawyer and author of Web of Debt: The Shocking Truth About Our Money System and How We Can Break Free, Brown explained how public banking originated with Pennsylvania Quakers and still thrives in North Dakota, as a potential solution to the downward spiral of debt, which threatens our collective financial security. Because of its state bank, developed in the 1920s, North Dakota escaped the recent credit crisis with the lowest

The Donella Meadows Institute of Norwich, Vermont, is a sustainability institute founded in 1996 by Meadows, a Pew Scholar and MacArthur Fellow, to bring economic, social, and environmental systems into closer harmony with the realities of a finite planet and a globally powerful human race by using the disciplines of systems thinking, system dynamics and collaborative learning. The gathering was carried out in collaboration with the Gund Institute of the University of Vermont (whose graduate students provided logistical support). The conference was also sponsored by Vermont Woman, whose editor, Rickey Gard Diamond, wrote a series of six economic articles (available now on the Vermont Woman webpage), which recently won a National Newspaper award. Her article, Avoiding Another Jackass Monetary Crisis, featured both Brown and Hallsmith. A reception sponsored by the Central Vermont Food Systems Council closed the event. According to Dan Jones of the Vermont Monetary Policy Advisory Committee, an ad hoc group formed to address the economic issues the state is facing; all 120 of the conference participants will be invited to join a new Coalition for a New Economy.

Community Herbalism Workshops

at Vermont Center for Integrative Herbalism Classes cost $10 members/$12 non-members and take place at VCIH (250 Main Street, third floor, Montpelier) unless otherwise specified. Preregistration required. Contact 224.7100 or Class descriptions at WINTER WELLNESS with Shona MacDougall, VCIH clinical herbalist. Wednesday, February 6, 68 pm. APRHODISIAC HERBOLOGY with Andrew Wolf, VCIH graduate. Wednesday, February 13, 68 pm; $8 materials fee. LUXURIOUSLY HEALTHY HAIR: SIMPLE HAIR CARE RECIPES with Joann Darling, Green Sylk Soap Company. Monday, February 18, 68 pm; $5 materials fee. THE HEART OF THE MATTER: PERSPECTIVES AND STRATEGIES FOR WORKING WITH ANXIETY with Sarah VanHoy, LAc. Wednesday, March 6, 68 pm.

Design & Build Custom Energy-Ecient Homes Additions Timber Frames Weatherization Remodeling Kitchens Bathrooms Flooring Tiling Cabinetry Fine Woodwork


J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2 013 PAG E 11

Upcoming Events
Uncluttering Your Life. Workshop with Linn Syz, organizational coach. 34:30 p.m. Milne Room, Aldrich Public Library, Barre. Free. Taylor Talk: The Paradox of the Green Mountain Parkway. Vermont historian Bruce Post talks about the 1936 defeat of the proposed Green Mountain Parkway and how our states natural treasures might actually have been better protected had the road been built. 7 p.m. Capital City Grange, 6612 Northeld Street (Route 12), Berlin. $5 Green Mountain Club members, $8 nonmembers, free for kids under 12. Baked goods and refreshments available. Open Mic Comedy Night: Stroke Your Joke VI. See live stand-up as comics try ve to seven minutes of new material in front of an audience. Sign up at 7:30 p.m.; show starts at 8 p.m. Espresso Bueno, 136 North Main Street, Barre. Free; donations welcome. Bob, 793-3884.




Reiki Clinic. A clothes-on, healing treatment involving light touch to restore balance and vitality and help support any medical therapies. Half-hour sessions. 10 a.m.noon. 141 Main Street, suite 1, Montpelier. $10. Walk-ins welcome, or make an appointment with Nancy, 522-6424. Telemark and Alpine Touring Ski Demo. With Clearwater Sports and G3 Ski Company. 10 a.m.3 p.m. Mad River Glen. Free. 496-2708. Dungeons and Dragons with Ben Matchstick. Inspired board gaming with the local game master. Bring a friend or ve and nd your tribe. 13 p.m. Childrens department, Kellogg-Hubbard Library, 135 Main Street, Montpelier. Free. Linda, 223-4665. Shape-Note/Sacred Harp Sing. No experience needed. All welcome. 35 p.m. Plaineld Community Center (above the coop). By donation. Scottie, 595 9951 or Event happens every second Sunday. Adamant Winter Music Series: Dave Keller. The local blues and jazz musician plays a solo show. Optional potluck before the show. 5:30 p.m. potluck; 7 p.m. concert. Adamant Community Club. $10 in advance (tickets at the Adamant Co-op) or $15 at the door. 456-7054. Sex Talk: Orgasms and Sex Toys. A monthly discussion group for women to explore all aspects of sexuality. Sacred, safe and condential. Open to women of all orientations. 79 p.m. Inner Sea Healing Arts, 56 East State Street, Montpelier. Free; $1$5 suggested donation. Nina, 498-3510. Next discussion February 9. Free Film Screening: Suburbia. Penelope Spheeriss ctionalized account of teen punks in LA squatting in a suburban home slated for demolition. 7 p.m. Sovversiva Open Space/Freeride Montpelier, 89 Barre Street, Montpelier.

Live Music
BAGITOS 28 Main Street, Montpelier. 229-9212 or Every Wednesday Blues jam with the Usual Suspects and friends, 68 p.m. Every Saturday Irish/Celtic session, 25 p.m. Friday, January 11 David Kraus and John LaRouche, 68 p.m. Saturday, January 12 Jason Mallery and Cyrus Graves, 11 a.m.1 p.m. Winter Songs with Bronwyn Fryer and friends, 6 p.m.close Sunday, January 13 Brunch with Eric Friedman, 11 a.m.1 p.m. Tuesday, January 15 Open mic, 6:308 p.m. Friday, January 18 The Neptunes with Nancy Taub, David Indenbaum, Corey Unger and Connie Button, 6 p.m.close Saturday, January 19 Big Hat, No Cattle (Western swing), 6 p.m.close Tuesday, January 22 Old-time session, 68 p.m.

Preschool Discovery Program: Snow Fun. Children age 35 and their families explore the cold white stu through nature-based activities, crafts and guided outdoor explorations. 1011:30 a.m. North Branch Nature Center, 713 Elm Street, Montpelier. $5 members, $8 nonmembers. 229-6206. Going Solar Without Going Broke. With Jessica Edgerly Walsh from Suncommon. Learn about nancing options and state Mindful Business Success Circle Networking Group. For service professionals and small-business owners and federal incentives that make now a great time to go solar and working to make a dierence in their communities and the world. save money. This workshop will focus on solar electric systems. 5:306:30 p.m. Hunger Mountain Coop community room, Montpe- Thirty minutes of optional sitting meditation, followed by an lier. Free. Register at 223-8000, ext. 202, or info@hungermountain. hour of networking and one-on-one connection with peers. 10:45 a.m.12:30 p.m. Shambhala Center, 64 Main Street (third oor), com. Montpelier. Free. RSVP at 225-5960. Event happens every third Wednesday. Sacred Co-Creation. With Nessa Rothstein, Brennan HealPhysical, Emotional, Mental and Spiritual Health. ing Science practitioner. Learn the basics of conscious creation, With Isabelle Meulet, certied massage therapist, Brennan Healing including a guided meditation and visualization with sacred geometry as a way to deepen your relationship to your life. 5:307 p.m. Science practitioner and Pathwork teacher/helper. An interactive Hunger Mountain Coop community room, Montpelier. Free. Register discussion and exploration of the ways we contribute positively at 223-8000, ext. 202, or and negatively to our health. 67:30 p.m. Hunger Mountain Coop Keeping Winter Blues at Bay. Panel presentation about community room, Montpelier. Free. Register at 223-8000, ext. 202, the prevention and treatment of depression during the winter with or Jeremiah Eckhaus of Montpelier Integrative Family Health, Cady Overcoming Negative Emotions. With Amy Miller, Hart of Conuence Health and Wellness Center and Bobbi Rood Buddhist nun and director of the Milarepa Center. Beat the of Washington County Health Services. Door prizes, handouts January blues and learn how to apply practical antidotes to negaand more. 5:30 p.m. Montpelier Senior Activity Center, 58 Barre tive mind states. Meditation and discussion included. All levels Street, Montpelier. Liz, 262-6288 or Inclement welcome. 67:30 p.m. Hayes Room, Kellogg-Hubbard Library, 135 weather date January 23. Main Street, Montpelier. Free. 223-3338 or Home Sharing Info Meeting. Find out what home sharing Meeting of the Washington County Stamp Club. is all about. Refreshments served. 5:306 p.m. Home Share Now, Continuation of the clubs holiday auction. Buy, sell, swap and 115 Main Street, Barre. RSVP at 479-8544 to ensure ample refreshconversation with other local philatelists. 7:30 p.m.; doors open at ments. Event happens every third Wednesday. Menstrual Health for All Ages. Learn about alternative Thursday, January 24 POSITIVE PIE 2 menstrual products, self-care techniques and herbal remedies to Jer Coons and Caroline Rose, 68 p.m. 22 State Street, Montpelier. 229-0453 or promote menstrual health. Yes, puppets and Fimo uteruses will be involved! All genders welcome, as well as any age appropriate for BIG PICTURE THEATER Saturday, January 12 open conversation about menstrual health. 67:30 p.m. Tulsi Tea 48 Carroll Road (just o Route 100), Room, 34 Elm St, Montpelier. By donation. 454-0102 or dandeliones Waitseld. 496-8994 or bigpicturetheater. Jenke presents Set Up City, Bless the Child, Face One and Mavstar (hip-hop), info. 10:30 p.m., 21+, $5 Song Circle: Community Sing-Along. Rich and Laura Monday, January 14 Friday, January 18 Atkinson lead community members in song, accompanied by a vaSheesham and Lotus, 7 p.m. Roots music showcase, 10 p.m., $5 riety of instruments. All ages and abilities welcome; no experience Wednesday, January 16 Saturday, January 19 necessary. Song books provided. 6:45 p.m.Jaquith Public Library, Valley Night with the Hip Replacements Serotheft (live-tronica/dance/jam), 10:30 122 School Street, Marsheld. Free. 426-3581 or jaquithpubliclibrar (folk/jam) p.m., 21+, $5 Wednesday, January 23 Valley Night with Mind the Gap (folk/ Protecting Yourself from Identity Theft. Amy SKINNY PANCAKE Americana) Schram, community outreach specialist with the Better Business 89 Main Street, Montpelier. 262-2253 or Bureau, covers tactics that identity thieves are using to obtain CHARLIE OS sonal information and ways we can protect ourselves. 7 p.m. Hayes Every Wednesday 70 Main Street, Montpelier. 223-6820. Room, Kellogg-Hubbard Library, 135 Main Street, Montpelier. Free. Jay Ekis (country/blues) Every Tuesday 223-3338 or Every Sunday Karaoke Old-time sessions with Katie Trautz NUTTY STEPHS CHOCOLATERIE see UPCOMING EVENTS, page 13 and friends, 46 p.m. (intermediate to Route 2, Middlesex. All shows 710 p.m. advanced players welcome to sit in) unless otherwise noted. 229-2090 or Sunday, January 13 Silent Mind (Americana) Every Thursday Sunday, January 20 Bacon Thursday, live music and hot conLiptak/Evans Duo (jazz) versation, 6 p.m.midnight THE WHAMMY BAR POSITIVE PIE Maple Corner Caf, 31 West County Road, AUDITIONS FOR JOSEPH AND THE 69 Main Street, Plaineld. Calais. All events free unless otherwise AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT Thursday, January 17 noted. 229-4329. Echo Valley Community Arts seeks actors and singers for Dave Keller, 7:30 p.m. Every Tuesday leads, mens chorus, womens chorus and childrens chorus. Thursday, January 24 Trivia night, 6:308:30 p.m. Performance dates are May 3, 4, 5, 10, 11 and 12. Saturday, Sara Grace and Miriam Bernardo, 7:30 Every Wednesday January 19, 10 a.m.2 p.m. Taplin Auditorium, Christ Church, p.m. Open mic, 6:30 p.m.close State Street, Montpelier. For more information or a private audition, call Naomi Flanders, director, at 225-6471.

