Vermont tax revenues fall below targets

first_imgConclusionSecretary Spaulding concluded, ‘Although the results for all three major funds (General, Transportation and Education Funds) were below the recently revised Consensus Revenue Forecast targets for the month, we see no reason to ring alarm bells at this time. We will carefully watch as results of the spring tax filing season come in and the rest of the winter recreational season plays out to get a clearer picture of where revenue results for the year are headed.’AttachmentsThe detailed schedules of the January 2012 year to date revenue results comparing the current periods with last year follow.Note: Minor differences in figures are due to rounding.Secretary of Administration 2.15.2012 Education FundToday, Secretary Spaulding released the ‘non-Property Tax’ Education Fund revenues (which constitute approximately 12 percent of the total Education Fund sources). The non-Property Tax Education Fund receipts for January totaled $17.55 million, or -$0.27 million (-1.53 percent) below the $17.82 million target for the month. Year to date, non-Property Tax Education Fund receipts were $96.71 million, or -0.28 percent short of the year to date target. The individual Education Fund revenue component results for January were: Sales & Use Tax, $13.48 million, or -3.35 percent below target; Motor Vehicle Purchase & Use Tax, $1.93 million or +3.39 percent; Lottery Transfer, $2.14 million or +8.02 percent; Education Fund Interest for January was immaterial for the month. Year to date receipts by component were: Sales & Use Tax, $70.17 million, or -0.66 percent short of target; Motor Vehicle Purchase & Use Tax, $14.98 million or +0.42 percent; Lottery Transfer, $11.54 million or +1.40 percent ahead of target; year to date Education Fund Interest for January was $0.02 million against a target of below $0.05 million. Although the non-property tax Education Fund receipts are below the current year target, they are 6.49 percent ahead of the FY 2011 results for the same period.  Transportation FundSecretary Spaulding also released the non-dedicated Transportation Fund Revenue for January. Total non-dedicated Transportation Fund receipts of $16.04 million for the month fell short of target by -$0.57 million (-3.43 percent), against the monthly target of $16.61 million. The January year to date Transportation Fund receipts of $123.63 million was below the $124.20 milliontarget by -0.46 percent. Year to date January FY 2012 non-dedicated Transportation Funds have exceeded the prior year (FY 2011) by 1.99 percent for the same period.Gasoline Tax, Diesel Fuel Tax and Motor Vehicle Fees all fell short of target for the month, with Motor Vehicle Purchase & Use and ‘Other’ exceeding target. Individual Transportation Fund revenue components for January were: Gasoline Tax, $4.89 million or -4.81 percent behind target; Diesel Tax, $1.29 million or -4.49 percent below target; Motor Vehicle Purchase & Use Tax, $3.85 million or +3.39 percent ahead of target; Motor Vehicle Fees, $4.56 million or -8.18 percent above; and Other Fees, $1.44 million or +1.36 percent above the monthly target. Year to date results for the individual Transportation Fund revenue components for January were: Gasoline Tax, $36.04 million or -0.68 percent short of target; Diesel Tax, $9.09 million or -0.66 percent below target; Motor Vehicle Purchase & Use Tax, $29.96 million or +0.42 percent above target; Motor Vehicle Fees, $38.23 million or -1.05 percent behind target; and Other Fees, $10.31 million or +0.19 percent above the monthly target.The Secretary also reported on the results for the Transportation Infrastructure Bond Fund (’TIB’). TIB Fund Gas receipts for January were $1.76 million or +5.33 percent in excess of target; year to date TIB Gas receipts were $12.73 million or +0.71 percent ahead of target. TIB Fund Diesel receipts for the month were $0.15 million or -20.25 percent below the monthly target; year to date TIB Diesel receipts were $1.09 million or -3.45 percent short of target. The TIB Fund receipts are noted below the following table:center_img All three Vermont tax categories fell below targets for the month of January, according to Secretary of Administration Jeb Spaulding. Nearly all the General Fund taxes, including the vital personal income and sales taxes, were down. Fuel tax receipts were also below expectations, thus bringing down the Transportation Fund. Spaulding laid most of the blame on the lack of snow, resulting in fewer tourists and fewer consumption revenues.January