Transit group gets $3m for new headquarters
WILMINGTON (AP) -- The transit agency that serves Vermont's Deerfield Valley is getting a $3 million federal grant to build a new headquarters and maintenance facility in Wilmington.
The grant to benefit the Deerfield Valley Transit Association was announced Wednesday by the three members of the Vermont congressional delegation.
The money will be used to centralize the association's administrative, maintenance, operations and biodiesel production facilities. It also will include maintenance bays, an interior bus wash, a large fuel tank, office space, and parking for 30 vehicles.
The Deerfield Valley Transit Association started service in the Mount Snow area in 1996. It has grown into a 13-route service to eight towns in the Deerfield Valley, providing nearly 300,000 bus and van trips each year.
Officials seek cause of house explosion
TOWNSHEND (AP) -- Vermont fire officials are trying to determine what caused an explosion that heavily damaged a Townshend home, with parts of the house found over 200 feet away.
No one was home during the blast, reported about 3 a.m. Wednesday. Fire officials arrived to find the house off its foundation. They said the owner, identified as Carlton Smith, had been experiencing the smell of propane over the past several weeks.
Officials suspect a problem with a gas line. They do not consider the explosion suspicious.
Firefighter said the home is considered to be a total loss. A neighboring building, West Village Family Dental, also was damaged in the explosion. A structural analysis will be done before the office is reopened.
Change of plea hearing in fatal crash
NORTHFIELD (AP) -- A change-of-plea hearing has been scheduled for a Norwich University student charged in a fatal crash.
Last year, Derek Seber had pleaded not guilty to drunken driving with death resulting and leaving the scene of the crash in Northfield in October.
The crash killed 18-year-old passenger Renee Robbins of Kentwood, Mich., and critically injured three others. Seven passengers were in the car.
The Burlington Free Press reports Seber has reached a plea deal with prosecutors for Thursday's hearing.
Townshend bans guns from town hall
TOWNSHEND -- Gun-toting residents no longer are welcome at Townshend's Town Hall.
Select Board members this week voted to ban firearms at all town buildings including the main offices, highway garage, library and fire station.
"We simply don't want any firearms in here," board Chairwoman Hedy Harris said. "Authorized law enforcement officers will be the only exception."
Officials said they were not responding to any gun-related incidents. Instead, they characterized the move as precautionary.
"We're trying to be a little bit proactive," Selectboard member Kit Martin said.
Board members briefly discussed expanding the policy further to include a ban on all potential weapons. But Harris wondered how such a rule would be enforced, adding that the town could end up with a metal detector and "the world's biggest collection of pocketknives."
Instead, the four board members present voted unanimously to approve a specific firearm ban "in all municipal buildings and premises except by duly authorized law enforcement."
Town Administrative Assistant Craig Hunt said the policy would be posted for 30 days before taking effect.
-- Brattleboro Reformer