Three weeks to apply for SBA economic injury disaster loans in Vermont

first_imgThe US Small Business Administration is reminding small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture and most private non-profit organizations of all sizes that July 18 is the application deadline for federal economic injury disaster loans available in Addison, Bennington, Chittenden, Grand Isle and Rutlandcounties in Vermont as a result of the effects of Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee that occurred fromAug. 27 through Sept. 15, 2011.”These counties are eligible because they are contiguous to one or more primary counties in New York.  The Small Business Administration recognizes that disasters do not usually stop at county or state lines. For that reason, counties adjacent to primary counties named in the declaration are included,” according to Frank Skaggs, director of SBA’s Field Operations Center East.”When the Secretary of Agriculture issues a disaster declaration to help farmers recover from damages and losses to crops, the Small Business Administration issues a declaration to eligible entities affected by the same disaster,” added Skaggs.Under this declaration, the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program is available to eligible farm-related and nonfarm-related entities that suffered financial losses as a direct result of this disaster.  With the exception of aquaculture enterprises, SBA cannot provide disaster loans to agricultural producers, farmers, or ranchers. The loan amount can be up to $2 million with a 4 percent interest rate for eligible small businesses and 3 percent for non-profit organizations with terms up to 30 years.  The SBA determines eligibility based on the size of the applicant, type of activity and its financial resources.  Loan amounts and terms are set by the SBA and are based on each applicant’s financial condition.  These working capital loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable, and other bills that could have been paid had the disaster not occurred.  The loans are not intended to replace lost sales or profits.Disaster loan information and application forms may be obtained by calling the SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339 for the deaf and hard-of-hearing) or by sending an email [email protected](link sends e-mail).  Loan applications can be downloaded from the SBA’s website is external). Completed applications should be mailed to: U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155. Applicants may also apply online using the Electronic Loan Application (ELA) via SBA’s secure website at is external).Completed loan applications must be returned to SBA no later than July 18, 2012.For more information about the SBA’s Disaster Loan Program, visit our website at is external) . ATLANTA, June 26, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ —last_img read more

Kilawatt Technologies plan reduces energy use at Vermont Public Television 20 percent

first_imgInitial results of the Energy and Environment Management Project with Vermont Public Television indicates that Vermont Public Television’s energy consumption was reduced by 20 percent in the first six months of this year as compared to last, according to Kilawatt Technologies of Shelburne. During this same period, the unit price of energy increased 11.5 percent. Vermont Public Television retained Kilawatt Technologies in 2011 to review their energy footprint and evaluation options for the renovation of their existing HVAC system. Kilawatt Technologies’Energy Assessment provided visibility to the energy consumption on specific circuits and identified the most inefficient consumption items that had the greatest economic benefit.  Based on this analysis, Kilawatt Technologies proposed some immediate repair issues that were implemented via Vermont Public Television’s own engineering staff. Kilawatt Technologies has twenty-three (23) new tasks to be implemented, each with a payback of less than a year, which will further conserve energy at their station. Background Vermont Public Television (VPT) is Vermont’s statewide public television network, serving the region on the air, online at and in the community.  VPT’s signal covers Vermont, as well as bordering regions of New York, New Hampshire and southern Quebec, including Montreal. A member station of PBS, the Public Broadcasting Service, VPT’s mission is to educate, inform, entertain and inspire Vermonters to be lifelong learners and to be engaged in their community.  Kilawatt Technologies, founded in 2008, provides a data-centric, statistically-based, energy and environment management program. The methods involve continuous trending and analysis of energy and interior environmental data for commercial, multi-family and industrial buildings. Source: Kilawatt Technologies, Inc, 7.25.2012last_img read more

February 11th is national ‘2-1-1 Day’

