Pat Bradley | WAMC

Pat Bradley

North Country Bureau Chief

Ways to Connect

New York State has dropped its appeal of a court decision that classified Lows Lake in the Adirondacks as wilderness.

Ryan Delaney/WAMC

Vermont officials say the total cost of recovering from Tropical Storm Irene is estimated at $733 million and the federal government is expected to pay about three quarters of that amount.  WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley reports…

Administration Secretary Jeb Spaulding says the state expects it will have to pay about $110 million for its share of the repair costs.

Spaulding and other top state officials gave a briefing Thursday on the efforts to recover from the biggest natural disaster in almost a century.

A legal challenge to New York’s participation in the regional program to limit greenhouse gas emissions has been thrown out by a state court.


A panel of state lawmakers met on Wednesday to tackle some major health and mental health issues facing Vermont as it moves toward a single payer health system.

The Health Access Oversight Committee, comprised of both House and Senate members, held a day-long session to review numerous health and mental health issues. The Committee meets when the Legislature is not in session to assure that there are no barriers to health care.  
Senate Health and Welfare Committee Chair Senator Claire Ayer is co-Chair of the Oversight committee.

The state of Vermont recently announced that education officials there will not seek a waiver from requirements under the federal No Child Left Behind law.

House Budget Committee Chair Paul Ryan’s proposed 2013 budget continues to be controversial. Initiatives in that budget include changes to the Medicare and Social Security systems by creating a voucher system for privatized insurance, increasing eligibility ages, raising payroll tax caps and capping program growth levels.  One group is concerned that political rhetoric about the changes is misleading voters.

Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Plant
Courtesy NRC and Entergy Corp.

The state of Vermont has filed a brief in an effort to overturn a federal judge's ruling that said only the federal government can decide whether a nuclear plant can operate.

New York’s Attorney General was in Plattsburgh recently to announce the results of a regional investigation into contractor compliance with the state Home Improvements Contract law.  Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said what was discovered in New York’s North Country is of statewide concern.


You’ve probably seen one, or more, in the past couple weeks.  Butterflies are migrating north and have reached the Adirondack region.  The influx of Red Admirals this year is early and in much larger numbers than usual.

New York’s Congressional delegation is supporting an bid by North Country economic development interests to gain federal funding to help regional manufacturers.

Officials at the Rutland Regional Medical Center have narrowly voted to close the hospital's inpatient rehabilitation unit, one of only three in Vermont.  WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley reports…

Hospital President Tom Huebner said the vote was 8-to-7 on Wednesday. The board had to choose between closing the hospital's unit or finding another way to cut $3.5 million out of next year's budget.

A bill that would expand New Hampshire's homicide law to include causing the death of a fetus is headed to the governor.

Vermont Congressman Peter Welch held a telephone Town Hall Wednesday night with his constituents to discuss their concerns about the doubling of the Stafford student loan interest rates, scheduled to take effect on July first.

The college loan rates will rise to 6.8% unless Congress acts to prevent the increase.  Congressman Welch says it would be unconscionable for the House to fail to act.

Officials at the Rutland Regional Medical Center are considering a plan to close the hospital's inpatient rehabilitation unit, one of only three in Vermont.  WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley reports…

If the Rutland hospital decides to close its unit, the remaining inpatient units would be at Mount Ascutney Hospital in Windsor or Fletcher Allen Health Care in Burlington.

Rutland's 12-patient inpatient rehab unit helps patients recover from strokes, head or spinal injuries, joint replacements and some long-term ailments.

Hannaford Supermarkets has become the first major supermarket chain in the country to implement a policy to only sell seafood products that are proven to be sustainably harvested.

New York has received a federal waiver that will allow the state education department to modify some of the provisions of the Bush-era No Child Left Behind Law.

Vermont National Guard Adjutant General Michael Dubie is getting ready to take a new job.  WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley reports…

Last week the U.S. Senate confirmed Dubie's promotion to the rank of lieutenant general and his naming as deputy commander of the United States Northern Command.

The Northern Command was created following the 9/11 attacks to protect U.S. territory and provide military support for civil authorities in the event of a national emergency.

The new job means Dubie will leave the National Guard post he's held since 2006.

A conference is planned Wednesday to begin establishing a Genuine Progress Indicator in Vermont. It will measure more than the state’s monetary progress by including environmental and social indicators such as an happiness index.

A poll released late last week finds Vermonters evenly divided on whether the Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Plant should remain open.

An effort to have cell coverage along the entire stretch of the Adirondack Northway took another step forward as another cell tower was activated Thursday.  It leaves only a 13 mile gap of coverage along the remote rural highway.

A proposed change in how the state monitors air quality is raising some concern from environmental and health advocacy groups.

Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin says he supports a plan to bring F-35 fighter jets to the Air National Guard base at the Burlington International Airport.  WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley reports…

Shumlin says Vermont should be honored to host the F-35. He calls it a commentary on the quality of the Vermont National Guard.

The Air Force is considering a proposal to base between 18 and 24 of the planes in South Burlington.

The Commissioner of the New York State Office For People With Developmental Disabilities met with members of the advocacy community in Plattsburgh this afternoon to explain legislation offered by Governor Cuomo to strengthen protections for people with special needs.

A public meeting by the NRC to discuss the Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Plant took a bizarre turn last night as a silent protest disrupted proceedings and officials nearly stopped the meeting.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission holds annual meetings in Brattleboro to present its safety assessment of Vermont Yankee. Brattleboro Reformer reporter Josh Stilts covers Vermont Yankee for the paper.  He says the meeting started cordially, but took an odd twist as it progressed.

Vermont State Police say human remains, including part of a skull, have been found on private property that was being excavated in Northfield.  More from WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley......

Police say the skull piece and other skeletal remains found at the construction site will be sent to the Federal Bureau of Investigation laboratory for further investigation.

The office of the Vermont chief medical examiner and a University of Vermont anthropologist determined that the bones are human.

Numerous museums across the region will participate in a program this summer that offers free admission to active duty military personnel and their families.

The Department of Homeland Security implemented its Secure Communities Program in Vermont on Tuesday.

The state of Vermont is now a part of a federal program aimed at identifying illegal immigrants arrested and charged with crimes.  WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley reports…

The Department of Homeland Security says its Secure Communities program went into effect Tuesday in Vermont.

The program shares the fingerprints of illegal immigrants charged with crimes with the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security.

Vermont’s unemployment rate is down two-tenths of a percent this month. One group says state's job market isn't improving as fast as it might appear.

The Vermont Department of Labor reports that the state unemployment rate dropped to 4.6 percent in April, well below the national unemployment rate of 8.1 percent.  Economic and Labor Market Information Chief Mathew Barewicz says it continues a trend.


The Burlington City Council has voted to move forward with a plan that would create a buffer zone around reproductive health care clinics in the city.