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									PAGE 8 • JANUARY 6, 2011                                                                                                                       THE BRIDGE


                                                                SHUMLIN, continued from page 2                         The third one is a tax structure that grows
                                 BE PREPARED                                                                        wealth and grows jobs.
                           Simple Wills • Living Wills             And the final one is tourism. We have a             The final one is education and workforce
                              Powers of Attorney                bright tourism future. If we can transfer our       training. When we talk to businesses, and I
                             Health Care Directives             thinking from just snow to four-months-a-           go into as many businesses as I can, and then
                                                                year ecotourism [as well], we have a bright         I say, “Tell me your biggest challenge and
                                      $75 each
                           Evening & Weekend Appointments       jobs future.                                        what I can do as governor to fix that.” And
                                                                   So if that’s all true, what does government      they say, “Get us a trained workforce. It’s
                           Richard E. Davis Jr., Esq.           have to do to help drive those jobs so that         not that we do not have jobs available, be-
                              Barre 802.476.3123                we get some of them?                                cause we do. We cannot find enough quali-
                           General Practice of Law, including      There are four obstacles to job growth in        fied people to do those jobs.” We have to be
                             Real Estate & Personal Injury      Vermont right now for small business, and I         much smarter about the way we’re educat-
                                                                say this as a small-business owner.                 ing Vermonters from early childhood educa-
                                                                   The first is health care. We cannot afford       tion to workforce training and retraining.
                                                                increases in health-care costs. You ask a           That’s the vision.
                                                                small business the biggest challenge they              I think that Governor Douglas has served
                                                                face and it’s the 10-, 20-, 30-percent in-          Vermont with great distinction in bringing a
                                                                creases a year on health-care costs.When            steady hand to state government at a time
                                                                Governor Douglas took office eight years            when we were facing real financial strug-
                                                                ago, we were spending $2.5 million on               gles. We’re not over. I didn’t mention my
                                                                health care every year as a state. Eight years      first job is to balance the $112 to $154 mil-
                                                                later, we’re spending over $5 million on            lion budget gap. And it’s not going to be
                                                                health care. If we do nothing, we’ll be             pretty. And we’re going to go in and we’re
                                                                spending $7.5 million. It’s just not sustain-       going to make the tough choices, and it’s not
                                                                able. I’m committed to passing, or trying to        going to make people happy.
                                                                pass, right design and put the team in place           Governor Douglas managed the state at a
                                                                to help us do it. It’ll be the first single-payer   time when we were facing a very tough
                                                                health-care system in the country where             economy. We’re grateful to him for that. I
                                                                everyone has access. We use technology to           think the difference now is that I have
                                                                contain costs. And health insurance follows         spelled out a much more ambitious agenda
                                                                the individual. It’s not a requirement of the       in terms of infrastructure changes that I feel
                                                                employer.                                           we must make to grow jobs and grow the
                                                                   [Shumlin argues that relieving Vermont           economy. This is not an unambitious agenda
                                                                employers of any obligation to provide              that I have laid out for you. And I’m not
                                                                health care could be an incentive for out-          going to suggest that we’re going to get it all
                                                                of-state employers to come to Vermont and           done perfectly. I’m prepared to work seven
                                                                do business here.]                                  days a week to make those infrastructure
                                                                   The second piece is broadband Internet,          changes we have to make to grow jobs. And
                                                                high-speed access and cell service to every         I do think it’s a different perspective, new
                                                                last mile [of the state] by 2013, if we don’t       energy, different priorities.
                                                                get that done, we cannot compete. The jobs
                                                                will not come without it.




