November 18, 2022

Good Morning -

The economy was the #1 issue on voters’ minds this month. With a Democratic supermajority in the House and Senate and a Republican Governor re-elected with an overwhelming 70% of the vote, policy discussions this upcoming legislative session will require a balanced discourse on affordability.

I encourage you to be in touch with your House and Senate representatives, particularly those who are newly elected. We are ready to assist with these connections and can provide guidance to ensure that these conversations are successful. Please reach out to learn more about effective engagement opportunities. 

Megan Sullivan, VP of Government Affairs

2022 General Election Results

With most statewide races pre-determined by the results of a competitive Primary and little contest in the General, all eyes were on down ballot races on Election Day.

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Attracting More Workers for a Successful Future

Vermont continues to lead the nation in addressing complex issues, but we are also experiencing an aging population and a declining workforce. By elevating our achievements, Vermont can attract more workers to ensure a more secure economic future.

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Healthcare Roundup

Several evolvements in the shifting healthcare landscape have made headlines in recent months.

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Declaration of Inclusion Initiative Reaches Milestone

With over 80 towns and cities adopting a Declaration of Inclusion, more than 50% of Vermont residents now reside in a municipality that has pledged itself to welcome and treat all members of marginalized communities who visit, reside, or do business there, fairly and equitably.

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Spotlight on MVP Health Care

This month, we are spotlighting Vermont Chamber member MVP Health Care. MVP Health Care has been providing affordable, high-quality health insurance for Vermont businesses for 20+ years—for healthier employees and a better bottom line. 

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Program Updates

  • Worker Relocation Incentive Program: This program provides grants of up to $7,500 to both new workers (moving to Vermont to take a Vermont job) and remote workers (moving to Vermont and bringing their job with them) to defray moving costs. This new program includes all occupations to better serve employer needs across all sectors. Learn more.
  • Short-Term Forgivable Loan Program: The VEDA (Vermont Economic Development Authority) Short-Term Forgivable Loan Program is now open for all business sectors and will provide financial assistance to businesses that continue to experience current and ongoing harm due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Learn more.
  • COVID Paid Leave Grant Program: The application window opening for this program has been delayed. The delayed opening date will not change the total amount of time that the application window will be open. Employers must demonstrate the dates each employee was out due to COVID, the total and hourly sick leave wages paid to each employee out due to COVID, and provide documentation to support that the leave was due to eligible COVID-related reasons. Learn more.

Employer Resources

  • Community Recovery and Revitalization Program (webinars): Provides funding for projects that make capital improvements or capital expansions that were delayed due to the negative economic impacts of COVID-19. These recovery funds are intended to retain and expand existing businesses and nonprofit organizations with a preference for projects located in regions and communities with declining or stagnant grand list values. Learn more.
  • Program Overview
  • Impacted Industry/Small Businesses and QCT
  • Childcare Recording
  • Affordable Housing
  • 2023 Minimum Wage Increase: The Vermont Department of Labor has announced an increase to the State’s minimum wage. Beginning January 1, 2023, the State’s minimum wage will become $13.18 per hour. This is an increase of $0.63 from the current minimum wage of $12.55. More information is available, here
Vermont Chamber News

Vermont Chamber Announces New Board Members

The Vermont Chamber of Commerce welcomed three new Directors to the Board: Chris Karr of The Karr Restaurant Group, Killington, Steve Gagner of 14th Star Brewing, St. Albans, and Steve Boyer of Sonnax, Bellows Falls.

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The 2022 Outstanding Vermont Business of the Year Award Announced

Hickok & Boardman Insurance Group will accept the award at the upcoming Vermont Economic Conference, which will take place on January 30, 2023.

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Vermont Chamber President Betsy Bishop Receives Leadership Award

The Vermont ATHENA Leadership Award honors a Vermonter who has provided mentorship and direction to women in business, helping them strive to attain their highest level of accomplishment and leadership. 

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