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Journal of the Senate


Friday, January 11, 2008

The Senate was called to order by the President.

Devotional Exercises

Devotional exercises were conducted by the Reverend Wendy Manley of Montpelier.

Message from the House No. 2

     A message was received from the House of Representatives by Ms. Wrask, its Second Assistant Clerk, as follows:

Mr. President:

I am directed to inform the Senate the House has considered joint resolutions originating in the Senate of the following titles:

J.R.S. 41.  Joint resolution to provide for a Joint Assembly to hear the budget message of the Governor.

J.R.S. 42.  Joint resolution relating to weekend adjournment.

And has adopted the same in concurrence.

Senate Resolution Adopted

Senate resolution of the following title was offered, read and adopted, and is as follows:

     By Senators Campbell, Ayer, Bartlett, Carris, Collins, Condos, Coppenrath, Cummings, Doyle, Flanagan, Giard, Hartwell, Illuzzi, Kitchel, Kittell, Lyons, MacDonald, Maynard, Mazza, McCormack, Miller, Mullin, Nitka, Racine, Scott, Sears, Shumlin, Snelling, Starr and White,

     S.R. 21.  Senate resolution honoring retiring Public Safety Commissioner Kerry Sleeper.

Whereas, retiring Public Safety Commissioner Kerry Sleeper has devoted three decades to protecting Vermonters and solving crimes committed against persons and property, and

Whereas, a native of Burlington, he graduated from that city’s public high school and then matriculated to Champlain College, from which he graduated with a degree in business administration, and

Whereas, in 1977, Kerry Sleeper completed the Vermont Police Academy training course and was sworn in as a new state trooper, beginning one of the most illustrious careers in the force’s history, and

Whereas, Officer Sleeper quickly impressed his superiors with his field skills, sound judgment, and obvious leadership potential, and he soon began a steady climb up the law enforcement ladder with successive promotions to the rank of sergeant, lieutenant, captain, and ultimately major, and

Whereas, as a lieutenant he was appointed to be in charge of the Vermont drug task force and served as a station commander, and

Whereas, after his elevation to the rank of captain, Kerry Sleeper was named chief criminal investigator in the bureau of criminal investigation, where he had served earlier as a detective sergeant investigator, and he also distinguished himself as a troop commander and later as assistant field force commander, and

Whereas, his continuing superb performance in positions of increasing responsibility and stature led to his selection as major field force commander, the highest ranking office in the Vermont State Police, and

Whereas, Governor Douglas was so impressed with Major Sleeper’s extraordinary record of leadership, as Vermont’s senior state police officer, that he appointed him Commissioner of Public Safety and as the state’s homeland security advisor, and

Whereas, in his role as Vermont’s homeland security advisor, Commissioner Sleeper advocated passionately before the federal government on behalf of the states’ administrative needs, and he repeatedly identified instances where state law enforcement authorities were being left dangerously in the dark due to a lack of access to critical homeland security information, and

Whereas, his efforts resulted in federal homeland security policy changes with respect to federal-state relations, and

Whereas, after a remarkable tenure as Vermont’s commissioner of public safety and as a nationally recognized state leader on law enforcement matters, Commissioner Kerry is concluding 30 years of impeccable public service, now therefore be it

Resolved by the Senate:

That the Senate of the State of Vermont honors retiring Public Safety Commissioner Kerry Sleeper in recognition of his many career accomplishments and wishes him, his wife, Mary, and their daughter all the best, and be it further

Resolved:  That the Secretary of the Senate be directed to send a copy of this resolution to retiring Public Safety Commissioner Kerry Sleeper.

Rules Suspended; Bill Recommitted

S. 318.

Appearing on the Calendar for notice, on motion of Senator Cummings, the rules were suspended and Senate bill entitled:

An act relating to the municipalities of Hardwick, Hyde Park, Johnson, Morrisville and Stowe.

Was taken up for immediate consideration.

Thereupon, pending the reading of the report of the Committee on Finance, Senator Cummings moved that Senate Rule 49 be suspended in order to recommit the bill to the Committee on Finance.

Which was agreed to.

Senate Concurrent Resolution

     The following joint concurrent resolution, having been placed on the consent calendar on the preceding legislative day, and no Senator having requested floor consideration as provided by the Joint Rules of the Senate and House of Representatives, is hereby adopted on the part of the Senate:

S.C.R. 25

     Senate concurrent resolution congratulating Bernie Gonyaw on his retirement as the press foreman at the Newport Express.

     [The full text of the Senate concurrent resolutions appeared in the Senate calendar addendum for Thursday, January 10, 2008, and, if adopted in concurrence by the House, will appear in the volume of the Public Acts and Resolves to be published for this session of the sixty-ninth biennial session of the Vermont General Assembly.]


On motion of Senator Shumlin, the Senate adjourned, to reconvene on Tuesday, January 15, 2008, at ten o’clock in the forenoon pursuant to J.R.S. 42.


Published by:

The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street
Montpelier, Vermont