The Vermont Legislature is made up of two branches or “chambers,” the House and the Senate. The House has 150 members (“Representatives”) who are elected from single and two-member districts throughout the State. The Senate has 30 members who are also elected by multi-member districts and according to population. The districts largely correspond to the boundaries of the state’s 14 counties. There are 3 Senate seats held by Washington County.
House and Senate members are elected in November of every other year for terms of two years each. In years when there are more than 3 Democrats running for the 3 Washington County Senate seats (as there is in 2018), there must be a primary election to narrow the field down to 3 candidates. This year the primary election is on August 14.
The Session: The annual Legislative session starts in January and generally runs through the beginning of May.
Leadership: The House is headed by the “Speaker of the House,” a Representative chosen by his or her peers. The Senate is headed by the Lieutenant Governor as the Senate “President” or, in his or her absence, by the “President Pro Tempore” (temporary President). The President pro tempore is the Senator elected by the majority party caucus and confirmed by vote of the entire Senate.
Much of the work of the Legislature is done by committees, where issues are studied, testimony is given, and policy is formulated. The different committees are explained here: https://legislature.vermont.gov/the-state-house/civic-education/about-legislative-committees/.
Committee assignments are determined by the “Committee on Committees,” which consists of the Lieutenant Governor, the President pro tempore and one member chosen by the full Senate.
More information about the Legislature:
- How a Bill Becomes a Law: https://legislature.vermont.gov/the-state-house/civic-education/how-a-bill-becomes-law/
- Track and follow bills that are proposed, and other Legislative activity: https://legislature.vermont.gov.
- Vermont Public Radio broadcasts a live-stream from the Statehouse: http://digital.vpr.net/topic/vermont-legislature#stream/0
- VT Digger and Vermont Public Television produce “VTDigger Minute,” a weekly news digest: https://vtdigger.org/tag/vermont-pbs/
The Stowe Reporter wrote about the Washington County primary, article can be found here.
Click your town below to find voting and/or town contact information. Check with the Secretary of State’s My Voter Page for additional information.
Longtime small-business owner and community member Andrew Brewer officially filed to run as a Democrat in the Washington County primary, with a focus on the environment, economy, health care and good government.
Brewer, 52, is committed to improving Vermont, making life better for Vermonters of all ages.
“.. After a long career in business and being involved in the community, I’ve truly come to understand that the things Vermonters care about – the environment, economy, education, fairness and equality, vibrant downtowns – are all interconnected. Each quality depends on each other. ”
Brewer hopes to bring his experience of progressive business and community leadership to the Vermont legislature.
The primaries are on Tuesday, Aug. 14, 2018.