first_imgFebruary 11 (2/11) is official “2-1-1 Day” in recognition of the free, confidential, easy to remember phone number that connects Vermont residents to essential community information and services such as healthcare, rent and mortgage assistance, food and shelter, job training, transportation, childcare, senior care, veteran services and much more. Vermont 2-1-1 helped 238,000 callers get help, give help and discover options since the Information and Referral program of the United Ways of Vermont was launched in 2005, especially as economic woes and natural disasters sent more families looking for help. That number continues to grow as more Vermonters have access to this invaluable referral service. “2-1-1 will be there for Vermonters on Monday, February 11 like we are 365 days a year, 24 hours a day,” said MaryEllen Mendl, Director of Vermont 2-1-1.  “When a person calls 2-1-1, an Information and Referral (I&R) Specialist or Community I&R Volunteer will speak to you and help assess your situation to determine what services, information or resources are needed to help. And, because we are able to answer calls in 150 languages, 2-1-1 call specialists can really help get information out to the harder-to-reach populations in our community.” Residents, emergency service providers, government entities, non-profit agencies and businesses have all come to understand how 2-1-1 connects people with the services they need, and the annual number of calls to 2-1-1 is on the rise as the economic crisis continues to take its toll.”Without 2-1-1, callers can make an average of eight phone calls to different numbers before finding the services they need,” said Carmen Derby, President of United Ways of Vermont. “2-1-1 cuts through the red tape to save providers time and money, while helping Vermont residents connect with the resources they’re looking for.” However, even as the value of 2-1-1 continues to be demonstrated, limited resources remain a barrier to sustainability and nationwide implementation. To date, 90% of the US population can access 2-1-1. “Every day, 2-1-1 call center specialists are helping people in every state untangle the web of social and government services available in their community,” said Mendl.Some highlights of the Vermont 2-1-1 program include:‘¢           providing 24/7 access to health, human and community services;‘¢           realizing an 853% increase in call volume between 2005 ‘ 2012;‘¢           preparing sixteen staff members to earn National Certification in the field of Information and Referral with four earning a dual certification as Resource Specialists;‘¢           receiving National Accreditation from the Alliance of Information and Referral Systems;‘¢           answering over 238,000 calls;‘¢           participating in more than a dozen Vermont Yankee Drills since 2007, including 2 successfully completed FEMA evaluated drills;‘¢           creating new and innovative partnerships and expanding the grant from the Agency of Human Services (AHS) to include answering after hours emergency housing calls for AHS;‘¢           responding to thousands of calls for disaster assistance as a direct result of2-1-1’ s designation as the number to call for flood related inquiries and flood damages reporting;‘¢           Actively engaged in communities throughout Vermont working to address issues including Human Trafficking, school safety, access to mental health and homelessness;‘¢           Responded to nearly 100 National Suicide Prevention Lifeline calls annually from 2007 – 2012 and trained over 70 faith-based, law enforcement, military, social service providers and community members in Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training;‘¢           Initiated the development and sustainability of VT Alliance for Information and Referral Systems, a membership organization supporting Information & Referral professionals. Need help finding help?  Dialing 2-1-1 is your first step.  Dial 2-1-1 from anywhere in Vermont, or visit our website at is external).  Professional Information and Referral Specialists are available 8:00am to 8:00pm, Monday through Thursday, 8:00am to 4:30pm, Friday. Vermont 2-1-1 is a program of the United Ways of Vermont. 2-1-1 is an easy to remember telephone number that connects people with important community services and volunteer opportunities.2-1-1 is confidential.2-1-1 is a useful planning tool.  A growing database of services and programs provides aggregate data about the types of calls that 211 receives in order to mobilize resources to meet changing needs of Vermont communities.last_img read more

Vermont’s Northern Power NPS 100 wind turbine powers microgrid in Hawaii

first_imgSeveral farmers in North Kohala, Hawaii, are now benefitting from an innovative off-grid water-pumping system powered by a Northern Power NPS 100 wind turbine. Like many others in remote locations and island communities, North Kohala farmers have been searching for an alternative to using polluting, expensive diesel fuel to generate electricity. This microgrid project, known as SkyGrid Energy, marks the growing trend of turning to affordable, clean, renewable wind energy as the solution. The NPS 100 wind turbine is specifically designed to support microgrids with its sophisticated voltage controls and no inrush current, thereby relieving stress to the system. In addition, the NPS 100’s ability to control reactive power independently of wind speed more reliably meets energy demands, a crucial component of microgrids.The SkyGrid Energy microgrid has been fully operational since April 2013. In addition to the NPS 100 wind turbine, which is the primary source of energy production, the system also includes a battery bank and solar panels. The system is capable of pumping more than 30 million gallons of water annually and is being used to irrigate 400 acres of agricultural land and support 14 participating farms and agricultural businesses. The project was partially funded by the U.S. Department of Energy through the Hawaii Renewable Energy Development Venture. Gen-X Energy Development LLC, the project developer, plans to replicate and deploy this microgrid solution throughout Hawaii and other island communities.”Besides providing innovation for a better world and helping increase our independence from fossil fuels, the new microgrid is also helping provide a reliable and cost-effective solution for Hawaii’s agriculture industry. This Northern Power turbine is critical to this microgrid’s success,” said Fred Brown, Gen-X Energy Development LLC co-founder.Northern Power Systems has been an integral part of the evolving microgrid market for 40 years. Northern Power Systems turbines have been used in microgrid projects all around the world, from Alaska to Newfoundland and the Bahamas to Antarctica.To learn more about the SkyGrid Energy project and microgrids, please join Northern Power Systems at two upcoming events. At the Distributed Wind Expo 2013 in Rochester, NY (June 11, 2013), Alan Axworthy, Director – Application Engineering, will present a case study of the SkyGrid Energy microgrid. Later in the month, on June 24, Paul Dawson, Director – Sales, Marketing and Business Development for the Americas, will present on microgrids at the Wind-Diesel 101 Workshop, at the Renewables in Remote Microgrids Conference in Toronto, Canada.Northern Power Systems is a fully integrated company that designs, manufactures, and sells wind turbines into the global marketplace from its headquarters in Vermont, USA, with European headquarters in Zurich, Switzerland and a significant presence in the United Kingdom and Italy. The Company’s proven, next generation PM/DD, wind turbine technology is based on a vastly simplified architecture that utilizes a unique combination of a permanent magnet generator and direct-drive design. This proven approach uses fewer moving parts, delivers higher energy capture, and provides increased reliability due to reduced maintenance and downtime. Northern Power Systems currently manufactures the NPSâ ¢ 60 and 100 turbines.With over 2.5 million run time hours across its fleet, Northern Power turbines provide customers with clean, cost effective renewable energy. To read more about the Northern Power wind turbines, please visit is external).BARRE, VT–(Marketwired – June 05, 2013)last_img read more

