Tue 23-JAN-2018 11 P.M. News Script


A push from the governor for no new taxes and fees. Good Evening, I'm Eva McKend. Thanks for joining us tonight. Governor Phil Scott gave his annual budget address today. He pledged to grow Vermont's workforce. Breaking down the numbers -- his budget includes nearly 3-point-9 billion dollars in state spending. That's up 82 million from last year. And -- he says the state can get it done without asking taxpayers for more money.


Our political reporter Neal Goswami was under the golden dome for the address today. Here is his report.


The governor is seeking three-point-two million dollars for the effort. That includes incentives to relocate and information targeted at potential residents who appear interested in moving here. ((ANDY0674 38:15:04 Gov. Phil Scott "We'll focus on those most likely to move to Vermont - people who lived here but left, came here for college who vacation or do business here." 38:26:29)) The plan also includes what he calls stay-to-state weekends - an added day in Vermont for potential Vermonters on the state's dime to show off economic opportunities. ((ANDY0674 40:18:24 Gov. Phil Scott "There's no question this approach is different." 40:21:25)) It could be too different for lawmakers - who were skeptical today after the address. Senate Appropriations Chairwoman Jane Kitchel said the administration needs to make a strong case. ((ANDY0716 28:40:28 Sen. Jane Kitchel "We, as an appropriations Committee in the Senate, would never move forward on something like that without the examination and testimony before the economic development folks.")) To make the state more affordable, Scott is proposing to eliminate the state income tax on Social Security over three years - at cost of one-point-nine million in the first year and over six million by the third year. ((ANDY0664 31:38:17 Gov. Phil Scott "Only five states fully tax social security benefits. Today, I ask you to join me in bring that number to four." 31:47:26)) The change is aimed at keeping retirees here by easing the tax burden on them. Scott says there's ample evidence to suggest that the current policy is driving seniors away. ((ANDY0664 31:08:03 Gov. Phil Scott "There's approximately 26,000 native-born Vermonters living in Florida, and it's not just the weather because 27,000 native-born Vermonters now live in New Hampshire." 31:20:17)) Lawmakers say it's not a new idea - and low-income seniors are already protected. (( ANDY0711 14:26:02 Rep. Janet Ancel/Ways and Means Chair "The one thing that I think people need to understand is that if you're low income right now your social security is already exempt." 14:32:27)) (GFX GOES HERE ) (Gov. Scott's Budget Initiative -- $25K Downpayment Assistance -- $640K National Guard Scholarships -- $625K Home Rehab Tax Credits) To help working families, Scott says he'll maintain a downpayment assistance program - a benefit of about five-thousand dollars per homebuyer. He'll also seek six-hundred-forty thousand dollars more in scholarship money for National Guard members. He's also proposing a six-hundred-twenty-fiv e thousand tax credit pilot program for rehabilitating existing homes. It's all aimed at finding twenty-two hundred new workers each year. Neal Goswami -- channel 3 news.


The governors supporters, detractors, and political interest groups all weighing in on the address. Here at channel 3 we watched the budget speech with political analysts, Democrat Steve Terry and Republican Mike Smith. They say while they think the measured speech did nothing to hurt Governor Scott in his bid for re-election, it left an easy opening for Democrats who routinely argue the governor is thin on substance.


((3:16 - 3:40, Steve Terry, Political Analyst, The issues that he left unanswered like property tax, how we're going to deal with education spending, how we're going deal with what we've heard, demands for clean water, more funding and other social issues, none of those he addressed.)) ((Mike Smith, 11:22 The governor talked about phasing out the state taxes on social security for moderate and low income people, taxpayers here in Vermont. What does that mean? Who does that affect? How many people does that hit? How is much is that going to cost in the first year? The second year? The third year? How many years? So all of that information is going to come out in the next few days. 11:49)) Smith and Terry say there were highlights. They like the idea of Think Vermont, an initiative to court Vermonters to return to the state. They also like the focus on growth weight calculation, measuring what Vermont is doing to remain affordable. And they welcome Scott's emphasis on environmental innovation and its link to economic growth.


In other news -- an evacuation from a St. Albans hotel this morning. Police say a Franklin County man having a mental health crisis was threatening to kill himself at the La Quinta hotel on Route 104. Emergency responders showed up at the hotel. They were able to get him on the phone. And while they did that -- they evacuated hotel guests and employees in the nearby areas and rooms.


