The Vermont Economy

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Jay Burstein, who makes ukuleles out of hemp like the one he's holding above, attended this year's Hemp Fest at Burke Mountain Resort on Sept. 9.
Jon Kalish / VPR

On Saturday, Sept. 9, about 400 people gathered at the Burke Mountain Resort for Hemp Fest, a daylong series of workshops and displays focused on the cultivation of industrial hemp.

Karin Hardy points to land along Ball Mountain Brook in Jamaica where her house stood before Tropical Storm Irene swept it away. Hardy's former house was not in the FEMA flood zone and she did not have flood insurance.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

Karin Hardy says she never thought much about flood insurance before Tropical Storm Irene, but she learned a pretty tough lesson the Monday after the storm in 2011.

Keep BT Local is a co-op and one of three potential bidders in the sale of Burlington Telecom.
Liam Elder-Connors / VPR

The four potential buyers of Burlington Telecom will be revealed next week, according to a statement from Burlington City Council president Jane Knodell.

A recent issue of Vermont Life magazine. A recent issue of Vermont Life magazine. The state is now accepting offers for the publication.
Henry Epp / VPR

The state of Vermont is taking offers for its iconic promotional magazine Vermont Life. A request for proposals was posted this week.

VPR/Melody Bodette

When the topic of insurance comes up, most people probably think about fender benders or trips to the emergency room before they think of flooding. But as scientists predict increasingly severe weather events in coming years, Vermonters will likely need to become better acquainted with it.

The inaugural Bolton Community Fair, pictured here, was held last year at Smilie Memorial School. This year's fair will take place at Bolton Valley's Nordic Center on Saturday, Sept. 16.
Deb Shelby / Town of Bolton, Courtesy

The second annual Bolton Community Fair will be held on Saturday, and organizers say this year's event will have plenty of entertainment, as well as showcase local cottage industries.

After presenting a grant award to Cindy Locke of VAST on Aug. 10, Gov. Phil Scott recounts a snowmobile trip on the Lamoille Valley Rail Trail when his security team rigged his sled to run only at low speeds, putting a governor on the governor.
Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

A third section of the 93-mile Lamoille Valley Rail Trail is on track to be built next year, and support and enthusiasm for the project is gaining momentum.

Mike Stewart / AP

State officials are urging Vermonters to find out whether they’re among the 143 million people affected by a massive data breach at Equifax. But experts say it's unclear if the website established by the company in response to the breach requires consumers to waive their right to sue over the incident.

Cape Air Captain Jonathon Coste, left, supervises First Officer William Smith on a recent flight from Boston to Lebanon, New Hampshire.
Nina Keck / VPR

After officials blamed a deadly 2009 commuter plane crash in upstate New York on pilot error and inexperience, Congress responded by mandating more training for commercial pilots.

Two solar panel manufacturers are asking the U.S. International Trade Commission to place tariffs on imported solar panels. But solar developers and installers across the country say a tariff would slow grow and cost jobs in the the industry.
Wilson Ring / AP/file

Two bankrupt companies that made solar panels are asking the U.S International Trade Commission to place a tariff on imported solar panels. The companies say that cheap foreign solar panels are harming the domestic industry.

Gene Puskar / AP

State regulators say that Comcast has to provide more high definition access to Vermont's community TV stations, and build out its high-def network.

On Tuesday the cable giant filed a suit in federal court, challenging those conditions in its new state permit.

Jeb Wallace-Brodeur / Ski Vermont

The Vermont ski industry is worried about the Trump Administration's review of the J-1 visa exchange program which allows resorts to hire some foreign workers.

Montpelier Pharmacy will be turned into a Kinney Drugs location on October 15, and the Waterbury Pharmacy is closing, the owners announced.
Peter Hirschfeld / VPR

Two independent pharmacies in central Vermont have been sold to the Kinney Drugs chain, the former owners announced. Montpelier Pharmacy will become a Kinney Drugs location on Oct. 15, and Waterbury Pharmacy will close its doors for good later that day, the three co-owners announced in a letter to customers.

Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Emily Boedecker has postponed officially submitting a new proposed draft rule for Great Hosmer Pond that would limit the use of racing shells and rowing sculls.
Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

The Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation is holding off on officially submitting a controversial draft proposed rule for Great Hosmer Pond, in Craftsbury and Albany.

Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

The state's largest slaughterhouse is about to get even bigger.

Vermont Packinghouse recently received an Act 250 permit for a $1 million expansion.

Farms in two of four "priority" watersheds have exceeded targets for water pollution reductions, but officials say there's still pressure to improve on those reductions for the health of Lake Champlain.
ands456 / iStock

Officials at the U.S. Department of Agriculture say farmers in Vermont are making better-than-expected progress in reducing the amount of phosphorus flowing into two of four “priority” parts of Lake Champlain.

Dozens of employees at Dealer.com in Burlington were laid off Tuesday according to a statement from Dealer.com’s parent company, Cox Automotive.

Robert Congdon is vice president of the Rutland County Agricultural Society, which runs the Vermont State Fair. Congdon, 29, says his grandfather Edward Congdon, Sr., oversaw the fair for many years and it feels like the event is in his blood.
Nina Keck / VPR

The 172nd Vermont State Fair is underway in Rutland with a shorter five-day schedule. Officials say it's part of a rebuilding effort after a rocky few years.

Pat Embree of Rutland is one of more than 4,700 Vermonter seniors who receive home delivered food with Meals on Wheels.
Nina Keck / VPR

Meals on Wheels brings nutritious food to more than 15,000 Vermonters a year, most of them over age 60.

Nationally, data show the program saves lives and billions of dollars a year in health care spending. Yet increasing demand on top of funding shortfalls are forcing program administrators across Vermont to make tough choices.

We're talking about the impact of income sensitivity on school budgets across the state.
Don Kurto / iStock

Vermont has a program – known as income sensitivity - that allows some homeowners to pay their school taxes based on their income and not the value of their property.

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