Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has released a report highlighting the ways in which infrastructure investments in rural communities help create jobs and boost economic development, and he announced additional investments that will create jobs and promote economic growth across the nation, including four new ones in Vermont worth $103,700 for a four-year total of $12.1 million. â Quality hospitals, schools and libraries are the building blocks for a vibrant rural America,’said Vilsack. “Todayâ s announcement illustrates how the Obama Administration is leveraging Rural Developmentâ s investments to ensure that rural communities can compete in the global economy.âIn Vermont, the Glover Ambulance Rescue Squad celebrated an Economic Impact Initiative Grant of $12,700 and a $32,300 Rural Development loan that will assist the organization in replacing a 14 year old ambulance with its first ever new rescue vehicle. Green Mountain College in Poultney has received a $20,200 grant to complete the funding package necessary to renovate Bentley Hall. The building will be a gathering place for community meetings as well as College instruction and community seminars. In addition, the town of Brattleboro has received a $13,500 grant to make the Brooks Memorial Library more energy efficient and ADA compliant. Finally, the town of Richford received $25,000 to expand its town records’vault.Since the start of fiscal year 2009, Rural Developmentâ s Community Facilities Program has helped more than 37 million rural Americans address essential challenges in health care, education, public service and public safety by financing projects through loans, grants, or loan guarantees.To find out how the Community Facilities Program is making a difference in your state, click here. USDA Rural Development State Director, Molly Lambert noted, â Since 2009, USDA has invested $12.1 Million in essential community facilities throughout Vermont. Libraries, schools, town halls, emergency, rescue and healthcare facilities are just a few of the needs supported by our community facilities program. We are building rural communities to last through this program ‘vital communities where people want to live, work and raise their families!âVilsack also announced that 38 Community Facilities investments in 21 states are being awarded today to continue the Administrationâ s commitment to help create jobs and improve the economy. For a complete list of awards announced today, please click here.USDA Rural Developmentâ s Community Facilities Program supports essential infrastructure and services for public use in rural areas of 20,000 in population or less. Financing for Community Facilities projects covers a broad range of interests, including healthcare, education, public safety and public services. There are three major Community Facilities Programs: Community Facilities Direct and Guaranteed Loan Programs, Community Facilities Grants, and the Rural Community Development Initiative.Since taking office, President Obamaâ s Administration has taken historic steps to improve the lives of rural Americans, put people back to work and build thriving economies in rural communities. From proposing the American Jobs Act to establishing the first-ever White House Rural Council ‘chaired by Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack ‘the President wants the federal government to be the best possible partner for rural businesses and entrepreneurs and for people who want to live, work and raise their families in rural communities.USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, administers and manages housing, business and community infrastructure and facility programs through a national network of state and local offices. Rural Development has an active portfolio of more than $165 billion in affordable loans and loan guarantees. These programs are designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities, businesses, residents, farmers and ranchers and improve the quality of life in rural America.Montpelier, VT May 31, 2012 â
The Green Mountain Club today welcomed this week’s 75th anniversary of the Appalachian Trail which the club manages through Vermont. The club and the state played a key role in the creation and management of this iconic trail stretching from Georgia to Maine, which was finished on August 14, 1937. Vermont’s Stratton Mountain is thought to be the summit on which, separately, both the Long Trail and the Appalachian Trail (’A.T.’) were conceived by the trails’respective founders James P Taylor and Benton MacKaye. In 1910, the Green Mountain Club began work on the Long Trail, completing it in 1931, thus establishing America’s first long distance hiking trail. MacKaye returned to Vermont in 1922 to study the L.T. in detail, hoping to make it part of his plan for the ‘great super trail’to run from Maine to Georgia. Today, the Green Mountain Club has MacKaye’s personal copy of the 1922 Long Trail Guide book (see attached) with notations he presumably used