((SOT Chief Gary Taylor, St. Albans Police Dept. *01:02:34:000 We made a decision in the interest of public safety we would have to evacuate any exposures and to secure that area until we were certain that nobody would be placed in any harm.)) About two hours later -- the man agreed to let police and mental health councilors enter his room. He was taken to the hospital.


A lumberjack charged with illegally cutting trees and providing a false name to customers. State police say 35-year-old Jason Morse or Arlington was responsible for an illegal tree cut in the town of Dorset. They tell us he cut trees along a clearly marked boundary. They say he also tried to cover up the cut by trying to get rid of the painted section of trees he cut. Then they say he gave a false name to the landowners who hired him. He was arrested for identity theft, taking parcel of realty, and trespassing. He could face up to a year in jail and/or a 20,000 dollar fine.


Police say it's a case of arson. Fire completely destroyed a 300-thousand dollar cabin in Chittenden -- earlier this month. Vermont State Police suspect foul play -- since the cabin was miles from any major road and had no power except solar panels. The Trust for Public Land bought the cabin and 27-hundred surrounding acres in December and were in the process of turning the property over to the Green Mountain National Forest.


((Kate Wanner/ The Trust For Public Lands TC 3:05 ...It was really going to be a gem of the hut to hut system. It was kind of in the perfect place. Not only did it have it's own amenities around it in terms of South Pond but it was also less than a quarter of a mile from the Long Trail and less than a half mile from the Catamount trail. )) ((BUTT WITH: TC 3:55 "It was really going to be a pretty fantastic place to invite the public to use. )) State Police continue to investigate the fire. There is a reward.


Dan Dowling is here with a check on the weather. A little bit of everything out there today. Temperatures warmed up enough this morning to any icy mix over to rain. We picked up about a half inch to an inch of rain. ((radsat)) Rain showers have ended. We may see a little light snow tonight, through the early morning. ((surfacemap)) Colder air returns tonight. Clearing tomorrow but it will be chilly through the end of the week.


A push in New Hampshire to help opiate addicted babies. The bill in the state Senate would create a pilot program to help babies who are born dependent on drugs. Senators acknowledged the importance of helping children after they leave the hospital -- but some question the potential cost.


It's failed before but another attempt to lower the drinking age in the Granite State. A Republican representative told a House committee today that countries with lower drinking ages don't have the same problems with alcohol as the United States. Under the proposal, 20-year-olds could drink alcohol in private settings, but couldn't buy it or consume it in public. A state Department of Safety attorney disagreed. Police chiefs also opposed the bill.


It's an ice rink in some parts of New England. Take a look at this. A school bus was caught on camera sliding down an icy road in Massachusetts. 29-children were on board the bus when this happened in Sutton. The vehicle slid over a mailbox... stopping only when it hits a car. The driver of that car had luckily stepped out of his vehicle before the crash. Police say no one was hurt.

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Still ahead -- another school shooting -- this one in Kentucky. Plus --- we're learning Americans were among those killed in a recent Afghanistan attack. And -- find out how and why your utilities are getting cheaper. Also -- getting high on campus -- ((11.10.25 Kalob Gabree - Student I think its defiantly a good step for the state - it will definitely make the culture around the use of it a little more acceptable 11.16.29)) we look at the move to legalize marijuana will impact the Vermont state college system when the channel 3 news at 11 returns...


Authorities in Western Kentucky are trying to figure out what led a 15-year-old student to open fire at his high school... killing at least two classmates and injuring 17 more. Adriana Diaz reports.


The shooting at Marshall County High School in rural Kentucky started in a crowded school atrium just before 8am: (SOT Jason Hall/ Student) I saw there was a lot of blood everywhere. People were getting shoved down. Authorities say a 15-year-old boy walked into his school and used a handgun to shoot randomly: (SOT MOS Student/ WHNS/ NNS) We all started running towards the library office and once we got in there, we just shut the lights off Many students were bused to a nearby middle school for safety...as others, wounded by gunfire, were flown by helicopter for treatment. Governor Matt Bevin was overcome with emotion, speaking about the teens who did not survive: (SOT Governor Matt Bevin, KY) That student was a 15 year old female. A second student, also 15-years-old a male, passed away at the hospital. (STANDUP: Adriana Diaz/ CBS News/ Benton, Kentucky) It look less than 10 minutes for law enforcement to respond to the scene of the school behind me...and arrest the gunman without incident: (SOT Lt. Michael Webb/Public Affairs Commander for the KY State Police) "This 15 year old was apprehended by a Sheriff's office officer that was the first to arrive." Tristan Klein, a student at the school also stepped in to help a special needs student who was hurt: (SOT Tristan Klein/ Student) The teachers around him helped him into my car. He was shot in the shoulder and he was bleeding pretty bad The 15-year-old suspect now faces charges of murder and attempted murder. The county attorney will ask for the teen suspect to be tried as an adult. Adriana Diaz CBS News Benton, Kentucky.


