MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — After an historic legislative session with remote lawmaking, Vermont legislators say online Zoom sessions will continue in some form after the pandemic.
Many committee rooms lack adequate airflow, so the Statehouse likely won’t reopen to full capacity, lawmakers said. A committee is looking at options, including using other spaces in the capitol complex, WCAX-TV reported.
“We may not be voting via Zoom, but access for committee rooms, access for the public in far-reaching corners of the state — that system will always be there,” Sen. Joe Benning, R-Caledonia County, said Wednesday.
Legislators are also testing 360-degree cameras so Vermonters can watch in-person committee hearings from afar in the months ahead.
In other pandemic-related news:
BURLINGTON EMERGENCY ORDER
Vermont's largest city will lift its pandemic-related emergency order on June 15.
Burlington Mayor Miro Weinberger made the announcement on Wednesday, saying the city has done what's needed to significantly slow the spread of the coronavirus virus, WPTZ-TV reported. But he said more work is needed once the order is gone.
The emergency order has been in place since March 16, 2020.
“We will continue our commitment of ending any threat of a false spike and a return to a pandemic by continuing through the summer to push for the deployment of vaccines,” the mayor said. “We will also be working at executing an equitable economic recovery.”
Vermont reported eight new cases of COVID-19 on Thursday, for a statewide total of 24,200 cases since the pandemic began.
Three people were hospitalized with the illness. The state has not had a death from COVID-19 in more than two weeks.
The Associated Press is using data collected by Johns Hopkins University Center for Systems Science and Engineering to measure outbreak caseloads and deaths across the United States
The seven-day rolling average of daily new cases in Vermont did not increase over the past two weeks, going from 48.14 new cases per day on May 18 to 10.00 new cases per day on June 1.
The seven-day rolling average of daily deaths in Vermont did not increase over the past two weeks, going from 0.43 deaths per day on May 18 to 0.00 deaths per day on June 1.