Tue 24-FEB-2015 6 P.M. News Script

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If you've ever experimented with barefoot running you may be wondering if you're supposed to do that now that winter is here. Chiropractor Matt Rushford says dare to go bare even in the snow! ((are talking about totally barefoot?)) ((what are the benefits to barefoot running?)) ((how do they change in the winter?)) ((proper technique?)) ((it's sooo cold how do you avoid frostbite?)) ((how can this be good for you?)) ((slipping?)) ((what kind of terrain?)) ((maximalist running is now a new trend being reported on -- shoes with chunky heavily cushioned soles -- what's the difference?))

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Tomorrow on the Thirty -- breaking down the Fairpoint deal. After four months more than 17-hundred Fairpoint workers are heading back to work across New England. They ratified their new, three-year contracts Sunday. Joe Blanchette -- a collective bargaining expert who's been on strike and in management will join us to talk about the deal and if this is a win for workers who walked out. That's tomorrow at 5:30 on the 30.

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Good evening. I'm Darren Perron. And I'm Kristin Kelly. State officials are calling it a win for low income Vermonters -- who say they're forced to drive illegally -- because they cannot afford to pay back traffic tickets and fines. But Channel 3's Jennifer Costa learned the state's new pilot program to reinstate licenses of delinquent drivers is open to ANYONE no matter how much they make. She is here to explain. Jennifer? Kristin and Darren -- Vermont officials say driving -- is the linchpin to economic survival in the Green Mountains. They're hoping a new -- ONE DAY -- program will get more low income Vermonters back on the road legally. But will the program really hold drivers accountable for their illegal actions?

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((Helana Martin/Cambridge 00:07:17 "I lost my license when I was just 13 for a tobacco fine.")) Helana Martin says that ticket -- she got as a teen -- ultimately led to a suspended license -- before she was even old enough to drive. And her inability to pay -- has haunted her as an adult. ((Helana Martin/Cambridge 00:07:46 "I kind of feel stuck. I have no way to get to work so therefore I haven't been able to try and look for work.")) Now the governor -- and the Chittenden County prosecutor are debuting a pilot program to help drivers -- like Helana. The program is available to anyone with delinquent tickets in Chittenden, Franklin, Grand Isle, Lamoille and Washington counties. ((Gov. Peter Shumlin/D-Vermont 00:02:25 "the idea is we have over 20-thousand Vermonters who have suspended licenses and many of them are suspended because they can't afford to pay the mounting fines.")) State officials say that translates to roughly 113-thousand unpaid tickets. ((TJ Donovan/Chittenden County State's Attorney 00:09:36 "They're still driving. And they're driving because they're not criminals. They're driving because they have to."They're driving to get to work. They're driving to put food on their table.")) Vermonters -- who have lost their licenses -- due to traffic tickets and fines -- more than 75 days past due -- will have the opportunity on March 20th -- to pay 20 dollars -- per ticket -- to clear their records and legally regain their right to drive. ((TJ Donovan/Chittenden County State's Attorney 00:09:52 "This is not a gift. This is in the interest of all Vermonters because while they are on our roadways, we know they're driving illegally but they're also driving without insurance.")) Prosecutor TJ Donovan says that puts all Vermonters at risk. He calls the law well intentioned -- but says it's not an effective way to promote public safety. ((TJ Donovan/Chittenden County State's Attorney 00:12:34 "we are also asking for personal responsibility. Once you are relicensed, we're asking you to be fully insured.")) But when we asked officials -- how the state plans to enforce the insurance clause -- they did not have a plan. They also claimed the situation disproportionately affects low income Vermonters -- but could not back up the statement. ((JC 00:31:00 "do you have any estimation of those 22-thousand Vermonters who have these tickets, how many are low income? PS: Uh, we do not have those numbers.")) We also questioned the architects of this pilot program on how much the state stands to lose by offering the reprieve on back fines. Again -- no direct answer. ((TJ Donovan 00:25:31 "We're not collecting the money. Getting something is better than getting nothing. that's just the bottom line here and the incentive is to stop living in the shadows 00:26:33 "it's a pilot. let's try it. If it fails it's on me."))