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THE BRIDGE                                                                                                                                                    JANUARY 6, 2011 • PAGE 9



 Pollina Brings Progressive Voice to Vermont Senate
           by Nat Frothingham                          Then he added a remark he had made dur-             “We talk about caring for each other,”he        cility in Vermont to freeze vegetables
                                                    ing his fall campaign: “A lot of people know        said. “We are one of the 10 top hungriest          throughout the year. During the 1980s, we


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            hen newly-elected Washington            who I am and that when times are tough, I’m         states. We can’t even manage the benefits.         lost half of our meat processing in Vermont.”
            County state senator Anthony Pol-       going to stand with them.”                          We’re in violation of federal law to act in a         Not too long ago, Pollina had an en-
            lina visited The Bridge office on De-      Pollina feels that there are many working-       timely way to get people the benefits they         counter with someone who prepares food at
cember 22 his personal excitement at taking a       and middle-class families and others such as        need.”                                             the St. Albans Correctional Facility. “I’m
seat in the Senate seemed almost palpable.          seniors and farmers who need to have a                 Pollina said he doesn’t think the state         preparing meals,” this person said. “I see
   Said Pollina, “I’ve already gone into the        stronger voice in the legislature. “I’ve            should focus on lay-offs and cuts. Instead, he     cows grazing. Why am I serving these peo-
Senate and sat in my chair—number 28. It            worked with families who have kids with             thinks the state will gain more by making in-      ple powdered milk from Wisconsin?”
was awe-inspiring for this reason: To sit in        disabilities,” he said.                             vestments. “When people are working, they             Even though Pollina thinks Vermont has
the Senate chamber and realize it was the              Pollina has long been active in progressive      are paying their bills, generating tax rev-        an excellent congressional delegation in
same desk and the same chair that has been          politics and community organizing and it’s          enues, supporting local businesses.”               Washington, he is harsh in his assessment of
used by other senators for close to 150 years.      likely he will bring a sharp critique to state         Pollina wants state government to buy           the U.S. Congress. Pollina takes issue with
To think of being a part of that history, and       politics.                                           local and hire local. He feels strongly that the   tax cuts for wealthy people who don’t need
responsibility—it’s a bit awe-inspiring.”              “Under the Douglas administration, the           state of Vermont needs to purchase locally         them, for cuts in social programs and for
   Pollina has many times run for public of-        rhetoric has sounded good, but the follow-          when it is buying food, printing, uniforms         what he described as “huge deficits with no
fice, for such posts as governor, lieutenant        through has been wanting,” Pollina said.            and paper products. “The state should hire         inkling of how to pay them off.”
governor and member of the U.S. Congress.              He faulted state government for its inef-        local when there are construction projects            “I think Vermonters are upset with that,”
In the 2008 general election, Pollina made          fective efforts to clean up Lake Champlain          that use taxpayers’ money,”he said. “Big con-      he said. “It feels like a lost cause to try to
an impressive showing in a three-person             and the state’s waterways. “There’s been            struction projects should not be built by          change things in Washington.” But he be-
race involving incumbent governor Jim Dou-          very little follow-through,” he said.               workers from out of state while Vermonters         lieves ardently that it may be possible to get
glas, Democratic candidate Gaye Symington.             Then there’s been talk about expanding           go unemployed.”                                    things done here in Vermont that would be
When Douglas won election with 53.4 per-            health care to all Vermonters. “Instead,”Pol-          Spending state money locally and hiring         impossible to achieve at the federal level.
cent of the votes, it was not a surprise. The       lina contended, “we’ve put together a patch-        locally was a consistent theme throughout             I asked Anthony Pollina if, beyond serving
surprise was that Pollina came in second            work of programs that fails to provide cov-         the interview. “I want to put people to work       as state senator, he was interested in running
with 21.8 percent of the votes, while               erage, and we are bankrupting families and          in green businesses,” he said. “We could re-       for higher office.
Symington took 21.7 percent of the votes.           businesses and state and local governments.”        cycle electronics and building materials.             “Not really,” he said. “I’m 58.” Then,
   Here’s how Pollina explained his success            There’s been plenty of talk about buying         Most of the computers [that people are dis-        laughing, he said of being his age, “You
at winning the election last November: “I           local. But, according to Pollina, “It just hasn’t   carding] . . . are sent out-of-state for the re-   bump into things.”
think people have gotten to know me                 happened.” He faults the state government           processing and recycling.”                            Pollina said that as newly-elected state sen-
through my political involvement and as an          for hiring an out-of-state company to rebuild          “Why aren’t we serving Vermont milk in          ator, he was especially looking forward to
organizer. You know my work with farmers            a failed bridge in Richmond. He also faulted        Vermont schools?” he asked. “Because we            having his voice heard and making it possi-
and working people and on environmental             Fletcher Allen Hospital for bringing up work-       can’t get the little containers the schools        ble for other people’s voices to be heard.
issues.”                                            ers from the Carolinas.                             like. It sounds ridiculous. There’s not one fa-