Cross-country Ski with the Young Adventurers Club. Easy, 2- to 4-mile outing for kids and parents at the Trapp Family Touring Center. Pass or trail fee required. Contact leader Lexi Shear, 229-9810, for meeting time and place. Sponsored by the Montpelier section of the Green Mountain Club. Cross-country Ski with the Montpelier Section of the Green Mountain Club. Moderate adventures of various distances at the Craftsbury Outdoor Center. Pass or trail fee required. Contact leader Fred Jordan, 223-3935, for meeting time and place. The Landscape and Healing Plants of the Holy Lands. Yvonne and Sandra Lory present a slide show of Palestines West Bank, Israels Tel Aviv, Haifa, Nazareth, the Sea of Galilee, Jerusalem and the Dead Sea through the regions landscape and healing plants. 3 p.m. Cutler Memorial Library, Route 2, Plaineld. Free; donations to Herbalists Without Borders welcome. Sandra, 479-1925 or The Washed Up Beulah Band. Kenny Shimizu, Luke Homan, Arthur Davis and Wheaton Squier perform jubileestyle radio-gospel music from 1930s and 1940s with rich vocal textures, syncopated rhythms and train-whistle harmonies. 7 p.m. Chapel, Bethany Church, 115 Main Street, Montpelier. Suggested donation: $15 adults, $10 students and seniors. Heidi,

Health educator Dana Woodruff, who will lead a menstrual health workshop for all ages on Wednesday, January 16.

6:45 p.m. First Baptist Church, corner of School and St. Paul streets, Montpelier. Free. 223-2953. Local Author Reading and Signing: Sydney Lea. Vermonts poet laureate shares his third volume of outdoor essays, A North Country Life: Tales of Woodsmen, Waters and Wildlife. 7 p.m. Bear Pond Books, 77 Main Street, Montpelier. Free. 229-0774.





PAG E 12 J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2013


Art & Exhibits

BIGTOWN GALLERY Holiday show of small works by BigTown Gallery artists. 99 North Main Street, Rochester. Extended through February. Hours: Wednesday Friday, 10 a.m.5 p.m.; Saturday, noon 5 p.m. 767-9670, or BLINKING LIGHT GALLERY Photographs by Theodore Teo Kaye, featuring highlights from his travel and work in Central Asia. 16 Main Street, Plaineld. Through January 27. Hours: Thursdays, 26 p.m.; FridaySunday, 10 a.m.6 p.m. CENTRAL VERMONT MEDICAL CENTER Paris/Provence, still-life and landscape paintings by Susan Abbott. Lobby, 130 Fisher Road, Berlin. Through January 18. CHANDLER GALLERY 20-30 / 2D-3D, juried show of work in a variety of media by Vermont artists in their 20s and 30s. Above right, Hermit Crab, by Barre artist Corinna Thurston. 7173 Main Street, Ran-


dolph. January 20March 13. Reception Sunday, January 20, 46 p.m. Hours: Friday, 35 p.m.; SaturdaySunday, noon2 p.m. 431-0204 or


CONTEMPORARY DANCE & FITNESS STUDIO Ever Moving . . . Ever Changing, digital art photos by Linda Hogan. 18 Langdon Street (third oor), Montpelier. Through February 25. 229-4676 or GOVERNORS GALLERY Eye of the Beholder, pastels by local artists Anne Unangst, Cindy Grith and Marcia Hill com-

President Obama signing the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act. Photo by Patrick Leahy, showing at the Vermont Supreme Court in Montpelier.

paring the same scene in their dierent styles. 109 State Street (fth oor), Montpelier. Photo ID required for admission. Through March. Reception Tuesday, January 29, 35 p.m. 828-0749. GREEN BEAN ART GALLERY NYC 19982012, photographs of Manhattan by Amy Lee. Below, End of the Tunnel. Capitol Grounds, 27 State Street, Montpelier. Through February 2.

ception Friday, January 25, 57 p.m. 479-7069 or SULLIVAN MUSEUM & HISTORY CENTER Useful and Elegant Accomplishments, landscape drawings by 19th-century Norwich University alumni and their contemporaries. Norwich University, Northeld. January 14June. 485-2183 or THREE MOUNTAIN CAFE Seen in Vermont, plein air paintings in oils and pastels by Jan Ghiringhelli. 107 Mad River Green, Waitseld. Through February 3. 496-5470 or 229-5209. VERMONT HISTORY MUSEUM Freedom & Unity: One Ideal, Many Stories, experience a full-sized Abenaki wigwam, a recreation of the Catamount Tavern, a railroad station complete with working telegraph, a World War II living room and more. 109 State Street, Montpelier. $5 adults, $12 families. 828-2291.

By the Falls, by Jan Ghiringelli, showing at Three Mountain Cafe in Waitsfield.



STUDIO PLACE ARTS On the rst oor, Thinking Out of the Box, art made from cardboard. On the second oor, works by Beth Barndt. On the third oor, photographs by Michael Lew-Smith. 201 North Main Street, Barre. January 22February 23. Re-

VERMONT SUPREME COURT The Eye of Senator Leahy, Patrick Leahys photographs of people both illustrious and ordinary from his insiders perspective. 111 State Street (rst-oor lobby), Montpelier. Through February 28. Hours: MondayFriday, 8 a.m.4:30 p.m. 828-0749.

Montpelier Senior Activity Center

Healthy Aging & Lifelong Learning
50+? Become a member to register now for WINTER CLASSES such as: Fly Tying, Short Play Writing, Painting, Italian, Poetry Writing, Line Dancing, Tap Dancing, Tai Chi, and dozens more.

with Jeremiah Echkaus, MD, Cady Hart, MS, and Bobbi Rood, MSW. Wed., January 16, 5:30 p.m., free and open to the public. Rick Winstons FILM SERIES now Thursday afternoons at MSAC! In February, look for NEW Billiards, Tango, and Improv Acting.

about prevention and treatment of depression in winter,

58 Barre Street, Montpelier,, or 223-2518.


J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2 013 PAG E 13

UPCOMING EVENTS, from page 11 Farmers Night Concert with the Vermont Symphony Orchestra. The orchestra performs works by Bach, Tchaikovsky, Alan Hovhaness, John Cheetham and more. 7:30 p.m.; doors open at 6:45 p.m. House chamber, State House, Montpelier. Free; seating is rst come, rst served.

Anna Lindblad, Pete Sutherland, Ken Perlman, Jim Prendergast, Ryan Dricky, Sarah Blair, Jeremiah McLane, Mayy and more. Downtown Montpelier. Complete schedule at, or contact Mary, 917-1186 or Most events $10$20; weekend pass $100 adults, $75 youth 16 and under. Event continues Saturday, January 19, and Sunday, January 20.




Workshop on Starting Your Own Business. Learn how to start your own business and write a business plan. Applicable to all types of business. 9:30 a.m.1:30 p.m. Community National Bank, Barre. $99. Register at (click on Training). Heather, Sponsored by the Vermont Small Business Development Center. Meeting on Disability Issues. Share stories and concerns. 13 p.m. Vermont Center for Independent Living, 11 East State Street, Montpelier. 639-1522 or 229-0501 (both are also V/TTY numbers). Event happens every third Thursday. Preparing for the Next Flood: A Checklist for Homeowners. Richard Czaplinski gives homeowners a systematic way to prepare themselves for the next disastrous ood. 67:45 p.m. Kellogg-Hubbard Library, 135 Main Street, Montpelier. Free. 223-3338 or A Transition Town Montpelier program. Songwriters Meeting. Meeting of the Northern VT/NH chapter of the Nashville Songwriters Association International. Bring copies of your work. 6:45 p.m. Catamount Arts, St. Johnsbury. John, 633-2204. Event happens every third Thursday. Ecumenical Group. Songs of praise, Bible teaching, fellowship. 79 p.m. Jabbok Center for Christian Living, 8 Daniel Drive, Barre. Free. 479-0302. Event happens every rst and third Thursday.


