House Speaker Shap Smith said Tuesday the possibility of new budget cuts from Washington could cause enormous problems with Vermont’s budget for next year.
Smith said a prolonged sequestration of funds will also jeopardize a number of the Governor’s new spending plans for 2014.
“The budget that we’ve got in front of us is very tight we don’t have a lot of give in the budget and anything that comes down from Washington at this point in time may upset the apple cart,” Smith said.
Meanwhile, state senators have removed a proposed moratorium from legislation regulating large-scale wind projects. But the bill would now require that wind developments be judged under the full criteria of Act 250, the state’s main development review law. Both sides of the wind debate are disappointed in the latest version.
“We felt that towns were not adequately represented in this process and the regional commissions were virtually absent so we tried to fuse it into the regional commissions, which would cover the towns,” said Sen. Robert Hartwell, D-Bennington.
Also, Vermont’s Public Safety Commissioner Keith Flynn and Parker Riehle of the Vermont Ski Areas Association both told the Senate Judiciary Committee they oppose legislation that would impose a $500 fine for skiers who deliberately go out of bounds at ski areas, get lost and then require rescue.
VPR’s Bob Kinzel and John Dillon will have more details on VPR’s All Things Considered and Morning Edition.