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.

Ryan Christiansen of Caledonia Spirits, Ben Whitcomb of the North Williston Cattle Company, Lisa Lorimer, former owner of the Vermont Bread Company, Allison Hooper, former owner of Vermont Creamery and Charles Storey of Harpoon Brewery spoke on a panel.
Nina Keck / vpr

Nearly a third of Vermont farms are run by someone over age 65, and according to a recent study by Land for Good, 91 percent of them don’t have someone younger ready to take over.

Joe Giancola, a prominent Rutland developer shakes hands with R. John Mitchell in front of former headquarters of the Rutland Herald. The Mitchell family owned the newspaper and the building that housed it for decades.
Nina Keck / VPR

Long time Rutland Developer Joe Giancola was the high bidder Friday morning when the historic headquarters of the Rutland Herald and several adjoining properties were auctioned off for $600,000 dollars.

John Cotter, Margaret Cheney and Tom Knauer, from left, of the Public Utility Commission. On Thursday, a legislative panel approved the commission's proposal for stricter sound limits for wind turbines.
Peter Hirschfeld / VPR file

In approving stricter sound limits for ridgeline wind turbines Thursday afternoon, the Legislative Committee on Administrative Rules has managed to upset both sides on the wind energy debate.

A recent review of public retirement and healthcare plans by Pew Charitable Trusts shows that many U.S. jurisdictions are on an unsustainable path.

Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

Two Townshend doctors are changing their practice over to a direct primary care model, where patients will pay a flat monthly fee for unlimited primary care. The Vermont doctors hope it will address the challenges of a changing health care insurance industry.

Mike Stewart / AP

Millions of Americans were only vaguely aware of the credit bureau Equifax until earlier this month, when the company revealed that the personal data of more than 147 million people was exposed in a massive data hack.

Wikimedia Creative Commons

What do the Vermont companies King Arthur Flour, Gardener's Supply, PC Construction, and Switchback Brewing have in common? They're all employee-owned businesses.

Signage in front of a soon-to-be Target in 2013. The first Vermont store, to be located in the University Mall in South Burlington, has attracted strong feelings from Vermonters.
shaunl / iStock

Reactions to the news that Target will be opening its first Vermont store have been all over the place. Some are lamenting the arrival of another "big box store," while others are barely able express their joy in words — instead relying on strings of celebratory emojis.

Kyle Gruter-Curham grows 6 acres of hemp in Irasburg. He says if lawmakers allowed it, he could add marijuana to his crops as early as next spring.
Emily Corwin / VPR

Vermont's handful of medical marijuana dispensaries have exclusive permission to grow and sell marijuana in the state.  If and when lawmakers legalize non-medical weed, they will likely have a head start on a very profitable industry.

Courtesy

Target has signed a lease to open a "small-format store" in South Burlington on Dorset Street.

For the last decade or more, my neighbor Walter has hosted an Annual Apple Squeeze on the Saturday of October’s long holiday weekend.

In the wake of an investigative report by The Washington Post and "60 Minutes," Rep. Peter Welch is calling for congressional investigations into the effects of legislation he co-sponsored in 2015.

An image from one of several 30-second ads Mondo Mediaworks has created as part of a $200,000 marketing campaign to attract new residents to Rutland County.
screenshot, Mondo Mediaworks video

Thirty-second ads touting Rutland have begun to air on cable TV networks in Burlington and Plattsburgh, Boston and Hartford and even Rutland.

Supporters of Keep BT Local came out in droves to the Burlington City Council meeting Monday to voice their support for the co-op's bid to buy Burlington Telecom. The council advanced the bids of Tuecows/Ting and Keep BT Local.
Liam Elder-Connors / VPR

The Burlington City Council voted Monday night to advance the bids of Keep BT Local and Ting  in the process to buy Burlington Telecom.

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 three bidders hoping to buy Burlington Telecom will be narrowed down to two after the city council meets on Monday evening.

Boxes of food are seen being prepared for distribution in Enosburg Falls, Vt., in this Nov. 18, 2010 file photo. An estimated one-fourth of Vermonters will receive some form of food assistance this year.
Toby Talbot / Associated Press/File

Local food shelves across the state have been seeing an increase in demand this fall. John Sayles, CEO of the Vermont Foodbank, joins Vermont Edition to discuss reasons for this increase in demand and explain how local organizations are dealing with it.  

Pixabay/Public Domain

Librarian and privacy advocate Jessamyn West was outraged when she heard about the massive data breach affecting 134 million people at credit reporting agency Equifax. So the Randolph librarian decided to sue the multi-billion dollar company in Vermont Small Claims Court.

Christina Moore of Halifax, Vt. sits at her desk in San Juan where she is managing disaster relief, using software she developed.
Christina Moore, Courtesy

A Halifax resident who developed a software program to help with the federal disaster relief process is in Puerto Rico managing the relief effort there.

The Vermont Agency of Human Services is cutting about $500,000 that would have gone toward support services for the state's Reach Up program.

Two people bike on the Lamoille Valley Rail Trail last year. Bike paths were one topic brought up at a recent forum held by the Vermont Outdoor Recreation Economic Collaborative in Rutland, along with other outdoor recreation activities.
Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR File

Outdoor recreation brings in $2.5 billion a year in consumer spending in Vermont, but many believe the state could bring in even more.

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