State, advocates spar over involuntary medication of psychiatric patients

first_imgby Anne Galloway A legislative committee rejected a proposal on Thursday from the Shumlin administration that would allow nurses to forcibly medicate psychiatric patients.The irony is, they already do.Hospitals in Vermont follow federal regulations for treatment of psychiatric patients. Under Centers for Medicare and Medicaid rules, registered nurses can involuntarily restrain, seclude and medicate patients.Mental health advocates say forcible medication is psychologically damaging for patients and treatments should only be administered by certain trained personnel after a physician has evaluated a patient. In a 1984 court settlement, Vermont advocates and the state set a higher standard for involuntary restraint, seclusion and medication.That standard was the norm at the Vermont State Hospital. The hospital, which cared for patients in the care and custody of the commissioner, was closed on Aug. 28, 2011, after Tropical Storm Irene. Since then, psychiatric patients have been sent to local hospitals for care as part of the Shumlin administration’s decentralized mental health system.After the Vermont State Hospital closed, the state’s rules for involuntarily seclusion, restraint and medication have been in limbo. Advocates say the state hospital regulations established after the Doe v. Miller settlement in 1984 should apply to all the hospitals now in the system. Representatives from the hospital industry and Paul Dupre, the commissioner of the Department of Mental Health, on the other hand, say the federal regulations should be the state standard.The Legislative Committee on Administrative Rules has been wrestling with the issue for more than a year, and voted 6-1 last week to oppose the Department of Mental Health’s plan to allow nurses to forcibly medicate patient without a physician evaluation.But that won’t be the end of the ongoing battle between the Shumlin administration, hospitals and advocates. The department can impose the rule (and risk getting sued) or come back to the Legislature and ask for a change in statute.At the committee’s meeting on Thursday, commissioner Dupre explained to lawmakers that the rules agreed to by the state and advocates in the Doe v. Miller settlement required physicians to assess patients before and after they are involuntarily medicated. Under CMS rules for community hospitals, practitioners can call a doctor once a patient is restrained, describe his or her symptoms and ask for an over-the-phone prescription.Dupre argued the VSH rule is outdated because the state now allows medical professionals, including physician’s assistants and nurse practitioners to perform many of the duties that were once the exclusive purview of doctors. Requiring physicians to evaluate every patient is ‘not the standard in medical care anymore,’ Dupre said.It’s impractical for a physician to be available after regular working hours for evaluations, he continued.‘The problem is, some people feel the need to follow the rule directly as it was at Vermont State Hospital ‘¦ but the same rights and protections at the state hospital are not defined by the law,’ Dupre said.The commissioner said the proposed rule is not a change in policy because the state expanded the authority of nurse practitioners and physician assistants a long time ago. It’s difficult to find psychiatrists, he said, and ‘if we set a rule we can’t follow, we’re going to make things worse.’‘In my mind, the state of Vermont has licensed these folks to do services that are the same as, or similar to, as to a physician,’ Dupre said.The problem with the phoned in assessment and prescription from a doctor, according to Rep. Anne Donahue, a patient advocate, is that there is no physician examination of the patient. Donahue says psychiatric patients should be seen by a doctor who can make an objective assessment on a patient’s condition before a drug is involuntarily administered.Jack McCullough, the project director of the Mental Health Law Project of Vermont Legal Aid, Inc., says the department’s proposed rule violates the legislative intent of Act 79, which requires the state to offer the same rights and protections for patients in the new decentralized state system that they were availed of at the Vermont State Hospital.At the state hospital, the only person authorized to order the emergency, involuntary medication of a patient was a physician, McCullough said. The department’s proposed rule removes that protection from patients in the custody and care of the commissioner, he said.‘This is a big deal,’ McCullough said. ‘The Vermont Supreme Court has looked at the question of commitment and involuntary medication, and it has said involuntary medication is an even greater intrusion on a person’s liberty than detention for psychiatric treatment. It’s a big deal for a hospital hold you under physical restraint and inject a medicine into you that you don’t want to get.’McCullough rejected the commissioner’s argument that changing the state rule is acceptable because nurse practitioners and physician assistants now do the work of doctors in other areas of medicine.‘The area of medical care here is involuntary,’ McCullough said. ‘In any other area of medical care you’re going to the hospital and they say, well, OK, you have a meeting with the physician’s assistant who is going to examine you, give you a diagnosis and prescribe treatment. That’s voluntary and you can decline that service if your wish is not to get service from physician’s assistant and get service from licensed physician.‘People locked up in a facility do not have the ability to decline a service not being provided by a licensed physician,’ McCullough continued.The second area in which the violates legislative intent, McCullough said, is in the scope of who the new rule applies to. The law, he says, is clear that the regulations must apply to all persons in the care and custody of the commissioner of the Department of Mental Health.Under the proposed regulations, the application of the rule would be limited to only patients who are already on psychiatric units.McCullough says limiting the physician assessment rule to patients on psychiatric units violates the law because ‘it fails to include people in care and custody of the commissioner who have an emergency medical need.’ It excludes patients who are treated in emergency rooms and minors.Too often, he said, patients are held in emergency rooms involuntarily and ‘force is used to keep them there.’ The sheriff’s department is there to physically restrain patients in many cases, McCullough said.The Vermont Association of Hospitals and Health Care Administration has advocated for a broader definition of who can forcibly administer drugs. Jill Olson, a government relations representative for the association, says hospitals have a difficult time recruiting psychiatrists.last_img read more