is the seventh month of fiscal year (FY) 2012. General Fund revenues totaled $129.17 million for January 2012, and were -$4.67 million or -3.49 percent below the $133.84 million consensus revenue forecast for the month. Year to date, General Fund revenues were $698.29 million, and -$4.67 million or 0.66 percent short of the target of $702.95 million for FY 2012.Secretary Spaulding explained, ‘The January revenue results against target were disappointing, but not terribly surprising. The lack of snow is having an impact on consumption tax receipts and personal income tax withholding was less than predicted. I caution against using the results of one month to project whether the FY 2012 revenue targets are in jeopardy and do not believe January’s performance is an indicator of the underlying strength of Vermont’s economy.’‘On a positive note, despite January 2012 General Fund revenues being below the monthly target, they do exceed the prior year results by 1.28 percent, indicative of our modest, but steady recovery,’ continued Spaulding.Current targets reflect the Fiscal Year 2012 Consensus Revenue Forecast adopted by the Emergency Board at their January 18, 2012 meeting. Statutorily, the State is required to revise the Consensus Revenue Forecast two times per year, in January and July; the Emergency Board may schedule interim revisions if deemed necessary. A date for the July 2012 Emergency Board has not been selected at this time.Personal Income Tax (PI) receipts are the largest single state revenue source providing approximately 50 percent of total GF revenue. PI Tax receipts are reported Net-of-Personal Income Tax refunds. Net Personal Income Tax is comprised of PI Withholding Tax, PI Estimated Payments, PI Refunds Paid, and PI Other. Net PI Receipts for January were recorded at $80.45 million, -$2.99 million or -3.58 percent below the monthly target of $83.43 million. The year to date Net PI Tax receipts were $364.34 million, or -0.81 percent below the cumulative target and 6.80 percent ahead of the prior fiscal year.Corporate Income Taxes are also reported net of refunds. Corporate Refunds for the month were $0.86 million, ahead of the -$0.73 million monthly target by +$1.60 million. Year to date Corporate receipts were $38.85 million, +$1.60 million or +4.29 percent ahead of target, but -18.95 percent below results through January of the prior fiscal year. Secretary Spaulding commented, ‘If there is an area of concern with the revenue forecast for the remainder of FY 2012, it is with Corporate Income Tax. Indications are that larger refunds than forecast may be on the horizon, due to what we believe are over payments in Corporate Estimates. For corporations which file taxes on a calendar year, the filing deadline is March 15, 2012. We will know a good deal more by the end of March.’Consumption tax results for January were below target for the month. Sales & Use Tax receipts of $26.97 million were short of target by -$0.94 million (-3.35 percent); Rooms & Meals Tax receipts of $11.03 million were below target by -$0.54 million (-4.65 percent). Year to date, Sales & Use Tax receipts of $140.34 million were behind target by -0.66 percent and Rooms & Meals Tax receipts of $76.44 were short of target by -0.70 percent for the current fiscal year (FY 2012). Compared to the results for the same period of the prior fiscal year (FY 2011), cumulative January consumption taxes (Sales & Use, and Meals & Rooms) exceeded the prior year results by +5.90 percent and +3.62 percent respectively.The remaining non-major tax components include Insurance, Inheritance & Estate Tax, Real Property Transfer Tax, and ‘Other’ (which includes: Bank Franchise Tax, Telephone Tax, Liquor Tax, Beverage Tax, Fees, and Other Taxes). The results for the remaining non-major categories for January were as follows: Insurance Tax, $0.79 million (+30.78 percent); Inheritance & Estate Tax, $0.69 (-59.83 percent); Property Transfer Tax, $0.45 million (-40.55 percent); and ‘Other’, $7.94 million (-7.58 percent). The year to date January results for the remaining non-major categories were: Insurance Tax, $17.35 million (+1.08 percent); Inheritance & Estate Tax, $10.10 (-9.27 percent); Property Transfer Tax, $4.64 million (-6.20 percent); and ‘Other’, $46.22 million (-1.39 percent). Cumulatively, the year to date non-major components total of $78.3 million through January 2012, is $10.85 million or -12.17 percent below the receipts for the same period of FY 2011 (reduced for a one-time settlement received in August 2010).last_img read more