to help establish the A.T. and this Appalachian Trail Conference (now conservancy) to establish and manage the trail. MacKaye adopted from the Long Trail such lessons as the importance of an extensive trail shelter system, white blazes to mark the main trail, and a cooperative management system that relies heavily on local volunteer groups with responsibility for a specific section of trail. Today, the Green Mountain Club has 14 Sections (i.e. chapters) and the Appalachian Trail Conservancy works with 31 trail maintaining clubs including the Green Mountain Club. The Bennington Evening Banner featured MacKaye’s visit on its July 17, 1922, front page: ‘Mountain Trail Asset of Back to Land Movement.’The article detailed how MacKaye sought to study the Long Trail ‘with the hope of making it part of the great super trail.’ His interest was not solely in developing a mere hiking trail. ‘His project is something more, as he conceives it, than a trail for hikers,’the Banner wrote, ‘it is a ‘new approach to the problem of living’, â ¦ an offset and relief from the various shackles of commercial civilization.’ The Green Mountain Club today manages the A.T. throughout Vermont in partnership with the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, the U.S. Forest Service, and the State of Vermont. This stretch of trail includes more than 100 miles where the A.T. runs along the Long Trail from the Massachusetts border to Maine Junction in Killington, and a more than 40 miles stretch of A.T. from Killington to Norwich, Vt. after the historic trails go their separate ways.Source: WATERBURY CENTER, Vt., August 16 ‘The Green Mountain Club FROM THE APPALACHIAN TRAIL CONSERVANCY:Two thousand twelve marks a major milestone for the Appalachian Trail (A.T.). Seventy-five years ago, on August 14, 1937, the A.T. was first completed. This task of building the original trail took more than 15 years and involved a few hundred volunteers, state and federal agency partners, local Trail-maintaining clubs, workers from the Civilian Conservation Corps, and the Appalachian Trail Conservancy. The A.T. is the longest hiking-only footpath in the world, measuring roughly 2,180 miles in length. The Trail goes through fourteen states along the crests and valleys of the Appalachian mountain range from the southern terminus at Springer Mountain, Georgia, to the Trail’s northern terminus at Katahdin, Maine.Since the A.T was first completed in 1937, it has undergone a remarkable transformation. Most’probably 99%’has been relocated or rebuilt. Hundreds of miles of the original route were along roads and passed through private lands. Thanks to the determination of Myron H. Avery and the Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC) he chaired for more than two decades, passage of the National Trails System Act, and the work of many partners and volunteers, more than 99.7% of the A.T. is now in public ownership. Not only is the footpath itself protected, but a corridor of land, averaging one thousand feet in width, is also protected.The Trail today is not only better protected but traverses more scenic landscapes than the original route. Many of the A.T.’s most cherished highlights were not part of the A.T. in 1937: Roan Mountain, Tennessee; the Mt. Rogers High Country, including Grayson Highlands, Virginia; the Pochuck Creek swamp, New Jersey; Nuclear Lake, New York; Thundering Falls, Vermont; and Saddleback Mountain, Maine, to name a few.The treadway itself each year becomes more sustainable. Except for places where the Civilian Conservation Corps was brought in (mostly in Shenandoah National Park, the Great Smoky Mountains, and Maine), the original Trail often was routed straight up and down mountains, making for rough hiking and a treadway prone to severe erosion. The ATC’s trail crews and volunteer trail-maintaining clubs have relocated or rehabilitated countless miles of Trail, and each year continue to improve the treadway.Today, 2-3 million people visit the Trail every year and about 2,000 people attempt to ‘thru-hike’the Trail. People from across the globe are drawn to the A.T. for a variety of reasons: to reconnect with nature, to escape the stress of home and work life, to meet new people or deepen old friendships, or to experience a simpler life.The A.T. is a unit of the national park system and is managed under a unique partnership between the public and private sectors that includes, among others, the National Park Service, the USDA Forest Service, an array of state agencies, the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, and 31 local Trail-maintaining clubs.www.appalachiantrail.org/promo/75th-anniversary(link is external)
