Well near nuclear station tests positive for tritium

A new positive finding for radioactive tritium in a well at the Vermont Yankee nuclear station has raised fears that it may be leaking from a new source at the plant.

Federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission spokesman Neil Sheehan says the well is about 125 feet from a plume of tritium found last year to have leaked from one part of the plant.

Vermont Yankee spokesman Larry Smith says the amount of tritium found in the well is less than half the Environmental Protection Agency’s safety standard for drinking water, that it isn’t a drinking water well, and that there’s no threat to the public.


Reality show winner gets prison for drug, tax offenses

The winner of the CBS reality show “Big Brother 9” has been sentenced to four years in prison on drug and tax charges.

Adam Jasinski, of Delray Beach, Fla., was sentenced Friday in federal court for attempting to sell 2,000 oxycodone pills in October 2009 to a witness cooperating with the government.

Jasinski pleaded guilty in October to possession with attempt to distribute oxycodone and failure to file a tax return for 2008, the year he won the TV show’s $500,000 prize.


Senator prods Smithsonian to seek busts made in USA

The head of the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of American History in Washington says he’ll make a “serious effort” to find U.S.-made presidential busts to be sold in the museum’s gift shop.

Museum Director Brent Glass was responding to a complaint from Vermont’s independent U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, who noticed that busts for sale at the museum were made in China..


Court: Governor has power to redirect nursing-home funds

The New Hampshire Supreme Court on Friday rejected a group of nursing homes’ claim to nearly $9 million in surplus funds, saying the governor had the authority to use the money to balance the budget.

In 2007, lawmakers had directed the state to pay any surplus from its share of Medicare nursing home reimbursements to the nursing homes. But citing a different law, Gov. John Lynch issued an executive order in 2008 reducing the amount intended for the Department of Health and Human Services budget by $8.8 million, the amount that would have gone to the nursing homes.

The New Hampshire Health Care Association, which represents 63 nursing homes, sued the governor to recoup the funds, but a Superior Court judge ruled in the state’s favor. On appeal, the state Supreme Court upheld that ruling.