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Memorial Day weekend kicks off Vermont’s hiking season

Fri, 05/22/2020 - 5:01pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The holiday weekend is traditionally the start of the hiking season in Vermont. From its rocky summits to its gentle valleys, Vermont is home to hundreds of miles of hiking opportunities. This year, with COVID-19 as a dominant concern, we are asking hikers to take a few extra precautions to both protect public health and protect the public value of our beautiful trails.

More COVID-19 pop-up test sites open for asymptomatic Vermonters

Fri, 05/22/2020 - 2:17pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The Vermont Department of Health is opening nearly two dozen additional pop-up sites to test people who do not have symptoms of COVID-19 for the virus. The specimen collection sites are located throughout the state. Health officials especially encourage health care workers, first responders, child care providers currently serving essential workers, and people returning to Vermont – such as college students, people who winter out of state and second home owners, to sign up. The sites are organized and led by the department’s local health offices with support from EMS units and the Vermont National Guard.

Vermont’s unemployment rate increases to 15.6 percent in April

Fri, 05/22/2020 - 10:34am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Today, the Vermont Department of Labor reported that the number of unemployed Vermonters increased by nearly 44,000, which pushed the April unemployment rate to 15.6 percent. According to household data, the seasonally-adjusted statewide unemployment rate for April increased twelve and five-tenths percentage points from the prior month’s estimate of 3.1 percent. The hardest hit sector was Accommodation & Food Services, which lost 18,400 jobs or 61.3 percent of its workforce. The comparable United States rate in April was 14.7 percent, an increase of ten and three-tenths percentage points from the revised March estimate.

Economic relief and recovery lodging Webinar Friday 3 pm

Fri, 05/22/2020 - 8:05am -- tim

Agency of Commerce and Community Development On Wednesday, Governor Scott unveiled a $400 million Economic Recovery Package prominently featuring targeted relief to the lodging industry. The package includes a $250 million loan and grant package – including a set of emergency assistance grants for lodging properties based on helping you meet fixed costs.

VDH COVID-19 Update: Six more cases for 950 total, no deaths

Thu, 05/21/2020 - 6:26pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The Vermont Department of Health is reporting today that there are six new cases of COVID-19 in Vermont for a total of 950. Deaths are holding at 54 and there has been only one in the last two weeks. Temperatures will be warmer than we’ve had yet this year, so the VDH says it’s important to err on the safe side in early season heat. Even though it’s not as hot as mid-summer, ease into outdoor activities. And owners and managers of buildings that have been closed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic are urged to take steps that can prevent illnesses associated with stagnant water in plumbing systems. And there will be outdoor seating at restaurants starting Friday.

Auditor Doug Hoffer announces new COVID-19 website

Thu, 05/21/2020 - 4:47pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Vermont State Auditor Doug Hoffer has announced the creation of an online dashboard to help Vermonters track federal and state expenditures related to COVID-19. The online tool is available at and will evolve over time, as the situation progresses and information is updated. In response to COVID-19, the federal government appropriated unprecedented levels of funding to the State of Vermont, its institutions, and directly to Vermonters. The State Auditor’s Office created this webpage to help Vermonters follow the flow of these public dollars. As the Auditor’s Office works to mitigate risks and guide the State in cost-effective directions, we will post graphics, memos, and other resources that can help us all better understand how this $2 billion-plus is spent.

Vermont Air Guard honors COVID-19 responders with F-35A flyover Friday

Thu, 05/21/2020 - 4:42pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The 158th Fighter Wing of the Vermont Air National Guard will honor Vermont’s front line COVID-19 responders and essential workers with a flyover on Friday, May 22, 2020. A formation of four F-35A Lightning IIs will takeoff from the Vermont Air National Guard Base in South Burlington at noon for the flyover that is scheduled to last 90 minutes. The flyover is part of Operation America Strong, an Air Force effort to salute healthcare workers across the country.

Sticky Brand Creative launches social distancing product line

Thu, 05/21/2020 - 4:38pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Sticky Brand - a local Burlington company specializing in custom-made stickers, decals, and design services - today announces the launch of an innovative social distancing product line. With this launch, the company has also pledged to donate 10% of profits from this specific line to the UVM Medical Center’s COVID-19 Response Fund. As the brand itself prepares to reopen its downtown Burlington offices, it will continue to work to help other small businesses safely reopen and adapt to new norms.

VDH: Take steps to prevent water quality issues before your business reopens

Thu, 05/21/2020 - 4:29pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine State officials are urging owners and managers of buildings that have been closed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, to take steps that can prevent illnesses associated with stagnant water in plumbing systems. The Departments of Health and Environmental Conservation have set up a website where building and facility managers can access guidance and recommendations for actions to take before a building’s drinking water is used again:

MEND Fund hopes to help heal Montpelier's downtown

Thu, 05/21/2020 - 4:18pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The Montpelier Development Corporation (MDC) with one of its partners the Montpelier Foundation (MF) announced today the launch of the Montpelier Economic Need and Distress (MEND) Fund. The MEND Fund was created last week to respond to the burden faced by downtown businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic and the State of Vermont’s subsequent ‘Stay Home, Stay Safe’ order. MEND will provide funding to downtown storefront businesses in the form of grants to assist with their recovery and revitalization efforts during this time of unprecedented economic hardship.

Labor Dept launches PEUC program, providing additional benefits for unemployed Vermonters

Thu, 05/21/2020 - 3:47pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine An additional 13 weeks of benefits are available to individuals who have exhausted their regular state unemployment insurance claim with a benefit year that expired on or after July 1, 2019. The additional weeks of benefits are provided by the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) program. Individuals will also receive Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC), an additional $600 to their weekly benefits through the week ending July 25, 2020.