Governor Douglas today announced a bold new economic plan to build SmartVermont by laying the foundation for a 21st century economy. The proposals will invest $17.1 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) State Fiscal Stabilization Funds (SFSF) to leverage nearly $160 million in direct support to new and exciting companies looking to grow and expand in the Green Mountain State as well as much needed support for existing Vermont employers. Initiatives will be largely administered by the Vermont Economic Development Authority (VEDA) which leverages private capital to maximize opportunities and investment in our struggling economy. The Governor s plan also calls for additional investment in our tourism economy as well as much needed support for agriculture.
This is a truly exciting and groundbreaking initiative that will transform our economy, said Governor Douglas. By investing ARRA funds wisely to grow our economy, we will position our state to charge out of this recession ready to provide a world-class education to the e-generation of students and build strong companies that can compete in a competitive global economy.
In addition to money for revolving loans funds, SmartVermont (PDF of background information attached below) will also allow our community partners, our Regional Development Coordinators (RDCs) to invest in existing infrastructure to offer energy efficient and technologically advanced building space to entrepreneurs and companies looking to expand in their region. This is exactly the type of investment we need in our communities to support companies that are struggling and attract companies looking to grow, said Frank Cioffi, President of the Greater Burlington Industrial Corporation.
David Bradbury from the Vermont Center for Emerging Technology was on hand to talk about how the increased investment in high-tech incubation services and seed capital for early stage companies will help these new, dynamic businesses grow. This, coupled with the good work being done by leaders like Senator Illuzzi and Senator Miller, will make a difference for hundreds of entrepreneurs across Vermont, said Bradbury.
And continued Investment in our workforce through the Vermont Training Program is critical for companies like MicroStrain. We are honored to host this announcement today, said Steve Arms, President. Vermont Training Program funds have allowed our company to retrain 34 of our 45 employees. We are so grateful for the state s focus on this and the other important initiatives discussed today.
Governor Douglas reinforced the need for Vermont to focus flexible ARRA funds to build on his Economic Growth Plan and the work that Senator Illuzzi and others are doing to grow our economy.
SmartVermont Background Information65.8 KB