Month: December 2020

first_imgDEW Construction Corp,Don Wells, president of DEW Construction Corp, of Williston, has announced the merger of the MacMillin Company, of Keene, NH, with DEW. A statement announcing the deal said the merger is a strategic step that unites the strengths of both businesses, resulting in a winning situation for their present and future clients as well as their employees.â Iâ m incredibly excited about the opportunity to work with MacMillinâ s owner Bill Walker and his staff to integrate our services to better serve the market,’says Wells. â Our business philosophies are in alignment: people come first. We both look out and advocate for our clients, and now we can offer them enhanced services. It also provides opportunities for our staffs and employees to grow.âDEW, a 15-year-old company, brings to the table a solid business development plan, progressive marketing strategies, and Building Information Modeling, a technology method of managing models, processes, and communication across a large team. MacMillin, a 66-year-old company, brings a rich history of service and customer satisfaction in a region where DEW previously planned to expand operations.Bill Walker, who has been with MacMillin for 42 years and President for the last 25 years, says the merger will yield an entity that is stronger than what each independent company now offers.â Our companies have a great synergy. They are alike in management practices and philosophies and itâ s a great fit for the employees. The result of the merger will be companies that are stronger and more competitive in the construction marketplace.âDEWâ s corporate headquarters will remain in Williston, VT, and the MacMillin Company will retain its Keene offices and New Hampshire corporation status, with Walker continuing as CEO.Recently, MacMillinâ s work volume has been approximately $40 million annually. Completed projects within the past year include Keene Family YMCA, Keene Middle School, Marlborough Elementary School, and Kilton Public Library.DEWâ s recent projects include Jay Peakâ s Hotel Jay and Pump House Waterpark, James M. Jeffords Hall at University of Vermont, Community College of Vermont Rutland Academic Center, Putney School Field House, and the Waterbury Fire Stations. Their current annual sales for 2011 were in the $150 million range.It is the goal of both companies to grow the New Hampshire operation to a similar size of DEWâ s Vermont operations.â It will be business as usual for everyone involved,’says Wells. â The merger will be a seamless transition to ensure integrity throughout the process.âRecently, the DEW staff popped a cork and toasted their 15-year anniversary as well as the merging of the two companies. â This is a positive move for everyone,’says Wells. â I look forward to an exciting and productive future for DEW and MacMillin.âlast_img read more

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first_imgAllEarth Renewables, Inc.,The innovative AllSun Tracker, which is manufactured by Vermont’s fastest growing business, is now available in one of the country’s top solar markets. AllEarth Renewables, the manufacturer of the solar electric AllSun Tracker, has announced the recent expansion of its solar installer network into Massachusetts with three new partners.The Vermont manufacturer has partnered with US Solar Works of Attleboro, NorthEast Solar Design of Hatfield, and Transformations Inc. of Townsend, Lexington, Somerville, Cambridge, Acton, Mill River, and Nantucket.AllSun Trackers are pole mounted solar systems that use innovative GPS and wireless technology to follow the sun throughout the day to boost solar energy production by up to 45 percent over roof-top installations.  They’ve been designed and built in the northeast to withstand tough northern climates.This week, Pete Fine of US Solar Works will be installing six Series 24 AllSun Trackers for Bruce Diamond Company in an industrial park in Attleboro, MA. ‘We see Massachusetts as a great place to grow the market for our tracker systems,’said David Blittersdorf, CEO of AllEarth Renewables.  ‘We’ve had tremendous success in Vermont and we are eager to find additional installation partners and continue to expand in Massachusetts’fast-growing solar market.’Massachusetts had the fourth largest solar market in the United States in the first part of this year, according to the Solar Energy Industry Association (SEIA).‘We believe our tracker is a solution for residential and commercial customers in Massachusetts looking to get more from their solar system.  By following the sun each day, we can produce more energy for each PV panel, enhancing the value of going solar,’added Blittersdorf, who was listed by Business Week among 25 of ‘America’s Most Promising Social Entrepreneurs of 2011.’AllEarth Renewables was ranked as Vermont’s fastest growing business in both 2010 and 2011 by Vermont Business Magazine and was named the Lake Champlain Regional Chamber of Commerce ‘2012 Business of the Year.’In a little over 2 years, more solar systems have been installed in Vermont using the AllSun Tracker than any other solar technology and over 5 MW and 1,300 of the innovative tracker have been installed in residential and commercial systems in the northeast. Source: AllEarth Williston, Vermont . July 31, 2012last_img read more

