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Condos: Let the sun shine in!

Mon, 03/06/2017 - 10:42am -- tim

by Vermont Secretary of State Jim Condos An open government makes for a better government. This is sunshine week and it is being celebrated all across the nation.  In reality, it should be celebrated every week – not just this week – in Vermont and every other state. Here at the Secretary of State’s Office, our operations assume 625,000 Vermonters are looking over our shoulders as we go about our daily work – keeping us motivated and accountable.

In fact, this attitude comes straight from the Vermont Constitution:

Smith: Are all GOP presidents stupid?

Mon, 03/06/2017 - 5:47am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine If you’re a loyal watcher of “Saturday Night Live” like me, here’s a conclusion you reach after watching the show: Republican presidents are dopes. From Chevy Chase portraying Gerald Ford as a stumbling goofball, to nowadays, when Alec Baldwin assumes the character of Donald Trump and plays him as a hapless fool, there is one thing for certain: On “SNL” if you’re a Republican president then you’re portrayed as stupid.

Legislature Week in Review: Halfway there

Sun, 03/05/2017 - 7:04pm -- tim

Leonine Public Relations The legislature takes next week off to allow elected officials to head home and attend Town Meeting Day events. As this week is the 9th week of the legislative session it likely marks the midway point of the 2017 legislative session. While there is no certainty the session will last 18 weeks, that has been the case over the past few years.  Whether the session will run 18 weeks this year is difficult to predict since we have a new governor and new leadership in the legislature. However, assuming it does, this week marks the halfway point.   

Fish & Wildlife to hold workshops on conservation resources mapping tool starting March 6

Sun, 03/05/2017 - 5:17am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department is holding a series of free workshops on using the recently updated online mapping tool, BioFinder. The workshops are aimed at town planners and conservation commissioners, but all members of the public are encouraged to attend. BioFinder is a mapping resource used to find the places in Vermont most important for maintaining biodiversity, even as the climate changes. It includes maps of Vermont's connected forests and waterways, locations of important ecological resources, and other information used for conservation and land use planning.

Fish & Wildlife Board weighs in on 2017 moose hunt, 80 bulls-only permits for October 2017

Sat, 03/04/2017 - 5:09am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine On February 22, the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Board preliminarily approved a total of 80 bulls-only permits for the October 2017 moose hunting seasons. Based on the Fish & Wildlife Department's recommendation, 63 bulls-only permits will be issued for the regular hunting season and 17 bulls-only permits for the archery hunting season.

Boyden Valley Winery celebrates 20 years

Sat, 03/04/2017 - 5:04am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Boyden Valley Winery, nestled in the bucolic town of Cambridge is celebrating  20 years in business. As fourth generation Vermonters, the Boyden family has been a pioneer of innovative wine-making techniques and one-of-a-kind wine and spirits since planting their first grapes in 1996. David Boyden and his wife Linda were some of the first entrepreneurs to grow their own winter-hardy grapes in Vermont. From these grapes, they launched two ice wines and an ice cider, including the first red ice wine in the nation.

Vermont AG opposes Trump order that 'guts' clean water protections

Fri, 03/03/2017 - 4:19pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Vermont Attorney General Donovan released a joint statement with a coalition of attorneys general opposing President Trump’s executive order that undermines the Clean Water Act. The President described the executive order as paving the way to the elimination of the Clean Water Rule (also known as the Waters of the United States Rule).

Andrew Savage leaving Vermont for California

Fri, 03/03/2017 - 12:44pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Andrew Savage, the Chief Strategy Officer for AllEarth Renewables in Williston, is leaving Vermont for the West Coast to help develop a bike share company in Oakland. Savage is a former communications director for Congressman Peter Welch and a VBM Rising Star. In a general email sent Thursday to colleagues and media, Savage said: "As some of you know, I am moving with my family to Oakland next month and my last day with AllEarth will be March 2.

House passes criminal justice reform 'expungement' legislation

Fri, 03/03/2017 - 12:29pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The House Judiciary Committee is focusing this year on proposals that increase Vermonters access to justice and address inequalities in the state’s criminal justice system. On Thursday, the House passed H171, a bill that expands Vermonters access to expungement on a vote of 88 to 51, after three amendments failed. This bill reduces waiting periods and modifies the requirements that must be met before an individual may petition the court for expungement.

Syrup production, events mark maple season in Vermont

Fri, 03/03/2017 - 11:46am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The 2017 maple season is underway and off to a promising start in Vermont. Vermont is the nation’s leading producer of maple syrup and is once again hoping for a robust spring for its sugar makers. Both Vermont and the United States set records in 2016 for their annual production of maple syrup. Last year, Vermont produced almost 2 million gallons of maple syrup, the most it ever yielded, and 47 percent (almost half) of all syrup produced in the United States.

Weekly unemployment claims up 37 percent

Fri, 03/03/2017 - 10:36am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Weekly unemployment claims were up by over 200 claims, or 37 percent, last week, but are still lower than the same time last year. By industry, Services reported the most claims. Services typically report the most claims, though Construction had led the way for most of the winter. The spikes in the graph below reveal the volatility in hiring and firing in Service positions around the holidays.

SymQuest names Meg Fleming president

Fri, 03/03/2017 - 10:25am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine SymQuest Group, Inc, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Konica Minolta Business Solutions USA, Inc, and regionally based IT services and office technology provider, has announced the appointment of Meg Fleming as President of SymQuest effective April 1, 2017. Fleming will succeed Co-Founder, and acting President and CEO, Larry Sudbay, after 21 years of service with SymQuest.