Welch backs Obama on national plan, Shumlin on Vermont’s approach

first_imgby Alicia Freese Representative Peter Welch, D-VT, is on board with President Barack Obama’s decision to allow individuals to extend their current health insurance plans for one year ‘ and with Governor Peter Shumlin’s preliminary decision to table a delay in implementation of Vermont’s mandatory health care exchange program.Obama needed to offer that one-year extension in order to keep his word, Welch said. The president had repeatedly said that Americans who like their health insurance plans could keep them under the Affordable Care Act, which was not true for plans that failed to meet minimum requirements.‘The bottom line is this is an issue that the president is addressing. He made a promise and a promise made is a promise kept,’ Welch said.The decision is also expected to bring Democratic lawmakers, who were threatening to break ranks with the White House, back into the fold.Welch said he thinks Congress needs to be fully committed to ‘rolling up our sleeves’ and fixing problems with the Affordable Care Act. To that end, he’s backing legislation drafted by House Democrats, which mirrors the executive order Obama announced Thursday. The GOP-led House is expected to vote it down.Beyond that, Welch said he didn’t plan to support other immediate legislative ‘fixes’ that are being floated in Congress.‘Right now the two priorities are the website ‘ that’s got to be operational ‘ and, number two, keeping the commitment the president made,’ Welch said.The House approved legislation Friday, drafted by Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich., that would allow people to continue to purchase new plans that don’t meet the ACA standards. Obama, whose order only permits people already on those plans to keep them for a year, has said he will veto Upton’s bill if it reaches his desk.Welch said that the bill ‘reintroduces a race to the bottom’ for insurance policies and would undermine the ACA.Vermont’s lone representative said he would defer to Shumlin on the decision to not permit Vermonters to extend their plans for a full year. And while he encouraged constituents to call his office if they are having problems with the exchange, he trusts that the Shumlin administration will remedy the situation.‘The state is really taking the lead on this,’ Welch said. ‘Of course I’m reading that there are some issues there, but right now most of the issues arising are being handled by the governor and the people in Montpelier.’last_img read more

