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Students show how compost connects them to science, soil and food

Sat, 05/20/2017 - 3:19am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine ANR Secretary Julie Moore, toured Berlin Elementary’s school composting system last Tuesday to learn about how their composting efforts contribute to healthy soils, reduce landfill waste, and will support the growth of their school garden. Students at Berlin Elementary have been composting for 8 years—diverting a total 60 tons of food scraps.

ANEW Place names Kevin Pounds executive director

Sat, 05/20/2017 - 2:40am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine ANEW Place is pleased to announce that its Board of Directors has appointed Kevin Pounds as Executive Director.  Pounds replaces Valerie Brosseau at the helm of ANEW Place, a community-based nonprofit with a mission to “provide a holistic continuum of services for the homeless, centered in love and dignity, that foster growth, cultivate community engagement, and provide tools for lifelong change so that each person may start ANEW.”

Governor: Status of negotiations on education savings and property tax relief

Fri, 05/19/2017 - 4:51pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Governor Phil Scott released the briefing documents from his press conference Friday afternoon. If Scott vetoes the budget, the Legislature will return June 21 to vote on an override. The document below includes a discussion of the negotiations with legislative leadership and a timeline of the governor's proposal to create a single, statewide health insurance plan for teachers, which he says will save taxpayers $26 million. Lawmakers ultimately voted late Thursday night on a more modest, one-year cut of 1.5 cents on the property tax rate and only for one year to give themselves time to review the issue.

Donovan joins action to protect health insurance affordability

Fri, 05/19/2017 - 4:23pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Vermont Attorney General Thomas J. Donovan, Jr. took legal action to protect health care access for millions of Americans, including thousands of Vermonters. Attorney General Donovan moved to intervene in a lawsuit filed by House Republicans that undercuts the affordability of health insurance plans under the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

Small business retirement plan passes

Fri, 05/19/2017 - 3:39pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine In its final hours Thursday, the Legislature voted to approve S135, Vermont’s economic development omnibus bill. Section C of the bill sets up a secure public retirement option, the “Green Mountain Secure Retirement” plan, for small businesses. Pending due diligence by the Treasurer’s office, the goal is to implement the retirement plan by January 15, 2019.

AT&T workers across Northern New England walk off the job

Fri, 05/19/2017 - 3:09pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine AT&T workers who are members of Communications Workers of America (CWA) walked off the job today in Vermont, Northern New England and across the nation. About 35,000 workers are protesting AT&T’s failure to present serious proposals that invest in good jobs with a future, the union said in a press release issued Friday afternoon. During the three-day strike this weekend, a majority of AT&T wireless, wireline, and DIRECTV workers fighting for fair contracts are expected to be on strike, the union said.

$5,000 reward offered in gas station, firearms burglary

Fri, 05/19/2017 - 3:01pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The Vermont State Police and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives continue to investigate the May 4, 2017, pre-dawn burglary of the Shell station and firearms dealership located at 705 Rockingham Road in Rockingham.  Numerous firearms and a large quantity of ammunition were stolen in the burglary. VSP and ATF are offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to arrest and conviction for this crime.

Community Bancorp reports earnings up 14 percent

Fri, 05/19/2017 - 2:31pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Stephen P Marsh, Board Chair of Community Bancorp and Community National Bank, based in Derby, welcomed nearly 180 shareholders at the Elks’ Club on May 18, 2017, for the annual shareholders’ meeting. Marsh led the group in the Pledge of Allegiance and asked for a moment of silence for friends, neighbors and shareholders who were no longer with us. He continued with introductions of Directors, Advisory Board members, Executive Officers and retired Directors.

Weekly unemployment claims fall for third week

Fri, 05/19/2017 - 12:39pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Weekly unemployment claims fell again last week to under 500, which is more typical of a summer-time level. There could be volatility in the coming weeks after school lets out. Claims during the summer hold at a relatively low level because of vacation hiring, until the next transition when school resumes in September. Claims spiked to over 1,100 three weeks ago. Claims are lower than they were the same time last year, which has been the usual case for most weeks in 2017.

Legislature adjourns, veto weighs heavily

Fri, 05/19/2017 - 11:27am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The Vermont Legislature wrapped up business Thursday night and advanced the budget, tax bills, and economic development bill to the governor today. Adjournment was delayed nearly two weeks over the issue of whether to institute a statewide teacher health insurance plan. Governor Phil Scott introduced the idea in April and the Legislature scrambled and then failed to find an alternative or compromise. Lawmakers might not be done yet, however, as a gubernatorial veto could be forthcoming. 

Vermont unemployment rate up one-tenth to 3.1 percent

Fri, 05/19/2017 - 10:49am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The Vermont jobless rate went up last month for the first time since the high point of the Great Recession in May 2009, when it went up one-tenth to 7.0 percent. It fell the next month to 6.9 percent. The Vermont Department of Labor announced today that the seasonally-adjusted statewide unemployment rate for April was 3.1 percent, an increase of one-tenth of one percentage point from the revised March rate. All three major metrics were off slightly: the labor force and number of employed fell, while the number of unemployed rose. The national rate in April was 4.4 percent, down one-tenth from March.

UVM's 216th Commencement set for Saturday and Sunday

Fri, 05/19/2017 - 3:27am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The University of Vermont will celebrate its 216th commencement exercises on Saturday, May 20, and Sunday, May 21. President Tom Sullivan will confer degrees on an estimated 3,228 graduates, including 2,620  bachelors, 386 masters, 106 doctoral and 116 medical degree recipients. Among expected degree recipients are students from 40 states and 97 international students from 21 countries. Approximately 1,116 graduates are from Vermont. The graduating class includes an expected 343 students of color.