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Humanitarian leader Burkle shares formula for satisfying service at 109th Saint Michael’s commencement

Mon, 05/16/2016 - 9:32am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Dr Frederick M “Skip” Burkle Jr. ’61, a dauntless and massively productive global humanitarian, scholar and scientist for many decades, never has let long odds turn him from epic challenges. Burkle, the featured speaker for Saint Michael’s College’s 109th Commencement Sunday, May 15, in the Ross Sports Center, told the Class of 2016 how he managed to enroll at Saint Michael’s despite the twin challenges of severe dyslexia and a severely resistant father. But it only was possible with help from a few “personal humanitarians,” something we all need, he said. His were a generous principal-priest supporting his application, two kind Saint Michael’s alumni doctors he’d met as an orderly at a hospital in Connecticut, his home state, and the supportive girlfriend from 8th grade on who became his wife.

Mike Smith: Trump the unifier?

Mon, 05/16/2016 - 5:25am -- tim

by Mike Smith Now that Donald Trump is the presumptive presidential nominee he, and his supporters, are seeking to unify the Republican Party. But “unification” has a very different meaning to Trump than it does to many Republicans, especially those seeking election. For Trump, a unified party is one that falls in line behind him and supports his positions. After all, in his view, he is now the leader of the party and the Republican Party is there to serve him.

Hoffer: EB-5 and the problem of faith

Sun, 05/15/2016 - 8:21pm -- tim

by Vermont State Auditor Doug Hoffer The unfortunate situation with the EB-5 program presents an opportunity to reflect on the State’s approach to economic development. Among other responsibilities, the State Auditor’s office examines various programs to determine whether they achieve the goals established by the legislature. That is, are we getting our money’s worth? 

Vermont producers, retail buyers make deals at Vermont Food Matchmaker event

Sun, 05/15/2016 - 4:59am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine On Friday April 29th, the Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food & Markets (VAAFM), in partnership with the Vermont Specialty Food Association (VSFA), Vermont Retail & Grocers Association, and the Vermont Fresh Network, hosted its 7th Vermont Food Matchmaker event in Burlington.  Featuring 54 Vermont producers and 40 buyers from 30 retail establishments, the Matchmaker event is a key component of the VAAFM’s domestic export program, which focuses on assisting Vermont food and forest businesses in making and maintaining connections with buyers,

Split justices rule Brattleboro Retreat had 'a duty to warn'

Sat, 05/14/2016 - 6:14am -- tim

by Mike Faher/The Commons, Brattleboro A sharply divided Vermont Supreme Court has opened the door for Brattleboro Retreat to face negligence claims in connection with a 2011 assault committed by a former patient. A majority of justices have ruled that the family of the assault victim, Michael J Kuligoski of St Johnsbury, can pursue claims that the Retreat and Northeast Kingdom Human Services failed to warn of the dangers posed by assailant Evan Rapoza, who had been under the care of both facilities for mental illness.

Welch calls for new funding for states and communities to fight opioid epidemic

Fri, 05/13/2016 - 2:52pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The House of Representatives today approved a package of bills to address the opioid epidemic spreading across the country. The legislation would help states and communities increase their capacity to treat patients in recovery and provide tools to prevent addiction and overdoses. Two bipartisan initiatives authored by Rep. Peter Welch (D-VT) were included in S. 524, the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act.

VSECU launches new equity investment program to grow Vermont co-ops

Fri, 05/13/2016 - 2:22pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine VSECU announced today a commitment to foster and grow Vermont’s cooperative economy through strategic equity investments in local cooperative organizations. VSECU (Vermont State Employees Credit Union) will make these strategic investments through Co-op Capital, a new initiative that marks the latest project under the credit union’s vision to bring people together to empower possibilities for greater financial, environmental, and social prosperity. The primary goal of Co-op Capital is to drive significant growth within Vermont’s cooperative economy and positively impact VSECU’s local communities. Accordingly, in addition to weighing the financial viability of its cooperative partners, VSECU will also consider the social impact of the co-ops it chooses to invest in through this program.

Weekly unemployment claims unchanged

Fri, 05/13/2016 - 12:58pm -- tim

unemployment rate & jobs, seasonally adjusted, chartsVermont Business Magazine After a long upward trend, unemployment claims were virtually the same as last week and last year. Claims had risen following the "disastrous" winter tourism season, but have now fallen back into a significantly lower range. For the week of May 7, 2016, there were 525 claims, up 2 from the previous week's total and 21 more than they were a year ago. By industry, claims fell across the board, except for Manufacturing and Services, which were up 5 and 4 percent. Services continued to garner by far the most with 65 percent of all claims. 

Shumlin issues statement on Obama Administration guidance to schools on gender identity

Fri, 05/13/2016 - 12:57pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Governor Peter Shumlin issued the following statement after the Obama Administration released guidance to schools nationwide making it clear that gender identity is protected under Title IX and that students should be treated consistent with the gender they identify with.

Net income of Gaz Metro's GMP, VGS falls 8.1 percent in Q2 2016

Fri, 05/13/2016 - 10:35am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Valener Inc, the public investment vehicle in Gaz Metro Limited Partnership (Gaz Metro is the parent company of Vermont Gas Systems and Green Mountain Power), today reported adjusted net income attributable to common shareholders of $32.4 million for the second quarter of fiscal 2016, unchanged from the second quarter of fiscal 2015. However, the relatively warm winter and lighter winds drove down net income from the Vermont operations to $20.5 million, or 8.1 percent, from the same period last year.