1st Annual Made in Vermont Marketplace, this weekend, April 12-13

first_imgThe first annual Made in Vermont Marketplace will take place this weekend, April 12th & 13th, at the Blue Pavilion Building at the Champlain Valley Exposition in Essex Junction. This the only trade show in Vermont that showcases the wide variety of quality products made right here in the Green Mountains. The show will feature wood producers, specialty food products, Vermont’s finest spirits and so much more. This is your opportunity to come and enjoy browsing, tasting and purchasing products all under one roof. You will be able to meet and talk with each artisan, maker and manufacturer of these fine goods. With over 75 exhibits, you will discover products you did not know existed in Vermont. SEE LIST OF EXHIBITORS BELOW.The Made in Vermont Marketplace is open Saturday April 12th from 9 am until 6 pm and Sunday April 13th from 10 am until 4 pm.There will be raffle prizes given away every hour and a Vermont Teddy Bear giveaway as well. Vermont Teddy Bear will also be raffling off a giant Teddy Bear at the end of the show so don’t forget to fill out a raffle ticket. You do not have to be present to win the giant Teddy. Champlain Chocolates, our ticket sponsor, will be giving away one free coffee at their new restaurant in Burlington, the South End Kitchen on Pine Street. The coupon for the free coffee is on the back of each ticket. Parking is free thanks to our parking sponsor, Co-operative Insurance Companies of is external)Look Who Will Be Exhibiting! Bertek Systems, Inc.Birds in Wood, LLCBlake Hill PreservesBoyden Farm, LLCButterworks FarmCabot Creamery CooperativeCaledonia SpiritsChamplain OrchardsChimney ScrubberCobb Hill Frozen Yogurt LLPCommonwealth DairyCo-operative Insurance CompaniesCreative Labels of VermontCurve Trends MarketingEden Ice Cider CompanyExactBuiltElm Brook FarmFreedom FoodsFresh Tracks Farm Vineyard & WineryGrafton Village Cheese Co.Green Village SoapGrey Owl DesignGringo Jack’sHall Home Place Ice CIderHealthy Paws Barkery, LLCImageTek LabelsJed’s Maple ProductsJohnson Woolen MillsKimball Brook FarmMarla McQuistonMy Brigadeiro, LLCNorth Branch VineyardsSienna Fontaine IllustrationSignaramaSinclair MillworksSmugglers’ Notch DistillerySnow Farm VineyardSumptuous Syrups of VermontSweet Basil CardsThe Gourmet GalThird GenerationTrue North Granola, LLCVEDA/ VACC – Vermont Economic Development Authority/ Vermont Agricultural Credit CorporationVermont CreameryVermont DistillersVermont Drying RacksVermont PhotoInkjetVermont Rolling PinsVermont Smoke and CureVermont SpiritsVermont Teddy BearVermont Trophy & EngravingVermont Verde Antique LLCVERY TEMPTING COMPANIES LLCVT Agency of Agriculture, Food & MarketsVT Agency of Commerce and Community DevelopmentWCAX-TV3WhistlePig Straight Rye WhiskeyWoodchuck Hard Cider CompanyWozz! Kitchen Creationslast_img read more

Adirondack community businesses to work with local museums to grow history tourism

