The Vermont Economy

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Facing skepticism from Democratic lawmakers over his controversial plan for teacher health care benefits, Gov . Phil Scott is trying to convince the Legislature — and the public — that the estimated $26 million in savings projections are realistic.

A municipally owned Central Vermont internet provider has marked a milestone by repaying the nearly 500 local investors who funded its start-up.

AlbertPego / iStock.com

Tax Increment Financing – also known as TIF – has been used to help pay for public infrastructure projects across Vermont, from the Burlington Waterfront to Newport’s industrial park. But how, exactly, does TIF work? And if it’s so successful, why does the state limit its use?

Angela Evancie / VPR file

Late Wednesday night, the Democratically controlled Vermont House of Representatives almost did the unthinkable by passing a proposal put forth by Republican Gov. Phil Scott that would drastically overhaul the collective bargaining process for public school teachers.

Mike Groll / Associated Press

The federal government's H-2B visa program allows temporary, non-agricultural workers from certain foreign countries to fill seasonal positions in the U.S. Vermont's resort, lodging, and restaurant industries rely on these workers. But a cap on the number of these visas could have a negative effect on the these employers.

WCAX-TV, Vermont’s CBS affiliate, has been sold for $29 million to a Georgia company by the family that founded the station in 1954, according a WCAX news report.

Angela Evancie / VPR file

A late-session budget proposal from Republican Gov. Phil Scott has Democratic lawmakers suddenly contemplating new ways to book savings in the public education system.

Manuel Balce Ceneta / Associated Press

Sen. Patrick Leahy says a new budget agreement in Congress will preserve funding for many important Vermont programs for the rest of the federal fiscal year.

A Vermont slaughterhouse received four United States Department of Agriculture violations in the past year, and an animal rights group is asking regulators to consider withdrawing the plant's federal inspection program.

The issue of whether to levy a tax on carbon pollution hasn't gained much traction yet in Montpelier. Vermont Businesses for Social Responsiblity is trying to broaden support for the concept.
Angela Evancie / VPR file

The Vermont House is expected to pass legislation this week that would create a statewide paid family and medical leave program. But the bill will face a number of hurdles to passage when the Senate takes up the proposal next year, and might see its progress hampered by a corresponding push to raise the minimum wage.

DenisTangneyJr / iStock.com

Officials say a late-January snapshot of the homeless population in Chittenden County counted 291 homeless people, a 12 percent decrease since January 2016. Burlington Mayor Miro Weinberger says that shows progress toward ending homelessness, but some advocates say the data don’t show the whole story.

Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

If you use Google Maps on your phone to find a business in Bennington, you may end up in the tiny town of Woodford. That's because a glitch in the map app fails to recognize many locations in the largest town in southwestern Vermont.

Nina Keck / VPR

Rutland's Wonderfeet Kids' Museum was launched by volunteers in an empty downtown storefront in 2011. As its role in the community has grown, officials hope an ambitious fundraiser scheduled for this weekend will help the museum further expand its services.

Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

In February, Vail Resorts jumped into the eastern ski market with its planned purchase of the Stowe Mountain Resort. The $50 million sale is expected to close in June, and Vail has kept the buzz going with other investments and announcements.

Green Mountain Power is asking Vermont regulators to approve a 4.98 percent rate increase for customers starting in January 2018.

Senate lawmakers have given unanimous approval to a state budget that includes funding for a range of spending initiatives that did not make it into House’s spending plan. But the accounting tactic used by the Senate to fund those programs will be a major point of contention as legislative leaders enter negotiations for a consensus budget plan.

Union Institute & University will offer a tuition break to members of the Brattleboro and Central Vermont chambers of commerce.

Fresh on the heels of Raymond James Financial’s $150 million dollar settlement with Jay Peak Resort, owner Ariel Quiros has responded to related allegations. 

Angela Evancie / VPR file

Ray Pronto’s story starts simple enough. He left his hometown of Newport and landed in Pennsylvania, in the Pittsburgh area, where he founded a business in title insurance and loan closings. The company grew — a lot.  

FotografiaBasica / iStock.com

As Vermont’s demographic profile undergoes a potentially dramatic shift over the next decade or two, analysts in state government are trying give policymakers a more precise glimpse at what the population is going to look like in the future.

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