Mon 24-OCT-2016 Noon News Script


Good afternoon, I'm Roger Garrity. One person is dead and another in the hospital after a fire ripped through a home in Panton early this morning. . Melissa Sheketoff is live on the scene. Melissa what do we know about what happened? Roger, investigators believe this was an accident that could have sparked near the back porch of the home. This is what the aftermath looks like, but here's footage from this morning. Flames trapped inside the home. Fire officials say wind was a real problem, pushing fire through the entire house. Vermont state police confirmed the body of 63-year old Muriel Neel was found in the home. Her husband, Harold did make it out of the home OK.


((Dep. Chief Matt Fraley ; "Two people inside the home when I got here, one person was outside already. (tell us what the conditions of both people are, we know one person is dead) // "We have one fatality and one person has burns and has been transported to the hospital.")) A family friend living with them, 51-year old Susan Idle was rushed to the hospital for 2nd and 3rd degree burns. She's expected to be Ok. Mrs. Neel's body has been brought to the medical examiner's office. We are waiting on autopsy results. Meanwhile, investigators are seeing what sparked the fire. I asked if this could have been a space heater or something related to weather changes and they told us that doesn't seem to be the case. Roger?


The Vermont A-C-L-U is defending a man accused of handing out K-K-K flyers in Burlington. William Schenk was charged with disorderly conduct after he left K-K-K recruitment leaflets outside the homes of two women of color last year. The judge said he'd specifically gone after the women. But the A-C-L-U says while it condemns the K-K-K and its message... there was no evidence that Schenk actually intended to threaten the women. He pleaded no contest in April -- but planned to appeal to the Supreme Court on First Amendment grounds. An appeal hearing has not been scheduled yet.


More than two weeks after the disappearance of a southern Vermont teen -- still no contact with the girl. About 150 people showed up at the boat launch in Springfield last night for a candlelight vigil for 17-year-old Autumn Sanville. Her car was located there more than two weeks ago. Sanville was last seen the morning of October 6th- getting into a car-- and has not been seen or heard from since. Her mother does NOT believe that the teen ran away from home-- though police have said that is a possibility.


A memorial service will be held tonight to remember the five teens killed in the wrong-way crash on I-89. Organizers are calling the event "A Celebration of Life" -- it will be from 6pm to 8pm at Harwood Union high school. Because of limited parking, shuttles will be provided from local schools, and the Shaws supermarket in Waitsfield starting a 5pm.


Teachers and school board members in Burlington are expected to vote today on a new contract. Negotiators reached a tentative deal last week just hours before teachers were scheduled to go on strike. The full membership of the Burlington Education Association and the school board need to ratify the agreement to make it official.


Four wetlands in Vermont will receive heightened protections under a new state designation. The areas -- including the Chickering Bog in Calais -- will be designated as Class one under amended rules. State officials say the change is meant to spotlight their remarkable natural features and functions. The Black Gum Swamps in Vernon, Dennis Pond in Brunswick, and the Sandbar Wetlands in the Milton Colchester area are the others receiving the new protections.


Green Mountain Power says a solar and battery storage project in Rutland is paying off for the utility's customers. GMP put up solar panels on this former landfill in 20-14. Power generated here -- and power stored in batteries -- was used on a hot day in August when GMP hit its annual peak for energy demand. Utilities pay more for power based on their peak demand. Using the solar and battery power kept GMP's peak much lower -- saving the company 200-thousand dollars.

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Did the rain this weekend help ease the state's drought? It might not have made a big dent -- but experts say, the outlook is starting to look better for the winter. And after a weekend full of rain, the lake levels are starting to finally rise on Lake Champlain. A week ago, the lake was about a foot below the average depth, but with rain and the snow this weekend, the water levels seem to be rising.


((Paul Sison Meteorologist 00:00.48:20 On average we got about an inch and a half of rain that fell over the Lake Champlain basin, so all of the rivers that flow into the lake. And all that water went in and the lake level went up about a half a foot as a result of that, so thats a pretty significant rise. 00:01.04:17)) This is typically the lowest time of the year for the lake and the water levels are expected to get back to normal with continued rain and snow.


In some places, a lot of that rain fell as snow. It was an early welcome dumping for the state's ski areas. Bolton Valley got nine inches. And while the lifts are not running -- a few riders were taking advantage. Other places across the state-- mostly in the higher elevations-- also got a fresh coat. The wet snow did cause scattered outages throughout the region.


Killington says it got a little over five inches of natural snow -- enough that they plan to open their lifts tomorrow. That will once again make Killington the first eastern resort to open. Tomorrow is only for season pass holders...the general public can hit the slopes starting Wednesday.


And opening day is still a month off for Whiteface Mountain in Lake Placid -- which saw a windy, snowy weekend as well. The ski area saw more than 5 inches of snow at the base. The mountain plans to open after Thanksgiving on Friday ... November 25.


Today: Mix of sun & clouds Blustery Highs: 43 to 50 Wind: NW 10 to 20 mph Tonight: A few rain showers, mountain snow showers, trace - 3" in mountains Lows: 28 to 35 Wind: NW 10 to 15 mph Tuesday: Mostly cloudy A few rain showers, mountain snow showers Highs: 38 to 45 Wind: NW 10 to 20 mph Extended: Wednesday: Partly sunny Lows: 20s Highs: 35 to 45 Thursday: Mostly cloudy Rain/snow showers Lows: 18 to 28 Highs: 35 to 45 Friday: Rain, mountain snow showers Lows: 30s Highs: 40s Hyper-Extended: Saturday: Mostly cloudy Rain showers Lows: 30s Highs: 40s Sunday: Partly sunny Chance for rain showers Lows: 30s Highs: 42 to 52

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Last Update: Mon 24-OCT-2016
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