Blurt: Seven Days Staff Blog

NOTE: Blurt has been retired and is no longer updated regularly. For new content, follow these links:

OFF MESSAGE: Vermont News and Politics
BITE CLUB: Food and Drink Blog

« Shelburne Museum to Build Shiny New Art and Education Center | Main | Movies You Missed 8: Mr. Nice »

October 14, 2011

Keeping Track of Gov. Peter Shumlin's Travels

24satelliteSince taking office in January, Gov. Peter Shumlin has taken regular respites — mostly long weekends at his chateau on Cape Breton, Nova Scotia — while at least one high-profile vacay took him to the sandy Caribbean isle of Dominica.

Shumlin was away this past Columbus Day weekend, just six weeks after the state was ravaged by Tropical Storm Irene.

Vermont’s Republican Party took the governor to task for his holiday weekend getaway, believing the gov should have stayed at home and used his bully pulpit to tout the state’s foliage to out-of-state travelers. The gov's staff called the charge "shameful."

Perhaps. If nothing else the vacation was ill-timed as many communities are spending their weekends orchestrating cleanup and repair efforts as evidenced by the calls for help from

For the record: Gov. Shumlin has an investment stake in 17 homes and investment properties — mostly in Windham County — aside from the Cape Breton home. Despite the many abodes, he is currently renting a spread outside of Montpelier that was originally the home of Republican Gov. Deane Davis as his primary dwelling.

This past weekend marked the third time since May that the gov headed north to his vacation home on Nova Scotia. Aside from Cape Breton, Shumlin secretly trekked to Dominica during the monumental March blizzard and has made a couple of out-of-state trips to New York, Washington, D.C. and Rhode Island for political and business events. When he’s in state, he’s no less at rest— often criss-crossing the state daily in one of his two taxpayer-funded, gas-guzzling SUVs.

All of this in-state and out-of-state travel makes the code name Team Shumlin has for the boss all the more amusing. Seven Days stumbled across the nickname while reviewing a recent records request.

No, it’s not “Shummy” or “Putney Pete” or “Gov” or even “Pete.”

It’s “GPS.”

Funny, right? Since “Global Positioning System” is used to help determine someone’s location, and Vermonters might find it hard keeping track of their gov on the go. So, did staff come up with this acronym because of Shumlin's constant jet-setting?


Chief of Staff Bill Lofy said the origin of “GPS” is far less interesting than the three letters may imply. Simply put, Lofy notes, “GPS” is the acronym for Gov. Peter Shumlin.

non story here...isn't there more important news stories than this? hrumph!

Governor Shumlin worked for 42 days straight, after Irene.

He then took a 3 day 'vacation' to Cape Breton.

And the VT GOP threw a hissy fit.

Anyone who works for 42 days straight needs a little bit of rest. If the VTGOP can't accept that then their problems are even bigger than they initially appear.

Sure, working 24/7 without taking a break makes so much sense...because when he lands in the hospital with a heart attack or some other health collapse that would save so much money and help us all so much more...what a bunch of idiots!

He owns 17 homes/investment properties? Doesn't that make him a despised 1%er?

what about the emissions from traveling back and forth to cape breton. Seems inconsistent with the his strong stance on global warming

With the Guv. out of state, and the Lt. Guv driving around in circles in the cow juice bowl, who had the hot line phone in hand in case of emergency? Shap Smith?
I support the Gov. taking a break, and certainly support the Lt. Guv in his participation of his hobby, but Shay who was in charge? Hard for Phil to make many decisions behind the wheel at the nations sight of excitement.

Dale: The order of succession is as follows: Governor, Lt. Governor, Speaker of the House and President Pro Tempore of the Senate. This happened earlier this year when Gov. Peter Shumlin and Lt. Gov. Phill Scott were both in Quebec. Technically, Speaker Shap Smith was the "acting governor," but then he left the state and that role then fell to Pro Tem John Campbell. After that, I think it falls to the Mayor of the state's largest city ...

Oh good one more thing for me to hang on the head of the honorable Robert Kiss.
Maybe though going five deep into the line of succession as you say the Mayor in a short time can spread Burlington telecom to all of Vt.

I daresay many, many Vermonters work far more than 42 days between vacations. And they aren't millionaires/real estate moguls.

Holy Christ !!! Kiss potentially ending up as the acting Gov is the scariest thing I have heard all week. That should be the scare message the RGA uses from now on.

Gov. Shumlin has a million dollar income and has many millions in assets. It's interesting that the local Occupy Wall Street protesters don't have a problem with him despite the fact that he belongs to the 1% they're protesting against.

We only protest against millkionaires we don't like. Millionaires and billionaires are fine -- as long as they say the right thing and pretend to be one of us.

Who says the local Occupy Wall Street participants don't have a problem with Gov. Shumlin? WTF are you talking about Eric and Caleb? Are you really that uninformed?

I can't speak for all the occupiers (no one can) but I know that many of us are disgusted with Shumlin for refusing to consider raising taxes on the wealthy in this state, who benefited mightily from the thefts on Wall Street and the huge tax cuts for the wealthy that are an important source of the skyrocketing income inequality about which occupiers are protesting. Instead of asking the 1% to share some sacrifice for the good of Vermont, Shumlin would rather cut funding for vital public services that are especially needed now for clean up and repair after Irene. Are these choices related to the fact that Shumlin is part of the 1%? I wouldn't be at all surprised.

@ Jeanne:

And yet, instead of occupying Shumlin's manor in Brattleboro, or any of the several rental properties that he owns, or even his rental house in Montpelier where he lives during the week, you're making a pigsty out of City Hall Park in Burlington.

Funny how that works out.

PS, You don't like Shumlin? I'll bet half or more of the Occupy Burlington crowd didn't even vote in the last gubernatorial election. And the ones who did voted for Shumlin.

"funding for vital public services that are especially needed now for clean up and repair after Irene."

And the inevitable cleanup of City Hall Park.

City Hall Park didn't need any more cleanup than usual when I last walked through a few days ago. But that park needs a thorough scrubbing with or without protesters.

The comments to this entry are closed.

Stuck in VT (VIDEOS)

Solid State (Music)

Mistress Maeve (Sex)

All Rights Reserved © Da Capo Publishing Inc. 1995-2012 | PO Box 1164, Burlington, VT 05402-1164 | 802-864-5684