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On Earth Day: Legislators urged to support rapid transition away from fossil fuels

Fri, 04/22/2016 - 1:01pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Executives from some of Vermont’s most iconic brands and companies converged in Montpelier on Earth Day to call on legislators to support a speedy transition to the low carbon economy of the future. New science suggests that the impacts from climate change may come sooner and be more destructive than previous climate models predicted.

Delegation calls for stricter federal regulations of PFOA

Fri, 04/22/2016 - 1:00pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine As tests for perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) contaminating drinking water in North Bennington, Bennington and Pownal continue this week, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vermont), Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) and Representative Peter Welch (D-Vermont) pressed two congressional committees, charged with finalizing legislation to regulate toxic chemicals, for stricter federal rules and deference to strong state protections already in place in Vermont and across the country.

Weekly unemployment claims fall by 150

Fri, 04/22/2016 - 8:25am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Weekly unemployment claims fell last week and below numbers from the same time last year. For the week of April 16, 2016, there were 809 claims, down 150 from the previous week's total and 171 fewer than they were a year ago. By industry, claims fell across the board. Services continued to garner by far the most claims with 70 percent. 

Funding available through the Walter Cerf Community Fund

Fri, 04/22/2016 - 5:04am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Funding is now available through the Walter Cerf Community Fund at the Vermont Community Foundation. Cerf, a native of Germany who made Addison County his home in his later years, gave more than $10 million to organizations and projects in Vermont before passing away in 2001. He focused much of his giving in Addison County and Brandon.

Leonardo’s Pizza Sauce will distribute to Vermont retailers and Amazon

Fri, 04/22/2016 - 3:58am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Leonardo’s Pizza Sauce is proud to announce both the local and nationwide distribution of their all-natural pizza sauces in four flavors: Original, Asiago, Garlic and Chipotle. Leonardo’s Pizza Sauce is now available for purchase at retailers such as City Market, Healthy Living and at every Hannaford location in the state of Vermont. Leonardo’s Pizza Sauce is also available for purchase on

'Ban the Box' bill passes House, ready to be signed into law

Thu, 04/21/2016 - 2:03pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The Vermont Legislature passed the "Ban the Box" bill (H261), which forbids employers from asking on an application if a prospective employee has a criminal record. The employer will still be entitled to ask that question during the subsequent hiring process. The bill now moves to the Governor’s desk to be signed into law. Vermont House Speaker Shap Smith offered the following statement following the House's final vote to concur with the Senate.

Entergy projects big Vermont Yankee surplus

Thu, 04/21/2016 - 1:27pm -- tim

by Mike Faher/The Commons Though some are worried that Entergy could run out of cash before cleaning up Vermont Yankee, the company is projecting a significant — and growing — surplus at the end of its obligations in Vernon. Entergy’s latest Nuclear Regulatory Commission filing shows $190.6 million left in the plant’s decommissioning trust fund at the end of Vermont Yankee’s decommissioning in 2075. That’s $9.3 million more than the surplus the company estimated a year ago.

Welch bill pushes for local involvement in nuclear plant decommissioning

Thu, 04/21/2016 - 1:23pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Representative Peter Welch (D-VT) has introduced legislation that would ensure local communities have a significant role in the decommissioning of retired nuclear plants. The legislation also requires the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) to publically approve or reject proposed decommissioning plans to ensure appropriate accountability and transparency measures are in place.

The Nuclear Plan Decommissioning Act (H.R. 4998) is the House companion to S.964, led by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) in the Senate.

VPR News wins five regional Edward R. Murrow Awards

Thu, 04/21/2016 - 12:56pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Vermont Public Radio has been honored with five first-place regional Edward R. Murrow Awards from the Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA). "These awards demonstrate the commitment VPR has to energetic and comprehensive public service," said John Van Hoesen, VPR's chief content officer. "We appreciate this recognition of excellence by the industry; it underscores our responsibility to provide essential and trustworthy news and information for all generations in a time of rapid change."

People's United Financial reports Q1 net income of $62.9 million, annual dividend increased to 68 cents

Thu, 04/21/2016 - 12:42pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine People's United Financial, Inc. (NASDAQ: PBCT) today reported net income of $62.9 million, or $0.21 per share, for the first quarter of 2016, compared to $59.2 million, or $0.20 per share, for the first quarter of 2015, and $70.8 million, or $0.23 per share, for the fourth quarter of 2015. Included in the results for the fourth quarter of 2015 was a net after-tax gain of $6.1 million ($0.02 per share) resulting from the sale of the company's payroll services business.

People's United Insurance Agency acquires Eagle Insurance

Thu, 04/21/2016 - 12:36pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine People's United Bank, NA announced today that its subsidiary, People's United Insurance Agency (PUIA), has acquired Eagle Insurance Group, LLC, a Raynham, MA-based insurance brokerage firm. People's United Bank, founded in 1842, is a premier, community-based, regional bank in the Northeast offering commercial and retail banking, as well as wealth management services through a network of nearly 400 retail locations in Connecticut, New York, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine.

Scheuermann: How are we doing? Final three weeks

Thu, 04/21/2016 - 11:40am -- tim

by Representative Heidi E Scheuermann (R-Stowe) With just a few weeks remaining until the 2015-2016 Legislative Biennium concludes, various items are still being developed in both the House and Senate. Unfortunately, none of the items being considered will put us back on a path of fiscal responsibility and real economic growth. The Fiscal Year 2017 budget that passed the House raises General Fund spending by 4% this year, meaning a Comparable Annual Growth Rate over the last five years of 4.6%. As most of us clearly understand, this continues to be well above both the rate