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first_imgUniversity of Vermont,A groundbreaking ceremony was held Monday at the Colchester Business and Technology Park for a state-of-the-art new laboratory for the Vermont Department of Health. The 47,844-square-foot building, which will replace the Health Departments 32,695 square foot current laboratory, located on Colchester Ave. in Burlington, will be completed in the summer of 2014. The current lab, which is 60 years old, must be replaced because it has outgrown its space and the structure is outdated. Planning for the new facility has been in process for more than 10 years. The new lab is designed, in part, to facilitate collaboration between university researchers and public health scientists. The state health lab routinely performs a wide range of analyses to detect biological, toxicological, chemical and radiological threats to the health of the population from testing for blood lead levels, rabies, pertussis and salmonella to drinking water contaminants, toxic contaminants, and to support disease outbreak investigations. The lab also has capabilities to respond rapidly to public health emergencies such as novel strains of flu, suspicious substances containing anthrax or ricin, and unusual events like the tritium leak at Vermont Yankee or widespread flooding after Tropical Storm Irene. More than 50,000 tests are performed at the facility every year. This is a great new facility that will serve the state well, said Governor Peter Shumlin. And the collaboration between the Health Department and UVM scientists will advance public health, medical research, health care and policy in the healthiest state. This is a great day for public health, said Health Commissioner Harry Chen, MD.The lab is a cornerstone of our ability to protect and promote the health of Vermonters. The new facility will give our professionals the modern scientific environment and space for the new technologies that are essential to support the daily work of disease investigation and environmental testing and monitoring.                             Im proud of the part UVM is playing in helping create a state-of-the-art public health facility for Vermont, said Tom Sullivan, UVM president. This critically important facility is an example of what can happen when the university and the state partner to achieve common goals. State health lab one of oldest in countryThe state health lab dates back to 1898, when the Vermont State Laboratory of Hygiene was established by the Legislature, just the third of its kind to be organized in the U.S. The Health Departments current lab facility is now one of the oldest in the country. Built in 1952, it originally housed administrative offices as well as the lab. The building was renovated in 1985 to serve exclusively as a lab, but the renovations did not replace the antiquated heating, ventilating, and air conditioning systems. There is also no additional space for new instrumentation.            Because of these limitations, it has become increasingly difficult to adapt the current facility to accommodate changing scientific technology that requires special facility design, such as safe specimen receipt/processing areas, clean room areas for preparing specimens for testing by molecular biology or low level contaminant chemistry procedures, and temperature/humidity and controls. Co-located labs will bring tangible benefitsThe new building was designed collaboratively by the Health Department and UVM to maximize the advantages of having the two buildings in close proximity. The new building will be physically connected to the Colchester Research Facility and the two buildings will share a front door.              The goal is to create a state scientific campus, said Dr. Chen. This collaboration is very much in line with the national trend in health sciences research to build facilities that bridge the distance from the research bench to the community to health policy. This positions us to meet the future challenges of emerging diseases and health threats.            The co-location allows us to bring professionals at the Health Department who are actively engaged in public health issues together with UVM faculty who work nationally and internationally to investigate patterns of disease and look for new diagnostics and treatments, said John Evans, UVM senior advisor for business engagement.  