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Again -- the Driver Restoration Day is scheduled for March 20th -- in Burlington -- at the Costello Courthouse. Delinquent drivers can pay their discounted fines by check, credit card or money order. The state will not accept cash. If the program works -- the Governor hopes to expand it to all counties. Darren.

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Controversial health care consultant Jonathan Gruber may be done with his work for Vermont--but now state officials are questioning his time cards. Shelby Cashman joins us now with reaction. Shelby? Kristin--state Auditor Doug Hoffer says Gruber's invoices--should have included more detail about the work that was done. And that Gruber over billed for the work of his sole research assistant. Now the Attorney General's office--is investigating.

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At a press conference Tuesday afternoon, House and Senate Republicans said state auditor Doug Hoffer's finding that healthcare economist Jonathan Gruber likely over-billed Vermont for his assistant's work -- speaks to larger oversight issues. (00:32:35:00) ((Sen. Joe Benning - R-Caledonia County: Now I'm not going to call for anyone to resign or be fired or anything like that at this point, but it is incumbent upon all of us as tax-payers to make sure the people who are running that are actually doing the job that they are supposed to )) Governor Shumlin defended his administration's management. (00:31:43) ((Gov. Shumlin "I didn't hear the auditor say that Gruber got overpaid, in fact I heard him say and these are his words not mine, it ended up being a good news story Hoffer's words, cause we actually paid less than half of what the contract called for.")) (00:31:58) The state stopped paying Gruber once controversy erupted over his statements about the stupidity of voters. But - Gruber stayed on the job - and billed for his assitant's time. Now, Attorney General Bill Sorrell says--his office will investigate the accuracy of Gruber's bills. (00:35:44) ((Bill Sorrell "He raises questions, we want to take a look at the evidence whether through documents or through other means to see that the state has been accurately billed for work performed.")) (00:36:00)

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Bill Sorrell also said there are two outstanding invoices that the state hasn't paid anything on. His office will be looking into if the state owes anything from those--and if so--how much. Kristin?

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Blue Cross Blue Shield of Vermont now knows how many customers were impacted by a security breach. The insurance company says information related to 23-thousand of its members - was in the Anthem Insurance data base that was hacked. Blue Cross says information on that data base was primarily names, addresses and birthdates. But - social security numbers for 22 customers may have also been on the database. Blue Cross says it is contacting those customers directly.

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Almost every time lawmakers take their seats under the golden dome, firecodes are violated. But there's no plan to fix the problem. Statehouse reporter Kyle Midura breaks the story tonight. Kyle. Darren and Kristin, occupancy limits in committee are so tight, that even getting staff and witnesses into a room frequently exceeds capacity… and keeping the public out is not an option.

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Controversial and intriguing topics frequently draw standing room-only crowds under Montpelier's golden dome. This year, the House Education committee has hosted about 40 people on multiple occasions - more than three times the fire code occupancy limit of 12. Others rooms cannot even fit the full assigned committee, a secretary, and a witness -- nevermind the public -- without violating state law, leading the law to be ignored. (00:16:54:00 ) ((Vermont Fire Safety Division Executive Director Michael Desrochers the committee rooms themselves really don't pose any type of life safety hazard )) Vermont Fire Safety Division Executive Director Michael Desrochers testified on an unrelated matter Tuesday, in a room eight people over its limit. He did not issue any tickets. Desrochers says the building has automatic fire-sprinklers and a police force. While uncomfortable, he says the committee squeeze does not hinder the ability to evacuate the building. (00:17:00:00) ((Vermont Fire Safety Division Executive Director Michael Desrochers what we want to do is concentrate on making sure the corridors, the stairwells, and those exits that go outside are maintained free of obstruction)) Those potential hazards presented when protesters flooded the statehouse during the Governor's inaugural address. House Minority Leader and Milton Fire Chief Don Turner says handling of the protest concerned him, but so does daily disregard for the limits. (00:35:50:00 ) ((Rep. Don Turner - R-Milton when people cannot move in and out freely, you can't egress a room, that's a problem)) (00:32:42:00) ((Rep. Don Turner it's pretty sad when we don't lead by example.)) Turner says the state needs to become more creative addressing the problem. He and House Speaker Shap Smith are in agreement that the state cannot afford to expand the building given the tight financial situation. The senate bumps into its restrictions as well -- limited to ten in committee. (00:12:35:00) ((Rep. Shap Smith - D-Vt. House Speaker we have to live with the capacity of the rooms we have )) Smith says meetings are moved into bigger rooms when there's space but every committee cannot be accommodated. He's most concerned about when members of the public feels there's no space for them. Those we spoke with say they'll figure out a way to expand the building and fit more people in, but those plans won't fit into the state budget for years.