Tech Vault Inc,Tech Vault, Inc. announced today that the State of Vermont Department of Information and Innovation has recently signed a five-year agreement to provide colocation services to support Vermont’ s data center consolidation and technology upgrade efforts.‘ We welcome the opportunity to meet the requirements of the State of Vermont’ s progressive technology and Green initiatives’Tech Vault will use state of the art technology to build a custom data center suite in its South Burlington facility. Tech Vault is a LEED Silver certified data center, that helps support Vermont’ s Green initiatives to promote growth in next generation technologies and environmentally friendly businesses.Tech Vault’ s nationally renowned facility demonstrates the industry’ s newest and best practices in cooling, power, security, monitoring, and space utilization. This modularly designed Data Center can meet the needs of various clients and market segments looking for a secure site to support their growing and custom requirements.Richard Boes, Vermont’ s Chief Information Officer and Commissioner of the Department of Information and Innovation said ‘ the move is a win for the State of Vermont, partnering with a Vermont company, enhancing the availability of services to Vermonters in an environmentally friendly way and eliminating the need to upgrade some outdated infrastructures and physical locations.’Tech Vault is the only first-to-market, premiere, LEED commercial data center in Vermont and the New England Region. This infrastructure will help the State reduce its physical and carbon footprint while utilizing the newest technologies for cooling, power & energy efficiency. Tech Vault customers are from the Government, Education, Healthcare, Financial, Software, and Construction sectors, looking for custom solutions to their technology needs, delivered in a cost effective and environmentally conscious way. ‘ We welcome the opportunity to meet the requirements of the State of Vermont’ s progressive technology and Green initiatives,’ said Steve Loyer, President of Tech Vault, Inc.About Tech Vault Inc.:Tech Vault (www.techvault.net(link is external)) is a state of the art data center located in South Burlington, VT, providing custom solutions to national and international customers, with a range of services and offerings including colocation, disaster recovery and managed services. We are a LEED Silver Certified, HIPAA, PCI/DSS, and SSAE-16 (formally SAS 70 -Type II) compliant data center facility.SOUTH BURLINGTON, Vt.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Tech Vault, Inc. 4.11.2013
by Hilary Niles July 26, 2013 vtdigger.org Controversy on Capitol Hill this week shined a national spotlight on one of Vermont Sen. Patrick Leahy’s signature economic development initiatives ‘a program that plays a key role in Vermont’s business strategy.Monday, the Department of Homeland Security Office of the Inspector General revealed to a lawmaker an ongoing investigation into Alejandro Mayorkas. The director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services is President Barack Obama’s nominee to fill the No. 2 position at the Department of Homeland Security.Alejandro Mayorkas being sworn in as director of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service in 2009. Photo courtesy USCISMayorkas, a tip from an FBI analyst alleged, had helped secure approval for a visa for someone whose application had previously been denied once, then again on appeal. The visa application was filed through the federal Immigrant Investor Program, also called ‘EB-5’for the type of visa it affords.Further allegations implicated Mayorkas in mismanagement of the EB-5 program, and extended to other USCIS officials suspected of obstructing a program audit by the Securities and Exchange Commission.In a letter to a staffer for Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), the Inspector General’s Office indicated that the preliminary investigation had found no criminal activity, but it also referenced a separate, ongoing audit of the EB-5 program that was in its ‘final stages.’Leahy is in the process of pushing Congress to make EB-5 permanent after 20 years in a pilot stage. The program ‘until Monday ‘had remained fairly obscure by national standards, despite a recent spike in use. But in Vermont, EB-5 plays a prominent role.Concerns and counter-accusationsFor Grassley and other Republicans who have responded most strongly to news of the Mayorkas investigation, the allegations underlie potential national security risks.Some FBI facilities had been constructed, at least in part, using EB-5 funding from Chinese investors. One Chinese technology company suspected of espionage had applied for EB-5 status. And if a high-ranking immigration official was suspected of skirting visa protocols for one applicant, it follows that a similar breach could have occurred with others.But many observers dismissed the controversy as optimally timed political shenanigans.Not only would allegations against Mayorkas potentially freeze his confirmation hearing for the Homeland Security post, but the specific visa he was accused of finagling happened to be for a client of Anthony Rodham, brother of former Secretary of State and potential 2016 presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton. And the business to which that investor wanted to give money was a firm associated with former Democratic National Committee chairman Terry McAuliffe, a candidate in Virginia’s high-profile gubernatorial race.Leahy’s spokesman David Carle said it’s highly unusual for an inspector general to publicize the nature of an investigation before it’s complete.The timing of the leak about the investigation ‘just days before Mayorkas was to receive a Senate confirmation hearing for his Homeland Security nomination ‘heightened some sources’suspicions that the allegations were politically motivated.Mayorkas did get a hearing Thursday with the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, as scheduled. Not a single Republican senator attended, however. Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) helped lead a Republican boycott in protest, on the principle that a hearing should not be conducted for a man under investigation.The Inspector General’s Office did not respond to a press inquiry, and Leahy’s office said he would not issue a statement about an ongoing investigation.U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., at the inauguration of Gov. Peter Shumlin on Jan. 10. Photo by Roger CrowleyCarle, the spokesman for Leahy, did say, however, ‘Congress is moving forward on EB-5 reforms to improve oversight and administration of the program.’Leahy’s proposal to make the Immigrant Investor Program permanent, along with new anti-fraud and oversight measures, is tied to the comprehensive immigration reform bill currently making its way through Congress. The program was initially approved for a 10-year period, and since then has undergone reauthorization every three years.Immigrant investment in VermontVermont’s EB-5 director, Brent Raymond, said he’s already seen improvements to the federal program in Mayorkas’short time at the helm of the state-run regional center.Vermont’s EB-5 program is designed to be a significant gear in the state’s economic development engine. Nearly the entire state qualifies for EB-5 investment ‘a process whereby immigrants can earn green cards by investing $500,000 in American businesses, so long as the investment creates at least 10 jobs in two years.A set of ongoing projects in the Northeast Kingdom is estimated to draw $600 million in foreign investment to the business plans of Jay Peak ski resort owners Bill Stenger and Ariel Quiros. The two plan to expand operations at Burke Mountain, another ski resort they recently acquired, and develop a biomedical research park, a waterfront hotel and conference center and a mixed-use block near the Canadian border in Newport, Vt.EB-5 also is a point of pride for Vermont, which is the only state government that wholly operates the investment program; most are run by private investment firms. Leahy often points out that Vermont’s EB-5 Regional Center is a ‘gold standard’nationwide.That’s not to say its been without its kinks. The Vermont EB-5 Regional Center this spring repealed its earlier approval for a resort-style retirement development, over concerns that some of the information in the application could not be verified.The strength of recipient investment businesses, Raymond explained, is crucial to the program’s overall success. Visa applications from immigrant investors can be denied not just for personal reasons, such as suspicion of criminal activity or affiliation with the Communist Party. The businesses in which immigrants invest also must be legitimate and poised for success.Raymond said his office vets the businesses in Vermont’s EB-5 program, but the federal immigration office has final say over whether the investments are credible and conform to all requirements. The business plans are reviewed not just once, but every time an immigrant applies for a visa on the basis of investing in that business.In the past, these reviews have been less than consistent.‘You could have 10 investors approved for the same project, but the 11th might not be,’Raymond said. ‘Not because of anything about the individual as a national security threat, or funds obtained through criminal activity. But all the sudden somebody’s questioning something â ¦ about the business plan that previously had been fine.’Raymond said he’s pleased that the review process ‘which he considers EB-5’s most significant, because it affects not just the investor but also the investment projects ‘has been streamlined under Mayorkas’s tenure. The reviews have become ‘more predictable,’he said.It’s that type of progress, and further improvements Raymond believes will come from Leahy’s proposals, that leave him feeling confident in the program’s future, despite the current controversy surrounding it.‘I think for EB-5 and the Vermont Regional Center, long term it will have no effect on the program,’he said.The fate of Leahy’s EB-5 amendments on the immigration reform bill, however, remains to be seen. The EB-5 program was last reauthorized in September 2012, leaving a little more than two years before it would expire or come up for another approval.