Council on Aging Information Sessions. Wanda Craig discusses benets, in-home help, family caregiver resources or whatever questions you may have in one-on-one sessions. 9 a.mnoon. Montpelier Senior Activity Center, 58 Barre Street, Montpelier. Schedule an appointment at 479-7553. Snowshoe Romp in Hubbard Park. Snowshoe on a lantern-lit course through the park. Demo the latest and greatest snowshoes from Tubbs, Atlas and MSR, and warm up with a cup of hot cocoa next to the replace in the Old Shelter. For all ages and abilities. 68 p.m. Hubbard Park, Montpelier. Free. Matt, 2299409 or Naturalist Journeys Lecture Series: Spectacles of NatureA Photographic Journey. Vermonter Heather Forcier presents images and stories of the birds, animals and scenery she has seen during 10 years of nature photography around the world. 7 pm. Unitarian Church, 130 Main Street, Montpelier. By donation. North Branch Nature Center, 229-6206. Summit School Winter Folk Festival. Concerts, traditional music workshops, Cajun dance party and more, featuring Dirk Powell and Riley Baugus with Corey Porsche,

Snowshoe with the Montpelier Section of the Green Mountain Club. Moderate 4-mile trek in Groton State Forest, from New Discovery to Big Deer Mountain and return along Osmore Pond. Bring lunch and snack. Contact leader Steve Lightholder, 479-2304 or, for meeting place and time. Lake Champlain Birding with the North Branch Nature Center. Join central Vermont bird enthusiasts to explore the wetlands, elds and water bodies of the Champlain Valley for waterfowl and winter birds. 8 a.m.4:30 p.m. $20 nature center members, $25 nonmembers. Call 229-6206 for meeting time and place. Central Vermont Interfaith Action Breakfast. Munch on regular or gluten-free pancakes and fruit, followed by a short program about community organizing honoring Martin Luther King Jr. 910:30 a.m. Unitarian Church, 130 Main Street, Montpelier. $5$10 suggested donation. Harris, 223-7399. Friends Annual Book Sale. Clean out your bookshelves and get some new reads. All books $2 or less. Drop o books in the week prior to the sale. 9 a.m.1:30 p.m.Jaquith Public Library, 122 School Street, Marsheld. Free. 426-3581 or jaquithpubliclibrary@g Meat Day at the Indoor Farmers Market. Knife sharpening by Capital Kitchen, meat demos by the New England Culinary Institute, education about humanely raised meatand plenty of options for vegetarians, too. Live music by Turning Stile. 10 a.m.2 p.m. Gym, Vermont College of Fine Arts, Montpelier. Carolyn, 223-2958 or Event happens every rst and third Saturday through April. Summit School Winter Folk Festival. See Friday, January 18, for description and information. Having Fun with Language. Picture-book author David Martin shares activities for helping youngsters learn words, create stories and verse and get meaning from the books they read. For anyone who works with kids pre-K through third grade. Snacks, discussion and discounts follow. 11 a.m. noon. Childrens loft, Bear Pond Books, 77 Main Street, Montpelier. Free. 229-0774. Family Movie Day. The librarys public performance site license does not allow them to advertise the name of the movie, but please call to nd out what this months G-rated, animated movie is. Noon1:30 p.m. Waterbury Public Library. Free. 244-7036. Rug Hooking: Open Class for All Levels. Bring any questions you have on a project youre working on or get help starting a new one. Shop open for supplies. 15 p.m. Green Mountain Hooked Rugs, 2838 County Road, Montpelier. $25. Register at 223-1333 or Shape-Note Sing. Ian Smiley leads tunes from The Sacred Harp. All welcome; no experience necessary. 6:308 p.m. Tulsi

Bow Thayer and Perfect Trainwreck, who will be playing at Chandler Music Hall on Saturday, January 19.

Tea Room, 34 Elm Street, Montpelier. By donation. Ian, 882-8274 or Event happens every rst and third Saturday. Bow Thayer CD Release Concert. Central Vermonts favorite rocker and his band Perfect Trainwreck perform their muchanticipated album, Eden, in its entirety in a multimedia event. 7 p.m. Chandler Music Hall, 7173 Main Street, Randolph. $20 in advance, $25 day of show. Tickets at 728-6464 or Contra Dance. All dances taught; no partner necessary. All ages welcome. Bring shoes not worn outdoors. 811 p.m. Capital City Grange, 6612 Route 12 (Northeld Street), Berlin. $8. 7446163 or Event happens every rst, third and fth Saturday. Goddard College Concert: Archie Shepp. Legendary jazz saxophonist and Goddard alumnus Shepp plays the Haybarn Theatre and accepts the Goddard Award for Excellence from President Barbara Vacarr. 8 p.m. award ceremony, concert follows; doors see UPCOMING EVENTS, page 14 Alchoholics Anonymous, Sundays, 8:30 a.m. Making Recovery Easier workshops, Tuesdays, 67:30 p.m. Wits End Parent Support Group, Wednesdays, 6 p.m. Narcotics Anonymous, Thursdays, 6:30 p.m. Open daily, 10 a.m.5 p.m. 489 North Main Street, Barre. 479-7373. Overeaters Anonymous. Twelve-step program for physically, emotionally and spiritually overcoming overeating. Fridays, noon1 p.m. Bethany Church, 115 Main Street, Montpelier. 223-3079.

Support Groups
Bereavement Support Group. For anyone who has experienced the death of a loved one. Every other Monday, 68 p.m., through December 17. Every other Wednesday, 1011:30 a.m., through December 12. Central Vermont Home Health and Hospice, 600 Granger Road, Barre. Ginny, 223-1878. Bereaved Parents Support Group. Facilitated by Central Vermont Home Health and Hospice (CVHHH). Second Wednesdays, 68 p.m. CVHHH, 600 Granger Road, Berlin. Jeneane Lunn, 793-2376. Survivors of Suicide. Facilitated by Cory Gould. Third Thursdays, 56:30 p.m. Board room, Central Vermont Medical Center, Fisher Road, Berlin. Karen, 229-0591.

1 p.m. Cancer Center resource room, Central Vermont Medical Center. 225-5449. Cancer Support Group. Third Wednesdays, 6 p.m. Potluck. For location, call Carole MacIntyre, 229-5931. Man-to-Man Prostate Cancer Support Group. Third Wednesdays, 68 p.m. Conference room 2, Central Vermont Medical Center. 872-6308 or 866-466-0626 (press 3).


Hurricane Irene Support Group for Recovery Workers. Get peer support and help processing emotions, strengthen relationships and learn coping skills. Every other Monday, 3:30 p.m. Unitarian Church, 130 Main Street, Montpelier. 279-4670. Hurricane Irene Support Group. Share your story, listen to others, learn coping skills, build community and support your neighbors. Refreshments provided. Wednesdays, 5:30 p.m. Berlin Elementary School. 279-8246.



Kindred Connections. For anyone aected by cancer. Get help from Kindred Connections members who have been in your shoes. A program of the Vermont Cancer Survivor Network. Call Sherry, 479-3223, for more information. Living with Advanced or Metastatic Cancer. Second Tuesdays, noon to 1 p.m. Cancer Center resource room, Central Vermont Medical Center. Lunch provided. 225-5449. Writing to Enrich Your Life. For anyone aected by cancer. Third Tuesdays, noon

Grandparents Raising Their Childrens Children. First Wednesdays, 10 a.m.noon, Barre Presbyterian Church, Summer Street. Second Tuesdays, 68 p.m., Wesley Methodist Church, Main Street, Waterbury. Third Thursdays, 68 p.m., Trinity United Methodist Church, 137 Main Street. Child care provided in Montpelier and Waterbury. Evelyn, 476-1480.

Bancroft; day group facilitated by Kathy Grange and Jane Hulstrunk. Evening group meets rst Mondays, 5:307:30 p.m., DisAbility Rights of Vermont, 141 Main Street, Suite 7, Montpelier, 800-834-7890, ext. 106. Day group meets rst and third Thursdays, 1:302:30 p.m., Unitarian Church, 130 Main Street, Montpelier, 244-6850. NAMI Vermont: Connection. A peer-led, recovery-oriented group for individuals living with mental illness. First and third Thursdays, 67:30 p.m. Kellogg-Hubbard Library, Montpelier. 800-639-6480 or NAMI Vermont Family Support Group. Support group for families and friends of individuals living with mental illness. Fourth Mondays, 7 p.m. Central Vermont Medical Center, room 3, Berlin. 800-639-6480 or Celiac and Food Allergy Support Group. With Lisa Mas of Harmonized Cookery. Second Wednesdays, 4:306 p.m. Conference room 3, Central Vermont Medical Center. Diabetes Discussion Group. Focus on self-management. Open to anyone with diabetes and their families. Third Thursdays, 1:30 p.m. The Health Center, Plaineld. Free. Don, 3226600 or Diabetes Support Group. First Thursdays, 78 p.m. Conference room 3, Central Vermont Medical Center. 371-4152.




Brain Injury Support Groups. Open to all survivors, caregivers and adult family members. Evening group facilitated by Marsha

Turning Point Center. Safe, supportive place for individuals and their families in or seeking recovery.

Womens Group. Women age 40 and older explore important issues and challenges in their lives in a warm and supportive environment. Faciliatated by Amy Emler-Shaer and Julia W. Gresser. Wednesday evenings. 41 Elm Street, Montpelier. Call Julia, 262-6110, for more information. Mens Group. Men discuss challenges of and insights about being male. Wednesdays, 6:158:15 p.m. 174 Elm Street, Montpelier. Interview required: contact Neil, 223-3753. National Federation of the Blind, Montpelier Chapter. First Saturdays. Lane Shops community room, 1 Mechanic Street, Montpelier. 229-0093. Families of Color. Open to all. Play, eat and discuss issues of adoption, race and multiculturalism. Bring snacks and games to share; dress for the weather. Third Sundays, 35 p.m. Unitarian Church, 130 Main Street, Montpelier. Alyson, 439-6096 or

PAG E 14 J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2013


UPCOMING EVENTS, from page 13 open at 7 p.m. Haybarn Theatre, Goddard College, Plaineld. $35 in advance, $40 day of show; tickets at Buch Spieler in Montpelier and


Summit School Winter Folk Festival. See Friday, January 18, for description and information. Chandler Film Society. Watch Smiles of a Summer Night (1955), directed by Ingmar Bergman. 7 p.m. Chandlers Upper Gallery, 7173 Main Street, Randolph. $9. 431-0204 or


Farm Ski Touring Center in East Montpelier. Distance depends on interest and snow conditions. Pass or trail fee required. Bring lunch to eat indoors. Contact leaders Reidun and Andrew Nuquist, 223-3550, for meeting time and place. Benefit Film Screening: The Challenge of Rudolf Steiner. Part two of a documentary by Jonathan Stedall on Steiners life, interwoven with contemporary examples of how his ideas and insights have inuenced pioneering work all over the world. 58 p.m. Downstairs, Savoy Theater, Montpelier. $18$20, includes light snacks, movie screening and discussion; benets the Central Vermont High School Initiative. Limited seating: tickets at Bear Pond Books or Keeping the Books and Tax Planning for Small Businesses. Denice Brown of Abacus Bookkeeping explains what you need to keep track of and how to keep track it. Bring questions. 6-8:30 p.m. conference room, Central Vermont Community Action, 195 US Route 302, Berlin. Free, but registration requested: 477-5214.

series: next event February 28. 78:30 p.m. Kellogg-Hubbard Library, 135 Main Street, Montpelier. Free. 223-3338 or kellogg Cosponsored by the library, the Vermont Humanities Council and the Summit School of Traditional Music. Climate Change in Vermont with Roger Hill. The popular local weather guru talks about weather and climate. 7 p.m. American Legion, 16 Stowe Street, Waterbury. Free. 244-7036. Sponsored by the Waterbury Public Library. Green Mountain Dog Club Monthly Meeting. Learn about the club and events. All dog lovers welcome. 7:30 p.m. Commodores Inn, Stowe. 479-9843 or Event happens every fourth Thursday.

Submit Your Event!

Send listings to The deadline for our next issue, January 10, is Friday, January 4. 50 words or less, please. Listings may be edited for length, clarity or style. Events happening in Montpelier have priority, then events in surrounding communities. High-resolution photos also welcome for possible use. Have a class series youd like to advertise? Get it in the classified section: call Carolyn or Gabriela at 2235112, ext. 11 or 12.

