Murray, Vermont’s Chief Information Officer, to lead Vermont Telecommunications Authority

first_imgThomas E Murray, Vermont s CIO and Commissioner of the Department of Information and Innovation, has been named as the Executive Director of the Vermont Telecommunications Authority. The VTA was established by the Legislature in 2007 as part of Governor Douglas proposal to make Vermont the nation s first e-state. Its mission is to ensure Vermonters have access to affordable broadband and cellular service throughout the state. I want to thank Tom for accepting this vital mission at a very critical time in the extended development of the state s infrastructure, said VTA s Board Chairman Chris Dutton. Under Tom s leadership and vision, I m confident that Vermonters will soon see these important services available throughout the state.”I am pleased to join the VTA team and help lead this effort, said Murray. Whether it is for economic development, public safety, smart grid or improving educational opportunities, ubiquitous broadband and cellular services are essential to the state’s future. The VTA has a unique opportunity to build public/private partnerships that will ensure every Vermonter has broadband service available to them and that we have cellular coverage where we need it. While there certainly are challenges bringing these services to rural areas, the recent federal stimulus funding and the resources that the state and private sector have put forth should assist with moving Vermont toward improving these services statewide.” Tom has sixteen years of leadership experience in the telecommunications field having worked with TDS Telecom; Rural Cellular Corporation (UNICEL) and as Director of Telecommunications Infrastructure for the State of Vermont. Tom grew up in Montpelier and graduated from Western New England College with a BS in Business Administration. He currently resides with wife Cynthia and their two children in Middlesex.Source: Governor’s office. 10.19.2009last_img read more

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From Trump, a new attack on immigration

first_imgLike almost any immigration program, the diversity visa lottery is imperfect and susceptible to abuse.The fortunate winners, who represent less than 1 percent of those who have applied annually in recent years, are not uniformly equipped to thrive in this country; many lack an education beyond high school.As Saipov may turn out to prove, even the extensive vetting required of all who immigrate through the program does not provide an ironclad guarantee that it is impervious to applicants who might seek to harm the United States.The lottery program might be improved.Still, the fact that more than 11 million people applied for it in fiscal 2016 reflects the magnetic appeal the United States continues to exert around the world.Satisfying a small fraction of that demand, through the lottery or some other legal means, is a powerful tool of public diplomacy in countries whose citizens might otherwise have no hope of coming here.More from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homes Never mind that Schumer’s legislation establishing the program attracted bipartisan support; or that it was signed into law by President George H.W. Bush, a Republican; or even that Schumer himself unsuccessfully bargained to end the program, in 2013, in return for a bill granting legal residence to millions of undocumented immigrants already in the United States.Neither the facts nor the normal political imperative to avoid partisanship in the wake of a terrorist attack appeared to move Trump.His tweet made it appear that his overriding interest in an assault allegedly backed by the Islamic State is to use it to assail immigration – in this instance, a legal program whose beneficiaries represent a speck in the overall number of immigrants.Managed by the State Department since 1995, the program now grants up to 50,000 visas annually, via a random lottery, to citizens of dozens of countries who would otherwise be mostly overlooked in the annual influx of green-card recipients.In recent years, many of the winners have been from Africa and Eastern Europe.Having reaped political advantage as a candidate in vilifying illegal immigrants, Trump has set his sights in office on legal migrants, including refugees, from a handful of mostly Muslim countries, whom he’d like Americans to see as an undifferentiated mass of potentially violent interlopers.Gradually, he is chipping away at what was once a national consensus that immigrants are a critical source of vitality, invention and international appeal. Categories: Editorial, OpinionThe following editorial appeared in The Washington Post:President Donald Trump, ever prone to seek out scapegoats, fastened on a new target in the wake of the terrorist attack in New York: the state’s senior Democratic senator, along with a 27-year-old visa program that offers applicants from dozens of countries a shot at immigrating to the United States.Trump singled out Sen. Charles Schumer, who, in 1990, sponsored the diversity visa program, through which the alleged attacker in New York, Sayfullo Saipov, is reported to have immigrated to the United States from his native UzbekistanIn a tweet, the president derided the program as “a Chuck Schumer beauty.”last_img read more

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