The full impact of Senator Leahy’s remarkable political career won’t be known for some time. One clear thread is the commitment to social justice and democratic principles as Phil Baruth describes in the one biography of the Senator written so far — “Patrick Leahy, a Life in Scenes.” In a future research newsletter we will explore more of Senator Leahy’s far-ranging impacts on Vermont, the nation and the world. Send your ideas here. (Above photo Marcelle Leahy, Sen. Leahy and Paul Bruhn during the 1974 campaign).
Vermont is wetter & warmer
A new climate report from researchers at the Nature Conservancy and the University of Vermont finds that Vermont is already seeing clear evidence of climate change as the state gets wetter and warmer. See also the story in VTDigger.
Rural school costs
A new study by a team of researchers dives deeply into questions around funding rural schools with declining populations. Researchers found that school size and rural location are distinct and important cost factors that should be treated separately. The report provides models for how states might gather data to estimate rural school costs and contribute to state fiscal policy.
A new report looks at PFAS soil and groundwater contamination in southwest Vermont, near Bennington. The authors find that PFAS emitted into the air can also contaminate groundwater and soil in places where the pollution is not stemming from in-ground streams and water.
Vermonters are going back to work
More than three-quarters of private sector jobs lost to the pandemic have come back, according to data from the Public Assets Institute – a Montpelier based think tank. The restaurant industry remains below pre-pandemic levels but manafacturing jobs have largely returned.
Essex Named One of the Safest Cities in Vermont
Essex has once again made the list of “Safest Cities in Vermont,” coming in at number seven this year. The rankings are made by analyzing cities with populations of at least 17,375 and come from a home security called SafeWise. See more here in an article from the Community News Service.
|Mt. Mansfield study|
UVM researchers summarized 20 years of research on Mt. Mansfield, Vermont’s highest mountain in a recently published study. The study compared water runoff between two streams on the mountain and focused particularly on the impact of ski resort development nearby. The study found that higher runoff and change in runoff appeared to have been influenced by greater precipitation, consistent with changes in climate. Read more about one of the researchers here.
The latest issue of Vermont History contains a story of the Lumiere brothers color photo plates factory in Burlington, at one time one of the main factories in the world for producing color photos, including the first color photo to appear in an American magazine. Closed since 1912, the facility still exists on the Burlington waterfront. The issue also includes reviews of eight books including Kim Cheney’s A Lawyers Life to Live and Gary Shattuck’s By the Wand of Some Magician.
Serving in the legislature in challenging
Vermont’s citizen legislature is one of the few in the country where individual legislators have no staff and yet the issues legislators have had to face in the last few years have been daunting. Does the increasingly difficult job of a legislator in Vermont make it difficult to recruit people to run for office? And how do those challenges effect the diversity and lived experiences of candidates? A report from the UVM legislative intern program includes interviews with legislators and others to understand the barriers to entering the legislature. See the report here.
|Restless Spirits and Popular Movements|
A new book by Burlington author Greg Guma revisits Vermont history explores the evolution and values of the Green Mountain State through the exploits of revolutionary leaders and feminist pioneers, activists and tycoons, Vermont-born presidents, progressive innovators and modern trailblazers like Phil Hoff, Richard Snelling, Madeleine Kunin, James Jeffords, Howard Dean, and Bernie Sanders. More information here.
Vermont Comedy Club Stand Up Night – November 16
Vermont and the Bright Green Nothing – November 16
From Here to There at Echo – November 18
The Path & Blind Idol at Swan Dojo – November 19