Health and UVM officials cited a number of mutual benefits, such as the ability to partner on specialized medical research, the potential for increasing research funding and enhanced recruitment, and cost economies for both resulting from sharing facilities. From the Health Departments point of view, being connected to a major medical research facility keeps public health on the leading edge of the health sciences, expands the training ground for future laboratorians, and provides surge capacity with specialized labs, instruments and personnel in the event of a public health emergency that requires 24/7 response. For UVM, there are many benefits from sharing specialized space for biomedical research with health department scientists, including expanded opportunities for cooperative projects and increased external funding. In addition, the state-of-the-art facilities provide training and internships in research and public health for undergraduate, graduate and medical students. VENDORS Design Team             Company                                                            Architects and Engineers              HDR Architects Engineers Planners          Princeton, NJCivil Engineers                                   Krebs and Lansing Consulting Engineers                ColchesterExterior Envelope                            Scott and Partners Architects                     Essex JunctionSoils Engineers                                  Civil Engineering Associates                         South BurlingtonGeo-Technical Engineers              GeoDesign, Inc.                                                                South Burlington Construction Team                         Company                                                            General Contractor                         PC Construction, Inc                                       So. BurlingtonConcrete                                             S.D. Ireland Concrete Construction          WillistonCurtain Wall & Storefront             St. Albans Glass Company, Inc.                  St. AlbansDrywall/Metal Framing/Acoustical Ceilings                           Denis White Interior Contractors              WillistonElectrical                                              Omega Electric Construction                       South BurlingtonFireproofing                                       Thermal & Water Barriers of VT                 FairfaxH-Piles & Steel Erection                 CCS Constructors, Inc.                                    MorrisvilleMasonry                                              Ziter Masonry, Inc.                                          BarreMechanical/Plumbing/Controls                                               Vermont Heating & Ventilating Co.          WinooskiMetal Stairs & Misc Metals          Charles Leonard Steel Services LLC           Concord, NHPainting                                                Russ/Wood Decorating, Inc.                        RichmondRoofing & Metal Panels                 Monahan Brothers, Inc.                                                Plattsburgh, NYSite Work                                            S.D. Ireland Brothers Corp.                          South BurlingtonSpray Foam Insulation                   East Shore Drywall                                           ColchesterStructural SteelFabrication                                          Canatal Industries Inc.                                   Thetford Mines, QCWaterproofing                                  Nicom Coatings Corporation                       Barrelast_img read more

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first_imgby Hilary Niles August 28, 2013 vtdigger.org If Tropical Storm Irene had brought more wind than water to Vermont in 2011, the state’s insurance landscape might look a lot different today.Most of the damage from Irene, as well as 2011â ²s other two federally declared disasters and most storms since, was caused by flooding. That damage is excluded from homeowner insurance policies ‘ a fact that can make recovery hard to pay for, but in Vermont’s case has helped keep the state’s property and casualty insurance rates stable while federal flood insurance rates skyrocket.‘If it had been a traditional hurricane with winds of 100 or 150 miles per hour and trees toppling on houses and roofs blowing off, you’d see a lot more rate increases,’ said Josh Fitzhugh, president and CEO of Vermont-based insurance company Union Mutual.As it stands, much of the storm damage from recent years has been absorbed by the National Flood Insurance Program. Fitzhugh said private insurers might have had to pass costs on to policyholders if flood claims had not dominated the storm damage. ‘But there’s less need for rate increases due to the nature of storm,’ he said.Home baseAn insurance company’s policies and rates are regulated state by state wherever the policies are sold, but the business itself is regulated by the state in which it’s incorporated. Regulation of internal operations and solvency, therefore, falls to the home state. The Vermont Department of Financial Regulation’s insurance division audits all domestic insurance companies every year.Susan Donegan, commissioner of the state’s Department of Financial Regulation, said property and casualty insurance rates in Vermont since Irene reflect normal inflationary cost increases. On average, they’ve gone up between 3.2 and 4.4 percent per year since 2011.