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Omnibus spending bill contains millions for Vt. programs

(CNN Newsource)
Published: Mar. 9, 2022 at 12:18 PM EST
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WASHINGTON (WCAX) - Congress is expected to vote Wednesday on a $1.5 trillion spending bill to fund the government for the rest of the fiscal year and Vermont’s congressional delegation says it includes upwards of $38 million in priorities for the Green Mountain State.

According to Senator Leahy’s office, the 2022 Omnibus Spending Bill includes $10 million to create an Institute for Rural Partnerships at the University of Vermont to study challenges facing the country’s rural areas. Another $5 million would go towards a national farm to school institute at Shelburne Farms. There is $17 million allocated to replace the nearly 100-year-old Vermont National Guard Readiness Center in Bennington. The bill also includes funding for the Aviation Tech Center at the Burlington Tech Center, $1 million for pedestrian improvements to the Church Street Marketplace, $1.5 million to preserve cultural sites around Vermont, funding for statewide recreation trails, and money to educate future nurses.

Some of Senator Bernie Sanders’ project requests include a new child care center in Alburgh; increasing access to quality, affordable dental care across Vermont’s federally qualified health centers; expanding the Vermont Employee Ownership Center to enable more Vermont small businesses to transition to employee ownership; sustainable energy projects for Vermont schools and public buildings; and expanding Vermont’s highly-successful Support and Services at Home model to low-income families and individuals living in affordable housing.

Funding secured by Sanders will also establish the first-of-its-kind Vermont Center for Correctional Post-Secondary Education to provide a tuition-free community college education and career training at all six of Vermont’s correctional facilities for both incarcerated individuals and correctional officers.

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