VT State Senate Institutions Committee invited members of Vermont’s Press Corp. to testify on the reopening of the Vermont State House in Montpelier.
Although majestic and beautifully historic, sickness can spread easily due to the close quarters of the tiny committee rooms and insufficient HVAC.
An Architectural Firm hired by the state surveyed the State House and presented options for reopening safely in January 2022. One option, to reopen only to legislators and their staff, was met with opposition. NBC5’s Stewart Ledbetter, Local 22/Local 44’s Devon Bates and WCAX GM Jay Barton testified that live streams are not an adequate substitute for allowing people access to the People’s House. Inferring that law makers would also be shopping eating out and socializing again by that time, Barton stated that if we aren’t living in a bubble, we shouldn’t be governing in one.
These broadcasters did a terrific job of standing up for transparency in government and access to elected officials.