Sun 27-JUL-2014 6 P.M. News Script


Agencies across state government will spend this week searching for savings. Governor Shumlin called for across the board cuts to budgets after economists downgraded the state's revenue forecast. Kyle Midura looks into the projections for the state's economy.


The state of Vermont essentially met its revenue projections for fiscal year 2014. That's thanks to better than expected performance in the corporate and estate taxes, and despite declines in more stable streams like income and sales. (( 44:28 - :31 - Kavet we have some good things and some things that aren't doing so well )) Economists say the counting on a repeat performance in '15 -- which began in July -- would not be a formula for success. The good trends aren't as likely to be repeated as the bad. In January Jeff Carr and state economist Tom Kavet predicted a 4.8 percent growth rate in Vermont revenues -- but reduced that prediction to 3 percent late-last week. Governor Peter Shumlin asked agency heads to put off filling vacant positions, and cut their budgets by four percent -- filling the 31-million dollar budget gap. He says that should avert layoffs or tax hikes. Vermont economists say part of the downgrade is the perplexing dip in the national Gross Domestic Product. ((42:20 - :26 Jeff Carr when you have an outlier like that part of the challenge of doing forecasts is that sometimes you have to say 'it's not believable')) They say it could be an error -- given other indicators of economic strength -- and aren't weighing it as heavily as their national peers. The state retains the country's second-lowest unemployment rate, but Carr and Kavet argue that stat hides weaknesses in the state's economy -- which does continue to recover, but slowly. The unemployment rate is buoyed by people retiring or giving up the job search. ((49:03 - :09 Kavet so shrinking labor force will make the unemployment rate look good, but you're not really getting in through job creation)) Where jobs are being created, low pay is adding little to the tax base. (GFX graph page 7) Red bars in this graph show the number of jobs created by county from the lowest levels recorded between 2009 and '14, while those in green show job numbers since peak figures between 2006 and seven. Chittenden and Orleans counties lead the recovery, while much of the state stagnates. (GFX Graph page 6) Since last year, Orleans County has the highest unemployment rate but also the highest job creation rate since the economy bottomed out. ((47:49 - :53 - Kavet for the state as a whole, we're not quite back up to the peak levels of employment)) (nats -skiing) The ski and snowboard industry rode winter storm systems to strong visitation and profits this year, but forecasters say weather won't always help the East and stymie the West as it did last season. Lottery sales dropped, and big tobacco paid less than anticipated - as newly-popular e-cigarettes weren't taxed as heavily as old-fashioned smokes. (nats) Low gas prices benefitted consumers -- who also logged less mileage -- but hurt state revenues now that revenues are tied to the rate at the pump. (GFX: graph page 8) Construction jobs grew, but not enough to build back up to the number of jobs held in June 2007. Since that time, jobs in professional and business services, the federal government, health care and hospitality are all net positive. Home values in Vermont fell last fiscal year, as the state struggles with a lack of first-time buyers. Young adults continue to leave Vermont. Those that stay -- often saddled with significant student debt -- largely can't afford to buy. ((51:05 - :10 - Carr That's one of the things that's been holding back some of the sales and holding bak some of the construction numbers )) ((52:20 - :25 - Kavet Residential's the one that really needs to come back before we get the kind of growth in hte economy that we would like)) Economists say convincing young adults to settle in Vermont will be crucial to keeping the Green Mountain State out of the red. KM, Ch.3 BTV


Two New York residents are dead after what police are calling a murder-suicide. The bodies of Pamela Williamson and Larry Williamson were found inside of a home in Ellenburg Saturday night. State police were called to the scene after a relative requested a welfare check. An autopsy is scheduled for Monday -- the incident is still under investigation.


A fire in South Burlington lastnight tore through a condo garage -- residents were evacuated before the building was destroyed. This was the scene just after midnight at 69 Joy Drive as firefighters worked to put out the fire. Firefighters told us someone from the condo spotted the blaze. Multiple departments responded and were able to put out the fire. But the garage and everything inside -- are a total loss. No one was hurt -- police say the cause is still under investigation.


A thief got away with thousands of dollars worth of jewelry last night after robbing a local art gallery. Hardwick Police say someone broke into the Miller's Thumb Gallery in Greensboro late Saturday night. Miller's Thumb says they got away with about 100-thousand dollars worth of jewelry. All of the stolen jewels belonged to a local artist -- Marion Stegner -- who has been displaying her work at the gallery for years. Police are asking anyone with information to contact them immediately.


A burlington man came home Saturday morning to a thief stealing his belongings -- right out of his window. Police say it happened around 3am on South Willard Street. A man walked into his home and caught the thief red-handed. When confronted -- the thief took off -- with the items. Burlington police are looking for the burglar -- call them -- if you saw anything suspicious.


A driver who police say hit a car and killed a Potsdam couple and injured their daughter will be in court Tuesday. Police say 20-year-old Trevor Sisto of Fort Covington was high -- and had been driving recklessly through the Lake Placid area. Police were in pursuit when they say the pickup Sisto was driving crossed the centerline on Route 86 in Ray Brook Thursday and collided with a small car. So far -- he is not charged for the two deaths.

