Nov 06

Vote today, and then join us at the Hilton tonight!

Today is the big day. This election is so important, and there are so many issues at stake: women’s rights, equality, curbing global climate change. Voting is both our right and our privilege – there is no excuse.

If you aren’t sure where to vote today, you can contact your local town clerk, or visit here to download the PDF of Vermont polling places.

After the polls close at 7pm today, join us at the Hilton in Burlington (60 Battery Street) with the Vermont Democratic Party to watch the returns and celebrate with our fellow Dems.

Some Election Day Live Blogs in Vermont

Vermont Digger

Seven Days

WCAX

WPTZ

 

Nov 04

Capital One Bank Settles Advertising Claim With Vermont Attorney General

Capital One Bank has agreed to settle claims by the Vermont Attorney General’s Office that it failed to disclose important information on “0% interest” solicitations sent to Vermont businesses. The settlement requires Capital One to change its solicitations and pay the State $150,000 in investigative costs. Vermont Attorney General William H. Sorrell said, “No matter how big they are, companies have an obligation to provide accurate information when they market their services.”

Capital One Bank (USA), N.A., headquartered in McLean, Virginia, has for some time been sending direct-mail solicitations to Vermont businesses, offering the use of an “access check” to borrow up to a certain amount of money—for example, $5,000—at 0% interest for 12 months. However, businesses that use an access check are considered to have a continuing balance on their credit card account until the check amount is paid back, even if all other purchases are paid in full by the monthly due date. As a result, interest accrues immediately on all new purchases on the account, and businesses that normally pay off all of their new purchases each month end up paying interest on those purchases. According to the Attorney General, this practice was not disclosed by Capital One, violating the Vermont Consumer Protection Act.

Under the settlement, for one year, Capital One will include this disclosure on the front of its access check offers: “Please read … If you accept this offer, you will pay interest on all purchases made with your credit card until your entire balance is paid off. See Special Notice on the back of this offer.” For an additional four years, Capital One is required to include a clear and conspicuous front-page disclosure to the same effect; and beyond that, the State retains its right to take legal action if warranted.

In addition to the disclosures and the payment to the State, Capital One is required, within 30 days of signing the settlement, to reimburse any Vermont business that paid interest on new purchases while a 0% access check balance was pending that it would not have paid absent that balance. Any such refunds that cannot be returned to a business will be sent to the State to be treated as unclaimed property.

Individual consumers should be aware that “0% interest” offers may similarly result in interest being assessed upon purchase. However, the Attorney General’s settlement addresses only solicitations to businesses, because federal law “preempts” states from enforcing their laws with respect to credit card solicitations to individuals.

Oct 19

Second Circuit Court of Appeals Strikes Down the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA)

A federal appeals court in New York City issued a decision today striking down a key part of the federal Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA. Attorney General Sorrell, along with the States of Connecticut and New York, filed a joint “friend of the court” brief in this case. The states’ joint brief urged the Court to strike down DOMA and require the federal government to recognize same-sex marriages permitted by the states.

Because DOMA defines marriage for all federal purposes as “only a legal union between one man and one woman,” married same-sex couples in Vermont have been treated as single for purposes of federal law, and have been excluded from a wide range of federal benefits and tax exemptions that depend on marital status. The Second Circuit Court of Appeals, whose jurisdiction includes Vermont, ruled today in Windsor v. United States that this part of DOMA “violates equal protection and is therefore unconstitutional.” In ruling that DOMA is unconstitutional, the Court agreed that laws discriminating against gays and lesbians must be examined with heightened scrutiny because of our nation’s history of discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. The Court found no adequate justification for DOMA’s unequal treatment of same-sex married couples. It described DOMA’s federal definition of marriage – a matter traditionally regulated by the states – as an “unprecedented breach of longstanding deference to federalism that singles out same-sex marriage.”

Attorney General Sorrell praised the Court’s decision. “Although this matter may ultimately be decided by the Supreme Court, today’s decision marks a crucial step toward achieving equality for same-sex couples. The federal government should not, and constitutionally cannot, refuse to recognize the marriages of same-sex couples in Vermont and across the country.”

Oct 12

Vermont Sierra Club Endorses Bill

On Friday, the Vermont Sierra Club announced its support of Attorney General Sorrell’s re-election campaign.

“Because of [Bill's] commitment to our environment, Vermont’s working families, and social justice, we are proud to stand by you in this year’s race,” said the e-mail sent by David Van Deusen, Conservation Organizer of the Vermont Sierra Club.

“I am very proud of my environmental protection record, and I am honored to have the support of the Vermont Sierra Club,” said Sorrell.

The Vermont Sierra Club is a chapter of the Sierra Club, an organization committed to environmental protection and conservation, social justice policies, renewable energy sources, and environmental education.

 

Oct 04

Live Debate on Monday

Sep 28

Johnson State College Debate

Sep 25

Planned Parenthood of Northern New England Action Fund Endorses AG Bill Sorrell

On Tuesday, September 25, Planned Parenthood of Northern New England Action Fund (PPNNEAF) announced their endorsement for Attorney General Bill Sorrell.

 

“I am honored to have the support of an organization that is an ardent supporter of reproductive rights and community health, and function also as a political advocacy group for women and families.  I always have been, and will continue to be committed to fighting for women’s reproductive rights, healthcare reform, and victim advocacy.  This is a tribute to my record on those issues,” said Attorney General Sorrell.

 

PPNNEAF is a nonpartisan, non-profit advocacy and political organization connected to Planned Parenthood of Northern New England.

Sep 19

Company That Charged Vermonters’ Phone Bills Settles With Attorney General

More than 600 Vermonters will receive refunds totaling over $50,000 for voicemail services they paid for starting in 2005. A Nevada company that charged Vermonters on their telephone bills for services that many of the affected consumers say they did not agree to buy has entered into a settlement with the Vermont Attorney General’s Office. The company is Voicemail Direct USA LLC, now known as Intelicom Messaging LLC, based in Henderson, Nevada.

According to the Attorney General’s Office, Voicemail Direct violated the Vermont Consumer Protection Act by charging consumers without their permission, and by failing to comply with a Vermont law requiring that specified notice of the charges be mailed to consumers. The reason for the notice is that most people do not realize that they can be billed through their local phone company for something unrelated to their phone service. Vermont law has now been tightened up to ban most such third-party charges from being placed on consumers’ landline telephone bills.

In the settlement, Voicemail Direct has agreed to abide strictly by the requirements of Vermont law, to provide full refunds to all of the Vermont customers, and to pay $10,000 to the State of Vermont.

Sep 18

Debate Schedule

Sep 14

Pride 2012

Pride Vermont 2012 Logo

Excited to announce that we will be participating in the Pride Vermont 2012 parade and festival!  Contact us at sorrell4ag@gmail.com if you would like to join us!

You can find more information about the Pride Vermont 2012 festival and parade here: http://pridevt.org/

 

“These married couples – our friends and neighbors in Vermont – have every right to fair and equal treatment by the federal government. Instead, they are denied Social Security benefits, tax exemptions, and health and retirement benefits. I am pleased to have worked with New York and Connecticut on this brief urging the Second Circuit to end this discriminatory practice.” — Attorney General Sorrell on his decision to lead Vermont in the fight against DOMA

Older posts «