Saturday, July 26, 2008

Next Meeting: Saturday, July 26, 2008

See you all at 9am at Common Cafe!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Grad Announces Re-Election Bid

Northfield Democrats were delighted to welcome Rep. Maxine Grad to our last committee meeting. She detailed some of her accomplishments from this past session, and outlined her hopes for areas to build on in the future. We are lucky to have her representing us at the Statehouse.

Her announcement for re-election follows below.


Maxine Grad of Moretown announces her re-election campaign seeking a fifth term for state representative for the district representing Moretown, Northfield, and Roxbury. “I am proud of my accomplishments and want to do more to help keep Vermonters safe, healthy, and help our communities thrive.” Her accomplishments have been recognized throughout her five terms of service.

Grad’s impressive record marks her as an advocate for public safety, crime victims, children and youth, and veterans. As the Vice Chair of the House Judiciary Committee, Grad was a leader on landmark public safety laws that strengthened prevention, investigation, sentencing, and treatment of sex offenders, and expanded the community sex-offender registry. This past session Grad provided leadership on the rewriting of Vermont’s juvenile and child abuse laws. Grad championed the passage of a law that will grant the public greater access to criminal records. Vulnerable adults’ safety will now be better protected due to Grad’s leadership on a law that criminalizes abuse and neglect of the elderly and disabled adults. "On any issue relating to public safety, Representative Grad has been an unwavering and compassionate advocate for the needs of Vermonters and communities impacted by crime. Her leadership on initiatives to protect children, the elderly and vulnerable adults have been particularly impressive" stated Jennifer Poehlmann, Esq. Director of Public Policy, Vermont Center For Crime Victims Services.

Grad’s strong advocacy for crime victims was recently recognized by the Vermont Center for Crime Victims Services and Network Against Domestic and Sexual Violence. Grad received the Legislative Leadership Award for her work last session that led to laws on voyeurism, stalking, sexual assault, and crimes against minors. “Victims and survivors of violent crime are so fortunate to have an ally like Representative Grad in the legislature. Her compassion, wisdom and experience make such a difference in crafting smart, tough laws and policies related to domestic and sexual violence. From preventing domestic violence to improving the sex offender registry and protecting kids from abuse, she has consistently been a leader in championing the rights and safety of victims of crime - and we can't thank her enough!” stated Sarah Kenney Public Policy Coordinator VT Network Against Domestic and Sexual Violence.

“As a mother and policy maker, children’s health and safety is a priority to me,” says Grad, who was named legislator of the year in 2002 by the Vermont Children’s Forum. Grad has been recognized as a leader on teen highway safety issues. She was the lead sponsor of a bill that strengthened Vermont’s child restraint law. Grad was lead sponsor of a bill that supports breastfeeding mothers in the workplace. “When we support working women, we are supporting, children, employers, and contributing to a sustainable workforce.” Grad, last session helped secure funds for the Northfield based parent-infant support and resource group Good Beginnings of Central Vermont.

Grad is a strong advocate of local government and communities. She helped secure $100,000 last session for Roxbury to address the environmental and health issues caused by beaver dams. She also supported the Moretown selectboard and community leaders in gaining the designation of the Mad River Byway and continues to serve on the By-Way committee. She serves on committees addressing local issues such as the creation of Moretown Village sidewalks, participates in the Moretown Energy Group and has been a strong supporter of her district’s public libraries.

“The transfer of the National Guard Armory to Norwich University and securing funding for Vermont Environmental Consortium hosted by Norwich University are other accomplishments I am especially thrilled about. Norwich is an economic engine in Northfield that plays a key role in the health of the community,” declared Grad.

Grad is known as an effective leader in public safety. As lead sponsor, Grad worked closely with the Northfield Ambulance Service and Moretown Fire Department and the Vermont Police Association to pass a law that protects ambulance, police, and fire personnel while acting in the line of duty. Northfield Ambulance Volunteers gave Grad an award for her commitment to public safety and named her as an honorary advisory board member. “Grad has been at the forefront of the public safety effort for many years. Her positions on highway safety and criminal matters are always based on a good deal of thought. She is a proven leader in Montpelier, with proven results” says Carolyn Fredette, President Vermont Police Association.

Grad’s efforts to honor veterans were recognized when she received a citation from the Military Order of the Purple Heart for her work establishing the Vermont Purple Heart Trail. She sponsored legislation that expanded scholarships for children of National Guard members who died while in active duty, and helped secure extra funding for the Veteran’s medal program. Grad pledged to continue her support for veterans, “I will re-introduce legislation that will exempt military retirement pay from income tax. Our veterans are a key component to our workforce, and we are losing highly qualified veterans to other states who have such benefits.”

Grad is recognized for her strong constituent work. “Maxine Grad knows how to "represent" and that is what it's all about! She listens to my concerns, responds thoughtfully, communicates effectively and seeks my opinion. On top of that, she genuinely cares about the people she is representing. What more could you ask for?” stated Doreen Allen, banker and long-time central Vermont resident.

“If re-elected I look forward to continuing my support for enhancing our public safety, better access to health care, lower property taxes, economic development, environmental protection, children, and youth issues. These are the elements needed to help our communities thrive,” Grad vowed.

Grad is a Mad River By-Way Committee member, board member of the Governor’s Institutes of Vermont, Northfield Rotary Club member, board member of Mayo Health Care, Inc. She served a Northfield Recycling Volunteer, member of the Friends of the Mad River board of directors, contributing writer and editor of Moretown Matters, member of the Moretown Community Activities Committee, and Chair of the Governor’s Commission on Women.

CONTACT: Rep. Maxine Grad, 496-4244,

Freeman and Costello Announce for Lt. Governor: Dubie Auditioning for General Hospital?

Northfield's own Nate Freeman has announced his candidacy for Lt. Governor. Hot on his heels, another Democrat, Tom Costello, of Brattleboro has also jumped in the race. A primary to get the word out about two strong challengers to incumbent Brian Dubie, is probably a good thing.

Check out the Times Argus story on Nate's announcement.

You can also check out his campaign website, here.

Tom Costello hasn't made his formal announcement, but he has definitively said he will run.

Is it possible that just as with this year's presidential candidates we have an embarrassment of riches in the Lt. Governor's race? Better late than never!