Community Bank NA,Vermont Business Magazine Merchants Bancshares, Inc (NASDAQ: MBVT(link is external)), the parent company of Merchants Bank, announced that its Board of Directors declared today, April 17, 2014, a dividend of 28 cents per share, payable May 15, 2014, to shareholders of record as of May 1, 2014. This quarter represents our 70th consecutive quarterly dividend payment and our 34th consecutive quarter at the current payout level.Merchants plans to release earnings on or about April 22, 2014. Michael R. Tuttle, Merchants’ President and Chief Executive Officer, Janet P. Spitler, Merchants’ Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer and Geoffrey R. Hesslink, Chief Operating Officer and Executive Vice President of Merchants will host a conference call to discuss these earnings results at 9:00 a.m. Eastern Time on April 23, 2014. Interested parties may participate in the conference call by dialing U.S. number 1-888-317-6016, Canada number 1-855-669-9657, or international number 1-412-317-6016. The title of the call is Merchants Bancshares, Inc. Q1 2014 Earnings. Participants are asked to call a few minutes prior to register. A replay will be available until 9:00 a.m. Eastern Time on May 1, 2014. The U.S. replay dial-in telephone number is 1-877-344-7529. The international replay telephone number is 1-412-317-0088. The replay access code for both replay telephone numbers is 10037005. Additionally , a recording of the call will be available on our website at www.mbvt.com(link is external)Established in 1849, Merchants Bank is the largest Vermont-based bank, independent and locally operated. Consumer, business, municipal and investment customers enjoy personalized relationships, sophisticated online and mobile banking options, more than 30 community bank locations statewide, plus a nationwide network of over 55,000 surcharge-free Allpoint ATMs. Merchants Bank (Member FDIC, Equal Housing Lender, NASDAQ “MBVT”), and Merchants Trust Company employ approximately 300 full-time employees and 40 part-time employees statewide, and has earned several “Best Place to Work in Vermont” awards. American Banker ranks Merchants Bank #10 in America among 851 peers. www.mbvt.com(link is external).SOUTH BURLINGTON, VT–(Marketwired – April 17, 2014) – Merchants Bancshares, Inc
Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vermont) on Friday announced that the Boys & Girls Clubs of Vermont will receive $550,000 in federal grants to fund activities and programs administered by five organizations in Vermont, an increase of nearly 10 percent over the previous year. Leahy, long the Senate’s leading champion of the Boys & Girls Clubs, said: “The Boys & Girls Clubs play vital roles in our communities across Vermont. They serve as on the front line in creating safe spaces for young people to grow up free of drugs and crime. These grants are a direct investment in the future of these young people, and in the future of their communities. As a former prosecutor I’ve seen firsthand how these programs make a difference. Nationwide, the Boys & Girls Clubs continue to do invaluable work, and we need to provide them with the resources to ensure they can continue these step by step, child by child efforts.”Leahy, the senior most member of the Appropriations Committee and the Ranking Member of the Judiciary Committee, strongly advocated for the funding. In 2001 he led a bipartisan coalition to restore funding for the Clubs when federal support was threatened with elimination. Following Leahy’s efforts, more than $8 million in grants have gone to fund local Boys & Girls Clubs in Vermont since 2005. Last June, Leahy held a Judiciary Committee field hearing in Rutland, Vermont. Mary Alice McKenzie, director of the Boys & Girls Club in Burlington, testified about the importance of providing young people with early and safe alternatives to drug use, and about the role that Boys & Girls Clubs play in communities across Vermont.The grant announcement coincides with National Mentoring Month, highlighting the efforts of volunteers who encourage and guide the nation’s youth.Leahy said: “Mentors help mold Vermont’s young people to become the leaders of tomorrow. Their tireless efforts to influence positive change deserve our deepest appreciation, and our support.”The grant awards, broken down among the five Vermont Clubs, include:Boys & Girls Clubs of Burlington – $225,600Boys & Girls Club of Brattleboro – $104,400Boys & Girls Club of Rutland County – $124,000Washington County Youth Service Bureau and Boys & Girls Club – $62,400Boys & Girls Club of Greater Vergennes – $33,600The Clubs are represented in all 50 states and reach millions of young people each year, providing after-school, evening, weekend and summer programs. Leahy noted that Boys and Girls Clubs have shown their effectiveness in keeping children and young adults off the streets and away from the influences of drugs, crime and gangs.Source: Leahy 1.16.2015