‘To us, that’s a very stable market,’ Donegan said. ‘We haven’t seen two-digit increases like some states.’Indeed, even before 2011, Vermont’s property insurance rates suffered relatively few fluctuations compared to neighboring states.Home-field advantageIt’s not just weather that drives insurance rates, though. Fitzhugh attributes ongoing stability primarily to two things: the predominance of domestic insurance carriers in Vermont, and a consistent regulatory environment.A lot of Vermont’s insurance policies are held by ‘domestic’ companies, meaning they’re insurance carriers incorporated in Vermont. That proximity can affect the company’s relationships with customers and regulators, Fitzhugh said.Take Rhode Island, for example. Even though Hurricane Katrina in 2005 did not devastate Rhode Island, the storm alerted many carriers to its risk.‘It is the Ocean State, after all,’ Fitzhugh said. Many insurers raised rates there to cover their own rising costs of reinsurance. In a situation like that, some companies might even decide to pull out of the market entirely.‘But it would take a much more cataclysmic event for a local company to decide to leave Rhode Island,’ Fitzhugh hypothesized.An insurance company’s responsiveness to its home state plays out at the regulatory level, too.Donegan said the morning after Tropical Storm Irene, she was on the phone with the CEOs of every domestic carrier, making sure they had agents in the field and that they brought in reinforcements to assist with the demand.‘This is the state that not only tells us what we should be charging on policies, and gives us final sign-off,’ Fitzhugh said, ‘but it also has a role in the general supervision of the company.’ He said that, Vermont aside, ‘a company that’s domiciled in a state tends to be a bit more responsive to the regulatory requests.’Donegan credits the private insurers for their swift and thorough response to the damages, especially praising companies that voluntarily waived penalties for delayed payments because they knew so many home financial records had been washed away and checkbooks destroyed. Proof of their service, she said, resides in an absence of consumer complaints: not a single one against a private insurer for failure to honor a claim from Tropical Storm Irene.Comparing costsTropical Storm Irene produced about $18.2 million in property and casualty insurance claims, Donegan said. Most of those came from homeowner policies (2,600 claims), followed by commercial claims (1,600, many of which were for ‘business interruption’ insurance), and finally auto (622 claims).‘It’s a lot of money,’ she said. ‘But in the overall scheme of things, the storm’s impact on the private market was not dramatic.’Compare that to the hits the National Flood Insurance Program has taken since 2010. Between 1978 and 2010, NFIP paid out roughly $7.9 million in claims, according to Rebecca Pfeiffer, floodplain manager and assistant NFIP coordinator for the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation.If those claims had been filed and paid out evenly from year to year, the annual totals would average less than a quarter-million dollars each year.Until 2011. In addition to Tropical Storm Irene in late August, severe storms and flooding in April and May earned federal disaster declarations.In one year, Vermont’s flood insurance claims practically quintupled their historical cumulative total, reaching about $41.3 million between 2010 and 2011 alone. Subsequent flooding in 2012 piled on more claims, worth nearly $13.5 million, between 2011 and 2012.Those figures should be taken with a grain of salt, because they’re not in ‘constant dollars.’ In other words, what cost $100 in 1978 likely would have a much higher price tag in 2012, so figures between the years can’t be compared exactly. And it’s hard to say exactly which jumps can be blamed on which storms, because claims each get filed and paid on different schedules.But there’s no getting around the fact that 2011 was a game-changer in Vermont’s insurance landscape, and one that private carriers largely avoided.Because private homeowner’s insurance generally doesn’t cover damage from floods, the federal flood insurance program ‘ and its policyholders ‘ were left to absorb the brunt of the impact.last_img read more