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Vermont's constitution requires that the state house be open to the public. Micheal Desrochers says the limits would be of more concern if people slept in the building -- like in nursing homes or in apartments. He also added that the square footage requirements used to set limits could be looser. - Darren

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A boil water order in St. Albans - where water main breaks caused major problems today. The breaks happened this morning on Barlow Street and Upper Welden Street. And the reduced flow meant the Northwest Medical Center sent home non essential employees and rescheduled elective procedures. About 100 patients at the Redstone Nursing Home were also effected. The city says repairs could take 24 hours and it is prepared to open shelters if needed.

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It was record breaking cold this morning! Burlington and Montpelier both broke low temperature records by getting down to -19° and some of the coldest spots in the Northeast Kingdom plunged to the minus 30s! Temperatures did recover into the teens above zero today, with another clipper heading our way from the Great Lakes. Overnight tonight, we can expect some snow showers which will linger into tomorrow. Accumulations will be light, only about a dusting to an inch or two. Then, you've got it. Another cold blast will follow in behind it. It will be blustery and cold Wednesday afternoon, and Wednesday night temperatures will fall to below zero once again. The cold and dry weather will last through the weekend, with a frontal system bringing some snow showers late Sunday into Monday.

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Commuter alert. Part of Route 7 in Colchester known as Sunny Hollow is closed -- due to a multi-car crash. Drivers should find alternate routes. We have a crew on the scene. We'll bring you more information when we get it.

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Plattsburgh City police are searching for a man - who disappeared more than a week ago. Police say 36 year old Cherokee Styles was last seen on Valentines Day -- at Geoffrey's Pub on Peru Street. His family is concerned because Styles has cognitive disabilities.

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(00:33:56 8434) ((Lt. Scott Beebie/Plattsburgh PD "Right now we actually have a helicopter going up to do some searching for us in areas that we can't get to because of the snow. THis is an active investigation, we are currently looking for him, every single shift, every officer that has a moment we assign duties." 00:34:10)) Police say they do not believe foul play is involved, and they are continuing to investigate along Route 3, where he may have been seen passing by. Styles is 5 foot 9 weighing 200 pounds, with brown hair and hazel eyes.

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An exclusive members-only resort is accused of permit violations. The state says the Hermitage Club in Wilmington -- failed to apply for Act 250 land use and water quality permits --before starting construction projects -- including a dam -- that disturbed wetlands -- and wind turbine on Haystack Mountain. The Vermont attorney general's office is charging Hermitage with 15 permit violations. Members pay 65-to-75-thousand-doll ars to belong to the club. Plus -- annual fees.

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Cutting off part of a cow's tail is a common practice among Vermont dairy farmers. But there's a push at the statehouse to stop it. Logan Crawford is in Montpelier -- where some say tail cutting is cruel. Logan? Kristin, dairy farmers cut -- or dock -- the tail of a cow when it's young to produce clean milk. But animal welfare groups say docking is inhumane -- and want to pass a bill to prohibit tail docking dairy cows.