Lake Champlain Committee promotes ‘Fix a Leak Week’

first_imgThe Lake Champlain Committee (LCC) is joining with the EPA’ s WaterSense Program to promote Fix A Leak Week. Fix a Leak Week encourages Americans to find and fix water leaks at homes and businesses. ‘ Leaks can account for 10,000 gallons of water loss in an average home every year’ enough water to wash nearly ten months’ worth of laundry or fill a backyard swimming pool,’ said Lori Fisher, LCC Executive Director. ‘ As a WaterSense partner, we are encouraging consumers to find and fix leaks to save water.’Wasting water can contribute to lake pollution. Sewage treatment facilities remove phosphorus pollution from the water that leaves our homes. The efficiency of pollution removal at the sewage treatment facility decreases when sewage is diluted by leaked tap water. Furthermore, municipal drinking water systems often add a phosphorus containing compound to drinking water to prevent lead from leaching from old pipes. This compound must then be removed from wastewater before it enters Lake Champlain. Of course, removal is not 100% efficient, so waste of water leads to additional phosphorus pollution.Wasted water also means wasted energy. Water must be pumped from its source, often Lake Champlain, to its end use in houses, apartments, businesses, and institutions. ‘ Moving water to where it will be used is a highly energy intensive process,’ notes Fisher. ‘ Letting a faucet run for five minutes uses about as much energy as letting a 60-watt light bulb run for 14 hours.’To help save water, the Lake Champlain Committee asks consumers to check, twist, and replace:Check for leaks.  Check your water meter before and after a two-hour period when no water is being used. If the meter does not read exactly the same, you probably have a leak. Look for dripping faucets, showerheads, and fixture connections. Also check for toilets with silent leaks by putting a few drops of food coloring into the tank and seeing if it appears in the bowl before you flush.Twist and tighten pipe connections.  Faucets account for more than 15% of indoor household water use. To save more water without a noticeable difference in flow, twist on a WaterSense labeled faucet aerator. Aerators usually cost under $5 and are readily available at hardware stores.Replace the fixture if necessary. Look for WaterSense labeled models, which are independently tested and certified to use 20 percent less water and perform as well as or better than standard models.Fixture replacement parts often pay for themselves, and they can be installed quickly by a handy do-it-yourselfer or plumbing professional.The Lake Champlain Committee is a bi-state citizens’ environmental organization that has been working for 50 years to protect Lake Champlain’s health and accessibility. You’ll find additional water conservation tips here.March 19, 2013 – Burlington, VT – The Lake Champlain Committeelast_img read more