U-S officials say Americans were among those killed in the weekend attack on a hotel in kabul, afghanistan. The taliban has claimed responsibility for the attack. Afghan officials say gunmen raided the hotel, and a 12-hour standoff with security forces ensued. At least 22 people were killed. It's unclear how many of those killed were american.


Your utilities are getting cheaper. Vermont Gas said today that it's cutting two-point-four million dollars from customers' bills. You'll see a monthly credit on your bills starting next month and going through October. The amount depends on how much you use... but families will save about 40 bucks. Vermont Gas says it's thanks to the new federal tax law that took effect.

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And Green Mountain Power is ALSO giving money back to its customers because of that change The utility says it will lower bills by 6 MILLION dollars... and you'll see that on the bill you get in February. GMP and Vermont Gas are both owned by the same parent company -- Gaz Metro -- which is based in Canada.



Tonight: Rain showers ending as snow showers. Tr-2" Lows: 18/25 Winds: SW 10-15 mph Wednesday: Morning cloudy. Becoming partly sunny. A few flurries, mountain snow showers. Highs: 23/30 Winds: NW 10-15 mph Wednesday Night: Partly cloudy. Lows: -5/5 Winds: NW 10-15 mph Thursday: Mostly sunny. Chilly. Highs: 13/20 Winds: NW 5-10 mph Extended: Friday through Tuesday. Thursday night: Lows -5/5 Friday: Mostly sunny. Highs 18/25 Lows 5/15 Saturday: Mostly cloudy. Chance of rain/snow showers Sat PM Highs 38/45 Lows 30s Sunday: Rain likely. Mixing with snow Sunday night. Highs 38/45 Lows 20s Monday: Chance of rain/snow showers. Highs 25/35 Lows 15/25 Tuesday: Partly cloudy, chance of rain/snow showers. Highs 20s



This summer marijuana will be legal in Vermont. Agencies across the state are now preparing - including college campuses. Ike Bendavid reports.


As Vermont college students hit the books this semester, they should know that pot policies on state campuses will remain by the book. ((22.15 Jeb Spaulding there probably be some impact on the Vermont State Colleges and their students because it will normalize the use of marijuana more then it otherwise would 31.15)) Chancellor of The Vermont State Colleges Jeb Spaulding says although the laws regurding marijuana will now be different the state colleges policies will not be changing ((1.03.15 Jeb We are really required to follow federal law - and marijuana smoking is still contrary to federal law - and if we were to violate federal law we could jeopardize federal funding 1.15.05)) That includes federal grants going to the students and the schools - Keeping separate from state law is a trend that colleges in other states have followed ((3.30.00 Jeb In other states across the country - whether is Colorado or other states that have legalized marijuana. When it comes to college campuses - they don't permit it 3.37.16)) Students at the Northern Vermont Unviversity feel it will bring attention to a topic which they feel is widespread - but not talked about. ((11.10.25 Kalob Gabree - Student I think its defiantly a good step for the state - it will definitely make the culture around the use of it a little more acceptable 11.16.29)) ((13.42.00 Adriana Eldred - Student Because it's going to be more widely accepted and talked about a lot more, I think the colleges are going to have to address that, because people are not going to stop using it 13.51.02)) But not all students on the Johnson Campus were supportive. ((8.01.22 Chris wlitshire - Student I mean the rules are the rules. I mean they are getting rid of smoking cigarettes already. Its not like they are going to say, oh thats fine smoke marijuana on campus 8.10.14)) For now It should be no change on the campuses of Vermont State Colleges ((1.59.10 Jeb I don't anticipate doing anything different - we are not going to turn a blind eye and we are also not going to be gestapo like 2.06.04)) A topic which is sparking conversations in and out of the classroom Reporting in Johnson Ike Bendavid Channel 3 news