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((nats cow moo)) Cutting off a cow's tail is common on many Vermont farms. It's called docking. (TC 00:10:53:10 Tile 3603) ((Keith Gray/Gray Farms "When they're milking the cows, the cow don't get their tail into the manure and splatter it all over where they're going to be milked." 00:11:00:13)) Keith Gray is ok with docking tails on cows. He does it on his farm. He argues docking provides clean, quality milk for customers. But some animal rights activists and state lawmakers want to stop docking. (TC 04:00 tile 6458) ((Joanne Bourbeau/humane society of the United States "It's incredibly cruel, these animals need their tails for a variety of reasons, fly avoidance behaviors is one. You have animals that all of a sudden don't have an defense against flies." 04:10)) Those against docking say there's no medical benefit to it for cows. They also argue there's no science to support docking produces cleaner milk. We asked Senator Dick Sears who introduced the proposed bill to prohibit docking to comment -- but he declined. Supporters of docking say they cut below the bone and causes the animal little harm -- and flies aren't a big deal. (TC 00:12:03:24 Tile 3603) ((Keith Gray/Gray Farms "We use fly spray and what not and our cows are inside most of the time, so it doesn't really affect them." 00:12:10:05)) Dairy farmer Mark Magnan stopped docking his cattle 4 years ago. He says if the cow's tail is trimmed -- it still keeps the cow and the milk clean. (TC 00:16:15:12 Tile 3604) ((Mark Magnan/Magnan Farm "Docking tails is probably associated with clipping ears on dogs I think. I think people think it's not necessary." 00:16:25:21)) At the State House Tuesday....there was a push to ban docking of cows tails....at the same time... The humane society honored public safety commissioner Keith Flynn for his work strengthening animal cruelty laws for household pets. But he would not step into the tail docking debate. (TC 13:16 tile 6556) ((Keith Flynn/public safety commissioner "we've been very careful to make sure that we limit it to that and then the agricultural piece is left to the department of Ag." 13:22)) (Tc 06:20 tile 6458) ((Joanne Bourbeau/humane society of the United States "being in a dairy state we don't expect this to be an easy issue but it's one we think is very important and we're moving forward with hopefully making some advances there." 06:30)) -3-

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Proponents of prohibiting docking included in their proposal it's okay to cut the tail of a cow if it's to relieve pain or save its life. The proposed penalty for docking otherwise -- would be up to a 5-hundred dollar fine. Kristin?

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Dairy farmers across Vermont gather to talk milk. The 16th annual Vermont Dairy Producers Conference was held at the Sheraton in South Burlington. Hundreds of dairy farmers learned about farm management -- and what's happening in the dairy industry on a global scale. Vermont dairy producers also share ideas with each other.

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(TC 00:06:57:03 Tile 3602) ((Melissa Woolpert/Vt. Dairy Producers Conference "Here they can see each other, it's a fairly small world so everyone knows each other, it's kind of a fun, social event, but more than anything it's an educational opportunity to just stay up to date." 00:07:08:19)) Speakers from Cornell University, McGill, and University of Wisconsin Madison spoke at the conference. Topics spanned from how to successfully hand your farm down to your children -- water quality -- and the dropping price of milk.

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At Williamstown Elementary School educators are transforming the school day with a strong focus on science. Teachers are now teaching one subject -- instead of a handful. As Keith McGilvery shows us it's allowing them to become "content experts" and boosting the amount of time kids spend on meeting the state's Next Generation Science Standards. Willamstown Elementary has 230 students -- 24 faculty and staff -- and a K through 12 budget of more than 8 million dollars.