Local food for healthy communities

first_imgWhile Vermont is a national leader in the local food movement, there are still many in our state who don’t have access to, can’t afford, or don’t know how to make use of the food produced here. This includes one in five Vermont children who are food insecure because their families can’t reliably meet basic nutritional needs.A new report from the Vermont Community Foundation highlights some successful efforts underway to bridge this gap and bring local food to a lot more Vermonters. At the same time groups are working to develop stable year-round markets for Vermont farmers at nearby schools, hospitals, and senior centers.Local Food for Healthy Communities: Bringing Food Security to All Vermonters clearly spells out the challenges that farmers, institutions, and individuals are trying to overcome while building a sustainable and equitable food system, and offers some promising approaches and opportunities where philanthropy can make a difference. It’s free and available at is external)‘There are many exemplary and innovative programs that reach food-insecure Vermonters,’ said Vermont Community Foundation President & CEO Stuart Comstock-Gay. ‘Our new Farm and Food Initiative is helping them explore the most effective and creative ways to combine their work and reach every corner of the state.’Through research, grants, and investments’and in partnership with funders and providers across the state’the Vermont Community Foundation will help Vermont develop a nationally-recognized food system that sustains local farmers and creates healthy communities for all Vermonters.The Vermont Community Foundation is a family of hundreds of funds and foundations established by Vermonters to serve their charitable goals. It provides the advice, investment vehicles, and back-office expertise to make giving easy and inspiring. The Foundation also provides leadership in giving by responding to community needs and keeping Vermont’s nonprofit sector vital. Together, its funds and programs provide more than $12 million a year in grants and other investments in Vermont. Visit is external) or call 802-388-3355 for more information.last_img read more

Six Vermont jurisdictions net over $700,000 for new police hires

first_imgSenator Patrick Leahy (D-Vermont)has announced that Vermont will receive $744,558 in grants for the hiring and rehiring of law enforcement officers.  The grants to six law enforcement agencies across Vermont are administered by the U.S. Department of Justice Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) through the federal agency’s COPS Hiring Program.Leahy, a former prosecutor, said, ‘COPS hiring grants remain a crucial source of support for our state and local law enforcement agencies, so they can continue their important and lifesaving work.  These funds will help Vermont police officers to quickly fill vacancies and hire new officers.  Every Vermont law enforcement entity that applied for a COPS hiring grant was successful, which is a testament to the quality and dedication of Vermont’s cops on the beat.’ Leahy has long been a champion of the COPS program.  To date, more than 71 state and local law enforcement agencies in Vermont have received $48 million in COPS grants. The grants provide 75 percent of the approved salary and benefits for newly hired entry level officer positions over a three year period.  Leahy said the funding comes amid extreme budget pressures as communities cope with the effects of sequestration and falling revenues under the economic downturn and will help Vermont’s law enforcement agencies add and retain the staffing levels needed to fight crime more effectively through community policing. The Department of Justice and its Office of Community Oriented Policing Services fall under the jurisdiction of the Senate Judiciary Committee, which Leahy chairs.  Leahy has previously held hearings dedicated to the importance of the federal partnership with state and local law enforcers, particularly during difficult economic times.  Leahy also is a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, which included $222.5 million for the Department of Justice’s Community Oriented Policing Services Program in its fiscal year 2014 spending bill, which is pending in the Senate.A breakdown of COPS Hiring Program grant funding for law enforcement agencies and localities follows:GranteeOfficers AwardedAward AmountCity of Barre1$125,000Franklin County Sheriff’s Department1$119,614Grand Isle County Sheriff’s Department1$125,000Milton Police Department1$124,944South Burlington Police Department1$125,000Williston Police Department1$125,000Total Officers Awarded6Grand total for Vermont$744,558   WASHINGTON (Friday, Sept. 27, 2013) ‘ Sen. Patrick Leahylast_img read more

