Tue 21-OCT-2014 Noon News Script


Good afternoon. I'm Roger Garrity. IBM employees in Vermont are breathing a sigh of relief after learning their pay and benefits will remain in place when GlobalFoundries takes over. Global representatives met with IBM employees yesterday after the deal was announced that IBM is off-loading its entire semiconductor manufacturing arm. Employees tell Channel 3 News that Global will send job offers to all employees in the mail within 90 days as a part of the transition. All workers are guaranteed to still have employment. And wages, benefits, vacation and seniority will remain comparable. Those nearing retirement with IBM will be able to receive their pensions while still working for GlobalFoundries. Employees we talked to say the meetings provided a boost in morale -- which has been very low at the Essex plant during a long period of uncertainty over the future of the plant.


Vermont's unemployment rate continues to creep upward. The state labor department announced today that the seasonally-adjusted statewide unemployment rate for September 2014 was 4.4 percent. That's up three tenths of a point from the month before. It's the fourth straight month Vermont's rate has risen -- and it comes at a time when the national unemployment rate is seeing steady decline. That number is down two-tenths to 5-point-9 percent.


Vermont state employees are going to be hit with a nearly 18 percent increase in their health insurance premiums. Human Resources Commissioner Maribeth Spellman says the increase is taking place because more state employees than projected were treated last year for cancer and heart disease. The premium increase comes as a shock because unionized workers had seen no increases in the past two years and some premium payments were waived.


The South Burlington teachers strike is officially over. Students were out of school last week -- while their teachers and school board tried to reach agreement on a new contract. Both sides finally agreed on a three-year contract with an 8 percent total compensation increase. Teachers will also have to pay slightly more for their health insurance.


(00:07:01) ((Martin Lalonde/School Board Clerk "I support this contract, its been a long road to get here. I think it is a fair and reasonable settlement for all the stakeholders.")) (00:07:09) (00:19:57) ((Milissa O'Brien/Resident "a lot of people are saying they are going to vote no on the budget. And I'm worried.")) (00:20:05) No word yet on how this will effect tax payers wallets.


Vermont's teacher of the year was announced today. Rebecca Haslam is a first grade teacher at Champlain Elementary School in Burlington. This is video of her testifying at a legislative hearing a few years ago. Along with her teaching duties, Haslam also works thru-out the Burlington school district coaching teachers to make sure their curriculum and classroom approach is culturally sensitive.

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Closing arguments are underway at the Allen Prue murder trial. Prosecutors are summarizing over two weeks of testimony -- meant to show the jury that Allen Prue participated in the kidnapping and killing of Melissa Jenkins. Prue's lawyers took just a few hours to present their case. The defense is trying to convince the jury that Prue's wife Patricia was responsible for the murder. The case is expected to go to the jury this afternoon.


A meth bust in Plattsburgh. New York State Police say they arrested residents 27-year-old Dustin Anderson and 37-year-old Scott Cornell at their Rugar Street home. Also taken into custody was 23-year-old Christina King of Altona. Troopers were trying to track down Anderson for an active arrest warrant, when they found drug-making supplies.


A former Waitsfield Elementary School employee is accused of stealing money intended to help students. Kay Marcelle worked in I-T at the school and oversaw the Waitsfield Education Fund before she retired in 2012. State police say the 60-year-old stole money from the non-profit. The exact amount is not clear -- but coud be in the tens of thousands of dollars.


And the board at a White River Junction non-profit is resigning... after an investigation by the Vermont Attorney General into financial mismanagement at the agency. Other Upper Valley groups are now stepping up to coordinate court-ordered visitations that were handled by Emerge Family Advocates until a new board is in place. Emerge has also agreed to an independent review of its finances.

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Moose season got underway this past weekend in Vermont. And at this weigh station in Middlesex, more than a dozen moose had already been brought in my midday Monday -- the biggest topping the scale at over 800 pounds. Bob Zaino is a scientist and ecologist for Vermont Fish and Wildife. He makes sure samples are taken from each animal to help the state track the herd's health.


((tile 4219_01 : Bob Zaino/ Fish and Wildlife : 00:01:17:17 "We measure the antlers if they are a male we collect the ovaries from a female to have a measure of reproductive success and collect other biological data on the animal , we collect a tooth to get the age all of that goes into our management strategy for the population." 00:01:36:02)) Also, starting last year, the state has been checking the moose for winter ticks. Some animals are infested with thousands of the bugs -- creating so much stress it can kill them. Biologists believe the ticks are responsible for a decline in the overall moose population.


Today: Showers Highs: 47 to 54 Wind: SE to N 5 to 15 mph Tonight: Periods of rain Lows: 42 to 48 Wind: N 5 to 15 mph Wednesday: Periods of rain Breezy Highs: 47 to 54 Wind: NNE 10 to 20 mph Extended: Thursday: Periods of rain Breezy Lows: 40s Highs: 45 to 55 Friday: Showers Lows: 38 to 48 Highs: 45 to 55 Saturday: Chance for AM showers Some clearing late Lows: 38 to 48 Highs: 45 to 55 Hyper-Extended: Sunday: Partly sunny Chance for showers Lows: 35 to 45 Highs: 50s Monday: Partly cloudy Lows: 35 to 45 Highs: 55 to 62

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Last Update: Tue 21-OCT-2014
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