Lang McLaughry Real Estate, the largest real estate firm in Vermont, with 15 offices, has merged with Four Seasons Sotheby’s International Realty, which has three offices in New Hampshire. Together, they have acquired Vermont Country Properties Sotheby’s International Realty, which has five offices in southern Vermont. The combined entities will operate as Four Seasons Sotheby’s International Realty, with a total of 23 offices and over 220 sales associates across Vermont and New Hampshire.Staige DavisPrinciple partners of the new firm are Staige Davis, CEO, and Buff McLaughry, COO, (Lang McLaughry Real Estate), and Stephanie Wheeler and Pam Perkins, both partners and vice presidents (Four Seasons Sotheby’s International Realty). Other top executives are Tom Heney, partner and EVP, Alan DiStasio, EVP of brand development, and Lisa Coneeny, EVP of southern region.The decision to merge was announced in a joint statement from all of the principle partners: “By bringing together three of the region’s most established, locally grown agencies, we will be better positioned to offer the highest and best level of service. The name of the new company, Four Seasons Sotheby’s International Realty, exemplifies the beautiful areas we represent, and we will continue to grow the strong personal ties that have anchored us in our individual communities. The affiliation with Sotheby’s International Realty gives us the strength, marketing power, and global reach of a large brand with an established reputation for quality, while each of our respective agencies brings with them a storied past, loyal customers, and deep roots in the areas we serve.”Lang McLaughry Real Estate was formed in 2007 in a merger that brought together Lang Associates, founded in 1969 and owned by Staige Davis, and McLaughry Associates, founded in 1959 and owned by Buff McLaughry, to create the largest real estate firm in Vermont. The two locally owned, well-established firms offered its clients over 60 years of experience, and grew from 12 offices primarily servicing the Champlain Valley and Upper Valley to 15 offices since 2007. Now Lang McLaughry proudly serves the Champlain Valley, Central Vermont, North East Kingdom, Southern Vermont and Upper Valley. Staige Davis says, “We have been continually committed to offering the best real estate services in the area. Joining forces with two of the region’s top agencies and affiliating ourselves with a globally recognized brand such as Sotheby’s International Realty will allow us to maintain that commitment to excellence, and to offer our clients an unprecedented level of service. We are excited to be working with two agencies that, like Lang McLaughry Real Estate, have deep roots and established histories in the communities they serve, and look forward to showcasing the best of what Vermont and New Hampshire have to offer.”The new Four Seasons Sotheby’s International Realty will be headquartered in South Burlington and continue to maintain their local roots and focus, while leveraging the marketing resources and global reputation of the Sotheby’s International Realty worldwide network. Four Seasons Sotheby’s International Realty listings will also be marketed on the sothebysrealty.com(link is external) global website.Whether buyers are in the market for a full-time residence, or a second home, Four Season’s Sotheby’s International Realty offers unparalleled real estate services in the most desirable communities in Vermont and New Hampshire.http://fourseasonssir.com/(link is external).About Four Seasons Sotheby’s International RealtyFour Seasons Sotheby’s International Realty is one of the finest real estate companies in Vermont and New Hampshire, with the goal of providing its customers and clients with an exceptional level of service and unparalleled exposure. With 23 offices and over 220 highly qualified and professional associates across both states, Four Seasons Sotheby’s International Realty is uniquely positioned to provide superior, innovative real estate services.About Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLCFounded in 1976 to provide independent brokerages with a powerful marketing and referral program for luxury listings, the Sotheby’s International Realty network was designed to connect the finest independent real estate companies to the most prestigious clientele in the world. Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC is a subsidiary of Realogy Holdings Corp. (NYSE: RLGY), a global leader in real estate franchising and provider of real estate brokerage, relocation and settlement services. In February 2004, Realogy entered into a long-term strategic alliance with Sotheby’s, the operator of the auction house. The agreement provided for the licensing of the Sotheby’s International Realty name and the development of a full franchise system. Affiliations in the system are granted only to brokerages and individuals meeting strict qualifications. Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC supports its affiliates with a host of operational, marketing, recruiting, educational and business development resources. Franchise affiliates also benefit from an association with the venerable Sotheby’s auction house, established in 1744. www.sothebysrealty.com(link is external).