Shumlin will make ‘opiate epidemic’ the overarching theme of State of the State

first_imgGovernor Peter Shumlin says the growing ‘opiate epidemic’ in Vermont will be a ‘major focus’ of his administration this legislative session, along with resolving a $70 million budget gap and laying the groundwork for his signature single-payer health care system in 2017.Opiate addiction will be the overarching theme of the governor’s State of the State address on Wednesday. Shumlin will mention the documentary ‘Hungry Heart,’ a film by Bess O’Brien that documents the lives of Vermonters who are struggling with addiction. Dustin Machia, a recovering addict, and his doctor, Fred Holmes, will be in the audience.Governor Peter Shumlin announces the opening of the West Ridge Center for Addiction Recovery at the Howe Center in Rutland during a ribbon-cutting ceremony outside the center in November. Photo by John Herrick/VTDigger‘I’m really concerned about the growing opiate epidemic in Vermont, and I want to spend time using my voice as governor to do a better job of fighting a battle that we’re losing,’ Shumlin said in an interview. ‘I’m willing to be creative and innovative and deal with all the players to reduce the number of folks who are becoming addicted and find more innovative ways to succeed in more immediate recovery.’The governor says he will offer a set of recommendations to the Legislature to address what he describes as a ‘frightening’ rate of increase in opiate addiction.‘We are gaining addicts to opiates at a rate that, if it continues, it will make it difficult for us to offer treatment in a system that’s already overrun with demand,’ Shumlin said.About 4,293 Vermonters were treated for some form of opiate addiction ‘ for heroin or prescription drug abuse ‘ in fiscal year 2012. That number is up from about 1,000 in fiscal year 2005, according to a December 15 study from the Vermont Department of Health and Vermont Department of Vermont Health Access.Though the state expanded programs for treatment last year, and as of October provided methadone to 1,482 people, the treatment centers can’t keep up. Another 1,200 Vermonters are on a waiting list for methadone, a commonly used medical therapy for heroin addicts. The typical wait time is two weeks; in Chittenden County the wait times can be as long as 12 to 18 months. The Chittenden Center, which serves Franklin, Grand Isle, Addison and Chittenden counties, provided methadone treatment for about 600 Vermonters by October. Centers in Brattleboro and the Northeast Kingdom also have high caseloads.In a recent editorial board meeting with VTDigger, the governor alluded to property crimes related to opiate addiction.‘This is one thing, on a long-term basis, that could degrade the quality of life, the sense of safety and security that we take for granted, in Vermont,’ Shumlin said.Even though the state does not yet have enough methadone treatment facilities available (once another Chittenden County center is online, that will help), the governor wants to move ahead with a plan that would divert addicts and people with mental illness who have been arrested from the criminal justice system into treatment.Over the last few years, the state has struggled to hold down the number of detainees, that is people who are being held without bail. Though the state does not have statistical information citing what percentage of the more than 400 detainees cycling through the system are opiate addicts, increasingly, the Department of Corrections is stepping up programs to provide ‘medication assisted treatment’ to help people detox in jail. The steady number of detainees has been a budget buster for the Shumlin administration, though it has slightly lowered the total number of inmates in the system to about 2,000 over the last few years.Shumlin says the state must do more to ‘successfully move people into treatment who aren’t ready to go who are charged with a crime.’ The resistance to treatment, he says, ‘is a big challenge.’‘What’s the place where you’re most vulnerable, and are we meeting the point where they’re most open to treatment? I would say we’re not,’ Shumlin said.Lawmakers in the Senate and House Judiciary committees have teed up S.295, a bill that would move arrested individuals with a substance abuse problem or mental illness immediately out of the criminal justice system and into treatment ‘ prior to arraignment. The accused would be required to undergo a ‘risk assessment’ for substance abuse within three days of an arrest. The Senate, which is taking the lead on the legislation, will begin taking testimony on the draft legislation this week.Sen. Dick Sears, D-Bennington, chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, says he is concerned that the state is putting more people with substance abuse addictions, mental illness or serious functional impairments ‘ a developmental disability, a traumatic brain injury, or other serious mental impairment ‘ in jail.‘If you go to the doctor complaining of chest pain, they don’t open you up without doing some testing beforehand,’ Sears said. ‘We make decisions without knowing what’s the real risk for the person. My hope is these folks will end up in treatment.’In Chittenden County, the state’s attorney and the Burlington Police Department have developed a Rapid Intervention Community Court that diverts addicts and people with mental illness into treatment. Sears says S.295 would create a uniform system for pre-arraignment diversion across the state based on the sequential intercept model developed in Missouri.‘There is no reason if you are arraigned in Brattleboro that you would be treated differently than if you’re arraigned in Burlington,’ Sears said.It’s unclear whether prevention and education efforts will be part of the governor’s recommendations. In an interview, Shumlin didn’t directly answer a question about how the state might try to keep people from becoming addicted in the first place.‘We’re in this situation for a lot of reasons, in some cases it’s people who aren’t born with mountains of opportunity and have lost hope, but we have to be very careful when the community assumes it’s low income folks who are struggling,’ Shumlin said. ‘This hits every income group.’Shumlin will acknowledge the struggles of a couple of Vermonters who have tried to overcome opiate addiction and were featured in O’Brien’s film. Dr. Fred Holmes, a pediatrician in St. Albans who has helped teenage patients deal with the devastating effects of heroin, will be in the audience on Wednesday. His patient, Dustin Machia, who has mastered his addiction, and is featured in the film, will also be on hand.O’Brien says she’s thrilled that opiate addiction is the topic the governor will focus on this year. Shumlin and his staff recently watched ‘Hungry Heart,’ and were moved by the film.‘I’m thrilled that the people in the film will be honored in this way,’ O’Brien said. ‘They are the ones who took the risk to tell their stories and put themselves out there, and I’m thrilled that the governor is recognizing them. As a filmmaker, it’s thrilling to see that the film’s message is making a difference and moving politicians to take further steps to deal with recovery and prevention around drug addiction.’The movie humanizes the issue, O’Brien said, and that’s why people are affected by it.‘What I say about all my films is that change can’t happen unless people have empathy for the issue,’ O’Brien said. ‘Then you can talk about the issue and see things move forward. Without that, it becomes those people with that problem.’last_img read more

