Current News

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Vermont State Police he Vermont State Police investigation into Saturday’s shooting in Danville is continuing. The deceased man is identified as Wayne Payton, 50, of Danville. An autopsy performed Sunday, Aug. 6, 2023, at the Chief Medical Examiner’s Office in Burlington determined his cause of death was a gunshot wound to the head, and the manner of death is a homicide.

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Vermont Business Magazine FEMA, in partnership with the State of Vermont, is hiring state residents to assist with recovery from the July floods, severe storms, landslides and mudslides. The agency has several openings for short-term, full-time jobs based at FEMA’s temporary offices in the surrounding areas. The temporary positions are for 120 days, but may be extended based on the needs of the disaster. More positions may open if needed.

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by Timothy McQuiston, Vermont Business Magazine Mike Smith has a lot of work to do and not much time in which to do it. But he has a plan on how to lead Vermont State University through an auspicious and difficult nascence. On April 14, less than three months before the university’s July 1 launch, the man hired a year ago as its first president, Parwinder Grewal, resigned, citing personal reasons. The school’s board of trustees appointed Smith, former secretary of the Vermont Agency of Human Services, as interim president later that day.

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Vermont Business Magazine This weekly report is a list of planned construction activities that will have traffic impacts on state highways and interstates throughout Vermont for the Week of August 7. Some projects are not included in the report this week as they have been temporarily suspended due to flood damage, the work site is inaccessible, or the contractors were repositioned to assist AOT with emergency response and repairs. Please remember to drive safely in all work zones. Lives depend on it. 

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by Steven Berbeco Youth mental health has been a priority of our state government and many organizations. During the pandemic, when so many social structures became unsteady, Vermont prioritized child care and school-aged youth through generous financial assistance programs and significant and swift regulatory changes. As a result, we were able to keep many of our youngest Vermonters in some semblance of normalcy during the chaos of world-wide disruptions.

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Vermont Business Magazine Following the flooding event from July 7-12, 2023, President Biden approved Governor Phil Scott’s request for a major disaster declaration for Vermont to assist individuals, businesses, and communities recover. The declaration covers Chittenden, Lamoille, Rutland, Washington, Windham, and Winsor Counties. The contiguous counties of Addison, Bennington, Caledonia, Franklin, Grand Isle, Orange, and Orleans are eligible for certain limited assistance. Evaluations by FEMA and other federal and state officials continue and other areas may be added to the declaration. Also, the declaration dates remain open-ended in case further weather events occur.  

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Agency of Commerce and Community Development The Business Emergency Gap Assistance Program (BEGAP) application is live and has been accepting submissions since Thursday afternoon. Some submitted applications are incomplete, open article to see some reminders for businesses and nonprofits that want to apply. The $20M BEGAP grant program is for organizations that suffered physical damage in the flood that began July 7, 2023.  The money is to be used towards reopening their doors and getting their employees back to work as soon as possible.

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Vermont Business Magazine Attorney General Charity Clark is warning Vermonters that the grandparent scam is on the rise -- and scammers are utilizing new, sophisticated tactics. As typical of this scam, callers claim to be grandchildren in an emergency situation, such as in a car accident, in prison, or at the hospital, and need money to resolve the problem. The Attorney General’s Consumer Assistance Program (CAP) has received reports of a new tactic used with this scam: scammers have local “couriers” arrive in person and collect money directly from grandparents at their home to resolve the fake emergency.

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Vermont Business Magazine The Vermont Historical Society has created a new initiative to preserve images and documents pertaining to the historic floods that severely impacted the state in July 2023. Members of the public are invited to submit their photographs, audio and video recordings, written memories, and other relevant documents to the Flood of 2023 Archive on VHS’s website, which will preserve them for future Vermonters and scholars. VHS holds a considerable number of records of past floods in its collection, including images and video from the Flood of 1927, the Montpelier flood of 1992, and of Tropical Storm Irene in 2011, amongst others. 

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Vermont Business Magazine Senator Peter Welch (D-VT) today celebrates the implementation of the senator’s Home Efficiency Rebates program for residential energy efficiency upgrades across the United States. The new rebate program, which Welch first introduced and championed as the HOPE for HOMES Act and successfully passed as part of the historic Inflation Reduction Act, will be available to households across the US after state governments develop rebate programs and submit applications to the DOE. Along with the Home Electrification and Appliance Rebates program, the Home Efficiency Rebates program is the core Inflation Reduction Act provision for homeowners—individuals will eventually be able to access these benefits directly from their state governments. Taken together, the savings programs provide states $8.5 billion to lower the cost of energy and make homes more energy efficient and upgrades more affordable.

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Vermont Business Magazine Today, Mayor Miro Weinberger released a new report by Burlington’s BTVstat Data team showing the region’s rising challenges around Opioid Use Disorder has reached unprecedented heights. Between January and July of 2023, the Burlington Police Department (BPD) responded to a record 265 overdoses, already surpassing the prior year’s total. Overdose responses increased by 75% between 2021 and 2022, and could increase as much as 100% between 2022 and 2023. City analysts project the total number of incidents to approach 500 by the end of the year.  

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Vermont Business Magazine A Disaster Recovery Center will open August 4 in Springfield to help Vermont residents affected by the floods kickstart their recovery. The joint DRC, a temporary facility established in partnership between Springfield, the state of Vermont and FEMA, will help survivors apply for FEMA assistance, upload documents and answer questions in person.