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US and Vermont labor departments sign agreement to protect workers from misclassification

Thu, 09/03/2015 - 4:40pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Officials from the US Department of Labor and the Vermont Department of Labor have signed a three-year Memorandum of Understanding intended to protect employees’ rights by preventing their misclassification as independent contractors or other non-employee statuses. Under the agreement, both agencies may share information and coordinate law enforcement.

IRS rules tax credit available to 'community solar' owner

Thu, 09/03/2015 - 3:49pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The IRS has ruled that an owner of solar panels in a community-shared array is eligible for the 30 percent federal residential income tax credit known as the "residential ITC." The IRS ruling applies only to a specific solar panel owner in Vermont, but it is a positive development for community-shared solar participants and project developers. Community-shared solar allows electric customers to buy an interest in an offsite solar array and to receive credit on their electricity bills for their ownership interest.

Ben & Jerry’s joins Vermont's GMO fight

Thu, 09/03/2015 - 2:55pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Ben & Jerry’s has joined other Vermont businesses and consumer groups in defending Vermont’s new labeling requirements for genetically engineered (GE or GMO) foods – one of the first such labeling laws in the country – against a federal court challenge brought by the food industry. The groups submitted a brief yesterday supporting the disclosure of GE ingredients so people have more information about the health, safety and environmental impacts of the foods they consume.

Windham Regional Commission tells PSB that another site should be found for Vermont Yankee's spent fuel

Thu, 09/03/2015 - 1:08pm -- tim

by Mike Faher The Commons It’s safe to say there’s no love lost between the state of Vermont and Entergy, owner of the Vermont Yankee nuclear plant. But when the time came to weigh in on Entergy’s attempts to build a second spent fuel storage facility at the Vernon property, it wasn’t the state raising the most ruckus — it was the local planning commission. The Windham Regional Commission (WRC) last week aired detailed concerns about how the company chose the proposed site for long-term storage of spent nuclear fuel.

US motorists to save $1.4 billion at the pump this Labor Day weekend, Vermont gas prices below average

Thu, 09/03/2015 - 12:51pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Americans hitting the road this weekend stand to see the cheapest Labor Day prices at the pump in over a decade, leading to huge savings - $1.4 billion - over the four-day weekend. Vermont gasoline prices are 4 cents lower than the national average and more than a dollar lower than they were a year ago ($2.399 vs $3.563). The lowest prices in Vermont are found in the Rutland area, down to $2.21.

Grants totaling $8.3 million to support upgrades at Newport Airport

Thu, 09/03/2015 - 12:32pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vermont), Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) and Representative Peter Welch (D-Vermont) Thursday announced two federal grants totaling more than $8.3 million to make critical improvements to Newport State Airport as it expands to accommodate a continued increase of economic growth in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom. Leahy, Sanders and Welch said: “These grants are an investment in the economic growth of the Northeast Kingdom.

Sterling College again sets record in enrollment and fundraising

Thu, 09/03/2015 - 10:33am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine As headlines across the country declare that “small colleges are in trouble” and highlight dire predictions for small, private higher education institutions, Sterling College in Craftsbury Common is once again setting records for enrollment and fundraising. Enrollment for the environmental stewardship college will be 128 students when the fall semester starts, the college’s largest student body in its history, and up nearly 25 percent from three years ago.

Comfort Colors to close in Northfield, 60 to lose jobs

Wed, 09/02/2015 - 3:23pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Comfort Colors in Northfield will be closing by the end of October, according to a story on Comfort Colors (previously known as Barry T Chouinard) was bought by Montreal-based Gildan Activewear Inc (GIL; TSX and NYSE) for $100 million last February. At the time, it stated that no changes were planned. But WCAX reported that all 60 emplloyees at the plant would lose their jobs as Gildan is consolidating the upscale t-shirt and sweat shirt company's operations at other plants.

Social psychologist, former Blue Man heading to Johnson State

Wed, 09/02/2015 - 2:55pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Johnson State College has hired two new full-time faculty members: social psychologist Leslie Johnson and longtime actor, artist and writer Isaac Littlejohn Eddy. Johnson is teaching undergraduate psychology courses in the Behavioral Sciences Department. Eddy is teaching acting classes as a visiting assistant professor in JSC’s Department of Fine & Performing Arts.