first_imgVermont Business Magazine The Adirondack Coast Visitors Bureau, a division of the North Country Chamber of Commerce, is pleased to announce the launch of their newest program, Adopt-An-Attraction. In 2015, the Adirondack Coast Visitors Bureau revisited the Clinton County Destination Master Plan. This plan outlines goals to grow the lake region destination, helping to draw visitors to the area, staying in local lodging properties and discovering area attractions. During the planning process history was identified as a core strength. Growing the areas heritage tourism with unique visitor experiences, will create a need for visitors to extend their stay. The Adirondack Coast Visitors Bureau knows how vital it is that we as a community work with local history museums and attractions to help the area continue to develop as a world class destination. Since budgets are small for a variety of these museums and attractions, to grow heritage tourism the Visitors Bureau has created a program called “Adopt-an-Attraction”, a goal outlined in the Destination Master Plan.How does Adopt-an-Attraction WorkLocal businesses were given a list of participating non-profit attractions to develop a partnership with and help complete projects to enhance their offerings. To launch the program the Plattsburgh Kiwanis Breakfast Club chose to partner with the Lyon Mountain Mining and Railroad Museum. The Lyon Mountain Mining and Railroad Museum, dedicated to depicting the histories of the Lyon Mountain Iron Mines and the Chateaugay Branch of the D&H Railroad, then provided the Plattsburgh Kiwanis Breakfast Club with a list of projects they wished to have completed. After reviewing the list, the Plattsburgh Kiwanis Breakfast Club didn’t waste any time getting started and has since been up at the museum working to provide a new coat of paint for the building. Ann Kent, Treasurer of the Plattsburgh Kiwanis Breakfast Club, stated “When the Plattsburgh Kiwanis Breakfast Club heard of an opportunity to partner with the Lyon Mountain Mining and Railroad Museum our club members were immediately on board.  The members are excited to be able to assist the museum with projects that are not only supportive of our local history but have the added benefit of being fun and promote fellowship within our group.  If any other organizations or businesses in the area are looking for a way to help some of our struggling museums I whole heartedly endorse the Adopt-an-Attraction Program.  All it takes is a little time.”Jane Kelting, from the Lyon Mountain Mining and Railroad Museum, stated “The Adopt an Attraction program has benefitted the Lyon Mountain Mining and Railroad Museum. Members of the Plattsburgh Morning Kiwanis Club spent several days painting the outside trim and window frames of the RR Station that houses our museum. We are very grateful for the work that they did and wish to thank them as well as the Chamber, and look forward to our partnership growing.”The Adirondack Coast Visitors Bureau is still looking for businesses and non-profit attractions wanting to participate in the Adopt-an-Attraction program. To sign up, please contact Amber Parliament at 518.563.1000 or [email protected](link sends e-mail). The Visitors Bureau hopes these partnerships will last for many years, and help to develop each non-profit attraction.About the Adirondack Coast Visitors Bureau                                                                                                        The Adirondack Coast Visitors Bureau, a division of the North Country Chamber of Commerce, was established in 1994 as the official tourism promotion agency for the travel and tourism industry in Clinton County, NY. Based in Plattsburgh, NY, the Adirondack Coast Visitors Bureau contributes to the county’s economic development and quality of life by promoting the region as a destination for leisure and group travel with a particular focus on history, agriculture and outdoor recreation including cycling, paddling, fishing, boating and skiing. For more information about Clinton County tourism, please contact the Adirondack Coast Visitors Bureau at 518.563.1000, visit is external) or log onto, NY– 10/13/2015 – The Adirondack Coast Visitors Bureaulast_img read more