Plainfield Book Club. Discuss Just Kids by Patti Smith. 6:30 p.m. Cutler Memorial Library, Route 2, Plaineld. Free. 454-8504 or Event happens every third Monday. Journeys End: Destination of a Dream. Vermont folklorist and commentator Jane Beck recounts stories of Daisy Turner of Grafton and the African American experience in Vermont to honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. 7 p.m. Vermont History Center, 60 Washington Street , Barre. Free. 479-8500 or 828-2180.

Preschool Discovery Program: Cones and Critters. Children age 35 and their families explore wildlife active in winter through nature-based activities, crafts and guided outdoor explorations. 1011:30 a.m. North Branch Nature Center, 713 Elm Street, Montpelier. $5 members, $8 nonmembers. 229-6206.



Cross-country Ski with the Montpelier Section of the Green Mountain Club. Moderate outing at the Morse

Musica Borealis: Fiddling in Scandinavia. Katie Trautz demonstrates and talks about ddling traditions from the deep north, including Norway and Sweden. Part of the Musica Borealis

Weekly Events
Open Shop Nights. Have a bike to donate or need help with a bike repair? Visit the volunteer-run community bike shop. Mondays and Wednesdays, 57 p.m.; Tuesdays, 68 p.m. Freeride Montpelier, 89 Barre Street, Montpelier. By donation. 552-3521 or

Noon Cafe. Soup, fresh bread, good company and lively conversation. Wednesdays, noon. Old Meeting House, East Montpelier. By donation. German Brunch: A Community Meal. All-you-can-eat buet of fresh fruit, bread, salmon and local meats and cheeses. Mimosas and other drinks available for purchase. Sundays, 10 a.m.2 p.m. Nutty Stephs, Route 2, Middlesex. $10 adult, $5 children 12 and under. nuttystephs .com.

Cub Capers Story Time and Songs. For children age 35 and their families. Tuesdays, 9:30 a.m. Childrens room, Bear Pond Books, 77 Main Street, Montpelier. 229-0774. Story Time at Onion River Kids. Outdoor adventure tales and childhood classics. Sundays, 10:30 a.m. 7 Langdon Street, Montpelier. 223-6025.





Ongoing Reading Group. Improve your reading and share some good books. Books chosen by group. Thursdays, 910 a.m. Central Vermont Adult Basic Education, Montpelier Learning Center, 100 State Street. 223-3403.

Apollo Duplicate Bridge Club. All welcome. Partners sometimes available. Fridays, 6:45 p.m. Bethany Church, Montpelier. 485-8990 or 223-3922.



Beaders Group. All levels of beading experience welcome. Free instruction available. Come with a project for creativity and community. Saturdays, 11 a.m.2 p.m. The Bead Hive, Plaineld. 454-1615.


Ecstatic Dance. Freestyle boogie with DJ using Gabrielle Roths meditative dance form, 5Rhythms. Wednesdays, 79 p.m. First and third Wednesdays: Worcester Town Hall, corner of Elmore Road and Calais Road; second and fourth Wednesdays: Plaineld Community Center (above the co-op). $10. Fearn, 505-8011 or

Free HIV Testing. Vermont CARES oers fast oral testing. Thursdays, 25 p.m. 58 East State Street, suite 3 (entrance at the back), Montpelier. Affordable Acupuncture. Full acupuncture sessions with Chris Hollis and Trish Mitchell. Mondays and Wednesdays, 27 p.m.; Fridays, 9 a.m.2 p.m. 79 Main Street, suite 8 (above Coee Corner), Montpelier. $15$40 sliding scale. Walk in or schedule an appointment at

English Conversation Practice Group. For students learning English for the rst time. Tuesdays, 45 p.m. Central Vermont Adult Basic Education, Montpelier Learning Center, 100 State Street. Sarah, 223-3403. Lunch in a Foreign Language. Bring lunch and practice your language skills with neighbors. Noon1 p.m. Mondays, Hebrew. Tuesdays, Italian. Wednesdays, Spanish. Thursdays, French. Fridays, German. Kellogg-Hubbard Library, Montpelier. 223-3338.




Free Community Meals in Montpelier. All welcome. Mondays: Unitarian Church, 130 Main Street, 11 a.m.1 p.m. Tuesdays: Bethany Church, 115 Main Street, 11:30 a.m.1 p.m. Wednesdays: Christ Church, 64 State Street, 11 a.m.12:30 p.m. Thursdays: Trinity Church, 137 Main Street, 11:30 a.m.1 p.m. Fridays: St. Augustine Church, 18 Barre Street, 11 a.m.12:30 p.m. Sundays: Last Sundays only, Bethany Church, 115 Main Street (hosted by Beth Jacob Synagogue), 4:305:30 p.m.

indicates new or revised listing

The Basement Teen Center. Cable TV, PlayStation 3, pool table, free eats and fun events for teenagers. MondayThursday, 36 p.m.; Friday, 311 p.m. Basement Teen Center, 39 Main Street, Montpelier. 229-9151. Story Time at the Waterbury Public Library. Mondays, age 1836 months. Wednesdays, age 018 months. Fridays, age 36 years. 10 a.m. Waterbury Public Library. Free. 244-7036. Story Time at the Kellogg-Hubbard Library. Tuesdays and Fridays, 10:30 a.m. Kellogg-Hubbard Library, Montpelier. Free. 2234665. Events for Teens at the Aldrich Library. No-obligations teen book club on Mondays; game night on Wednesdays. 5 p.m. Aldrich Public Library, Barre. 476-7550. Youth Group. Games, movies, snacks and music. Mondays, 79 p.m. Church of the Crucied One, Route 100, Moretown. 496-4516. Story Time and Playgroup. For children age 06. Story, followed by art, nature and cooking projects, as well as creative play. Dress for the weather. Wednesdays, 1011:30 a.m. Jaquith Public Library, 122 School Street, Marsheld. 4263581 or

Sing with the Barre Tones. Womens a cappella chorus. Mondays, 6:30 p.m. Alumni Hall (second oor), near Barre Auditorium. 223-2039 or Friday Night Community Drum Circle. Open drumming hosted by the Unitarian Universalists of Barre. Everyone welcome. Fridays, 79 p.m. Parish house, Barre Universalist Church, Main and Church Streets, Barre. Follow your ears, or follow the signs. Accessible venue possible with advance notice: 503-724-7301.

Christian Science. Gods love meeting human needs. Reading room: TuesdaySaturday, 11 a.m.1 p.m.; Tuesdays, 58 p.m.; and Wednesdays, 57:15 p.m. Testimony meeting: Wednesdays, 7:308:30 p.m., nursery available. Worship service: Sundays, 10:3011:30 a.m., Sunday school and nursery available. 145 State Street, Montpelier. 223-2477. Deepening Our Jewish Roots. Fun, engaging text study and discussion on Jewish spirituality. Sundays, 4:456:15 p.m. Yearning for Learning Center, Montpelier. Rabbi Tobie Weisman, 223-0583 or Christian Meditation Group. People of all faiths welcome. Mondays, noon1 p.m. Christ Church, Montpelier. Regis, 223-6043. Shambhala Buddhist Meditation. Instruction available. All welcome. Sundays, 10 a.m.noon, and Wednesdays, 67 p.m. Program and discussion follow Wednesday meditation. Shambhala Center, 64 Main Street, Montpelier. Free. 223-5137. Zen Meditation. Wednesdays, 6:307:30 p.m. 174 River Street, Montpelier. Call Tom for orientation, 229-0164. With Zen Aliate of Vermont.



Mamas Circle. Meet and connect with others experiencing the joys and challenges of new motherhood. For infants up to 1 year old and their mothers (toddler siblings welcome). Snacks, drinks and parent education materials provided. Thursdays, 10 a.m.noon, through April 19. Good Beginnings of Central Vermont, 174 River Street, Montpelier.

Roller Derby Open Recruitment and Recreational Practice. Central Vermonts Wrecking Doll Society invites quad skaters age 18 and up to try out the action. No experience necessary. Equipment provided: rst come, rst served. Saturdays, 56:30 p.m. Montpelier Recreation Center, Barre Street. First skate free. Coed Adult Floor Hockey League. Adult women and men welcome. Equipment provided. Sundays, 35 p.m., January 20April 21. Montpelier Recreation Center, Barre Street. $52 for 13 weeks or $5 per week. bmoorhockey@gmail. com or



Free Food Scrap Collection. Compost your food waste along with your regular trash and recycling. Wednesdays, 9 a.m.5 p.m.; Saturdays 6 a.m.1 p.m. DJs Convenience Store, 56 River Street, Montpelier. Dollar Days. Bring in odd and sundry items for reuse, upcycling and recycling, including toothbrushes, bottle caps, cassette tapes, books, textiles, batteries and more. Mondays and Fridays, 12:30 p.m.5:30 p.m. Additional Recyclables Collection Center, 3 Williams Lane, Barre. $1 per car load. Complete list of accepted items at 229-9383, ext. 106, or

Yoga with Lydia . Build strength and exibility as you learn safe alignment in a nourishing, supportive, and inspiring environment. Drop-ins welcome. Mondays, 5:30 p.m., River House Yoga, Plaineld ($5$20 sliding scale). Wednesdays, 4:30 p.m., Green Mountain Girls Farm, Northeld ($15). Tuesdays, noon; Thursdays, 6 p.m.; Fridays, noon, Yoga Mountain Center, Montpelier. Rates and directions at 229-6300 or Community Yoga. All levels welcome to this community-focused practice. Fridays, 5:306:30 p.m. Yoga Mountain Center, 7 Main Street (second oor), Montpelier. $5$20 sliding scale. 223-5302 or


J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2 013 PAG E 15

Class listings and classifieds are 50 words for $25; discounts available. To place an ad, call 223-5112 for Carolyn, ext. 11, or Gabriela, ext. 12

HWA YU TAI CHI Winter-spring semester starts January 7 and runs 15 weeks for $150. Payment plans available. New and continuing students welcome: Mondays, 5 p.m., at 64 Main Street, third oor, in Montpelier. Instructor Ellie Hayes has been teaching Hwa Yu Tai Chi since 1974. Preregister by January 6: 456-1983.

DRIVERS: CDL-B Great pay, hometime. No forced dispatch. New singles from Plattsburgh, New York. Passport/ enhanced license required. 888-567-4861 or

reception area, wireless Internet, private phone line if desired. Lease to start February 1. Contact or 224-7100. vtherb


HOUSE PAINTER Since 1986. Small interior jobs ideal. Neat, prompt, friendly. Local references. Pitz Quattrone, 229-4952. SEASONED COMPANIONSHIP PROVIDER Will provide quality services for soul in need. Reading Writing (cards/letters/memoirs) Light meal preparation Light gardening Light cleaning Light personal care Chaueuring

Mending Picking up prescriptions Pet care Bilingual conversation (English/French) Administrative assisting Sorting through boxes/papers All needs considered. References available. Charlotte, 583-1093. SNOW REMOVAL Small driveways, walkways, roofs, decks. Careful, responsible, insured. Andy Plante, 223-5409. STUFF TO SELL? Wish you could have a yard sale, but its getting too cold to hold one outside? Call us at T&T Repeats Thrift Store. We just may be able to help you out. 224-1360.


