By KEVIN O’CONNOR Staff Writer
Surveying residents from northernmost Alburgh to southernmost Vernon, the Council on the Future of Vermont found on-the-spot agreement: Everyone loves the state. They just differ on same-sex marriage. And issues of the environment vs. the economy. And school spending vs. the needs of seniors. And the value of natives vs. newcomers.
“One clear idea that emerged from the thousands of conversations that the council held,” members report, “is the need to find balance points between, on the one hand, the complex working out of community needs and engagement, and on the other hand the freedom of individuals.”
The nonprofit, nonpartisan council had good reason to hold more than 100 meetings throughout the state to determine that. Once each generation, a similar group has asked Vermonters about the future - and reaped results.