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Despite projected costs, Vermont Gas estimates its gas pipeline will still save residents more than 150 million dollars. The gas company announced earlier this month that its newest natural gas pipeline would cost 40 percent more than expected. Residents of Chittenden, Addison and Rutland counties opposed to the pipeline questioned if its benefits are as large as the gas company says. But Vermont Gas says the millions of dollars in savings will come from decreased gas prices and more efficient technology.


(14:17:21)((Steve Wark "Adjusting for even the new budget, there is still 152 million dollars of savings overall. 14:18:48 I think it's fair that some of the landowners are not pleased that this might be an impact on their property but what I'd like to point out is that we've moved the route many times to accomodate landowners.)) The Public Service Board is deciding if the change in costs means the project's certificate of public good needs to be updated.


The state is asking for your help with tracking down turkeys. Starting this Friday -- the Fish & Wildlife department is asking people to record on its website the number and size of any turkey families they see. The department says the data gives them a better sense of the size of the turkey population in the state. This spring -- hunters bagged about 51-hundred turkeys -- down by more than a thousand compared to 20-13.

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Still ahead... local health officials are teaming up with the CDC to test a vaccine plus Cat catches up with an Ironman - before he competes in Lake Placid... but first here's Dan with the Weather.

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Vermont's public health officials are studying a cough epidemic to figure out if the current vaccine will work against a new strain. It's called whooping cough. Officials say a new strain is sweeping across the country. Now, The Centers for Disease Control and the Vermont Health Department are examining hundreds who may have had the cough between 2011 and 2013. They're also keeping track of those in the group who didn't get sick. The disease has spread over recent years in Vermont -- and 47 other states.


The Middlebury College Bread Loaf Writers' Conference is only a few weeks away -- and everyone is invited. The conference brings out hundreds of writers and students. The 10 day event features workshops, lectures and classes. It kicks off August 13th in Ripton. For more information, visit our website at WCAX-DOT-COM.


Right now -- triathletes from around the world are testing their endurance in Lake Placid -- for the annual Ironman race. Cat Viglienzoni caught up with althetes training there this week.


Athletes arrived early this week in Lake Placid to hit the roads and check out the course for this year's Ironman Lake Placid. Bill Peterson is from Edwardsville, Illinois. It's his 15th time here. ((SOT Bill Peterson, 15th Lake Placid Ironman: 002707 Peterson: Every year is a challenge because every year Mother Nature throws something different -- you never know what the unexpected is going to be 14 So there's always the challenge of the unexpected, even though we think we know everything 18 Cat: So for riders who it is their first time, what's your advice? Peterson: 22 Take the first loop nice and slow, enjoy the sights, and the second loop, let 'er go. 26)) ((IRONMAN YOUTUBE VIDEO)) The mountainous scenery around them will hopefully be enough to distract from a long -- and likely painful -- race. About 28-hundred competitiors are expected to compete on the grueling course, which takes triathletes on a 2-point-4-mile swim in Mirror Lake, a 112-mile bike ride through the mountains, and then finishing with a marathon. ((SOT 002748 Cat: So if you train in Illinois, where you said it's flat and cornfields, how do the mountains go for you? 52 Peterson: We have overpasses. That's our mountain, basically. 56.)) ((BUTTED))((SOT 002800 We kind-of look forward to having wind because then we'll have some resistance, but it's hard to train for the hills because we don't have hills like this. So when we hit the hills we just spin it and go on as best we can.11)) His training partner Russ Darbon is doing his first Ironman in Lake Placid. He says he'll probably be nervous on race morning. ((SOT Russ Darbon, First Lake Placid Ironman 002820 We took a drive around the bike course and it looks tough but it sure is beautiful. There's plenty of scenery to take your mind off of things, so I'm just going to get out there, have fun, and enjoy it 29)) Cat V.. ch3 news ... wilmington, ny


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A warm front brought a round of showers and thunderstorms this morning. Now more thunderstorms have developed this afternoon. They're scattered about, but some are capable of producing gusty winds and small hail. Any thunderstorms will weaken this evening, with mainly showers overnight. A more steady rain will arrive around daybreak on Monday, as a low pressure moves in. Rain will continue on Monday, with embedded thunderstorms. There may be some heavy downpours. This system will move out of the region Monday night. Tuesday is looking much quieter, and almost fall-like! There may be a morning shower east of the Champlain Valley, otherwise it will be partly sunny with highs only in the upper 60s to mid 70s. Expect a chilly one Tuesday night, with lows in the 40s. Overall, the latter half of the week is looking good, though a few showers are possible on Thursday. Next weekend will be a little iffy, with an isolated shower possible on Saturday, and a few thunderstorms by Sunday.


They're ditching the weights and hitting the streets. More Americans are picking up running as their main form of exercise. Alex Apple breaks down the national trend.


