Deborah Lee Luskin

Passing the moderator’s gavel in Newfane

Town Meeting in March 2024 will be my last as Newfane town moderator. The time has come to hand the gavel to someone new. I will not be seeking reelection.

Town moderator is an elected position with a one-year term. To be on the ballot, candidates for the position must submit a petition with 15 signatures of Newfane voters to the town clerk no later than 5 p.m. on Jan. 29, 2024.

I thank Newfane voters for allowing me the honor of moderating municipal meetings for the past 16 years, and I'm glad to answer questions about the position for anyone interested.

Deborah Lee Luskin...

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Grace Cottage needs a new building — now

Plans for the hospital’s new primary care clinic were submitted in April to the Green Mountain Care Board, which has yet to issue a Certificate of Need

I recently participated in the Townshend Community Conversation about "Vermont's healthcare system to support hospital transformation." For two hours, residents of rural Windham County testified to the extraordinary way medical services are delivered at Grace Cottage Family Health and Hospital. It was a remarkable expression of gratitude and pride...

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Rethinking a huge (and neglected) toll to our environment

Working online has underappreciated carbon-emissions consequences

I thought I was so environmentally virtuous by working from home and sending my words out into cyberspace. But a reader who responded to my recent piece about the carbon footprint of road building [“Our roads, at what cost?,” Column, May 10] burst that bubble. She called my attention...

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Our roads, at what cost?

The torn-up miles of Vermont Route 30 between Brattleboro and Newfane is no mere repaving project, but a full-depth reclamation (FDR) of the road surface. FDR requires making several passes over the 10 miles that run from the corner of Cedar Street in Brattleboro to about a mile south of Newfane Village, just past Brook Street. During this first phase, the road is being milled and the asphalt pulverized, mixed with gravel, and compacted. This is also when the roadway...

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Three hours for democracy

Newfane will return to an in-person town meeting at Williamsville Hall on Tuesday, March 7, and I’m glad of it. The meeting will start at 9 a.m. and most likely end by noon. Three hours. It’s true that attendance at Annual Town Meeting has been dwindling in recent years, and many voters blame this decline on the time and day of the meeting — a morning in the middle of the work week. It’s also true that there’s been robust...

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Harrison: an up-close-and-personal knowledge of how municipalities work

With 10 of Vermont's 30 state senators stepping down - including both senators from Windham County - we need someone with experience in government to represent us in Montpelier. That would be Wendy Harrison. Since moving to Vermont full time in 2015, Wendy's had firsthand experience as a municipal manager and/or administrator in the small town of Vernon (pop. 2,141), the medium-sized town of Rockingham (5,034), and the city of Winooski (7,320). She also has eight years' experience as an...

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A pleasant journey

When I boarded the train in Brattleboro on a recent Friday, gas was approaching $5 per gallon, and my ticket cost less than making my 300-mile round-trip in my Prius. When I returned home that Sunday, gas had hit the $5 mark. If I calculated the cost of purchasing, registering, insuring, and maintaining the car, the train was an absolute bargain. It was also a pleasure. After boarding, I settled into a seat the size of a Barcalounger, which would...

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A stranger in the grocery line turns forgetfulness into a blessing

I was recently the recipient of a random act of kindness, and I want to thank the stranger who helped me. I'd driven to the grocery store during my lunch break to pick up last-minute needs on a frantic Friday before leaving on vacation. It wasn't until the cashier rang up my items that I realized I'd left my wallet on my desk. I could picture it sitting next to my keyboard as I tried to figure out how I...

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