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((classroom nats)) The flick of the rubber band and the thump of a ruler -- are the sounds of learning at Williamstown Elementary School. ((In classroom NAT)) It's these experiments that have students like Keira Lee and Ayden LaPiont so excited about science. ((Keira Lee, Williamstown Elementary Fourth Grader 29:55 "I think it is really fun, science is my favorite subject.)) ((Ayden LaPoint, Williamstown Elementary Fourth Grader 30:05 "I like science a lot because we get to do a lot of stuff in science like now we are studying waves and it is just really fun.)) And kids here are in the process of getting a whole lot more of it. ((Amanda Mormile, Science Teacher/Reading Intervention 14:04 "Being able to dive into that science world is really exciting to me.)) By the fall of 2015, every teacher at Williamstown will be a content-area specialist -- meaning they'll teach just one subject instead of a little bit of everything. ((:59 Jessie Anderson, Williamstown Science teacher "It allows me to understand the content much better and spend a lot more time working with it and creating activities that are going to engage my students.)) Teachers here say the move will help them streamline their prep work and what they're teaching to spend more time engaged with students. The goal is to boost the amount of time kids are studying science from about 30 or 45 minutes to a full hour every day. ((Amanda Mormile, Science Teacher/Reading Intervention 14:15 "Just having the opportunity for that to be my focus allows me to really differentiate instruction for kids pick out different texts, hands on projects.)) In addition to their area of expertise - every teacher is also being trained as an intervention specialist for another subject - like math or literacy. ((Amanda Mormile, Science Teacher/Reading Intervention 16:13 "Our response to intervention and the timeliness that we get kids in and out of intervention and giving them what they need has blown me away this year.)) Principal Jamie Kinnarney says daily intervention blocks are allowing teachers to help struggling students right away- rather than waiting for a problem to get worse - and he's seeing progress without spending more money on special ed. (( Jamie Kinnarney/Williamstown Elementary Principal 49:40 "We are identifying immediately, this student is struggling, let's be diagnostic about it because we have the expertise at the table to be diagnostic and let's figure out what it is the student needs.)) And teachers and students agree -- keeping the kids moving from class to class and subject to subject is paying off in other ways as well. ((01:47 Jessie Anderson, Williamstown Science teacher "It breaks up their day a bit more and so when they get to you they are fresh for their new subject.)) ((Ayden LaPoint 31:17 "It's actually a little more fun than having 1 or 2 because you get to do three different things with three different teachers.)) An approach to science educators hope will pay off across the common core. Km ch 3.

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It was record breaking cold this morning! Burlington and Montpelier both broke low temperature records by getting down to -19° and some of the coldest spots in the Northeast Kingdom plunged to the minus 30s! Temperatures did recover into the teens above zero today, with another clipper heading our way from the Great Lakes. Overnight tonight, we can expect some snow showers which will linger into tomorrow. Accumulations will be light, only about a dusting to an inch or two. Then, you've got it. Another cold blast will follow in behind it. It will be blustery and cold Wednesday afternoon, and Wednesday night temperatures will fall to below zero once again. The cold and dry weather will last through the weekend, with a frontal system bringing some snow showers late Sunday into Monday. Temperatures will bump up a bit early next week, but colder weather will return midweek. At some point, this is going to have to give a little!

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An important bus route in the city of Plattsburgh was abruptly cancelled this week, leaving many locals without transportation. On average, about 25-thousand riders use the North City route run by Clinton County Public Transit each year. Stops include the hospital, local mall, senior center, and grocery stores. But - last night, the department decided to cancel the route for the rest of the week.

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(00:38:16 8450) (( James Bosley/Clinton County Planning Department "Clinton County Contracts with FIrst Transit to manage and operate our bus system for us, and they're very short on drivers. So there's just not enough drivers to run all the routes." 00:38:27)) With temperatures this week below freezing, riders are concerned about the danger of having to walk to their destinations. The county planning department suggests that riders take the West City Route, because it overlaps with some of the North City Stops. The department says next week, more routes are expected to be closing.

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Starting Line Sports ...The UVM men's basketball plays it's regular season home finale tomorrow night when the Cats host New Hampshire at 7pm at Patrick Gym. Vermont will be looking for a little payback for New Hampshire's 73-68 win in Durham just over a month ago. It was the Hoopcats first conference loss, and UNH went on to prove that it was not a fluke. The Wildcats have gone 10-4 in conference play, riding a four game win streak and are currently tied for third with Stony Brook in the America East race, a game back of Vermont. If the Cats win tomorrow night, they will lock up the second seed in the conference tournament and at least two home games. There's a lot at stake and Coach Becker said the team is embracing the opportunity.

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((TRT: 34 ... OC: TO THAT GOAL))

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Stratton Mountain School elite team member Jessie Diggins and fellow American Caitlin Gregg finished second and third today at the women's 10K freestyle race today at the nordic World Championships in Sweden, the best finish ever by the U-S team at a distance event at the World Championships. East Montpelier's Liz Stephen also had an outstanding performance, finishing tenth.

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A week from today -- Burlington residents will head to the polls -- voting for Burlington Mayor. This week Alex Apple is taking an in depth look at each of the candidates -- and tonight we begin with a profile of Progressive Steve Goodkind.