We're just over 24 hours away from the first to two, and potentially three, highly anticipated showdowns between the UVM men's basketball team and rival Albany. The Great Danes will be visiting Patrick Gym tomorrow night. The last night Albany came to town, the Danes nearly upset the Cats in the America East championship game last March, leading by nine points midway thru the second half, and were tied at 52 with 51 seconds to go before the Cats made a couple of final big plays to hold on for a 56-53 win. Albany's top five scorers from that game are back this season, but their leading scoring this year, junior guard Joe Cremo, is dealing with an ankle injury, and may not play tomorrom, but the Cats aren't taking anything for granted.


((TRT: 29 ... OC: HOW THESE GAMES HAVE GONE)) ((Becker/ Sometimes when your leading scorer, as we know, goes down, guys can rally around that. You wonder how long you can rally around it, as a coach, we've been able to do it for a few games here. So whether he plays, he's their leading scorer and he will help them if he does, if he doesn't, I'm sure their other guys will be challenged to step up. I expect them to play a spirited game and for it to be similar to how these games have gone. ))


Of course, if there's a team that knows how to succeed in the face of injuries, it's this year's Hoopcats. The most recent example, with Sam Dingba sidelined by a groin injury, freshman Ra Kpedi made his UVM debut playing five minutes in Vermont's win at New Hampshire, then played 14 minutes, scoring six points, with five rebounds and two blocked shots in Sunday's rout at Hartford. Kpedi, a 6-9 forward from Indianapolis, was going to redshirt this season, but called into action after injuries to Anthony Lamb, Skyler Nash and now Dingba, Kpedi has responded and his teammates have responded to him.


((TRT: 34 ... OC: THE TEAM'S EXCITED)) ((Bell-Haynes/ In the Hartford game, just seeing him out there, him going one-on-one with John Carroll and getting multiple stops, that really excites all of us, especially the older guys. This is someone who, two weeks ago, was on the scout team helping prepare us for games. Helping us get ready by giving us looks defensively and offensively and now he's in and it's like he's been here all year. As a senior, I know how hard it is for someone to do that and I'm just really impressed and I know Payton (Henson) and Ernie (Duncan) are really impressed and when he's playing well we're really happy for him and the team's excited. ))


Lyndon State's Mikayla Hodge has been named the NCAA Division Three Women's Basketball National Player of the Week by the U-S Basketball Writers Association. The senior center and former Oxbow standout averaged 31 points and 19 rebounds as the Hornets went 1-1 on the week. In Saturday's double overtime victory against Husson, Hodge posted career highs with forty points and 27 rebounds. She has reached double figures in both points and rebounds in all 16 of Lyndon State's games this season.


high school hoops...a pair showdowns between top D-1 contenders... CVU boys hosting Mount Mansfield... --- The Cougars came out of the gate firing. Trent Labounty goes back-door to Harrison Leombruno-Nicholson for the easy bucket... --- Later, Tyler Muttilainen (mutt-a-LY-nen) drives the lane and hits the fade-away jumper. MMU opens on an 8-2 run... --- The Redhawks trying to stem the tide. Noah Martin goes up hard through traffic to stop the Cougar run... --- But too much offense from Mount Mansfield. Off the missed 3, Zach Reinhardt cleans up the rebound and puts it in for 2... --- Then, Leombruno-Nicholson... throws the alley-oop to Muttilainen (mutt-a-LY-nen) who guides it home... And the Cougars ride a big 1st Quarter en route to the 63-46 win ...


Rice visiting South Burlington in a cross-town showdown... --- Rice up 9 at the half and looking strong in the 3rd. Michel Ndayishimiyeg (in-DAY-a-SHIM-ee-YEG) on the fast break... finishes with the nifty spin move... --- Later, Ndayishimiyeg (in-DAY-a-SHIM-ee-YEG) ...splits the defense and goes up strong for 2. Knights led by as many as 13 in the 3rd ... --- But the Wolves stick around. Final seconds of the frame, Cameron Yee with the put-back to beat the buzzer. Cuts the lead to 10... --- Game tightening in the 4th. Evan Parker's 10-footer puts South Burlington within 4... --- But Rice finishes down the stretch. Leo Chaikin works his way in and gets the underhand lay-up to go ... As the Knights hold-off South Burlington for the 69-61 win...

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