Rep Sibilia: Late Summer updates & time-sensitive notes on voting, emissions rules

Good afternoon,

As we near the end of summer, we also near the return to school and early voting for the 2022 General Election. In Vermont, all registered voters will be mailed a ballot by October 1st, and voters are encouraged to update or confirm their voter registration information by August 31. To confirm or update your voter registration information, including mailing address, use the MyVoterPage at https://mvp.vermont.gov or contacting the Town Clerk in your town. Click here for your Town Clerk’s Office contact information.

In addition to being able to vote by mail, voters can also choose to vote early at their Town Clerk’s office or in person on November 8th. Vermont also has same day voter registration.

In this year’s election contest for the Dover, Jamaica, Wardsboro and Stratton seat, voters will have a choice in addition to me. My opponent – also running as an independent – holds extreme views that are very different then mine. If you would like me to continue to represent our district please consider supporting my campaign financially, hosting a campaign sign on your property, or writing a letter of support to the Brattleboro Reformer, The Commons and Deerfield Valley News. Small donations and short letters are a big help!

The Deerfield Valley Rotary is hosting a candidate forum for the Windham-2 House District voters in Dover, Jamaica, Somerset, Stratton and Wardsboro from 5- 6 pm on September 19th at the Dover Town Hall.

Please pay careful attention to notes here on the public hearings for new emissions reductions rules that are being proposed by ANR which model California. Public comment is important. If you need assistance filing comments or testifying, please reach out.


Governor Issues 10-point Public Safety Plan

Statewide Initiatives Address Rise in Violent Crime with Focus on Law Enforcement Capacity and Coordination, Prosecution and Long-Term Prevention

Governor Phil Scott issued a 10-point public safety enhancement and violence prevention action plan, laying out the framework of a comprehensive response to address violent crime and other public safety concerns across the state. 

“Vermont is among the safest, healthiest states in the country, and that remains true today,” said Governor Scott. “But the fact is, a statewide workforce crisis, coupled with various social and public policy factors, have resulted in a spike in criminal activity and these trends are negatively impacting the public safety and welfare of the state. To address this, we need all our law enforcement organizations to work more closely together, get all our intelligence and data on the table, and face this head on.”

To begin, Governor Scott has directed the commissioner of Public Safety and other agency and department executives – in partnership with other law enforcement entities, prosecutors, and the judiciary – to implement a 10-point plan focused on three core goals:

  • To reinforce frontline law enforcement capacity and prioritize immediate reduction, prevention and prosecution of violent crime statewide;
  • To expand prosecution capacity and help the courts address a backlog of cases; and
  • To prioritize long-term violence prevention policies, systems, and services.
The U.S. Department of Education has implemented temporary changes to the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program rules that make it easier for federal student loan borrowers to receive credit for past periods of repayment that would otherwise not qualify for forgiveness. These changes end on October 31, 2022. Millions of non-profit and government employees have federal student loans and may now be eligible for loan forgiveness or additional credit through the temporary changes, known as the Limited PSLF Waiver. But they must apply before the deadline. Borrowers can learn more about the temporary changes at www.studentaid.gov/pslfwaiver.

The directives lay out initiatives to ensure the Vermont State Police can continue to support the needs of communities and local police departments while taking steps to enhance the response in regional hot spots. This includes efforts to augment staffing with law enforcement personnel from other agencies, and with temporary hiring of retired officers.

The Attorney General’s Office has also agreed to expand the State’s capacity for prosecuting major crimes, including all levels of violence associated with drug and human trafficking, and the Judiciary has prioritized eliminating its case backlog to ensure these prosecutions can move forward in a timely manner.

The Governor has also directed the Commissioner of Public Safety to expand the role of the Vermont Intelligence Center, directed his agency and department executives to establish a more nimble interagency collaboration modeled after Vermont’s nation-leading COVID-19 response, and will reestablish a Violence Prevention Task Force to focus on preventing violence in communities and schools.

“We’ve shown that when we roll up our sleeves, knock down silos and work together with a clear and measurable goal, we can lead the nation in addressing challenges and protecting people. This framework will be key to remaining the safest state in the country with a criminal justice system that is fair and equal to all,” added Governor Scott.

Click here to view the full 10-point plan.


ANR Public Comment on Car Emissions Rules

The Vermont Agency of Natural Resources (ANR) is announcing a series of events for the public to learn more about proposed amendments to existing rules related to low emission and electric vehicles.

These proposed amendments set standards for auto manufacturers that will reduce greenhouse gas and criteria air pollutant emissions from passenger cars, light-duty trucks, and medium- and heavy-duty vehicles and engines that are delivered for sale or placed in service in Vermont. The proposed amendments will also require auto manufacturers to deliver more low emission and electric vehicles to Vermont.

Even though these requirements are being imposed on auto manufacturers, ANR expects that there will be indirect impacts on Vermonters. At the events, the public will have an opportunity to learn about the benefits and impacts of the rules, get information about existing programs and resources that support the transition to electric vehicles, participate in a discussion of what other policies are needed so that all Vermonters can benefit from this transition, and provide public comment on the proposed amendments.