Lake Sunapee Bank parent increases dividend 7.7 percent

International Paper extends natural gas ‘Virtual Pipeline’ contract with NG Advantage for Ticonderoga, NY, mill

first_imgNG Advantage LLC,Vermont Business Magazine Colchester-based NG Advantage LLC, a majority-owned subsidiary of Clean Energy Fuels Corp. (NASDAQ: CLNE), today announced that it has signed an 18 month contract extension with International Paper. Under this extension, NG Advantage will continue delivering clean-burning compressed natural gas (CNG) to International Paper’s Ticonderoga, NY, paper mill using its “virtual or mobile pipeline” of tractor-trailers that deliver 24/7. This is the largest mobile pipeline project in the US and showcases the scalability of NG Advantage’s service to deliver natural gas as an alternative fuel choice for even the largest industrial energy users.Tom and Mary Evslin at the Milton depot. VBM file photo.“It’s a pleasure to work with the very innovative people at International Paper and help them meet their environmental and financial goals in a rapidly changing world,” said NG Advantage CEO Tom Evslin. “The service to the IP mill demonstrates that our trucked CNG platform has successfully been scaled to meet demand which would have formerly required a special pipeline extension.”International Paper had long been planning a switch to natural gas to displace much of the #6 fuel oil used at the Ticonderoga mill in order to substantially reduce its environmental footprint and enjoy the price stability of the domestic fuel. The mill had originally planned to pay much of the cost of a traditional pipeline extension from Vermont to Ticonderoga, NY, and sought bids for trucked CNG only for interim service until the pipeline arrived. However, the deal with Vermont Gas fell through earlier this year because of cost increases involved with bringing the pipeline from Middlbury, Vermont.NG Advantage, which was the first company to provide virtual pipeline service in the US, received the contact for that interim service in 2014.A mill as large as Ticonderoga requires a customized end-to-end energy supply chain. NG Advantage designed new hardware, developed new procedures, and built extensions to its cloud-based SCADA (control software). The result was deliveries beginning on schedule in May of 2015 with NG Advantage providing the mill with approximately eighteen trailer loads of clean, inexpensive natural gas daily.International Paper canceled plans for the pipeline because of escalating delays and costs and issued an RFP for long-term virtual pipeline service to keep natural gas in their fuel mix. After evaluating bids, International Paper chose to extend its existing contract with NG Advantage.International Paper is the seventh paper mill and the twenty-sixth location to contract with NG Advantage. Natural gas delivered 24/7 by truck gives plants an experience much like being on a traditional pipeline without the long term capital commitment of a pipeline extension. Burning natural gas instead of oil products reduces CO2 emissions by 26%; substituting natural gas for coal reduces CO2 by about 50%. Natural gas use also eliminates almost all Sulphur and particulate emissions and enables a substantial reduction in nitrous oxides.About NG Advantage LLC:NG Advantage(link is external) is a U.S.-based mid/downstream provider and the leader in the new “virtual pipeline” industry of trucking compressed natural gas (CNG) in the U.S. NG Advantage’s virtual pipeline service brings the economic and environmental benefits of North American natural gas to large institutions and industrial customers without access to a pipeline. The Company’s current customers include large regional hospitals, paper mills, asphalt facilities, food processors, industrial dry cleaners, LDCs, and manufacturing facilities. Facilitated by the purchase of a controlling interest in the company by Clean Energy Fuels(link is external) (NASDAQ: CLNE), NG Advantage is expanding its service area nationwide. For more information on NG Advantage, see is external).About Clean Energy:Clean Energy Fuels Corp(link is external). (NASDAQ: CLNE) is the leading provider of natural gas fuel for transportation in North America. We build and operate compressed natural gas (CNG) and liquefied natural gas (LNG) fueling stations; manufacture CNG and LNG equipment and technologies for ourselves and other companies; develop renewable natural gas (RNG) production facilities; and deliver more CNG, LNG and Redeem RNG fuel than any other company in the U.S. For more information, visit is external). See more at: is external).About International Paper:International Paper(link is external) (NYSE: IP) is a global leader in packaging and paper with manufacturing operations in North America, Europe, Latin America, Russia, Asia and North Africa. Its businesses include industrial and consumer packaging along with uncoated papers and pulp. Headquartered in Memphis, Tenn., the company employs approximately 58,000 people and is strategically located in more than 24 countries serving customers worldwide. International Paper net sales for 2014 were $24 billion. For more information about International Paper, its products and stewardship efforts, visit is external).last_img read more