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first_imgby Hilary Niles September 3, 2013 vtdigger.org About 70 workers remain at the Energizer plant in St Albans Town, and regional planners are wondering what will become of the property once battery and flashlight manufacturing operations are disassembled by the end of the year.Energizer announced in November 2012 that it would close the plant on Swanton Road, along with two others in Missouri and Malaysia, as part of a 10 percent global workforce reduction. Operations in North Carolina, Canada and China also were downsized. Production in St. Albans will cease by the end of September.Of the 100 employees who already have moved on, many have found local jobs, according to Tim Smith, executive director of the Franklin County Industrial Development Corp. Expansions at Mylan Technologies, the St. Albans Cooperative Creamery and Perrigo Nutritionals have helped absorb some of the displaced workers, he said.While the Energizer displacement tells the story of manufacturing’s shifting foothold in Vermont, it also highlights Franklin County’s resolve to grow through industry. Once empty, the Energizer plant, which reportedly opened in 1947, will join the ranks of at least 15 industrial parks looking for tenants.GoalsSmith emphasizes that industrial development ‘isn’t an overnight venture.’In 2010, the development corporation completed the first phase of what could be a 20-year undertaking: establishing an eight-lot industrial park in St. Albans Town. The $93 million build-out, financed through the Vermont Economic Development Authority, set in place infrastructure for five of the eight parcels.‘The ideal scenario is manufacturing or technology operations,’ Smith said. He’s hoping to land one tenant, on average, every two to three years. There aren’t any serious inquiries yet, he said.Whether or not the pending vacancy at Energizer will throw a wrench in FCIDC’s plans remains to be seen. It hardly would be the only parcel potentially competing for tenants. Other industrial site development projects are underway, at varying stages of development or completion, in Enosburg, Highgate, Richford and Swanton.And the Energizer plant’s role in the market will depend on what the company intends to do with the property. Lawrence Miller, secretary of the Agency of Commerce and Community Development, said his office is engaged in ongoing talks with Energizer’s real estate representatives to gauge whether and how the company will divest itself of the St. Albans land and facilities.Meanwhile, St. Albans City appears to be gearing up for a renaissance, largely orchestrated around a tax increment financing district approved in 2012.On Sept. 10, residents will vote on a proposed bond to build a new parking garage to service a state office building that might move downtown. If that goes through, medical patch-maker Mylan Technologies might take over the current state office building. Brownfield remediations are underway at two former manufacturing sites, and a downtown streetscape renovation, years in the making, will be celebrated Thursday evening.Mayor Liz Gamache said many of the city’s development plans can stand alone, but industrial growth in surrounding St. Albans Town and the rest of Franklin County can help the city exceed the sum of its parts.‘Right now we have tremendous opportunity in Franklin County to develop economically,’ Gamache said. She highlighted the area’s geography ‘ on the outskirts of Burlington and on the way to Montreal ‘ as one major advantage.Energizer’s closing in St. Albans has been blamed largely on consumer technology choices: More all-in-one devices and rechargeable batteries have reduced demand for AAA lithium batteries, the conventional wisdom goes. The plant had brought on more workers in 2004 precisely to make those batteries, in addition to handheld flashlights.But foreign trade also played a part. The U.S. Department of Labor certified a petition for Trade Adjustment Assistance in February, acknowledging that the Energizer workers were displaced at least in part because of the company’s shift to foreign production or suppliers.A similar determination was made two years earlier in the wake of a layoff at Vermont Transformers Inc. And another TAA investigation is underway following IBM’s summer layoff in Essex Junction. Elsewhere in the state, 13 layoffs have been certified through the trade adjustment act since 2010.Within Franklin County, the population faces its own hurdles.St. Albans City has the county’s highest crime rate, according to 2010 data from the state’s division of criminal justice services within the Department of Public Safety. With an average 89.39 offenses per 1,000 people, the rate far exceeds averages of 36.28 in the surrounding St. Albans Town, 44.78 in Swanton to the north, and still lower rates between roughly 18 and 25 in other neighboring communities.U.S. Census data show that, like many other parts of Vermont, the poverty rate in Franklin County hovers in the low teens ‘ not as high as Lamoille and Orleans counties, but certainly higher than in Grand Isle and Chittenden counties, which round out Franklin’s borders. Franklin County also ranks low in educational attainment, particularly beyond high school, according to a 2012 publication from the Lumina Foundation.State economists pointed out in July meetings with the Legislature, however, that manufacturing is trending more and more high-tech and increasingly requires a workforce with higher levels of expertise.Miller compares the dichotomy to one faced by New York City years ago.