High Mowing founder named Vermont Small Business Person of the Year

first_imgVermont Business Magazine The Small Business Administration announced the 2016 Vermont small business award winners today. The top prize, the Vermont Small Business Person of the Year, is awarded to Tom Stearns, High Mowing Organic Seeds founder and owner. He is being recognized for growing his company, increasing sales, employee growth and contributing to the local community. High Mowing Organic Seeds is a farm-based company located in Wolcott that produces and distributes vegetable, flower and herb seeds throughout the US and Canada. High Mowing Organic Seeds is the first organic company guaranteeing all of its seeds are non-genetically modified organism verified.Tom Stearns, High Mowing Organic Seeds founder and owner.Stearns launched his company in 1996, and in its first year sales were $2,000.  By 2001, business had grown to such an extent Stearns began to contract with other local farmers to grow his seeds. Twenty years later his company has grown to be one of the top organic seed companies in the U.S., and today has more than 60 employees.The other 2016 Vermont winners are Mansfield Heliflight as the Exporter of the Year, Shat Acres Highland Cattle as the Family-Owned Small Business of the Year, Sweet Crunch Bakeshop & Catering Company as the Woman-Owned Business of the Year, Power Play Sports as the Young Entrepreneur of the Year, Snug Life as the Micro-Enterprise of the Year and Desai Management Consulting as the Minority-Owned Business of the Year.Each year since 1963, the President of the United States has issued a proclamation announcing National Small Business Week, which recognizes the critical contributions of America’s entrepreneurs and small business owners.“Small business owners represent the best of the best and showcase daily their entrepreneurial spirit and what it takes to be successful in today’s evolving and competitive business environment,” said Maria Contreras-Sweet, administrator of the Small Business Administration.Stearns and the 49 other state winners are invited to attend the ceremonies in Washington, D.C. May 1 to 2 where they will be awarded their individual awards, along with the naming of the 2016 National Small Business Person of the Year. “There are more than 28 million small businesses serving as the economic engine of our country, employing half of the private sector and creating two out of three net new jobs. If our small business sector was a country, its output would rank number three above Germany and Japan. I’m looking forward to welcoming these talented entrepreneurs to their nation’s capital and celebrating their stories to shine a light on American ingenuity and innovation,” said Contreras-Sweet.In the spring, all of the Vermont small business winners will receive their awards during the 2016 Vermont Small Business Awards Ceremony cohosted by Vermont Business Magazine at the Shelburne Museum Pizzagalli Center for Art and Education located in Shelburne, Vt. The ceremony is open to the public and registration will be available in May.2016 Small Business Person of the Year WinnersALABAMA               Xiomara Hernandez Bracken                         Owner                                                                        Bouncing Parties, Inc.                                              ALASKA                               Connie Core-Dubay                                                   CEO/OwnerCold Spot Feeds, Inc.ARIZONA                             Paul A. Smiley                                                                                   President                                                                                Sonoran Technology and Professional                       Services, LLC                                                            ARKANSAS             Regina Renee Radke                                                 CEO                                                                                       Wade Stuart Radke                                                   COO                                                                                      Galley Support InnovationsCALIFORNIA                      Helen Margaret Russell                                                                                  Co-Founder and CEO                                               Brooke Jean McDonnell                                            Co-Founder and PresidentEquator Coffees and Teas, Inc.COLORADO            Reed Howard Silberman                                           Founder/CEO                                                            Ink Monstr                                                                             CONNECTICUT                 Peter Newman                                                           CEO                                                                                       Victoria Newman                                                                   Executive DirectorGreenwich Education GroupDELAWARE                        Chris J. Bisaha                                                                       Joseph A. Baker                                                                                 Co-OwnersHenlopen City Oyster HouseDISTRICT OF COLUMBIA                                                                      Robert C. Palmer                                                                   CEO                                                                                       Creative Business Solutions, Inc.FLORIDA                 Sherry L. Acanfora-Ruohomaki                                Owner/President                                                                    K9 Kampus LLC                                                                   GEORGIA    Catherine A. Downey                                                CEO                                                                                       CATMEDIA, Inc.                                                                 GUAM                       David J. John                                                             President                                                                                ASC Trust CorporationHAWAII                    Raymond Jardine Jr.                                                  Chairman & CEO                                                                  Native Hawaiian Veterans, LLC                               IDAHO                       Enrique F. Contreras                                                  Ana M. PazOwnersConpaz Inc. dba Enrique’s Mexican RestaurantILLINOIS                  Dwayne Steven Jackson                                            President & CEO                                                                   Software Tech Enterprises, Inc.INDIANABaziel W. Vrient                                                                    President                                                                                Albert W. VrientOperations ManagerAgdia, Inc.IOWA             Anthony D. Halsted                                                  Owner                                                                        Hoover’s Hatchery Co., LLC                                    KANSAS                   Roger Lee Ward IIIDana Marie WardOwnersGreat Day Moving (Marathon Moving & Delivery LLC)KENTUCKY                        David Allen Dafoe                                                    Founder/CEO                                                            8th Street Ventures                                                     Dba Flavorman, dba Distilled Spirits                      Epicenter                             LOUISIANA Angela O’Byrne                                                                     President/Owner                                                                    Perez, APCMAINE                                  Margo Walsh                                                              Owner                                                                        Maine Works LLC                                                     MARYLAND                        Patrick Babasola Munis                                             CEO                                                                                       NewWave Telecom & Technologies, Inc.MASSACHUSETTS                                                                                    Robert Jacob George                                                             Founder, President and CEO                                                StratComm, Inc.                                                                                MICHIGAN              Russell Beaver                                                           President                                                                                RB Construction Company                                       MINNESOTA                       Gloria Jean Freeman                                                  CEO                                                                                       Olu’s Home/Olu’s Center                                          MISSISSIPPI                        Mike PornovetsOwnerEverything Kayak LLCMISSOURI                David Laurence BaileyFounder & PresidentBaileys’ RestaurantsMONTANA               Greg Thayer                                                               CEO                                                                                       Eugene Thayer                                                                       DirectorMontana Merchandising, Inc.                        Dba Montana Milling, Inc.NEBRASKA             Yolanda F. Diaz                                                                     Member/Owner                                                                      Little Miss Fashion LLC                                            NEVADA                  Bradley J. BurdsallOwner and OperatorThe Egg WorksNEW HAMPSHIRE             Elie El-Chalfoun                                                        Owner/OperatorMega-XNEW JERSEY                      Charles Olivo                                                             Founder and Principal                                    Stonefield Engineering and Design LLCNEW MEXICO   Karl S. Halpert                                                           President & CEO                                                       Private Label Select Ltd. Co.                        NEW YORK Tammy Ann Loewy                                       Wynde Kate ReeseOwnersGreen Goddess Foods LLCNORTH CAROLINACharles Ashton CreechPresidentThomas Howard ChappellVice President – MaintenancePlus TeamNS Aviation, LLC dba North State AviationNORTH DAKOTAJon Simmers                                                                           CEO                                                                                                   Bismarck Aero Center                                                                                              OHIO              Sally Hughes                                                  CEO                                                                           Caster Connection                                         OKLAHOMAEllis “Lanny” McIntosh                                 Founding Principal, CEO                              The McIntosh Group                                     OREGON      Jeremy MurfinGeoff MetsJohnpaul SimonetOwners/Members5.S.G. LLC dba Five Star GuitarsPENNSYLVANIA   Dr. Wei-Shin Lai                                                                    Chief Executive Officer                                                        AcousticSheep LLC                                                  PUERTO RICO                    Fernando J. Rodriguez                                                           President                                                                                Prime Janitorial Service Corp.                        RHODE ISLAND                 Thomas Parsons Kellogg III                                      President                                                                                Parsons Kellogg LLC                                                SOUTH CAROLINA                       JoAnne LaBounty                                          President                                                                                Spartanburg Meat Processing Co., Inc.SOUTH DAKOTA               Janet R. Eining                                                                       Owner                                                                        Cellular Only Connection, Inc.TENNESSEETerence Andrew Douglas                                          President                                                                                Alliant CorporationTEXASYolanda Arriola                                                                     President and CEOSouthwest University at El PasoUTAHJay Benjamin BroadbentPresidentAlpine Home Medical Equipment LLCVERMONT               Thomas M.L. Stearns                                                 PresidentHigh Mowing Organic SeedsVIRGIN ISLANDS              Brianne B. Beatty                                                      Ryan B. Skinner                                                                     OwnersFlagship, LLCVIRGINIA    Caroline Anne Taylor                                                             RN-President                                                             Taylor Made Diagnostics, Inc.WASHINGTON       James “Kiwi” Ferris                                                   President                                                                                Edensaw Woods, Ltd.                                                           WEST VIRGINIA    Arria Hines                                                                             President & CEO                                                                   Allegheny Science & Technology Corp.                    WISCONSIN             Mark Matthiae                                                           CEO                                                                                       Crystal Finishing Systems, Inc.         WYOMINGAnthony Andrew AguireePresidentTriple A Building Services, Inc.last_img read more

