Vermont Business Magazine Vermont Representative Bill Botzow (D-Pownal) and former Vermont Senator Kevin Mullin (R-Rutland) were recognized by the Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development (ACCD) on February 21st for their commitment to enacting policies aimed at growing Vermont’s economy. Vermont Secretary of Commerce and Community Development Michael Schirling presented Botzow and Mullin with the agency’s first Vermont Economic Advancement Awards during the ThinkVermont Week Legislative Luncheon in Montpelier. During the luncheon, community and economic development practitioners from Bennington County presented to a crowd of 120 lawmakers and others about how Bennington has used ACCD tools, programs and funding to spark redevelopment.
Rep. Bill Botzow, Commerce and Community Development Secretary Michael Schirling, and former Senator Kevin Mullin was taken during the ThinkVermont Legislative Week Luncheon on February 21st at the Capital Plaza Hotel in Montpelier. ACCD photo.
“Rep. Botzow and Sen. Mullin helped authorize new tax increment financing districts, pass a housing bond to create 600 units of affordable housing, expand the Vermont Small Business Development Center, grow the downtown tax credit and reduce housing permitting burdens in designated centers last year,” said Schirling during the luncheon. “The two men have spent more than a decade each advocating for economic development here in Vermont, and I’m pleased to present them with the first-ever Vermont Economic Advancement Award.”
Botzow represents Pownal in the Vermont House of Representatives. He currently serves as the chair of the 11-member House Commerce and Economic Development Committee where he has set the House’s economic agenda and helped vet economic development ideas for about a decade.
Mullin represented Rutland County in the Vermont Senate until last summer, when he was appointed by Governor Phil Scott to chair the Green Mountain Care Board. Before taking the appointment, Mullin had served in the Vermont Legislature for nearly 20 years, including as chair of the Senate’s Economic Development, Housing and General Affairs Committee.
ThinkVermont Legislative Week educated lawmakers and the public about the community and economic development tools offered by the agency. During the session Bill Colvin of the Bennington County Regional Planning Commission and Zirwat Chowdhury of the Town of Bennington talked about downtown redevelopment efforts. Mack Molding Director of Human Resources Nancy Cefalo presented how Mack Molding has used the Vermont Training Program to grow. Neighborworks of Western Vermont Executive Director Ludy Biddle spoke about the Bennington Small Scale Rental Rehab Program funded in part through ACCD. Bennington Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Matt Harrington talked about partnerships between ACCD and the town to boost tourism.
The Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development’s mission is to help Vermonters improve their quality of life and build strong communities. ACCD accomplishes this mission by providing grants, technical assistance, and advocacy through three divisions: The Department of Economic Development, the Department of Tourism and Marketing, and the Department of Housing and Community Development.
Source: Montpelier, Vt. (Wednesday, March 7) – Vermont ACCD