The Mountain Times

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News briefs from the Rutland Region

SAVING ENERGY, CUTTING EXPENSES
Rutland Regional Medical Center is half way to its energy use reduction goal, already saving enough to supply 40 'typical' homes each using 11,000 kilowatt-hours a year. After the first year of the Efficiency Vermont's Energy Leadership Challenge, the hospital has trimmed its electrical use by some 440,000 kwh.

The campaign has already saved the hospital more than $250,000 a year, a savings that goes into improving the quality of care. To make that savings, the hospital replaced lighting fixtures, and switched heating and air conditioning controls; it also put in control sensors in the main kitchen's exhaust hood.

RRMC is not the only business that has accepted the Challenge; 68 other businesses and institutions are attempting to trim 7.5 percent from their energy budgets during a two-year period. Ten of those participants exceeded their entire target, trimming close to 15 percent already. Together, those ten saved $7.6 million after spending $1.2 million for improvements.

Local organizations enrolled in the Challenge include Castleton State College, Carris Reels, GE Aviation, Green Mountain College, Killington and Pico Ski Resort and Rutland Plywood.

WORKFORCE INVESTMENT BOARD
Lucia Boatman has become the new chair of the Rutland Region Workforce Investment Board's Adult Workforce Council.

During the upcoming year, RRWIB is concentrating on the area of health care, looking at already existing shortages in primary care, with the knowledge that these shortages cannot be addressed locally but local educators can encourage young people who are interested in sciences to consider the health care industry. RRWIB has offered to develop a "teacher in-service training" on labor market trends, fast growing occupations, and other information that would help grow the local work force.

Direct contact with young people includes a Learn to Earn Day at Rutland High School, planned for June 5, to cover the six career tracks of Health Careers, Engineering and Technology, Energy Generation and Sustainability, Business /Accounting/Finance, Public Service/Safety, and Hospitality /Tourism. Later next year, RRWIB plans a larger Sophomore Summit at Castleton State College in October; it will feature 17 career tracks.

FED UP AND STRIKING BACK
Operation Fed Up, a recent series of raids, has resulted in more than 20 individuals being entered into custody, and removed 16 firearms and large quantities of crack cocaine and heroin were pulled from Rutland bars and neighborhoods. Involved agencies included the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in Vermont, the Vermont Department of Liquor Control, federal Drug Enforcement Agency, the U.S. Marshals Service, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, State Police, Rutland Police and the Rutland County Sheriff's Department.

Investigations are continuing, to be unannounced and sporadic.

POLICE CHIEF SEARCH CONTINUES
Although interim Rutland police chief James Baker's decision to apply for the open permanent chief position pleased the members of the search committee, they decided to continue their nationwide search. They planned to bring in the top four out-of-state candidates for interviews as well as accepting Baker's application. The out-of-town candidates were scheduled to arrive in Vermont Monday, July 30, for two interviews and a tour of the area.

VETS CLINIC OPEN, BUILDING CLIENTELE
The Veterans Administration's new Rutland Community Based Outpatient Clinic formally 'cut its ribbon' recently and is looking to attract more veterans to use its services. Currently, the West Street clinic serves some 1,200 veterans, but can provide for far more, working now in a facility twice the size of the space it formerly occupied on Stratton Road.

Patients may receive evaluations and therapy, as well as virtual services such as learning how to use equipment for specific conditions. Surgery will continue to be provided at the VA facility in White River Junction.
 
MORE WATER PURIFYING OPTIONS
Rutland City has more water purifying alternatives than chloramine disinfectant, a choice that city officials have recommended after reviewing a number of possibilities, a prominent consultant told a recent community forum. The city has been forced to consider other possibilities than the chlorine it has used for many years after the Environmental Protection Agency reduced acceptable byproduct levels,

The EPA is extremely unlikely to fine Rutland if levels are too high; it has not levied a fine to any community in the 50 states, only to the Virgin Islands and Guam, protectorates without Congressional representation.

Chloramine is unacceptable because its byproducts are one thousand times as toxic as chlorine byproducts. He recommended considering using activated carbon filters instead. The city's aldermen will discuss the water treatment issue Monday, August 6.


LANI'S PICKS
Thursday, Aug. 2 - Local band The Space Monkey performs classic rock on West Rutland's Town Hall Green at 7 p.m. No admission fee but please bring non-perishable food items for the West Rutland Food Shelf. 438-2263.
Fri.- Sat., Aug. 3-4 - Two-time Obie winner and Broadway veteran Martin Moran presents his one-man show All the Rage at the Paramount Theatre. 775-0903
Fri.- Sat., Aug. 3-4 - Friday Night Live and the city's annual sidewalk sales/food festival enliven the weekend. Friday Night entertainment begins with dance by Cobra Dance Studio, followed by the Stafford All-Stars and the Bobby Dick Show. More than 100 vendors present a variety of foods, apparel, jewelry, books, toys and games, fine art and antiques both days. Call 747-7900.
Mon.-Tues., Aug. 6-7 - The Marble Valley Players will hold open auditions for their Fall 2012 production of Baby, the Musical at 6 p.m. in the West Rutland Town Hall Conference Room.
Wednesday, Aug. 8 - Satin & Steel performs in Rutland's Main Street Park.

Tagged: News Briefs, rutland