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Vermont Labor Dept updates data breach

Fri, 03/24/2017 - 4:53pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Officials from the Vermont Department of Labor (VDOL) continue to work closely with America’s Joblink Alliance (AJLA) – a provider of the nationwide web-based database Joblink – to identify individuals in Vermont who may have been breached as a result of a cyber-attack on the vendor’s Joblink system, announced by VDOL on Tuesday. The FBI is also investigating.

Vermont AG: Legislator did not violate campaign finance law

Fri, 03/24/2017 - 1:29pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The Vermont Attorney General’s Office has concluded that an email solicitation sent under the name of a representative to the Vermont General Assembly did not violate Vermont’s prohibition against legislator solicitations of lobbyists. Representative Jill Krowinski had given the Vermont Democratic Party permission to send an email soliciting contributions to the party using her name.

Jobless rate down another tenth to 3.0 percent

Fri, 03/24/2017 - 10:44am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Vermont’s jobs outlook continues to slowly improve. The Vermont Department of Labor announced today that the seasonally-adjusted statewide unemployment rate for February was 3.0 percent. This reflects a decrease of one-tenth of one percentage point from the revised January rate, as all the key indicators improved: the rate was down, the labor force and number of employed increased, and total unemployed fell. Vermont ranked sixth best, while New Hampshire had the lowest rate in the nation at 2.7 percent and New Mexico was highest of any state at 6.8 percent.

Finance proposes, governor slams $2 a night room tax

Fri, 03/24/2017 - 10:07am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The Senate Finance committee voted 5-1-1 Thursday to add a $2 fee on top of the 9 percent "rooms" tax to raise $7.2 million for affordable housing and for other vulnerable Vermontes, such as victims of abuse. Governor Phill Scott on Friday issued a statement saying this new fee would be a detriment to the tourism industry, while jeopardizing broadly-supported affordable housing efforts. The Finance committee is responsible for tax policy.

Governor calls JobLink data breach 'appalling'

Fri, 03/24/2017 - 9:02am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Governor Phil Scott called the JobLink data breach "appalling" at a press conference Thursday at the State House with Labor Commissioner Lindsay Kurrle. While 180,000 or more Vermont Labor Department accounts could be affected, the extent of the damage is not yet known, or even whether any Vermonters were actually victimized. The state has been using the third party vendor, America's Job Link Alliance, since 2003, as a way for job seekers, including those on unemployment, to find work.

Weekly unemployment claims nearly double

Fri, 03/24/2017 - 8:11am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Weekly unemployment claims jumped last week after falling the week before. This suggests that the winter tourism season is winding down just as the best snowfall of the year covered the state with deep powder. Claims were also higher than a year ago. As expected, by industry, Services reported the most claims with 597 (67 percent of the total), all the other sectors were similar to the previous week's totals. Services typically report the most claims.

CVMC named one of 2017’s Top 20 Rural Community Hospitals

Fri, 03/24/2017 - 5:06am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The University of Vermont Health Network – Central Vermont Medical Center (CVMC) in Berlin has been named one of the nation’s Top 20 Rural Community Hospitals by the National Rural Health Association (NRHA). This follows the Top 100 Rural and Community Hospital honors awarded in February by iVantage Health Analytics and The Chartis Center for Rural Health.

Welch dares GOP to bring Obamacare killer bill to vote

Thu, 03/23/2017 - 5:07pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The scheduled vote on House Republican leadership’s American Health Care Act was just postponed and will no longer be taking place this evening as previously scheduled. Representative Peter Welch (D-VT) this morning spoke during the House debate on the legislation that would replace the Affordable Care Act. In his remarks, he said the bill would result in the GOP turning its back on the people who did the most to elect them.

Representative Peter Welch Remarks March 23, 2017:

CFV releases plan for $350 million in taxpayer savings

Thu, 03/23/2017 - 4:59pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Campaign for Vermont Prosperity (CFV), a non-partisan advocacy and policy development group, today released a plan that could save property taxpayers as much as $350 million per year. CFV is encouraging lawmakers to further investigate attracting international students to Vermont’s secondary public education systems. It says Vermont is uniquely positioned to take advantage of the increased demand for American education internationally and that the state can be on the leading edge of public education systems serving international students.

Merchants Bancshares stockholders approve $304 million merger with Community Bank

Thu, 03/23/2017 - 1:33pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Merchants Bancshares, Inc (NASDAQ: MBVT) today announced that its stockholders have voted to approve the previously announced merger of the Company with Community Bank System, Inc of Syracuse, NY.  Consummation of the merger is subject to regulatory approval and the satisfaction of other customary closing conditions.

House passes worker privacy protection bill

Thu, 03/23/2017 - 1:05pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The Vermont House today unanimously passed what the lead sponsor calls important legislation designed to provide social media privacy protection measures for Vermont workers. The bill, H462, prohibits employers from requiring or requesting that an employee or job applicant share their social media account information. This stipulation applies to the employees’ personal accounts, not accounts that are provided by or used for an employer.

Comcast unveils SmartOffice video surveillance solution for businesses

Thu, 03/23/2017 - 1:02pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Comcast Business today announced the availability of SmartOffice, a video surveillance solution designed to improve efficiency for small and medium sized businesses (SMBs) through advanced monitoring. With SmartOffice, SMBs can record, store, access, and share surveillance video on a 24x7 basis to oversee their organization. It provides secure cloud storage and instant access via mobile devices, and is professionally installed by Comcast Business and backed with 24x7 customer support.