• September 24,2013
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    Vt. says pipeline shift needs permit

    MONTPELIER — A regional Vermont environmental official says the owner of an oil pipeline between Portland, Maine, and Montreal would need a state land-use permit if the company seeks to reverse the flow of the pipeline.

    The District 7 Environmental coordinator ruled Monday that an Act 250 permit would be needed in the event the Portland Montreal Pipeline seeks to carry Canadian “tar sands oil” from Montreal to Portland.

    Currently the pipeline is used to carry foreign crude oil from Maine to Montreal where it is refined for consumption in eastern Canada. Some worried the pipeline could be used to move tar sands oil to Portland.

    Monday’s decision reaffirmed an early ruling by the commission and came after the owner of the pipeline had asked the commission to reconsider.

    A.G. settles with 25 companies on gifts

    MONTPELIER — The Vermont attorney general’s office says 25 manufacturers of drugs and medical devices have agreed to comply with a state law that bans most gifts such as meals to health care providers.

    The office said the companies self-reported violations. The law requires manufacturers of prescribed products, including pharmaceuticals and medical devices, to disclose expenditures deemed appropriate by the Legislature.

    Twenty-four of the manufacturers, having failed to file disclosures entirely, paid a total of over $25,000 to the state in fees.

    One manufacturer paid $36,000 in civil penalties to settle a total of six gift-ban violations; each one consisted of providing a meal to a health care provider.

    Leahy wants full review on spying

    MONTPELIER — Vermont U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy is leading an effort to call for a full-scale review — with results made public — of the use of surveillance by the U.S. intelligence community.

    Leahy joined senators from both parties on Monday in signing a letter to Charles McCullough, inspector general of the intelligence community.

    The Senators are asking for detailed information on the surveillance of Americans under federal law and any misuse of such authority during the last three years.

    The Senate Judiciary Committee — which Leahy chairs — held a hearing on the topics in July and is planning another one next week.

    New charges set in teacher killing

    ST. JOHNSBURY — New charges have been filed against a couple accused of killing a St. Johnsbury teacher.

    Allen and Patricia Prue already face murder charges in connection with the March 2012 death of 33-year-old Melissa Jenkins. Both have pleaded not guilty.

    The new charges of conspiracy to commit murder and kidnapping were filed against the Prues last week by Caledonia County State’s Attorney Lisa Warren.

    Prosecutors also filed charges on eight counts of possession of child pornography against Patricia Prue after finding multiple images on her laptop computer.

    The Prues are accused of luring Jenkins from her Danville home, strangling her and dumping her body in the Connecticut River. Jenkins’ vehicle was found idling with her 2-year-old son inside.

    — The Associated Press
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