HOLISTIC PRACTITIONER OFFICES Three oces for rent at 252 Main Street (Vermont Center for Integrative Herbalism), Montpelier. $300$400/month depending on size. All utilities (except phone) included. Shared


T&T REPEATS Bikes, name-brand clothes, small household furniture and more. At least two free parking spaces for T&T customers. 116 Main Street, Montpelier, or call 224-1360. TRINITY COMMUNITY THRIFT STORE Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, 10 a.m. 4 p.m. Trinity United Methodist Church, 137 Main Street (use rear entrance), Montpelier. Donations accepted during normal business hours. 229-9155 or

PAG E 16 J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2013


The Power of Words

by Mary Mello

U listening? Maybe youve noticed that our language appears to be shrinking. In a world that increasingly relies on the shorthand of e-mail and texting, we may be losing our interest in complex language. What will happen to our ability to think, as well as to write, if we no longer feel that words matter? If we use emoticons to express emotion, will anyone still write poetry? (Or read it?) Can we wait until our children reach college age to teach them about the power of language to influence and to persuade? The second-grade teachers at Union Elementary School know we dont have the luxury of waiting. Theyre beginning now to use literature to expand and to enrich vocabulary and to explicitly teach the power that words have. One inspiration came from Mr. Peabodys Apples by Madonna, a contemporary retelling of an ancient fable. Its apparent that the book engaged students. I liked that it was a good book, but it had a lesson inside, says student Anna Neuberger. When asked about the message, the students are very clear. Think before you speak, says Aidan Quinn. His classmate, Pilar Abele, agrees, Words can really hurt. In the book, a young boy is asked to gather feathers that have been blown by the wind. The impossibility of his task symbolizes the difficulty of trying to gather up hurtful or untrue words. What has once been said, can never be unsaid. Students responded to the message in the


book in a variety of ways. Some painted watercolors. Others created acrostics or assumed the role of the young boy in the story and wrote a letter of apology to the character he had wronged. They all seemed to understand, as Mya Sturge, another student, puts it, Words can be very strong. Room parents in two of the classes silkscreened pillows with the message: Remember the power of your words. The students sewed up the pillows, leaving one small feather attached as a symbol of the feathers that can never be reclaimed. Every time I look at my pillow, says Ella, Ill remember not to say mean words about anyone. The students are learning that words have the power to hurt and the power to heal. Jasper Turner talks of a time when I lost something very special to me. My friend said, Ill bet you can make another one. Olin Duggan thinks about the way in which you can comfort people when they fall down. Many second graders stated that they like to give compliments to cheer people up. Their writing shows they also know how to use words to express thinking and emotion. Bryn Bouchey-Delaney writes: I wished that moving didnt exist. My parents said that I would be going to kindergarten in the new place we were moving. They also said that everyone had changes in their life. Second-grader Kashvi Panjolia writes about friendship: I always look for a friend thats a good friend, a caring friend and a nice friend. I also look for a fun friend that will do some things to make me laugh. I would also look

Second-grader Alanna Sweet displays her painting. In back, from left, students Lillian Boutin and Ethan Borland. Photo courtesy Mary Mello. for a friend that understands my feelings. Try saying that with an emoticon. This is Veronica Ibeys haiku entitled Bird: Tweet, tweet from the nest. Mary Mello teaches at Union Elementary Colorful feathers, happy, School and is a 2012 recipient of UVMs OutSo pretty with wings. standing Teacher Recognition program.


J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2 013 PAG E 17

break through
Simply Music is a revolutionary Australiandeveloped piano and keyboard method that oers a breakthrough in music education. This unique approach has students of all ages playing great-sounding contemporary, classical, blues, jazz and accompaniment pieces immediately from their very rst lessons! The Simply Music Method is based on the premise that everyone, without exception, is naturally musical. Simply Music temporarily delays music-reading and introduces a revolutionary, playing-based approach a vast array of unique concepts that unfold directly onto the keyboard and produce unprecedented results. The Simply Music approach focuses on the fun and sheer pleasure of playing music. There are four distinguishing features of Simply Music: The quantity of music that students learn The quality of music that students immediately learn to play The speed of progress The ease with which students experience the process Who can benet from learning with the Simply Music program? Children, teens, adults, and seniors Total beginners Students with prior experience People with special needs, including cognitive delays and physical limitations People who believe they are not musical

piano method has students playing immediately!

Since starting the program my 9-year-old sons love of piano has grown immensely. He sat down and played at the Whammy Bar and Caf (Maple Corner) the other night. He plays wherever and whenever he sees a piano. Im so excited for him. He now thinks of himself as a musician and this sense of accomplishment seems to be pouring over into other areas of his life as well. Elisabeth M., parent, Adamant, VT Im so happy and surprised by my progress. Already I have a play list of twelve songs and three structured improvisation pieces in the works. Each lesson is tailor-made to match my progression and I am encouraged not to feel hurried or impatient with the learning process. Im amazed at how a positive, tolerant attitude towards myself as I pick out a new piece impacts the entire experience.
Alex Noyes, student, Plaineld, VT, age 63

Free Introductory Session for January Enrollment

At 83 years of age, this wonderful program has given my life a dimension that has brought me much joy and satisfaction. It is so fullling to sit down at the piano and play.
Sara Larmer Meuse, student, age 83

ages 4 to 104
Nicholas Mortimer Licensed Simply Music Teacher 802-595-1220

I have seen a lot of music programs over the years. Some were fun. Some were clever. Some were thorough. Heres one that has it all. In terms of presentation, eectiveness, philosophy you name it theres nothing out there that compares at all.
Mary Pride, publisher, Practical Homeschool Magazine



PAG E 18 J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2013


Bagitos: A Home for Local Musicians

by Bronwyn Fryer

ot long ago, Langdon Street Caf was the live-music destination in Montpelier. When the dark red curtains cocooning the stage area came down and its doors shut, many local musicians felt adrift. They bemoaned the lack of a beloved venue, and the cafs shuttering felt like a big loss to the community. Into that vacuum swept Soren Pfeffer, the owner of Bagitos Caf on Main Street. Bagitos doesnt have the cozy, coffeehouse feel that Langdon Street did, but Pfeffer and his crew have done a noble job of transforming the burrito-and-bagel restaurant into a great place to hear local music at no charge, six nights a week, beginning at 6 p.m. (the caf, which serves wine and beer, is closed on Mondays).


As it turns out, the acoustics in the stage area by the front window are surprisingly good, and a small upright Baldwin piano helps with the atmospherics. While many musicians bring their own microphones and amplifiers, Bagitos has a small public-address system on hand that performers can borrow. When I was preparing my business plan a few years before Langdon Street closed, I saw live acoustic music as an integral part of the caf and its community contribution, says Pfeffer. I always loved being able to go down to Langdon Street and hear some wonderful folk artist who was passing through or a great local blues singer. Then Pfeffer learned that Langdon Street Caf was closing after he had finished most of the renovations to Bagitoscoincidentally, we opened the day after they closed, he saysand he realized that a big, live-music

void would need to be filled. Pfeffer is not a musician himself, and live music isnt a big money-making activity for the caf or the musicians, who play for tips and a glass of wine or a bite to eat. But once word got around that Bagitos was a place where performers could strut their stuff, momentum started building. The community of musicians opened up a whole new reason for hosting live music, says Pfeffer. I was really surprised how enthusiastic and appreciative the musicians were to have a place to play and get together. Soon Bagitos became a destination for performers. Several groups who played their first gigs at Bagitos became regulars, featuring recordings at Bagitos on their Facebook pages or websites. Currently, artists have to book a month in advance to secure a spot on Bagitos performance calendar. In addition to the bookings, Bagitos hosts regular events that have become popular, including acoustic blues every Wednesday evening, Jazz Jam the first Tuesday of each month, Open Mic the second Tuesday and,

starting this month, Old Time Sessions the third Tuesday of each month. On Saturday afternoons, a group of people who like to play Irish music pull out their fiddles, mandolins and guitars and gather before the front window, which serves as a makeshift stage for an appreciative and growing audience of listeners. Pfeffer has received lots of positive feedback from customers who drop in on Saturday afternoons to discover the caf full of happy people tapping their toes to highenergy Irish music. It feels really good to have Bagitos be a home for musicians, even though many moved on to other venues where they could make more money, says Pfeffer. Its nice when a performer says that they had a great time playing and want to come back. Thats one aspect of the music hosting that I never could have anticipated, but I love.

Bronwyn Fryer is a Montpelier-based writer and musician.


J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2 013 PAG E 19

Exploring Heritage, Legacy and Identity

Collective Memories of a Lost Paradise by Robert Belenky
termath of World War IIthe cold war and overt and covert anti-Semitism. Belenkys portrayal of family history in the context of the times is enthralling. His father, Max, emigrated from Smolensk, Russia, to the United States in 1911. In his new country, Max became a shopkeeper who longed for liberation through agriculture, bare-chested in the sun. Like many Jewish boys of that time, he dreamed of working the land, a way to dispel the historically dictated pejorative characterization of Jews as luftmenschen, or air people, because they worked with their words rather than their hands and produced nothing tangible. In the area ruled by the tsars, Jews were denied by law the privileges bestowed by citizenship and as a result could not own land, did not have internal passports enabling travel and were subject to pogroms, or violence, unleashed by the local populace. In his new country of opportunity, Max Belenky followed his dreams and enrolled in the Baron de Hirsch Agricultural School, which taught immigrant Jewish boys to become farmers. He then went to Michigan State Agricultural College and graduated as a certified tractor expert in 1923. Maxs history and that of the Soviet Union converged, when the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee or JDC, an organization committed to worldwide relief efforts, hired him to introduce tractors and industrial agriculture to these new Soviet farmers and to aid in settling these nonproductive Jews on land in Ukraine, Belarus and Crimea. In 1913, about half of world Jewry was restricted to living in the Pale of Settlement, a vast territory of about a million square kilometers, stretching from the Baltic to the Black Seas, controlled by the tsars. The period following World War I saw increased famine, poverty, overpopulation, deprivation and despair for these Jewish inhabitants. And so, Lenin wisely approved of the influx of capital, equipment and experts and saw this as also solving the Jewish question by using the Jewish kolkhozy, or cooperative farms, as role models in the service of the revolution. By 1938, 70,000 Jews from the shtetls (Jewish villages or small cities) had been voluntarily resettled. The Soviet AgroJoint committee worked with the JDC in bringing food to the starving people, building houses and schools and teaching them to farm. Belenky notes that those Russian Jews who were part of the Jewish cooperative farm movement were interested in improving life at home for themselves and were not adherents to the rival Zionist movement, with its belief that only a Jewish homeland could provide safety, security and dignity for the Jewish people. They were not Bolsheviks or Zionists, Belenky writes, but rather nonideologically committed poor people seeking a better life. Max Belenky had wanted to take his wife and son, Bob, to visit the Soviet Union, but