Public Event Schedule:

September 7, 6:00pm Park House, 340 Rec Park Road, Manchester Center, 05255
September 8, 6:00pm Gateway Center, First Floor, 84 Fyfe Drive, Newport, 05855  
September 14, 6:00pm Burlington Old North End (O.N.E.) Community Center, First Floor, 20 Allen Street, Burlington, 05401
September 15, 6:00pm Bellows Falls Opera House, Lower Theatre, 7 Square, Bellows Falls, 05101
September 21, 5:00pm Aldrich Public Library, Milne Room, 6 Washington Street, Barre, 05641
September 23, Noon Virtual Meeting, Zoom link and phone number

RSVP is encouraged.

The public comment period is open until September 30, 2022 and comments on the proposed amendments may be submitted via email to: megan.otoole@vermont.gov, or by mail: Megan O’Toole, Vermont Agency of Natural Resources, 1 National Life Dr, Davis 4, Montpelier, VT 05620.

For more information about the proposed amendments visit the ANR website.

Vermonters are facing the impacts of climate change now, and emissions from vehicles make up most of the harmful greenhouse gas and other air pollutants emissions in Vermont. The initial Vermont Climate Action Plan, released on December 1, 2021, calls for reducing greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles by adopting these proposed rules to further increase electric vehicle adoption in Vermont.

Learn more about Climate Change in Vermont and the Vermont Climate Action Plan


Outreach to Route 100: NAACP Survey on Vaccinations

Update on vaccines for kids under 5: Over 941,700 kids under 5 have received their first dose — up by around 79,600 from last week and now ~4.8% of this age group.
DC leads jurisdictions in uptake, with 20.8% of kids having received their 1st dose. Vermont leads states at 16%.
Find a COVID‑19 vaccine near you

During the pandemic, the NAACP of Windham County has partnered with the Department of Health and over 25 other community organizations to bring COVID vaccine and testing equity to our communities. We have consistently aimed to use intersectionality and solidarity to extend our resource to Asylum seekers, migrant farmers, people from the LGBTQ+ community, those homebound, and other marginalized populations. Though we focus on BIPOC and BIPOC-adjacent folks, our hope is always to use our power to improve the health of our community as a whole.

This includes the Rt100 area!

In anticipation of Fall vaccinations, we are administering a short survey (1-2 min) to understand why or why not people chose to receive vaccines. This is especially important in our county as 12-34 year old community members are significantly disproportionately unvaccinated as compared to the rest of Vermont.

This survey is a pilot and should ONLY be completed by folks who live/work in Windham County. Please complete by September 15.


Vermont Council on Rural Development

At this year’s Vermont Council on Rural Development, I was asked to speak about the opportunity for communities in light of the unprecedented once in a lifetime federal funds that have come into our towns. I and others from Southern Vermont were interviewed by Bennington County’s GNATY after the event.


Incoming Eighth Graders: Become a Vermont Legislative Page

Each year a small group of young Vermonters are selected to work as legislative pages in the Vermont State House. Pages deliver messages for the members of the Senate, the House of Representatives, and the various legislative offices.  Serving as a page offers a unique opportunity to observe the workings of the legislature and to witness firsthand the often historic events in Montpelier.

Many Vermont politicians, including members of the current legislature, got their start working as pages.  If you will be an eighth-grade student during the 2022-2023 school year, are interested in public affairs, and would like to serve as a legislative page, you and your parents must submit a cover letter with a completed application form and other supporting information to the Office of the Sergeant at Arms postmarked on or before September 30, 2022.



Deerfield Valley News: American Flatbread slated to open in fall in West Dover by Mike Eldred

FREE Courses for Vermonters  

There is still opportunity for Vermonters to take advantage of two FREE Northern Vermont University and Vermont State College courses and training. This funding is available for Fall 2022 and Spring 2023 semesters while funding lasts. 

Visit vtworkers.vsc.edu to learn more, browse available courses, and sign up!

You may qualify for these funds to take up to two FREE courses at NVU (or another Vermont State College). We offer numerous training options across many high-demand industries and classes that fit your lifestyle to help you upskill or reskill as a member of the Vermont workforce. Check out our workforce-focused course through Center for Professional Studies.


Information for Vermonters on the Inflation Reduction Act and Student Debt Cancellation

Earlier this month, we estimated the IRA would reduce deficits by $1.5 trillion through 2042, with $1.3 trillion of drug savings and $1.1 trillion of net revenue more than covering the $900 billion of spending and tax breaks. However, modifications made between the original and final version of the bill substantially reduced those savings. We now find the bill would reduce deficits (excluding interest) by roughly $1 trillion through 2042; those savings would fall to $400 billion if the temporary Affordable Care Act (ACA) subsidy expansions were made permanent.

IRA Changes Could Erase $500 Billion of Long-Term Savings – Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget

Laura’s latest:

See what bills I have sponsored and voting record, or watch my committee hearings or Listen to VPR House Live Audio  or Watch House Live Video .

As always, if you have suggestions, concerns or critiques please be in touch so we can schedule time to discuss. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you need assistance navigating government services at (802) 384-0233 or lsibilia@leg.state.vt.us. Follow my regular posts online at http://www.laurasibiliavt.com

Kind regards, 
Rep. Laura Sibilia Dover, Readsboro, Searsburg, Somerset, Stamford, Wardsboro, Whitingham

running for election in 2022 to represent Dover, Somerset, Stratton, Jamaica and Wardsboro

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