‘Many of the strategies that worked there are what community planners and economic development professionals here are working toward,’ Miller said. ‘Setting standards for livability and community conduct, and making resources available for people who need to get to a better place in their life.’In conjunction with the Agency of Human Services’ presence in St. Albans, Miller said the hope is for downtown revitalization to create an anchor on which other development can follow.‘You give people something to be proud of in their community. You get the positive momentum, see job growth, see people moving from having the wrong kind of free time to good employment and civic engagement, and you do it bit by bit and person by person,’ he said.And, planners might hope, industrial park by industrial park.PHOTO: Vermont Business Magazine, August 2013last_img read more

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first_imgRelated Company: Cota & CotaBourne’s Inc. Cota & Cota, Inc, of Bellows Falls, and Bourne’s of Morrisville, Inc, two Vermont suppliers of retail propane, settled claims that they violated Vermont consumer protection laws with regard to propane pricing, fees, and terms of service. Cota & Cota also settled a claim that the company retaliated against a consumer who complained to the Attorney General’s Office about the company’s propane practices.“Since 1986, Vermont has regulated the business practices of propane suppliers to protect consumers and promote fair competition,” said Attorney General Sorrell. “Our propane laws require clear disclosure and fair implementation of pricing, fees, and terms of service. My office takes seriously any consumer complaint regarding an unfair practice by propane suppliers.”Vermont law requires propane suppliers to list all applicable fees in an initial fee disclosure form. Additionally, propane suppliers cannot refuse to deliver propane based on outstanding balances, or require up-front payments, except under certain circumstances.After a consumer complained to the Attorney General’s Consumer Assistance Program (“CAP”), the Attorney General found that Cota & Cota was illegally requiring all cash customers to make a $350 up-front payment, and the company would refuse a delivery unless a back balance was completely cleared and the up-front $350 charge was paid. Cota & Cota also did not list the amount or duration of any of its fees in its fee disclosure form. The company agreed to a settlement changing those practices to comply with Vermont law.Immediately after that settlement, however, a vice president of Cota & Cota took steps to cancel all propane service at the property where the consumer who complained resided.“My office determined that Cota & Cota’s actions, immediately after settling other consumer protection claims, were retaliatory,” said Attorney General Sorrell. “We reacted swiftly. We will not tolerate consumers being targeted for shedding light on unfair business practices.”Vermont has an explicit law prohibiting retaliation against consumers who have complained to the Attorney General’s Office or otherwise assisted in an investigation of unfair business practices. 9 V.S.A. § 2453b. In a second settlement, Cota & Cota will pay $5,000 in civil penalties and costs to Vermont, and $2,500 to two affected consumers, as well as any fees necessary for them to establish propane service with another provider.In another case, a consumer complained to CAP about being billed a higher amount after ordering propane online from Bourne’s Energy. The Attorney General found that Bourne’s charged some consumers a higher price for propane delivered after the consumer had pre-paid via the online ordering system. Bourne’s agreed to a settlement to: (i) charge consumers only the price that is clearly disclosed and paid in advance; and (ii) refund all consumers who were charged a higher amount after delivery the post-delivery charges.Consumers who have questions about the settlements or wish to file a complaint may contact the Attorney General’s Consumer Assistance Program, by phone: (802) 656-3183 or 1-800-649-2424, by email at [email protected](link sends e-mail), or by mail to: Consumer Assistance Program, 146 University Place, Burlington, VT 05405.Vermont Attorney General, April 9, 2014last_img read more