by Joyce Kahn

obert Belenkys personal quest for his roots is lovingly detailed in his latest book, Collective Memories of a Lost Paradise: Jewish Agricultural Settlements in Ukraine During the 1920s and 1930s. Part memoir, part historical documentation of a little-known era in which Jews were given land to farm in Ukraine, Belenky accomplishes what many people can only fantasize about: meeting the people they heard stories about in their youth, people who were part of their parents formative years and personal history. The study of genealogy can be quite fascinating and compelling. Especially as we age, many of us want to understand more about those who came before. Belenky acknowledges that mortality is part of the motivation for this work and his increasing preoccupation with such matters as heritage, legacy, and identity. It is one thing to interview friends and relatives of your parents or consult records in an effort to know your history better. It is quite another to cross the ocean twice in your late 70s in pursuit of that history. But Belenky has done just that. He traveled to Ukraine and interviewed elderly Jews who witnessed and survived the agricultural collectivization movement that followed the Bolshevik Revolution; Stalin and his purges and abandonment of this agrarian movement in favor of industrialization; the invasion of the Nazis and the horrors of the Holocaust and the af-


Stalin quashed those dreams with his murderous purges of the late 1930s and the subsequent disintegration of the farms. Belenkys own trip put a kind of closure to this period of family history. His interviews with a dozen or so people provide snippets of memories from their childhoods on the kolkhozy. Those who were not too young to remember spoke of flourishing farms with animals, vineyards, gardens, plentiful food and enough wealth to buy clothing, toys and other goods. The farms had proved successful. However, many spoke of more painful and poignant wartime memories of family and friendsmen, women and children marched to pits, where they were shot, or to wells, where they were drowned. Others spoke of places in the east like Baku to which they had been evacuated, the difficulties of harrowing escapes and survival, and the kindnesses of many people. All found it difficult economically to live in the country since the dismantling of the Soviet Union, though all were attached to home. Belenkys book sheds light on a period known primarily to scholars. This slim volume is a quick read and one that will spark your curiosity for more information about Soviet history. It did mine. Joyce Kahn is a Montpelier resident and former Adult Basic Education teacher.

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PAG E 20 J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2013


South Side Tavern: A True Barre Gem

by Steven M. Cliche

ruising through downtown Barre on a frosty Monday night, Im in awe. A few months ago, Main Street was a muddled mess of caution signs, construction equipment and barriers that blocked off massive holes that would have swallowed up vehicles. Frankly, it looked downright postapocalyptic. How things have changed. With clean, well-lit sidewalks, smooth blacktop and tasteful decoration, downtown Barre has become a thing of beauty. As I pass people out walking and enjoying themselves at local eateries and bars, I get the sense that Barre is poised for a major renaissance. Seeking a pint, I head to a place that is helping Barres comeback by offering the best craft beer you can find anywhere. As is often the case with cities, the true gems are found off the beaten path. Just past the railroad tracks at 107 South Main Street, South Side Tavern is just such a place. Coming through the door, Im greeted by cheering Patriots fans who have gathered to take in the game. As I take a seat at the bar, I scan the beer options. Its like looking at a sample of New England: Vermonts Long Trail pushes up against brews from Maine (Gearys) and New Hampshire (Smuttynose). Theres no domestic beer to be seen. I order up a pint of Goodnight Irene from Long Trail and look the room over. Off the spacious main room is a large private deck where people can go out and enjoy the fresh air. I decide not to brave the elements and stay in my seat. Owner Brian Parker, who is busy filling glasses for his thirsty patrons, steps out from behind the bar for a moment so I can talk with him. The hulking Parker looks like a man you wouldnt want to get into a tussle with. How-

ever, a quick conversation reveals him to be somewhat shy and mild mannered. As quiet as he is, hes quick to speak of the pride in his work. You wont find domestic beer on tap here. Id rather give the smaller, local guys a chance. Thats where the quality beer comes from, he says. Keeping things local is important to Parker, who grew up in East Montpelier and graduated from U-32 High School in 1990. He then went on to earn degrees from both Vermont Technical College and Norwich University, where he graduated highest in his class. He paid for both degrees by digging ditches for Green Mountain Power and waiting tables on his off time. Says Parker of what sounds like an impossible feat, I learned early on the importance of hard work. My father had his own repair business. Thats how I learned. Work hard every day and always give it everything youve got. Few could argue with Parkers work ethic. On top of running the tavern, he works full-time for the state of Vermont, owns and maintains several apartments in the Barre area and sells Christmas trees across from the Lazer Wash, just up the road from the tavern, during the holiday season. Parker started at South Side as a bartender but always had aspirations for bigger things. I saw a lot of potential in this place. So when Dave [Nelson] decided to sell it, I jumped, he says. In January 2012, he went from being behind the bar to behind the desk. The biggest difference between the two jobs? Not much, he says with a grin. Im still behind the bar. Still here every day making sure people are happy and things are running smoothly. The happiness of his customers is without a doubt the number 1 priority for Parker, who greets many of them

Brian Parker. Photo by Steven Cliche. with a handshake and a hearty What can I getcha? Its this blue-collar philosophy that dominates the atmosphere at South Side. People who come here work hard for their money, says Parker of his patrons. Our prices reflect that. A pint of Switchback Ale goes for $4 at South Side, which is by far the lowest price in town. What Parker is too modest to admit is that he has been a key player in helping the city make a comeback. And like the blue-collar men and women who first built Barre, hes been doing it brick by brick. Or, in his case, pint by pint. On what South Side Tavern brings to Barre, Parker says, A tavern shouldnt just be a place to drink, it should be a pillar of the community. Its about bringing people to together. Parker walks what he talks. Since he took over the business in January, hes used South Side as a vehicle to give back to the community. Recently, the tavern held a fundraising event for a local toddler with juvenile diabetes. When you reinvest in your community, it comes back to you tenfold. My goal is to be here for the long haul, he says. Parker is also taking the unprecedented step of offering a free local shuttle service to his customers. The service is set to start in early 2013. Its a way for me to make sure people get home safely, he says, getting up from his seat and heading back around the bar. When I ask him who is going to drive the shuttle, he grins sheepishly. Me. No surprise there.

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J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2 013 PAG E 21

Running for Local Public Office

overnment by the consent of the governed is at the heart of our democratic system. And that system works best when there are contested races, strong candidates and an honest, vigorous, intelligent airing of the public issues. On Tuesday, March 5, 2013, Montpelier citizens will go to the polls at City Meeting. According to Montpelier City Clerk John Odum, a Montpelier resident who wants his or her name on the city ballot is required to present a petition to the city clerks office with 25 verifiable signatures from city voters. Odum suggests that any citizen who wants to run for public office play it safe by presenting a petition with 30 signatures minimum. (Odum said that some people think theyre on the Montpelier voter checklist, but sometimes theyre not.) The city clerks office will begin accepting petitions on Thursday, January 25, at 8 a.m., and will not accept petitions later than Monday afternoon, February 4 at 5 p.m. In this years March 5 election, there are three openings for seats on the Montpelier City Council currently occupied by Tom Golonka, District One; Anne Watson, District Two; and Angela Timpone, District Three. (Angela Timpone has recently announced that she will not be seeking reelection.) There are also three (citywide) openings for Montpelier School Board seats, currently occupied by Sue Aldrich, Steven Robinson and Lowell Vanderlip. Local issues have always been important because its where we live and where we can have the most clout politically. In Montpelier, city councilors offer leadership in thinking through this difficult question: What are the services we definitely need in this community and what is the local tax burden we can afford? Also in Montpelier, school board members help us deal with this absorbing question: In our schools and with our children and young people, how can we create and protect a level of educational excellence that will prepare students both for higher education and for the adventure of living in a complicated, exciting and often dangerous world? Now on to the brass tacks. And we cant make this point too strongly: Please consider running for local public office. Please consider offering your time, intelligence and experience as a member of the Montpelier City Council or the Montpelier School Board.

