Author: Tom Benton

Enosburg Initiative welcomes state visitors

ENOSBURG FALLS — The Enosburg Initiative’s Thursday meeting drew a record crowd, somewhere around 40 people, after a three-hour village tour for visiting representatives from state and federal agencies. Just as turnout was unusually high, the duration of the meeting was unusually short, just 45 minutes, after another 45-minute period during which Initiative members and agency representatives chatted over a pot luck dinner. Still, those agency reps managed to fit a lot of praise and ideas for the Initiative’s next steps into those final 45 minutes. The day was Ben Doyle’s fourth visit. Doyle is the director of community...

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Joe Halko finds his voice

ST. ALBANS — Joe Halko is director of community relations at Northwestern Counseling and Support Services (NCSS). But in 1992, he was working for a different company: Jogbra, the designer of the original women’s sports bra. Halko was working on a marketing effort for the company with a New York-based ad agency. One day, Halko had a conversation with a woman from the ad agency. The conversation turned to voice work. And then she said something that opened a path Halko still walks to this day: “You ought to do a tape.” Halko’s voice, she said, was ripe for...

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Frustration at Carmi — ANR Secretary visits Lake

FRANKLIN — Lake Carmi residents gathered at the shore of its state park Thursday afternoon, waiting for the secretary of Vermont’s Agency of Natural Resources (ANR), Julie Moore, anxious for any show of action that might curtail toxic blue-green algae that has spread across the lake for three weeks now. “This is ten times anything I’ve ever seen,” John Barrows, the former head of the Franklin Watershed Committee, said prior to the meeting. “I’m hoping for action. Not a plan. Action.” When asked what he thought the chances of that were, Barrows didn’t miss a second. “Zero.” Ruth Ann...

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Algae plagues Carmi

  FRANKLIN — Lake Carmi’s shorelines remain closed to boaters and swimmers, nearly three weeks after the Vermont Department of Health listed those shores on high alert for cyanobacteria, blue-green algae, blooms. The state department of health listed the Lake Carmi State Park, Dewing Road and north beach as being on high alert as of press time. The department of health also listed, for the first time, open water at the south end of the lake and near the outlet stream as being on high alert. The health department even classified the center of the lake as being on...

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Swanton seeking $2.2M for dam repairs

SWANTON — An informational meeting on a vote that could double local electric rates drew a measly three people Monday evening, two of which were village or town officials. The point of the Sept. 19 vote on replacing the Orman Croft facility’s rubber bag dam is to avoid doubling electric rates — replacing the dam means the hydro facility, located at the edge of Highgate Falls, could return to full functionality, and Swanton, which owns the dam, could resume generating its own power, rather than purchasing power from the outside market. But village manager Reg Beliveau Jr. said Monday...

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