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first_imgVermont Business Magazine Ending months of speculation, the man who founded Campaign for Vermont said today that he will not run for governor in 2014. Despite strong urgings by a broad cross section of Vermonters over the past few months and numerous persistent inquiries, Bruce Lisman, a native Vermonter and successful business executive, said he wants to focus on grassroots engagement and non-partisan advocacy.No Republican has yet to step forward to challenge Democratic Governor Peter Shumlin.“I love Vermont and believe that she faces serious challenges as seldom before in her history,” said Lisman. “At this time, however, I believe I can best contribute to improving Vermont’s future by publicly and vigorously advocating for a focused, core set of moderate, nonpartisan and common sense government reforms. Indeed, this coalition building effort is the best approach to policy change and consistent with my focus since 2011.”Lisman, who has spent considerable time traveling the state and listening to Vermonters, said that people are deeply concerned about the future of Vermont.“The vast majority of Vermonters, from all different parts of the state and all different backgrounds, want to see expanded job opportunities and economic growth which stem from a stronger business environment, a return to responsible budget management, ethics standards in government, enhanced transparency, particularly on health care, and a better and more effective education system,” Lisman said.“I know this because I have heard from Vermonters who are facing significant challenges. To create the political landscape to systematically address these issues involves a good deal more than electing any one politician or enacting a piece of legislation,” Lisman said.“I will focus on showcasing the public’s growing frustration about these issues and the need to implement tangible solutions for true change, change that Vermonters are demanding” said Lisman. “Vermonters have made it clear they are not satisfied with the direction of the state and I will make it my mission to influence citizen-led forward progress.”The issues include:Need for Increased Job Growth and Economic Development. The number of employed Vermonters has dropped in the past five years, wage growth has remained dormant and the trend toward low-paying jobs continue with many jobs created being at or near minimum wage. Need for a Comprehensive Ethics Standards to Govern the Conduct of Public Officials. Vermont is one of just three states without comprehensive ethics standards and ranks 43rd in government integrity laws according to the Better Government Association.Need for Transparency with the Development of the Single-Payer Health Care System. With a projected cost of more than $2 billion annually for Vermonters, it is imperative that all financing aspects of Governor Shumlin’s health care plan be immediately disclosed to Vermonters and continue to be disclosed as they are developed. Lisman supports affordable, accessible universal health care for all Vermonters.·         Better Use of Education Dollars, Supporting an Exceptional Education System and Reducing Property Taxes. We’re at risk of breaking the intergenerational partnership.  We spend a lot for only above average results.  We can retain local control, reconnect local citizens with local budgets, streamline and refocus the educational infrastructure, and eliminate most of our supervisory unions, replacing them with 15 local education districts and realigning them with Career and Technical Education Centers.Bruce Lisman of Shelburne is a native Vermonter who founded Campaign for Vermont following a successful 40-year career in the financial services industry.  Campaign for Vermont is an independent grassroots advocacy organization offering moderate policy solutions to the challenges facing Vermonters today in such pivotal areas as the economy, education, health care, transparency and government accountability.last_img read more

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first_imgVermont Business Magazine Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Wednesday announced $500,000 in grants to four Vermont community organizations in the latest round of funding to prevent and address youth substance abuse in the state. The grants will fund community-based approaches to preventing youth substance abuse, including prescription drugs, heroin, marijuana, tobacco and alcohol. The grants were part of $86 million awarded to nearly 700 communities across the country in Drug-Free Communities Support Program grants by the Office of National Drug Control Policy. The program is a federal grant program that has funded more than 2000 coalitions and currently mobilizes 9000 community volunteers across the country.Leahy said:  “Substance abuse leaves a devastating wake of destruction through communities across our state and our country.  It is a scourge that affects us all and will take all of us to face together, as a community.  These grants are another step toward strengthening our communities to combat youth substance abuse.”A former prosecutor, Leahy has long supported and advanced community-based prevention and involvement that these grants will encourage.  