Put People First: Health Care for All To the Editor: I am an uninsured resident of Vermont. I work on a fruit tree nursery in the Northeast Kingdom, doing work that I love and that contributes to the health of the land, the health of Vermonters and the local economy. I work hard and live simply, yet I cannot afford insurance or health care. I am afraid of having an accident at work or getting sick and losing my savings due to an emergency. I want to take care of myself, yet I cannot go in for preventative care. This leaves me feeling hopeless. Vermonts farms and rural economies are hurtingfarms are going under every yearand lack of access to health care is a huge reason why I and other farmers struggle to keep going. Universal health carea health care system that allow me to pay what I can afford and covers every person, including those without documentationwould give me the freedom to invest in work that I love. It would allow me to focus on contributing to a strong Vermont instead of being afraid for my health. Im a member of the Put People First campaign, which is a way for me to come together with Vermonters and organize for a health care system that is equitably financed and lets all people live up to their full potential. I know that so many in our communities are facing these same challenges, and I hope that they will join us in our campaign to Put People First. Sarah Claassen, Cabot Montpelier Needs Better Bus Service To the Editor: When will the capital city get an honestto-goodness bus station? A recent experience with the Greyhound bus service (Montpelier to Montreal) makes me doubt that it will happen in my lifetime. On Christmas Day, my Canadian guest and I were in a car parked at city hall, not 10 yards from the bus stop. Rather than stand in the cold, we kept a sharp eye, waiting for the bus. We quickly jumped out of the car as the bus came, but the driver chose not to stop, only slowed and went on. My Canadian friend recalled that once before she had to stop the bus by hitting her fist against the side to get the drivers attention. What kind of service is this? What are travelers to do in below-zero weather, or when they have no alternate transportation? When the history of Vermonts public transportation is written, will Montpelier be only a footnote? Alban Richey, Montpelier Music Program Vital to Our Schools To the Editor: I am concerned over the future of our music programs in the Montpelier school district. As I understand it, the present proposal is to eliminate one full-time music position from our district, leaving just one teacher per school, who, presumably, would be asked to teach in multiple disciplines. I am a parent of two high-schoolers who benefit from the music program and am a longtime musician myself, having performed in choral groups, bands and community theater groups throughout my life. It is imperative to understand that a reduction in our music programs will weaken and compromise the education of our students in the near and long term. Currently, our music teachers cover general music classes for the elementary school and band, chorus and orchestra classes from elementary school through high school. Three of the teachers have to shuttle between the schools, handling kids from fourth grade through 12th grade, and are expected to assist in multiple festivals and prepare students for concerts and performances of many varieties throughout the school year. I believe they are already stretched thin and yet continue to do an amazing job, maintaining a viable and high-quality music program for our students (including students from all economic backgrounds), despite challenging schedules and declining enrollment. Each of our teachers is well trained in his or her specific musical discipline and was hired to instruct in this specialty. We cant expect the choral teacher to conduct the orchestra or the orchestra teacher to direct the jazz band if we want to maintain the quality of our music education department. As a lifelong musician, I can tell you that the director/conductor makes all the difference and cannot be replaced by someone without specialized education and experience. We, as a community, highly value these programs and our excellent music faculty, and our district would suffer if it is not maintained at its current level. Our school system is one of the main reasons that people choose to buy property in Montpelier. Since the taxes are so high in Montpelier, its downtown and school quality are two big selling points. It needs to be recognized that any reduction in the music program will be weakening the Montpelier school district, not only for those of us already living here but also for those considering this district as a new home for their families. And with declining enrollment, I know everyone can appreciate how important public perception is in this process. I understand the general nature of the economic challenges we face in Montpelier, and I am also concerned with budget and tax issues. I am sympathetic to the task of keeping our school budget under control. However, taking one full-time position away from the music department is not the answer and will have unintended consequences for our students, our reputation and our future. If we reduce the music department when we are faced with declining enrollment, I foresee that the program will never fully recover. The community needs to understand and take these implications into account when evaluating any cuts. I respectfully request that the school board and superintendent reconsider this proposed cut to our already stretched music department and consider the multiple benefits the music program affords our children and our district. I believe our music program to be an integral piece of our students education in the Montpelier school district and one worth preserving at its current level of staffing. Irene Facciolo, Montpelier Keep VHAP and Catamount Health To the Editor: Vermont has accomplished more than most states to help working Vermonters gain access to affordable health coverage through programs like VHAP and Catamount Health. We are at the forefront of heath care reform, and once again, Vermont was named the healthiest state in the nation. Why would Governor Shumlin advocate for increasing costs to working Vermonters when the Health Benefit Exchange starts January 2014 and move the state backward? VHAP and Catamount Health will end January 1, 2014, when the Health Benefit Exchange starts. These programs provide the only option for affordable coverage for working Vermonters. The end of these programs will affect about 30,000 Vermonters, includsee LETTERS, page 22

Turn City Hall Lobby into a Bus Stop Waiting Room

ust a few years ago, when it looked as if Greyhound bus service might disappear from Montpelier, the City Council took decisive action. It freed up a few parking spaces in front of City Hall so that Greyhound buses could have a reliable spot to pick up and discharge passengers. In a letter to the editor on these pages, Alban Richey tells the story of a Canadian friend of his who waited for a bus in a parked car at City Hall. But when the Greyhound bus arrived, the driver only slowed down but didnt stop to pick up any passengers. We can do better than this. In a recent conversation, City Manager Bill Fraser said that even in the best and most expeditious of circumstances, we cant expect a new bus station (or transportation center) at the Carr lot until the fall of 2014. What can we do in the meantime? Heres an idea: at least during winter, allow people waiting for a bus to wait in the City Hall lobby for the half hour before the 3:15 a.m. bus arrives and the half hour afterward, if passengers are waiting to be picked up. Is this a good idea? Well, its not without problems. You cant just open up a public building at 2:30 a.m. without proper staffing. Someone has to open the door, ensure that people are safe and shut and lock the door after the passengers have left. Who would that someone be? Well, thats a critical question that the City Council and the city administration can no doubt resolve. Lets make this happen.


The Michael Arnowitt Gala Concert

nce in a great while, theres a performance, or event, or speech, or poem, or cluster of stars across the night sky that is memorable enough to be remarkable and to be remarkable for a long time. Michael Arnowitts 50th gala concert on January 6 at Montpelier High Schools Smilie Auditorium was such an event. The gala concert was remarkable in its full orchestra ambition; for the diversity of music on offer (jazz, classical, eastern, western and African traditions on full display); and for the extraordinary range of sound that filled the hall. The capacity crowd turned out for the music and to honor Michael Arnowitt for what he has contributed to Montpelier and Vermont and for his dazzling roles as a concert pianist, a composer, a jazz musician, a musical thinker and a writer and spokesperson for music and the arts and as someone whose dreams are very large. With the largeness of his dreams, he often challenges us both to dare and to achieve the impossible.


Read something you want to respond to? We welcome your letters and opinion pieces at Deadline for the January 24 issue is Monday, January 21, at 5 p.m.

PAG E 2 2 J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2013


A Mother with Two Children Reaches Out to The Bridge

by Nat Frothingham

Vermont mother who has two children and who has experienced continuous difficulties in getting child support payments from her former husband has been in touch with The Bridge. Because of the sensitivity of her situation, she asked The Bridge if she could be anonymous, and The Bridge agreed. The Vermont mother feels strongly that she is one of many other people (mostly women) who are trying to get child support payments from a former spouse, and not succeeding. She did appear in court and got a divorce and also resolved child custody and property division issues. But she has not succeeded in getting child support payments. About her ex-husband, she said, He could pay this child support if he had enough workif he wanted to work. Its a

motivational issue. She said her ex-husband is not paying her child support that he owes from the past. I had to go to court for this, she said. But all this takes time, she noted. And hiring a lawyer to represent her in court costs money. While this mother is waiting for the court to act on the child support case, she is forced to apply to social service agencies to pay for fuel to heat her house and food to put on the table to feed herself and her children. She feels badly that her fellow Vermont citizens are having to pay to support her family when she feels her former husband should be making child support payments. She feels that at the time of a divorce, the court that grants a divorce and rules on property division should also rule, right then, on the child support amount and payments. She said her former husband knows hes responsible for child support payment. He

knows he has to pay it, she said. The judge said he has to pay it. But when he doesnt pay child support, she added, Theres no immediate enforcement without added legal options. This mother is concerned about other mothers with kids. In a phone conversation, she said, About 50 percent of mothers who are divorced and have kids are falling below the poverty line. Theyre depressed and raising kids. And these kids are the next generation. In her view, there are multiple negative impacts on mothers who are not getting child support payments and find themselves thrust into poverty. Mothers in this situation, she imagines, may have difficulty meeting their work commitments because they are depressed, and they may experience increased medical needs because of chronic stress. These increased medical needs can

place an added burden on Medicaid. In addition, a mothers ongoing daily stress can have negative impacts on the mental and emotional health of her children. In conclusion, this mother said that unless the court system becomes more effective, taxpayers will continue to carry the burden of supporting kids rather than their biological parents, who should be required to take responsibility for the care of their own children. Then she reemphasized a key point, that the child support amount and the requirement for payments should be enforced immediately when a divorce is granted. Doing this, she feels, will prevent prolonged hardship for mothers and children. And when child support payments are honored, this will place the responsibility for children on the biological parents and not on other taxpaying citizens.

Zero Waste Saves Money and Prolongs Landfill Life

by Cassandra Hemenway Brush

very day, Americans waste enough food to fill the Rose Bowl. Im talking about the 90,000-seat football stadium, not a bowl of flowers. Indeed, according to the Natural Resources Defense Council, Americans waste a full 40 percent of their food, most of which is thrown out. This year, central Vermonters will face a pressing regional issue: one of our only two landfills may not get permitted this year. The Moretown Landfill faces the very real likelihood of closing in 2013. What does the closing of the landfill have to do with food waste? For one thing, food scraps comprise 21 percent of all waste. For another thing, the Moretown Landfill recently received notice from the Agency of Natural Resources that its permit for expansion may be denied, in large part due to odors. The only odors you will ever smell from a trash heap come from organicsfood scraps and sludge. If we, as a community, want a stink-free landfill, organic material must be removed. And if we want to avoid closing landfills, we all have to dramatically limit what we put into it and even consider eliminating the concept of waste altogether. Vermonters need to seriously consider how we handle our waste and how we even define waste. As individuals, families and businesses, we need to consider what we put intoor keep out ofour own, very personal, trash bins. The Vermont legislature has addressed this issue through Act 148, which phases in mandatory recycling and composting by 2020. The Central Vermont Solid Waste Manage-


ment District (CVSWMD) has done a lot of work for many years toward achieving this goal, including district-wide mandatory recycling. CVSWMD facilitates composting in 29 regional schools and 72 area businesses and restaurants. It collects tons of household hazardous waste throughout central Vermont every year. And it has also developed a substantial list of hard-to-recycle items above and beyond the basics that are accepted at the Additional Recyclables Collection Center in Barre. A few examples of additional recyclables include yoga mats, prescription pill bottles, sunglasses, CDs and DVDs, cereal bags and much more. CVSWMD maintains a constantly updated list of recyclables on its website ( Nobody wants a landfill in their backyard. To avoid this, we must make sure existing landfills last and eliminate the need for new ones entirely. The last time this issue was discussedin 2001, when a landfill location was being considered in BarreCVSWMD recognized that the only way to achieve the goal of fewer landfills is to become a zero waste community. And so the district adopted a zero waste policy. All district programing has been aimed toward that goal ever since. Zero waste is a term that previous generationsyour parents or grandparentswould understand: it means use and reuse what you have, be thoughtful about new purchases, dont spend money on single-use items, make do and dont waste. Its not a punishing cutting back but rather an opportunity for simple, creative ways to reduce your overall impact on the planet. Zero waste saves money. Families who

have achieved zero waste report that they reduced their household budgets by 10 to 12 percent, without diminishing quality of life. Many large corporations have gone this path, among them Hewlett Packard, which saved $870,564 in 1998, its inaugural zero waste year, Xerox, which saved $45 million that same year by implementing a waste-free goal, and Burts Bees. Other zero waste companies include Epson, Apple, Pillsburyand the list goes on. Corporations do this because it saves money. The list grows at an increasingly faster pace as people recognize that the culture of waste does not make sense. Communities across the globe have adopted zero waste goals. It stands to reason that if individuals and municipalities followed suit, not only would we contribute to the betterment of our beloved Vermont, but we would also stand to save a few bucks. So, how does one go zero waste? First, dont get intimidated by the word zero. Eliminating the very concept of waste is the longterm goal. For the short-term, we encourage the kind of small steps that everyone can make toward diverting resources out of the waste stream. One easy way to eliminate waste is to compost food scraps. Besides adding bulk and stink to trash, food scraps decompose anaerobically in a landfill, releasing methane, one of the most potent greenhouse gases. Although off-gassing methane can be used for energy production, at most 50 percent can be captured, meaning the other 50 percent escapes into the atmosphere and contributes to serious environmental issues, far beyond unsightliness and noxious odors. Zero waste aficionados promote the six Rs. Youve probably heard of the big three: reduce, reuse, recycle. Add three more: rethink, refuse, rot. Rethink what resources you use, how you use them, where they come

from and where they go. Refuse to accept wastefully packaged products or items you dont actually need. Then reduce and reuse items you already have. Rotor compost what you can. Recycle as a last measure. Following these guidelines may mean buying second-hand goods and goods in bulk, borrowing DVDs or books from the library or video store rather than buying them, sharing big-ticket items among neighbors rather than everybody owning one of everything, printing on both sides of a paper sheet before recycling it and so on. If you start with the concept of the six Rs, youll come up with your own ideas. Youll also influence those around you to do likewise. Communitywide baby steps can add up to a lot. Lastly, consider that if the Moretown Landfill shuts down, central Vermonters will likely face higher trash bills as haulers end up driving farther distances. Shipping trash out of state does not solve the problem, nor does driving it to Coventry (the site of Vermonts only other lined landfill). It prolongs the problem and requires every household to dig deeper to pay for trash removal. By working toward a zero waste lifestyle, we save money, prolong the lives of our landfills, keep harmful gasses out of the atmosphere and reduce or eliminate most of the offensive odors that cause problems in the first place. For more ideas and resources for going zero waste, go to CVSWMDs website at, or call CVSWMD at 2299383. Cassandra Hemenway Brush is the Zero Waste Outreach Coordinator at the Central Vermont Solid Waste Management District. She hosts Zero Waste Central, a cable access television series dedicated to creating a zero waste community. Brush is also an awardwinning freelance writer and blogger.

