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Legislative Notes for January 17, 2013

January 12, 2013

The legislature convened this week in Montpelier.  It is hard to believe that I am beginning my eighth year representing our community.  It is truly an honor and privilege to represent you in the legislature, a duty that I take very seriously. Thank you for your continued support and please feel free to contact me with your legislative concerns.

As with the beginning of each biennium, the week was filled with lots of excitement, hope and enthusiasm.  We received the oath of office and were sworn in on Wednesday.  Thursday the Governor and other statewide officials were sworn in and the Governor delivered his inaugural speech. The speech focused on improving Vermont’s education system.  I was very happy to hear this since I had been assigned to the House education committee by the Speaker on Wednesday.  The Governor is focused on getting better outcomes for Vermont kids, a goal I share.  Serving on the education committee will be a new experience but, I look forward to working with my colleagues and the Governor to improve our education system.

Along with education reform, my focus this session will be to work to address the estimated $70 million dollar budget gap while protecting our most vulnerable and limiting the impact to taxpayers, resolve the outstanding TIF issue for Milton, keep the spotlight on healthcare reform, a moratorium on industrial wind projects and limiting the always increasing cost to live and do business in Vermont.

I was re-elected House Minority leader by our caucus in late November so I have been quite busy preparing for the session.  With three fewer caucus members this session my job has become a little more challenging.  It has become even more important for our members to remain informed if we are to have any relevance this biennium.  A job that is quite difficult and stressful at times.

I look forward to representing you and your concerns in Montpelier. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions, comments or concerns. I am very interested in hearing from you. During the session, I can be reached at the Statehouse by calling 1-800-322-5616 or by cell at 373-5960. My email address is dturner@leg.state.vt.us. My web-site address is www.donturnerjr.com. Thank you and have a great week.

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