More Americans are hitting the pavement than ever before. From LA to Boston to Burlington, Americans are running as their main form of exercise. Last year, nearly 550 thousand people ran in marathons--up 75 thousand more than the year before. (08:21:44)((Jim Fredericks/Triathlete "It's a really easy sport to get into. It doesn't take a lot of equipment.)) 500 people were ready to hit the road Sunday in Colchester -- but bad weather left them running for nothing but cover. More and more participants in the event each year are women (09:10:04 Nicole Colantoni)(("This was going to be my husband and I's first triathlon.)) -- and that's also becoming a national trend. (09:21:37)((Jim Fredericks "There is a big increase in running, but most of that increase is due to women getting into it.)) Triathletes in Colchester were prepared to run, bike and kayak -- and the reasons for the increased interest in these events vary. (09:20:57 Jill Nye-McKeown)(("Running is social. you're running with friends. You're encouraging each other.)) (08:22:19 Jim Fredericks)(("It's easy to get better at it.")) (09:10:50 Nicole Colantoni)(("Low cost. As soon as the spring hits, you get that first 50 degree day. Let's get outside.")) That get outside mentality was the reason Jill Nye-McKeown has helped start programs such as Girls on the Run. (09:19:50 Jill Nye McKeown)(("These program get young girls who may not normally try out running because they're intimidated by it, to try it out and then hopefully later on it becomes a lifestyle sport for them.")) These new runners aren't running from something -- they're running for something -- and whether its for fun or a healthier life -- running is all the rage. Alex Apple. Channel 3 News. Colchester.



The Legion baseball state tournament is winding down. Teams are trying to punch their tickets to tomorrow's championship games while avoiding that dreaded second loss. Let's head to Castleton for the first game of the day, An elimination game between Essex post 91 and Lakes Region. --- Lakes Region adds to it's 2-0 lead in the bottom of the second, MSJ's Jonah Farrow with the deep drive to center. It falls in for an RBI double. Lakes Region takes a 4-0 lead. --- But the Post 91 pitching shuts the door from there. Jake Benson of Essex with one of his 10 strikeouts during his 6 scoreless innings of work. --- Essex then starts to chip away at the deficit. They score three in the top of the sixth and two more in the seventh, Eli Baez of Essex with the infield RBI single. 5-4 Post 91 after 7. --- They put it away in the ninth, Joey Robertson with an RBI single through the left side. Essex Post 91 comes back to beat Lakes Region, 9-4 advancing to tomorrow's championship game.


The afternoon game is in a lightning delay. In the second inning, Colchester leads Addison County, 4-1. Addison County is already going to tomorrow championship, Colchester needs a win to make it a three team battle tomorrow.


Both the Lake Monsters and Vermont Mountaineers are on the road today. In the third, The Monsters trail Hudson Valley, 4-1. They are just underway in Newport, Rhode Island the Neers taking on Ocean State. Vermont has a 2 and a half game lead on Sanford for first place in the Northern Division with 7 games left.


Yankees and Blue Jays playing the rubber match of their three game series --- Yanks down a run in the eighth but Carlos Beltran ties this one up with an RBI single, Brett Gardner scores and we're tied at four. --- But Toronto not done as Dioner Navarro puts his team back up. An RBI single. And the Blue Jays go on to win 5-4.


Red Sox at the Trop against the Rays. Allen Webster making his first start of the season for Boston. --- Not a bad first outing, two runs on three in five and a third innings of work including this strike him out, throw him out double play in the first. --- David Ortiz puts the Red Sox on the board in the third. A three run shot to right Those runs would be enough as Boston holds on for a 3-2 victory.


Last night in Eugene, Oregon Montgomery's Elinor Purrier finished 9th in the 3000 meter steeplechase at the World Junior track championships. While the richford high grad was doing her thing out west, about 20 of Elle's closest friends and family were watching the race at Montgomery elementary school. ((("They have about seven and a half left."))) (((Annie: Right there, the blue shoes. Yep. There she is. It's hard to believe that she's that well known."))) ((("Pretty much two groups here."))) (((Annie: "There she is, there she is."))) (((Beth O'Brien/"She's proof that it doesn't have to matter where you come from. If you have dreams and you work hard and you preserver, you can make them come true."))) (((Annie: "Last lap."))) (((Charlie Purrier/"She takes it very seriously. She's representing her state, her college."))) ((("And the runners, a really tough race for them."))) (((Annie Purrier/"This is the 5th time she's running this race and I think she really likes it. We haven't really talked much about it but I do think she enjoys it."))) ((("Here are the official results for the 3,000 meter steeplechase in the women's final."))) (((Annie: "She held her spot. 10:21."))) (((Jinny Purrier/"She's kind of a firecracker, you never really know what's going to come out of her mouth. She could be really pleased with herself. I know she was pleased with her heat race so she should be pleased with this one."))) (((Annie: "Are you happy with your race?"))) (((Ellie Purrier/"Yeah it was so hard because it was really hot and I was running two days before. I don't even know what my time was. I know I got ninth."))) (((Jinny: "10:21 was your time."))) (((Ellie: "What was it?"))) (((Jinny: "10:21."))) (((Ellie: "Oh okay."))) (((Annie: "It doesn't really matter where she placed. She's accomplished a great feat.")))

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Last Update: Sun 27-JUL-2014
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