LETTERS, from page 21

ing those who are currently enrolled and those who are uninsured who will have to obtain coverage through the exchange. In the exchange, their out-of-pocket (OOP) costs increase dramatically. These are costs paid on top of premiums. Those in Catamount Health could see their OOP maximum increase from $1,050 year to as much as $6,250 year. This is about 28 percent of gross income for someone making about $34,000 who reaches the OOP maximum. Working Vermonters in these tough economic times do not have savings to fall back on. Those with chronic or disabling

conditions are most at risk. It can take only one accident or medical crisis to be faced with overwhelming medical debt. Faced with such high costs, Vermonters will not get care when they need it or simply not enroll. We do not have to go backward. The legislature already prioritized this spending to provide affordable coverage to working Vermonters. It should not be taken away now. We must do all we can to keep moving forward on the promise of universal affordable coverage for all Vermonters. Donna Sutton Fay, Policy Director, Vermont Campaign for Health Care Security Education Fund


Read something that you want to respond to? Worked up about a local issue? We welcome your letters and opinion pieces. Letters must be 300 words or fewer; opinions, 600 words or fewer. Send them to Deadline for the January 24 issue is Monday, January 21, at 5 p.m. We reserve the right to edit all submissions for length, clarity or style. In many cases, we will work with you to make sure your piece meets our journalistic standards.


J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2 013 PAG E 2 3

What Is Our Vision for Montpelier?

by Angela Timpone
Editors note: A day or two before press time, city councilor Angela Timpone visited The Bridge office and made the following statement about current discussions concerning city budget cuts, now under consideration. of a much larger place: places to eat, movie theaters, Lost Nation Theater, music venues, churches, the farmers market and the list goes on. Its an amazing place. I know I have to pay my share. I feel that we cant cut our way out of the municipal tax situation we face. Sometimes, as in housing, we set unrealistic goals. We dont appear to have a plan to move forward logically to build more housing or encourage economic development. I see it as the councils role to set priorities and create a plan so that the city can move forward intelligently. However, most of the time we get stuck with the details and we dont move forward. I would challenge our leadership to create a vision for what Montpelier could be like in the next five to 10 years, and then follow up with a work plan to get there. The city could lose a lot by cutting vital positions. In an emergency, we could well need the capacity we now have in fire, police and public works. Montpelier is at a critical juncture where were trying to balance the services we provide with the money we need to run the city. We have these budgetary challenges year after year. We have to prioritize. But at what cost? Do we cut the police and see more break-ins? Do we go from a proactive to reactive police force? Do we cut fire and ambulance and lose ground on response times? Do we decrease public works personnel and not have our streets plowed on time? Taken together, will the proposed cuts make our city more or less attractive? Will more people want to live here with their families and put their children in our schools? What about visitors? These are tough questions. And the council needs to hear from as many citizens as possible about the kind of city they want and envisage. Often we hear the same people, over and over again, making their case to the council. But there are many, many people out there who appreciate and love Montpelier and dont want to see the quality of life and the level of services cut. Just a few weeks ago, I walked with a friend in Hubbard Park. We talked about city budget issues and the prospect of cuts. Heres what she said: If my house is burning, I want the fire department to come. If Im having a heart attack, I want the ambulance to show up. If my house is being broken into, I want the police to come. I get it. And Im willing to pay for it. Its like an insurance policy.

m not sure theres a Montpelier voter mandate to cut positions or cut municipal taxes. Last year at City Meeting, 69 percent of the voters approved the municipal budget. At the same time, I struggle with this issue as a middle-class, single mother with three school-aged children. I understand what its like to make ends meet and that its expensive to live in Montpelier. But theres a reason I live here: the quality of life is good. The public school education that my children receive is excellent. Montpelier is a walkable city. I can walk from my house practically everywhere. Montpelier is a small city but has some of the amenities


Prudent Energy Policy Is Key to Vermonts Future

by Guy Page

ermont has excellent prospects for strong and sustained economic growth and a high quality of life if it can fashion a more prudent energy policy. This is a central conclusion in a recent report released by The New England Council, the nations oldest regional business organization. First, the good news. The report, Smart Infrastructure in New England: An Investment for Growth and Prosperity, finds that Vermont has an important structural advantage: a lower-cost, high-skill subregion known as the I-91 corridor. As a result, this area and two other regional corridors have acceptable cost structures for industries making complex products and/or offering sophisticated services. This can be a catalyst for the creation of new businesses, quality jobs and business relocations, particularly from manufacturers and distribution facilities. The I-91 corridor offers production costs, says the report, only four to five percent higher than that for the same product made in the Southeast. Salaries are relatively

comparable, and any cost differences come mainly from higher taxes and energy prices in the Northeast. Unfortunately, energy is a glaring competitive weakness. As the report says, New Englands infrastructure lacks an energy resource that is both reliable and cost competitive. In fact, prices for energy in the region are double those of some southern U.S. states. All six New England states are among the 10 most expensive for electricity rates in America, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). And recently, with the push to higher-priced, noncompetitive, mandated renewable electricity sources, Vermonts electricity prices have increased considerably. EIA reports that for the 12 months ending October 31, 2012, Vermonts electricity prices had risen 6.8 percent, more than any state east of the Mississippi. In fact, prices have declined or stayed the same in most states. The New England Council report also makes clear that for economic and environmental reasons, it is important to keep New Englands four nuclear plants operating. New England needs its own sources of affordable,

3SquaresVT Reminder

ccording to the Central Vermont Community Action Council (CVCAC), one in six Vermonters gets assistance through the 3SquaresVT program. A family of four earning up to $3,554 per month can qualify for benefits, including financial assistance (formerly food stamps), free school meals for children and landline assistance. Families who take part are not taking money away from others in need, the CVCAC says. Applying for these benefits not only helps you buy healthy food for your kids so they can grow and learn, but it supports the economy by bringing over $12 million federal dollars into the state each month. For more information on 3SquaresVT, visit Applications can be completed online or by calling CVCAC at 800-649-1053.

reliable, grid-friendly, low-carbon electricityan apt description for nuclear power. And because new power plant construction seems unlikely, New England must protect its assets, including Vermont Yankee. As the report says, The regions four nuclear power facilities generate 30 percent of its electric energy. Nuclear energy is the only local fuel source and plays a big role in maintaining fuel diversity. Just as important, low operating costs make nuclear power an economical choice. Nonetheless, it is unlikely that new plants will be built in New England in the future, while prices would likely rise if a current plant were decommissioned. This is the economic rationale for keeping nuclear facilities operating. The councils report also drives home the downside of closing nuclear power plants as regulation of carbon and other emissions increases. It says, In addition to providing cost and reliability advantages, nuclear energy also plays an important role in attaining greenhouse gas reduction goals. Nuclear energy is an emission-free energy source, producing no carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxide, or sulfur dioxide. . . . If nuclear power plants were closed, new sources of energy would


need to be emission-free to continue to meet emissions standards. The council supports energy portfolio diversity, including renewables if shown to be cost efficient, and recommends investment in transmission and natural gas generation. For Vermont, however, the most important takeaway from Smart Infrastructure is this: New Englands future prosperity will benefit from the continued operation of Vermont Yankee. Policy makers need to take us away from policies that lead to higher energy prices and undermine the regions competitiveness. Vermont can and should have a bright future, as The New England Council envisions. We also owe this to our children, so they can find the jobs, quality of life and opportunities here in the Green Mountain state. Guy Page is communications director for the Vermont Energy Partnership, a diverse group of more than 90 business, labor and community leaders committed to finding clean, affordable and reliable electricity solutions. Entergy, owner of Vermont Yankee, is a member of the Vermont Energy Partnership. For additional information please visit

Update: Annual Campaign to Benefit The Bridge

Free Online Registry Helps Connect Local Residents and Care Providers

he Vermont Direct Care Registry is a free online service seeking to connect caregivers in the Montpelier area to care seekerselderly and disabled people and their families who need support doing things that others take for granted, such as shopping, cleaning, cooking, running errands and just staying involved in community life. The registry allows individuals who need a caregiver to search for qualified workers by zip code. Users can filter the search results to meet different criteria (access to a car, hours of availability, experience, etc.), prescreen workers by browsing online applications and contact candidates directly to discuss care requirements. The service also helps interested Vermonters find jobs as Direct Care Workers. The registry is free to all users and can be accessed online at Further information is also available by calling 866-212-WORK (9675).

s of this writing, contributions to The Bridge as part of our current annual campaign now total just over $10,620, toward an overall campaign goal of $15,000. The math is simple. We are now more than two-thirds of the way toward our goal. The money we are raising fills an income gap between the dollars we receive from advertising and subscription support and the dollars that it costs to produce The Bridge twice a month or 24 times a year. Please help us fill this gap by contributing to our current campaign. I continue to be grateful to each one of our readers and friends who have made a gift to this campaign during this and other years. To make a contribution, please send us a check made out to The Bridge. Mail that check to: The Bridge, P.O. Box 1143, Montpelier, VT 05601. Or please drop off an envelope at our office. We are located in the lower level of Schulmaier Hall on the Vermont College of Fine Arts campus. If you need detailed directions for finding us, please phone 223-5112. Nat Frothingham

PAG E 24 J A N UA RY 10 2 3, 2013