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For 32 years Steve Goodkind worked for the city of Burlington -- under five mayors. He retired in 2012 after years as Director of Public Works. As he puts it -- literally building the city. Now he no longer wants to work for the mayor -- he's says he's ready to be the mayor. (10:47 Steve Goodkind/Progressive for Mayor)(("I believe that we need to reorganize city government and I'm talking about a reallocation of what the resources we already have are doing.")) The 1974 UVM graduate is unhappy with the direction the city is going -- so he's running for mayor to bring more transparency to Queen City Government. To do so -- he'll have to unseat an incumbent mayor that he says has gone too far in Burlington development. (14:05 Steve Goodkind/Progressive for Mayor)(("If you look at the mayor's donors many of them are developers.")) Goodkind says he'll slow that building -- allowing the city to grow naturally. (11:37 Steve Goodkind/Progressive for Mayor)(("I'm not an anti-development person at all. I do believe that I like what I call the more organic type of development that we're used to in Burlington.")) Mayor Miro Weinberger says he's sought a development plan that benefits the city and protects its proud history. Goodkind -- on the other hand -- says often the mayor merely continued the projects Goodkind's public works department started. (07:28 Steve Goodkind/Progressive for Mayor)(("There is lots of stuff that's in the works that this administration wisely so is saying lets continue with it. Most of those are things that myself or my staff, working for me, initiated when I was public works director.")) Sitting in his Church Street campaign headquarters -- Goodkind listed a host of ideas he believes will resonate with voters. The seminal example of which is tax changes. (13:10 Steve Goodkind/Progressive for Mayor)(("We need to keep pursuing alternatives to the property tax.")) So Goodkind suggests reforming the franchise fee: by asking large companies like Fairpoint and Vermont Gas to pay a little more. (13:34 Steve Goodkind/Progressive for Mayor)(("Then we can look to see what other options are available.")) Now a native of Burlington for 46 years -- Goodkind's hope is that a lifetime of public service culminates with his election as mayor of the city he loves. Alex Apple. Channel 3 News. Burlington.

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and tomorrow night Alex will continue his series -- with a profile on Independent candidate Greg Guma.

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It's a smelly job, but someone has to do it. Jennifer Costa introduces us to woman in the Northeast Kingdom earning a living -- by breaking down what cows eat.

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In Vermont -- milk matters. ((NATS -- farm)) More than 134-thousand dairy cows call the Green Mountains home. Each year -- they produce enough milk to fill 16-thousand standard swimming pools. But to get the creamiest crop -- farmers must look at what their cows are eating. ((Roberta Royer/Forage Analysis Lab Technician 00:04:23 "You can't just say here's a bale of hay, and here's the grain and expect to get the most out of your cows.")) That's where Roberta Royer comes in. ((Roberta Royer/Forage Analysis Lab Technician 00:12:29 "Yes. I'd say I really know my poop.")) She's Vermont's ONLY forage lab technician -- working at Poulin Grain -- in Newport. Her job is to test what's going into a cow...and what's coming out. ((RR 00:15:51 "I have an oven just for manure.")) It's a process that starts at the post office. ((Roberta Royer/Forage Analysis Lab Technician 00:01:39 "They're glad to see me coming because the mail doesn't smell too great.")) Each day -- Royer picks up dozens of feed and manure samples -- sent in from Poulin's 20 nutritionists in the field. At the lab -- she tests each sample twice. Last year -- Royer analyzed more than 13-thousand samples. ((RR 00:28:56 "Ummm this is pretty good looking corn. It doesn't smell too, too bad.")) Royer starts her analysis with the total mixed ration -- or TMR. It's a dairy cow's complete diet -- a mixture of hay, haylage, corn silage and grain. Samples come from across New England and New York. Each is weighed -- dried in an oven -- weighed again -- then ground into a fine powder. ((NATS -- grinding)) Royer scoops the powder into a cell cup -- then drops it into a special near infared machine. ((NATS DROPPING SAMPLE 00:19:15 RR: "It takes about a minute and a half and a half almost.")) The machine breaks down the components -- like proteins, starches and sugars. She then ships the feed's nutritional makeup to a partner lab in Maryland for more complex testing -- for digestability, toxin screenings and mold. The report is shipped back to Poulin's nutritionists and its customers -- within one day. ((Roberta Royer/Forage Analysis Lab Technician 00:05:23 "I love cows. That's my life. I want cows to be healthy and eat a great diet.")) Royer and her husband have a small dairy farm in North Troy. She's been around cows her entire life. But 10 years ago -- Royer was seriously hurt by a heffer. The accident didn't change her love for the AG industry -- but due to lasting injuries -- she was forced to find a new career. Poulin was hiring -- and trained her on the spot. Now Royer says her mission -- is to give farmers the most accurate information to make them profitable -- with a fast turn around. ((Roberta Royer/Forage Analysis Lab Technician 00:12:57 "If there's a farm that's having a crisis with a feed, then we need to know what's going on. You know I'll stay late and get that done.")) Royer typically works alone. But today she agreed to make an exception. ((RR 00:24:51 "Want to do a manure sample?" JC: Sure.")) It's a dirty job -- but someone has to do it. ((JC 00:26:51 "Oh, oh yeah. It smells now.")) Royer says testing an animal's waste -- is a good way to identify how its feed is being digested and utilized by the body. ((JC 00:09:40 "Do you think you have an odd job?" RR: Yes I do." 00:09:47 "Not everyone cooks manure for a living.")) It comes with a few drawbacks. Royer says she ends up being the butt of A LOT of poop jokes -- and leaves the office -- coated in a particular aroma. ((Roberta Royer/Forage Analysis Lab Technician 00:06:31 "The worst is when I'm on my way home, if I decide to stop at the grocery store, and all of a sudden I'm in line and I'm like oh boy! So I hurry up get what I need and get out of there.")) A former farmer -- using her odd job -- to help Vermont remain New England's dairy leader. Jennifer Costa, Channel 3 News, Newport.