Gifford Auxiliary gives $1 million to hospital’s capital campaign

first_imgVermont Business Magazine Gifford Medical Center’s Auxiliary announced a million dollar gift to the Randolph hospital’s “Vision for the Future” campaign at the organizations quarterly membership luncheon on November 15, 2015. Funds for the generous gift were raised through sales at the popular volunteer-staffed Thrift Shop in Randolph. The Vison for the Future campaign is raising funds to support a multi-phased project that built the new Menig Nursing Home in Randolph Center (which opened last spring), 25 private inpatient rooms (which will open mid-December), and an updated and more centrally located Birthing Center in the hospital (planned to open next spring). The campaign needs just $800,000 to close the $5 million campaign, and hopes the Auxiliary’s gift—created through hard work and small-dollar sales—will inspire others to invest in the hospital’s future.“This gift represents an overwhelming generosity of time and resources,” said Gifford Administrator Joseph Woodin, who noted that over the years the Auxiliary has supported strategic projects (including the original Menig Extended Care wing, the Philip Levesque Medical Building, and the employee day care center) as well as annual departmental “wish list” items not included in the hospital budget. “The Auxiliary is a key part of Gifford’s success, and truly adds tremendous value to our community.”The Thrift Shop first opened its doors in 1956 and has been providing clothing and household items to bargain hunters and those in need ever since. The 148-member Auxiliary runs the Thrift Shop, with some paid staff and many dedicated volunteers who sort through donations, clean and mend clothes, price items, stock shelves, and staff the store. Each year the Auxiliary also funds scholarships for college students pursuing health careers, financial aid for students enrolled in LNA programs, and supports other community outreach programsAuxiliary President Margaret Osborn says the Thrift Shop’s success can be measured in terms of money raised, but also by the enthusiasm of the volunteer workers, the creativity of employees, and the many community customers and donors.“This million dollar gift reflects our community’s enthusiasm for re-gifting their possessions through the thrift shop, helping to ensure that we have high-quality local hospital care and good merchandise at prices everyone can afford—from fire victims to frugal shoppers,” said Osborn. “We provide an effective, simplified process that gets unused goods out to those who can use them. At the same time we offer tremendous opportunities for people with vitality and skills who want to give time to community service.”Woodin also notes the many layers of the Thrift Shop’s community contributions. “We are so fortunate to have this unique community resource,” he said. “It helps the hospital, it helps people with limited resources, it keeps unused items from cluttering homes and out of the landfill, and it offers everyone the joy that comes with finding a good bargain. That’s a universal gratification!”To volunteer or learn more about the Thrift shop call (802) 728-2185. For more information about Gifford’s Vision for the Future campaign call Ashley Lincoln at 728-2380 or visit is external).Left: Entrance to Gifford. Very Top.Members of Gifford Medical Center’s Auxiliary at their quarterly membership luncheon on November 15, 2015. Photo Credit: Bob EddyGifford is a community hospital in Randolph, Vt., with family health centers in Berlin, Bethel, Chelsea, and Rochester and specialty services throughout central Vermont. A Federally Qualified Health Center and a Top 100 Critical Access Hospital in the country, Gifford is a full-service hospital with a 24-hour emergency department; inpatient and rehabilitation units; many surgical services; accredited cancer program; a day care; two adult day programs; and the 30-bed Menig Nursing Home, which was named by U.S. News and World Report as one of the best 39 nursing homes in the country in 2012. The Birthing Center, established in 1977, was the first in Vermont to offer an alternative to the traditional hospital-based deliveries, and continues to be a leader in midwifery and family-centered care. The cancer program is accredited by the Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons. The hospital’s mission is to improve individuals’ and community health by providing and assuring access to affordable, high-quality health care in Gifford’s service area.last_img read more

GBIC honors Senator Patrick Leahy at 62nd GBIC annual meeting Thursday

Weekly unemployment claims fall, still high for summer

first_imgVermont Business Magazine Weekly unemployment claims fell deeply last week but remain slightly above typical summer levels. Claims in 2016 generally have been running above 2015 claims. For the week of July 9, 2016, there were 540 claims, down 199 from the previous week’s total and 44 more than they were a year ago. By industry, claims edged down across the board; Service, as is typical, carried the most claims. Altogether 4,694 new and continuing claims were filed, an decrease of 131 from a week ago, and 104 more than a year ago.The Department processed 0 First Tier claims for benefits under Emergency Unemployment Compensation, 2008 (EUC08).Vermont’s unemployment rate fell one-tenth to 3.1 percent in May, as the labor force and total employment increased, along with a decrease in the number of unemployed. However, the overall jobs situation was not as strong as it was in April. SEE STORY.The June jobs report will be available July 22.The Unemployment Weekly Report can be found at: is external). Previously released Unemployment Weekly Reports and other UI reports can be found at: is external)NOTE: Employment (nonfarm payroll) – A count of all persons who worked full- or part-time or received pay from a nonagricultural employer for any part of the pay period which included the 12th of the month. Because this count comes from a survey of employers, persons who work for two different companies would be counted twice. Therefore, nonfarm payroll employment is really a count of the number of jobs, rather than the number of persons employed. Persons may receive pay from a job if they are temporarily absent due to illness, bad weather, vacation, or labor-management dispute. This count is based on where the jobs are located, regardless of where the workers reside, and is therefore sometimes referred to as employment “by place of work.” Nonfarm payroll employment data are collected and compiled based on the Current Employment Statistics (CES) survey, conducted by the Vermont Department of Labor. This count was formerly referred to as nonagricultural wage and salary employment.last_img read more