Vermont Business Magazine Governor Peter Shumlin has ordered flags around Vermont to fly at half staff in honor of Steven L. Lapierre, a longtime firefighter and fire warden who passed away in the line of duty last week. The Vermont flag will be lowered Saturday at sunrise and will return to full staff Tuesday at sunrise. The governor will attend calling hours for Lapierre on Friday in St Albans. Governor Shumlin issued the following statement.”My thoughts are with the family and friends of Mr Lapierre at this difficult time. His long and distinguished history of service to his community and state should serve as an example to all of us. I know the tight-knit community of firefighters and first responders, of which Mr Lapierre was such an integral part, is especially touched by this loss. At a time like this, Vermonters are reminded of the sacrifice that firefighters, first responders, and others make to keep us safe. On behalf of Vermonters, I thank them all for their service and express my condolences for this loss.”
Brattleboro Retreat,Downs Rachlin Martin PLLC,Craig Miskovich, representing Gold Sponsor Downs Rachlin Martin, tees off in hopes of winning a new car at the Brattleboro Ford Subaru sponsored Hole-in-One Contest during the Brattleboro Retreat’s 11th Annual Golf Tournament held Wednesday, August 3rd at the Brattleboro Country Club.Vermont Business Magazine More than 100 golfers played under sunny skies at the Brattleboro Country Club on Wednesday, August 3rd, to help make the Brattleboro Retreat’s 11th Annual Golf Tournament a record-setting success. With fundraising revenue marking an all-time high in the tournament’s history, the event netted more than $50,000 for the Brattleboro Retreat’s programs for children and adolescents. Tournament proceeds help fund therapeutic, recreational, and educational opportunities for children in five different Retreat programs including residential, inpatient, and school programs. This year’s Platinum Sponsors were Communicators Group, the Richards Group, and Sodexo. Tournament Gold Sponsors were Brattleboro Memorial Hospital; Brattleboro Savings & Loan; Downs Rachlin Martin PLLC; GPI Construction; the Melanson Company; Netsmart; WKVT radio; and WTSA radio.Tournament Silver Sponsors were Bast Investment Co.; Brattleboro Ford-Subaru; the Health Law Group; HP Cummings Construction; Jackson Lewis; Locum Tenens.com; S&S Painting and Decorating; and TD Wealth Management. Seventeen Bronze Sponsors and seventeen Hole Sponsors helped round out the list of event supporters. “We certainly look forward to this special event each year. The enthusiasm and growing support of our fantastic sponsors, players, volunteers, and staff members is extraordinary,” said Dr. Louis Josephson, president and chief executive officer. “There’s lots of fun and camaraderie throughout the day, but the real winners are the kids in our care who will benefit from a host of opportunities made possible by today’s record-setting generosity.”Winner of the tournament’s “First Gross” was a team of representing Platinum Sponsor Sodexo, including David Marquis, Jack Varner, Pat Varner, and Tim Sheehan. Winner of “First Net” was Tim Copeland, Nate Faulkner, Luke Stafford, and Jeff Whitcomb.Father and daughter Ward Dannemiller and Laura Barnett won the Men’s and Women’s Longest Drive, respectively. Women’s and Men’s Closest to the Pin winners included Tracy Sloan, Terry Boyce, Steve Cummings, and Craig Miskovich.Tracy Sloan and Dan Smith won the Women’s and Men’s Straightest Drive. Jeremy Zumbruski had the longest putt at 23’ 3”. At the end of the afternoon, Tim Sheehan of Team Sodexo, won the Putting Contest.Source: BRATTLEBORO, VT (August 5, 2016)—Retreat. The Brattleboro Retreat, founded in 1834, is a not-for-profit, regional specialty psychiatric hospital and addictions treatment center, providing a full range of diagnostic and rehabilitation services for individuals of all ages and their families. Nationally recognized for its premier treatment in behavioral healthcare, the Brattleboro Retreat offers a high quality, individualized, comprehensive continuum of care including inpatient, partial hospitalization, residential and outpatient treatment.