Leahy cosponsored the original 1997 legislation authorizing the Drug-Free Communities Support Program and has long championed the program as the senior-most member of the Senate Appropriations Committee and as the Ranking Member of the Senate Judiciary Committee.Vermont will receive four grants from the program to establish and strengthen community collaboration in support of local efforts to prevent youth substance abuse:·         $124,684 to the Alliance for Community Transformations in Bennington·         $125,000 to West River Valley Thrives in Brattleboro·         $125,000 to the Burlington Partnership for a Healthy Community·         $125,000 to the Greater Falls Prevention Coalition in Bellows FallsThe grant announcements can be found here.(link is external)The announcement comes on the heels of Leahy’s late August visit to Bennington, where he discussed comprehensive approaches to combating drug abuse and related crimes.  Last week the Vermont Department of Health was also awarded $4 million(link is external) by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to prevent overdose deaths related to prescription opioids. WASHINGTON (WEDNESDAY, Sept. 9, 2015) – Senator Patrick Leahylast_img read more

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first_imgVermont Business Magazine The Vermont Lake Monsters and Oakland Athletics have announced that the two teams have extended their Player Development Contract for the next two seasons through the year 2018, the New York-Penn and American League teams jointly announced today. The signing of the two-year agreement assures that the Lake Monsters will continue as Oakland’s short-season Single-A New York-Penn League affiliate for the 2017 and 2018 seasons. Vermont has been an affiliate of the Athletics since the 2011 season when the Lake Monsters won the Stedler Division title.“The Oakland Athletics have been great partners, both on and off the field,” said Vermont Lake Monsters Vice President Kyle Bostwick. “We are excited to continue to work together to help develop ballplayers into future Major Leaguers.”“We are pleased to extend our partnership with the Vermont Lake Monsters. A number of our organization’s most talented players have thrived during their time with the Lake Monsters before advancing through our system,” said A’s General Manager David Forst. “Over the past six seasons, we’ve enjoyed a great working relationship with the entire Lake Monsters organization, as well as with the City of Burlington. We look forward to future success.”Since Vermont became the New York-Penn League affiliate of the Athletics, six former Lake Monsters have risen through the Minor Leagues and become “Major League Monsters”: Ryan Dull (2012), Bruce Maxwell (2012), Addison Russell (2012), Michael Ynoa (2012), Ryon Healy (2013) and Dillon Overton (2014).last_img read more

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first_imgCommunity Bank NA,Vermont Business Magazine Merchants Bank donated $8,000 to sponsor the Athletes Village at the Lake Champlain Dragon Boat Festival on Sunday, August 7th. This is Dragonheart Vermont’s eleventh year holding this event and Merchants Bank is overjoyed to have been involved each year. Funds raised during the Dragon Boat Festival stay in Vermont to benefit cancer programs. They have raised over $1.65 million since starting the annual festival in 2005.”Dragonheart Vermont is thrilled to have the support of a company like Merchants Bank to put on the Lake Champlain Dragon Boat Festival,” stated Linda Dyer, Founder of Dragonheart Vermont and Lake Champlain Dragon Boat Festival. “They have put in a spirited team in our event for all 11 years with the best captain—Carol Boivin— and the best team name—Hakuna MaTaTas! We truly appreciate the financial support that Merchants Bank offer us. They have served as our Athletes’ Village sponsor to our community charity event for the last 3 years. Clearly, Merchant Bank is a company that believes in community as much as Dragonheart Vermont does. Paddles Up to Merchants Bank!”Anita Bourgeois, Senior Vice President at Merchants Bank stated, “We are proud of our Merchants Bank team. Over thirty dedicated Merchants Bankers were participating in the Festival supporting friends and neighbors who have had, or are currently battling cancer. We are truly honored to support Dragonheart Vermont so that they can continue providing hope to those who have been touched by cancer.”About Merchants Bank: A Vermont-chartered commercial bank established in 1849, Merchants Bank is the largest Vermont-based bank. The bank’s business, municipal, consumer, and investment customers enjoy personalized relationships, sophisticated online and mobile banking options, with 31 branches in Vermont and 1 location in Massachusetts, operating as NUVO, A division of Merchants Bank. American Banker ranks Merchants Bank a “Top 200” in America among 851 peers. For more information, go to www.mbvt.com(link is external). Where do you want to grow? (Member FDIC, Equal Housing Lender, NASDAQ “MBVT”)Source: BURLINGTON, Vt., Aug. 15, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — Merchants Banklast_img read more

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