The Vermont Economy

VPR's Steve Zind

VPR senior reporter Steve Zind focuses on the Vermont economy and its impact on our lives. Follow Steve Zind on Twitter, post comments on the stories, and let Steve know what local economy stories you think VPR should cover.

Steve Zind / VPR

The Utah man who wants to build a unique project in Central Vermont says he is poised to purchase an additional 500 acres of land.

Steve Legge / AP file

The business executive running two Northeast Kingdom ski resorts involved in a federal fraud investigation says both businesses have enough money to stay viable for the time being.

Taylor Dobbs / VPR

Gov. Peter Shumlin and his top commerce official visited Jay Peak Wednesday to ease concerns about the future of that resort as well as Q Burke and other developments in the area funded by the federal EB-5 program.

Taylor Dobbs / VPR

Allegations of fraud at multiple developments in the Northeast Kingdom have raised major questions about the future of those projects and the jobs they were supposed to create, and Northeast Kingdom residents weren't the only ones counting on those jobs. For foreign investors who used the federal EB-5 program to fund the projects and pay their way into the United States, the alleged fraud could jeopardize their immigration status.

A downtown Newport development project is in doubt following fraud allegations against the project developers. State and local officials met this week to talk more about the project's future but few answers were found.

The Brattleboro Reformer, the Bennington Banner and several other Vermont newspapers are getting a new owner.

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Of all the alleged EB-5 frauds perpetrated by Bill Stenger and Ariel Quiros, none was as grand in scale as the case of AnC Bio. 

Rebecca Sananes / VPR

The fate of a proposed redevelopment project in downtown Newport – halted since March – is now even less clear following allegations of fraud against two Northeast Kingdom developers, Bill Stenger and Ariel Quiros.  

Vermont Business Magazine

Federal authorities launched an investigation into Jay Peak’s EB-5 projects nearly a year before state officials had their first inkling that something illegal was afoot. And documents on file at the Securities and Exchange Commission indicate that the agency had strong forensic evidence of a massive fraud well before the changes in state regulatory oversight that Gov. Peter Shumlin now credits for taking down the “Ponzi-like” scheme.

Melody Bodette / VPR

Rep. Peter Welch is co-sponsoring a bill that will make changes to the program that's supposed to be a safety net for dairy farmers in times of low milk prices.

Mount Snow

While attention in the state has been directed toward the alleged EB-5 violations at Jay Peak and Burke Mountain, another EB-5 project in southern Vermont has also hit a snag.

Vermont Department of Financial Regulation, Alden Pellet/AP, Freeman/French/Freeman, AP/Steve Legge

The news on Thursday of major, alleged fraud in the Northeast Kingdom was a punch in the gut for Vermonters who had nurtured dreams of economic revitalization in the area. But the story is pretty complicated. If you’re coming to it cold, here’s what you need to know.

Ekaterina Minaeva / iStock

The Vermont Senate has given its unanimous support to legislation that's designed to improve employment opportunities for people who have a criminal record in their past. Backers of the bill say it's needed because many people who've been convicted of a crime never get past the application process if they have to initially disclose this information to an employer.

The state's new revenue report shows that the dismal season for the ski industry hasn't yet had a major impact on Vermont's tax base.

Representatives of GlobalFoundries, the chipmaker that purchased the IBM plant in Essex Junction, visited the Statehouse Thursday.

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The program that gave liftoff to Vermont’s renewable energy industry is getting a makeover, and new rules from the Public Service Board could alter the solar power landscape across Vermont.

AlexiusHoratius / Wikimedia Commons

Should the state of Vermont get into the energy business? That’s suddenly become one of the most pressing questions in Montpelier.

Courtesy of NewVistas

A Utah man who has been buying land in Central Vermont to create a self-contained community of 15,000 to 20,000 residents that would produce its own food and energy has also been purchasing property in the city of Provo, Utah, where he lives.

Just as in Vermont, some people in Provo aren’t happy about it.

Martin Dimitrov / iStock

This week the House is scheduled to debate a bill raising the legal age to purchase tobacco products from 18 to 21. Backers of the legislation say it is one of the most important public health issues of the session.

Hermitage Club

A proposal to expand an exclusive private ski resort in southern Vermont got a big boost last week.