Vermont Business Magazine On Monday, the Bennington Superior Court granted the State of Vermont’s motion to enter the Consent Order between the state and Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics Corporation. The Consent Order memorializes the settlement agreement between the state and Saint-Gobain for PFOA contamination in western portions of Bennington and North Bennington. Under the settlement, Saint-Gobain will fund municipal water line extensions costing an estimated $20 million and conduct an expedited investigation in the eastern portion of the Bennington site. Saint-Gobain bought Chemfab in 2000. In Bennington, the Chemfab plant produced Teflon-covered fabrics. The Teflon-coating process is considered the source of the PFOA.(link is external) “I am very pleased that the Court has entered Vermont’s settlement agreement with Saint-Gobain” said Governor Phil Scott. “We can now begin the real work of extending water lines to more than 200 residents of Bennington and North Bennington impacted or at risk of being impacted by PFOA. This is the result of many months of hard work by the Agency of Natural Resources and Attorney General’s Office working with state legislators and local officials – across multiple administrations – and the work is not done. The Attorney General and I will continue to push Saint-Gobain to address all residents affected by PFOA contamination. We will not stop until we have long-term drinking water solutions in place for everyone.”“This settlement is a first step,” said Attorney General TJ Donovan. “Work can begin this year to bring clean drinking water to many in Bennington and North Bennington. But the job isn’t done. Clean drinking water is a human right and my Office, with our state and community partners, is committed to fight until everyone gets the clean water they deserve.”The settlement addresses approximately one-half of the Bennington site, roughly to the west of Route 7A. Approximately 200 homes will be connected to a municipal water line, with others receiving a new well or long-term point-of-entry-treatment (POET) filters. Under the settlement, Saint-Gobain is responsible for providing clean drinking water to homes in this portion of the site until long-term sampling shows that PFOA is below the State’s standard of 20 parts per trillion (ppt). Saint-Gobain has also agreed to conduct an expedited investigation in the other half of the site, roughly east of Route 7A. The State is continuing negotiations with Saint-Gobain regarding the eastern portion of the site.The Consent Order was filed in late July and announced at a public meeting in Bennington that evening. A thirty-day public comment period followed the filing. At a status conference in Bennington Superior Court last week, the Court requested more information from the parties. The parties provided that the next day and the Court’s October 2, 2017 Order followed.Related Documents:Pleadings by Agreement (7/26/17)(link is external)Stipulation for Entry of Consent Order, with Consent Order (7/26/17)(link is external)Consent Order Appendices (7/26/17)(link is external)Letter regarding Public Comment Period (8/22/17)(link is external)Letter regarding Entry of Consent Order (8/29/17)(link is external)Motion for Entry of Consent Order (9/29/17)(link is external)Entry Order (10/2/17)(link is external)Consent Order Fact Sheet (7/26/17)(link is external)Consent Order FAQ (7/26/17)(link is external)Vermont AG: Oct 4, 2017