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The forage testing service is free for Poulin Grain customers. The company says entry level forage lab technicians can expect to earn 15 dollars per hour.

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Spending a day on the slopes can really work up an appetite. and a Vermont country store just had a very famous customer looking for food. Eliza Larson has more.

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Juliette Britton owns J.J. Hapgood's general store in Peru. While she was working on Sunday - she received a call about a very important person coming in to eat. They wanted to make sure not many people were around. Sir Paul McCartney - the famous musician and former Beatle - stopped in after a day on the slopes at Bromley. This picture is from J.J. Hapgood's Twitter account. Britton said they waited until Tuesday to release the picture because she feared a paparazzi frenzy. (TC 19:21:41:04 Title 1917)((Juliette Britton/Owner, J.J. Hapgood: "it's very exciting. 19:21:42:29)) McCartney told Britton a celebrity-friend said he should stop by -- to check out the store's diverse menu. TC 19:18:45:03 Title 1917)((Juliette Britton/Owner, J.J. Hapgood "he ordered a margherita pizza and he ordered a kale salad. I understand he's a vegetarian and he heard we have a lot of vegetarian options, organic kale." 19:18:55:06)) And a side of red sauce too. J.J. Hapgood first opened 150 years ago and is the longest running general store in Vermont. It is recognized as a destination after being featured in the 19-87 movie Baby Boom staring Diane Keaton. (TC 19:37:05:15 Title 1936)((Eliza Larson/Peru: "when you walk through the aisles at J. J. Hapgoods, you never know what or who you may find. But the cozy, quiet atmosphere is great for everyone -- a local or celebrity." 19:37:17:08)) (TC 19:19:19:14 Title 1917)((Juliette Britton/Owner, J.J. Hapgood "peru is a really special place and I think that this place on earth for whatever reason is charmed and we feel pretty lucky." 19:19:26:17)) Britton tells us her favorite McCartney song is Jet. She said it was a nickname of hers growing up. And now - as she runs the general store - she hopes more folks jet over to check it out. Eliza Larson. Channel 3 News. Peru.

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It's a busy night in the Vermont high school winter sports playoffs. It's opening night for boys basketball...28 playdown games around the state across all four divisions. There are also a handful of boys and girls hockey quarterfinal matchups. Look for highlights and all the scores coming up tonight at 11pm.