                 Kitzmiller Embraces the Democratic Sweep
           by Nat Frothingham                       ber general election, Shumlin was elected           istration than with the Douglas administra-           Kitzmiller said that in his view the most ef-
                                                    governor by a margin of less than 5,000             tion. We will get more things done.”               fective use of scarce state money would be


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           arren Kitzmiller, a Democratic           votes out of more than 240,000 votes cast              Kitzmiller also thinks the voters will be       spending to improve roads and bridges and
           senator from Montpelier who was          statewide.                                          well-served by a state government in the           sewer lines, and developing areas where a
           reelected in November, is feeling           “This does really represent a fundamental        hands of one party.                                business could locate. Once these business
excited about his return to the Vermont             shift in government,” Kitzmiller observed.             “If we don’t do things well, the voters will    areas are in place, Kitzmiller said he was
House.                                              That shift in Vermont was the decision by           know who to blame. The responsibility is           confident that the utilities “would be there
   When Kitzmiller’s wife, Karen Kitzmiller,        voters to place both legislative and execu-         now ours to govern well,” he said.                 to meet their needs.”
who represented Montpelier in the Vermont           tive branches of state government in the               Kitzmiller is a longtime member and past           Kitzmiller plugged the importance of
House, died in 2001, he was appointed by            hands of one party.                                 chair of the House Commerce Committee.             workforce development training programs.
then-governor Howard Dean to her seat.                 Kitzmiller doesn’t feel apprehensive about          He said that the only other state in the        He mentioned three such programs that he
   Since then Kitzmiller has won election to        the Democratic sweep.                               country that is better off than Vermont is         felt were exemplary.
the House five times.                                  “First,” he said, “I believe there’s a natural   North Dakota. “They are an asset-rich state,”         “Vermont HITEC is one workforce train-
   One source of Kitzmiller’s feelings of an-       and inevitable tension between the role of          Kitzmiller said. “They have vast mineral de-       ing program that I’m impressed by,” he said.
ticipation at returning to the legislature this     the administration [the governor’s office]          posits. They’re the only state that isn’t in the   Then he mentioned the Vermont Center for
January is the Democratic sweep in Novem-           and the legislature. That tension is at least as    red.”                                              Emerging Technologies in Burlington. Fi-
ber.                                                important as the tension between Republi-              He praised Vermont for its commitment to        nally, he praised the Vermont Manufacturing
    “There’s no doubt that this has been more       cans and Democrats,” he said.                       a balanced budget. Even though Vermont             Extension Center, whose headquarters is at
than a typical election cycle,” Kitzmiller said        Kitzmiller doesn’t think that the legisla-       has no statutory mandate to balance its bud-       the Vermont Technical College in Randolph
in an interview December 28. What made it           ture will lose its independence or identity         gets, the state is fastidious about balancing      Center. “I hear nothing but good things
more than typical in Kitzmiller’s mind was          now that a Democrat is governor. “I think           its books. Although Kitzmiller acknowl-            about that operation,” he said.
the closeness and length of the primary elec-       we will have our differences with the Shum-         edged that this year’s House Appropriations            “These kinds of programs that train peo-
tion and the public attention it attracted.         lin administration,” he said. “We had our dif-      Committee will have a difficult task in mak-       ple for specific workplace situations—
   In the Democratic primary, Peter Shumlin         ferences with Howard Dean. But because              ing even more spending cuts, he said, “The         they’re valuable,” he ended.
won the Democratic nomination by a margin           we’re all Democrats, I suspect we will have         projected deficits we face, we face head on
of about 200 votes statewide. In the Novem-         more compatibility with the Shumlin admin-          and squarely.”

								
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