by Timothy McQuiston, Vermont Business Magazine Governor Phil Scott, the Agency of Commerce and Community Development (ACCD), and Department of Tax today announced Vermont’s Economic Recovery Grant Program will launch on July 6. The grant program was first proposed by the Administration in May and amended by the Legislature. It utilizes federal CARES Act funding to provide direct cash grants to Vermont businesses who have seen lost revenue because of COVID-19. The first wave of money is largely directed toward restaurants and retail, which were hardest hit by the COVID-19 shutdowns that began in March.
Vermont Business Magazine On July 1, Superintendent Tom Flanagan launched his first day in the Burlington School District (BSD) by announcing an ambitious 100 Day Entry Plan, focused on bridging opportunity gaps in equity, empowering student engagement, and deepening community learning. Phase two, the heart of the plan, will extend 100 days—from July 1 to October 9. Some activities include, but are not limited to, an equity and race workshop series for District and school leadership, a review of the BSD special education program, town hall meetings to engage families and the community, and the establishment of a professional development plan in collaboration with the BEA.
Vermont Business Magazine The Vermont State Colleges System (VSCS) announced that it has partnered with Vermont Electric Power Company (VELCO) to offer free Wi-Fi to the general public on the campuses of Northern Vermont University, Castleton University and Vermont Technical College. The move is designed to support Vermonters living in areas where connectivity is anything but universal and comes at a time when more Vermonters are working and learning remotely due to the global COVID-19 pandemic.
Vermont Business Magazine Cartographic Associates, Inc dba CAI Technologies (CAI), a municipal mapping and GIS services company located in Littleton, New Hampshire, has acquired Russell Graphics, a municipal mapping company that has provided mapping services to Vermont municipalities for more than three decades. It is based in North Carolina. This strategic acquisition further establishes CAI as the leader in municipal mapping and GIS services in Vermont and throughout New England.
Vermont Business Magazine In February, Attorney General Donovan and Chief Stevens together called upon the Legislature to pass and the Governor to sign H.716. Because the benefit would extend to Native Peoples residing outside of Vermont, the new measure would also promote a much-needed influx of new sportspeople to Vermont’s hunting and fishing communities. In addition, the bill would help Vermont partner with Native Peoples to promote environmental, educational, and conservation initiatives.
Vermont State Police After receiving multiple tips from members of the public, the Vermont State Police has been able to positively identify the victim as Anna Shackett Wagner, 51, of Barre. Detectives are continuing to investigate the circumstances of her death, including a determination on cause and manner by the Chief Medical Examiner’s Office in Burlington.
Vermont Business Magazine US Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) on Tuesday spoke on the Senate floor to advocate for amendments he introduced to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that would fundamentally overhaul the Pentagon budget, which exceeds $740 billion this year. Military spending, now higher than the next 11 nations combined, represents more than half of all federal discretionary spending. The Pentagon budget has exploded under President Trump, increasing by more than $100 billion in annual spending compared to military budgets under President Obama. In his floor remarks, Sanders called for a 10% cut to the Pentagon budget to invest the savings in distressed communities; the production and distribution of free face masks to every American household; and an independent audit of the Defense Department.
Vermont Business Magazine In response to the COVID-19 pandemic the SBA Vermont District Office is hosting a free webinar from 9 to 10 a.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays to discuss the Paycheck Protection Program, the Economic Injury Disaster Loan and Advance, and any pertinent updates. Also, The SBA Vermont District Office is hosting a free daily webinar from 9 to 10 a.m. Monday to Friday to discuss Paycheck Protection Program forgiveness and other changes.
Vermont Business Magazine For the first time since June 16, the Vermont Department of Health is reporting no new cases of COVID-19 in Vermont. Also, effective Wednesday, July 1, people from low-risk counties in additional states can travel to Vermont without having to quarantine. The broader allowances are based on detailed modeling and analysis of health and population data. The additional states include Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia, as well as the District of Columbia.
Vermont Business Magazine The Vermont Lake Monsters announced today that the 2020 Minor League Baseball season has been shelved, due to the impacts of COVID-19. As a result of a decision by Major League Baseball to not send players to their affiliates, there will be no Minor League Baseball games played in any city in the country this year.
by Timothy McQuiston, Vermont Business Magazine Both Governor Phil Scott and Speaker of the House Mitzi Jonson held press conferences Monday and both discussed the Coronavirus Relief Fund and money spent, and not spent, toward economic recovery. The governor will again hold press conferences Wednesday and Friday discuss COVID-19 health news and the reopening of the economy. He is also expected to sign legislation recently passed by lawmakers. Bills need to be vetted on both sides before Scott can sign them. He’s not expected to veto any of the recently passed legislation, including the CRF bills.
Vermont Business Magazine Nine bills to boost energy efficiency and promote clean energy authored by Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) were included in the comprehensive congressional climate action framework unveiled on Tuesday by the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis. The Select Committee’s climate action framework outlines ambitious and achievable policies to grow our economy and put Americans back to work in clean energy jobs, protect the health of all families, make sure our communities and farmers can withstand the impacts of climate change, and protect America’s land and water for the next generation.