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Two high school girls hoop semis last night in Barre. Let's start with D-2 Number 1 Lake Region and number 4 Lyndon. --- The vikings open the game on a 6-0 run, Madalyn Sanborn gets the feed down low and puts it in for 2. --- Final seconds of the first, Rylie Nichols gets it off in time and nails the jumper at the buzzer. Lyndon with an 11-7 lead after one. --- Back come the Rangers in the second. They swing it around to Molly Horton for three in the corner. --- later, off the rebound, it's Horton taking it in strong for 2 more. this one goes down to the wire, but Lake Region survives 45-43 to advance to Saturday's state final.

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The girls Division 4 semifinal game, number one Mt. St. Joseph and number 4, West Rutland. M-S-J sisters Sarah and Izzy Harvey singing the national anthem before the game with their cousin and West Rutland player, Lauren Harvey. A great moment... --- first quarter, M-S-J's Jenna Eaton the steal and lay-in as the Mounties take a 15-0 lead after one. --- Second quarter, the long outlet pass goes to Monica Schmel-zen-bach who splits the D for 2 and the foul. --- West Rutland tries to battle back, Lauren Harvey with 2 of her team high 7. Golden Horde cutting the deficit to 8. --- But MSJ was pretty much in control all night, Eaton again for 2. She had a game high 23. Mt. St. Joseph is headed to the D-4 championship, 47-32 the final.

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There will be a trio of high school hockey quarterfinal games tomorrow night at Cairns Arena in South Burlington. A girls game between Rice and Hartford starting at 5pm, a South Burlington-Rutland boys game at 5:20 and a CVU-BFA St. Albans boys game at 7:30pm. Because all three are expected to draw big crowds, the folks at Cairns will be running shuttles from the South Burlington High School parking lot starting at 6:20pm to help deal with the expected parking crush at the rink.

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In Division 2 college basketball, it's the regular season finales tonight for the St. Mike's men's and women's basketball teams. The Knights taking on Merrimack in a Northeast-10 doubleheader at Ross Sports Center. The women are already underway...they need St. Anselm to loss tonight to make the conference tournament. The men get a 1st round bye with a win and a stonehill loss. Also in Division Three tonight, the Castleton men and Norwich women host conference quarterfinal matchups. In the NAC Tourney, The Spartans is taking on Thomas at Glenbrook Gym. The game got underway at 6pm, at last check it was -- in the --. ---- The Cadets put an 11 game win streak on the line against Anna Maria in a GNAC tourney game at 7pm at Andrews Gymnasium. And the Plattsburgh women's hoop team is on the road at Oneonta tonight for a SUNYAC quarterfinal.

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The Red Sox have opened the checkbook for a second time in six months to land a star from Cuba. Boston has landed the rights to 19-year-old Cuban infielder Yoan Moncada, outbidding the Yankees, Dodgers and Padres for a player who is compared to a young Robinson Cano. The cost is steep. $31.5 million as a signing bonus to Moncada and a 100 percent tax to Major League Baseball bringing the total to around $63 million. Boston signed Cuban outfielder Rusney Castillo to a six-year, $72.5 million deal back in August.

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Big Papi is in the house. David Ortiz arrived at the Red Sox spring training complex today in Fort Myers, Florida, the final player on the club's 40-man roster to report. The 39-year-old is the longest active member of the Red Sox, signing as a free agent in 2003. He is the only player that has been a part of all three of Boston's most recent World Series winning teams, in 2004, 2007 and 2013, where he was the series MVP. In a lineup that will included newcomers Pablo Sandoval, Hanley Ramierz and Castillo, as well as healthy returning stars Dustin Pedroia, Mike Napoli and Shane Victorino, it is still Big Papi, entering his 19th major league season, that is still the heart of the Boston attack.

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((TRT: 32 ... OC: MARCHES ON))

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There's a new buzz surrounding Boston Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask. A Boston-area researcher who was part of a team that discovered a new species of wasp in Kenya has named the insect Thaumatodryinus tuukkaraski in Rask's honor. Also, the project that led to the discovery was underwritten by the government of Finland, Rask's homeland. A journal article to be published in April says the name is fitting because Rask's "glove hand is as tenacious as the raptorial fore tarsus of this dryinid species."

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