Running for a Cause. The second Boston Marathon since the bombing is one month from today. Yesterday, a post went up on a couple of the lists from a White River Junction couple, Amanda Cohen and Nikolas Franks, asking for support for their Marathon run as part of Team MR8. The team was formed to help fund the work of the Martin Richard Foundation, which was set up by Martin's parents after he was killed in the bombing. He was 8 years old. Nikolas was working as a Boston Public Schools teacher at the time of the bombing -- and had had Martin in his first-grade class. Amanda explains the whole thing in this post, which you'll have to be registered to see. Here's where to learn more about Team MR8.
Ya Got Trouble, My Friend, Right Here. About ten days ago, a single post set off a firestorm on the Barnard List questioning the Selectboard's decisions to pay its own members for various town jobs. For a couple of days, the accusations and oil-on-water appeals for calm ricocheted around that tiny space (reg. required). Then everything fell silent. Now the Vermont Standardhas checked in with the facts and bid-policy comparisons with other towns. It's not pretty--two board members have been paid $470,000 over the last five years "to do contract work," the story notes. Similar things have happened in nearby towns, as well, especially when there's a policy to buy local. “You don’t have a lot of options" in smaller communities, Vermont League of Cities and Towns director Steve Jeffrey points out. "People start recusing themselves and you run out of people.”