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Council on the Future of Vermont to hold summer events

Thu, 05/28/2009 - 7:36am -- tim

The Council on the Future of Vermont (CFV) was a two year project of the Vermont Council on Rural Development. Join us in a regional roll-out of the results where residents can learn about the CFV process and share their ideas and priorities for their own towns and Vermont. A series of free and open public discussions will be held around the state this summer.
All Meeting Times are: 6pm to 7:30pm
July 1: Island Pond, Island Pond Welcome Center
July 2: North Hero, Public Library
July 7: Middlebury, venue TBA

NPR political correspondent Juan Williams to keynote Roundtable's summer meeting

Thu, 05/28/2009 - 6:54am -- tim

Senior political correspondent Juan Williams of National Public Radio and other national media will be the keynote speaker at the summer meeting of the Vermont Business Roundtable, which will be held on June 18 at the Sheraton Burlington Hotel and Conference Center. Williams will deliver The Latest from Washington An Insider s View following dinner and a brief awards presentation.

Groundbreaking today for $15 million Champlain College welcome center

Thu, 05/28/2009 - 5:59am -- tim

A groundbreaking ceremony will be held today for Champlain College's renovation of historic Perry Hall. The $15 million student “Welcome Center” is one of Vermont's largest, non-transportation construction projects. President David F Finney said the project is important to both the college and Burlington, especially during the current economic conditions. When completed, Perry Hall will house the admissions, financial aid, student accounts and advising and registration departments.

Douglas enlists businesspeople to help with budget fix

Wed, 05/27/2009 - 11:35am -- tim

By Timothy McQuiston. Businesspeople did not have to encourage Governor Douglas to use the bully pulpit to make his case for vetoing the Vermont state budget, but they did it anyway. Douglas was at DEW Construction in Williston for a town hall style meeting with about 40 business leaders. Douglas has also visited businesspeople in St Albans and in the Northeast Kingdom to spread his message that the Legislature s $4.5 billion budget spends too much, taxes too much, and where lawmakers did make cuts, they made the wrong cuts.

Douglas allows renewable energy bill to become law without his signature

Wed, 05/27/2009 - 9:54am -- tim

By Timothy McQuiston. Governor Douglas today avoided a veto of H446, the renewable energy bill, by letting the it become law without his signature. The governor opposed the bill because he said it gets government in the way of what already is a competitive and growing private marketplace for the development of renewable energy. He and his administration have told Vermont Business Magazine that they also opposed the Legislature setting de facto electric rates, which has been the purview of the Public Service Board.

Weekly unemployment claims decline

Wed, 05/27/2009 - 9:04am -- tim

Week Ending May 23, 2009. There were 958 new regular benefit claims for Unemployment Insurance last week, a decrease of 422 from the week before. Altogether 15,386 new and continuing claims were filed, 951 less than a week ago and 7,809 more than a year earlier. The Department also processed 2,629 First Tier claims for benefits under Emergency Unemployment Compensation, 2008 (EUC08), 162 more than a week ago. In addition, there were 1,095 Second Tier claims for benefits processed under the EUC08 program which is a decrease of 284 from the week before.

Vermont to get $30 million in stimulus funds for economic development

Wed, 05/27/2009 - 5:48am -- tim

US Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt) says Vermont will receive $30 million under an innovative and proven economic development program New Market Tax Credits (NMTC) to spur economic growth and affordable housing in the state.  The funds, included in the recently enacted American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), will be formally announced by Secretary Timothy Geithner at noon today.  The New Market Tax Credit Program, created in 2000, offers incentives to private investors to invest in economic development projects that primarily benefit low-income Americans, by offering them 39 percen

TD Banknorth donates $20,000 to three Chittenden County organizations

Wed, 05/27/2009 - 5:23am -- tim

TD Banknorth, through the TD Charitable Foundation, recently donated a total of $20,000 to local organizations in Chittenden County as part of the bank s commitment to giving back to the community. Included in the gifts are Recycle North, Shelburne Museum and Nordic Spirit Soccer Club.
The following organizations received a donation from the TD Charitable Foundation:

Governor signs bill to encourage biomass energy production

Tue, 05/26/2009 - 12:53pm -- tim

Governor Jim Douglas today signed into law H. 152, An Act Relating to Encouraging Biomass Energy Production.  The Biomass bill creates a biomass energy development working group to investigate and recommend fiscal and regulatory incentives for biomass energy, as well as guidelines and standards for maintaining forest health, procurement standards and other policy considerations for biomass development in Vermont.

New program to develop strategies for Medicaid/Medicare dual eligibility

Tue, 05/26/2009 - 10:04am -- tim

As the nation debates health reform options, Governor Jim Douglas today announced that Vermont was chosen to participate in Transforming Care for Dual Eligibles, a national initiative that will test innovative models for people who are dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid . Vermont will join six states in developing and implementing strategies to improve care and control costs for dual eligibles, a high-need population with individual health care costs nearly five times those of other Medicare beneficiaries.

Public hearings to address the budget

Tue, 05/26/2009 - 10:01am -- tim

Ahead of a June 2 special legislative session, legislative leaders and the Douglas Administration will hold public forums to inform the public about the budgetary issues. Douglas vetoed the $4.5 billion budget and has offered his own alternative. Before the Legislature would take up Douglas' changes, it will first have to vote to sustain or override the veto. As with the gay marriage veto that the Legislature overrode in early April, the budget showdown could come down to a single vote.
Public Hearings to Address Budget
Wednesday, May 27