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.

Emily Corwin

One year ago, two nonprofits and a county planning commission set out to add 3,500 new homes to Chittenden County’s housing stock within five years.

This railroad bridge is part of the Lamoille Valley Rail Trail in Morrisville. According to the Vermont Association of Snow Travelers, there are 42 bridges to repair or replace along the trail before it is complete.
Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

The Vermont Association of Snow Travelers and the state have finalized an agreement regarding the construction of a four-season trail across Vermont.

Many Vermont mobile home parks were built in the 1960s-1980s. We'll explore the role this housing option plays across the state.
clubfoto / iStock

About 10 percent of Vermonters live in mobile, or manufactured, homes. They provide an important option in a state where affordable housing can be difficult to secure.

Steve Wadsworth greets cows at Laggis Brothers Farm in East Hardwick with a kiss on Sept. 1. Wadsworth, a large animal vet who serves dairy farms, took "Vermont Edition" host Jane Lindholm on a tour of four farms earlier this month.
Jane Lindholm / VPR

We've left the studio in favor of a field trip on this Vermont Edition to see what goes on behind-the-scenes at four large dairy farms in Franklin and Caledonia Counties.

Brenda Thibault stands in front of her mobile home at St. George Villa, where the residents are looking into forming a cooperative to purchase the park.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

As Vermont sees a growing number of mobile home parks go on the market, some residents are turning toward cooperative ownership to take over control of the properties.

A screenshot of the Airbnb website, taken Sept. 20, shows some available rentals in Vermont. A Vermont working group is studying short-term rentals, prompting Airbnb to reach out to Vermont hosts registered on the site to share their experiences.
Screenshot from Airbnb.com

Airbnb says more than 3,600 people across the state use the online service to rent out their homes. Now the company is asking those homeowners to get involved with a statewide study that could impact the future of home sharing in Vermont.

The Burlington Telecom building. The City of Burlington hopes to have a buyer for Burlington Telecom lined up by the fall. The City Council will vote to eliminate one of three bids from the sale process.
Taylor Dobbs / VPR File

The city of Burlington has released the names of the three groups making bids to buy Burlington Telecom, the city's telecommunications service.

This drawing shows part of the plan developers have for The Putnam Block in downtown Bennington.
courtesy of Stevens &-Associates

A development group in Bennington says it's acquired a major downtown property that's part of a $50 million renovation project.

Data from the U.S. Census Bureau shows Vermont to be the only state in the country to see an increase in the poverty rate in 2016 — however the lower rate in 2015 was an outlier compared to previous years, according to an official at the U.S. Census Bureau.

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.

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