Randolph wastewater facility opens, USDA announces $17.9 million for 18 water projects

first_img$325,000 loan for storm water drainage improvements and system enhancements. Town of Berlin $20,900 grant to perform a preliminary engineering and environmental reports for the upgrade of the wastewater system. $83,000 loan and $142,000 grant to improve water lines on two village main streets. Town of Brighton $19,000 loan to complete the new treatment and storage building for the town’s new water system. $776,000 loan and $1,844,000 grant to improve the water system necessary to eliminate public health issues associated with the current system. Village of Wells River Randolph Area Community Development Corporation Town of Royalton Bellows Falls Village Corporation Greensboro Fire District No.1 Town of Bristol Village of Saxtons River $286,000 loan to remedy leakage and operational issues in the water system. $1,106,000 loan and $834,375 grant to improve the Royalton Wastewater Treatment system. $577,000 loan and $221,500 grant to improve the water system of the Town of St. Johnsbury. Westfield Fire District No. 1 Town of Bristol $112,388 emergency grant for the replacement of waterlines and the removal of contaminated soils. Royalton Fire District No. 1 $1,044,000 loan and $1,526,880 grant to replace a water storage tank originally built in the 1800’s.center_img $884,000 loan and $1,277,000 grant to upgrade the town’s water treatment facility to increase efficiency and reduce environmental impact.*This project was previously announced in April of 2016.Source: RANDOLPH, VT. (September 1, 2016) – USDA. For more information on Rural Development visit the Vermont Rural Development website ( is external) ) or contact USDA RD at (802) 828-6000. $2,561,000 loan to update and refurbish the Wastewater Treatment Facility in the Bellows Falls Village. $175,414 grant to improve the Comstock Road water main to guarantee access to potable drinking and reliable water services. Tom Berry (Senator Leahy’s office), Ted Brady, Mel Adams (Randolph Town Manager), Elizabeth Walker (Plant Manager), Chuck Goodling (Dabois and King), George Twigg (Representative Welch) Burce Kenney (T-Buck Construction).Vermont Business Magazine During a grand opening celebration of Randolph’s new wastewater facility Thursday, US Department of Agriculture (USDA) officials announced that 18 communities across Vermont are receiving a total of $17.9 million in loans and grants to improve water, wastewater and stormwater infrastructure through the USDA’s Water and Environmental Program. The funding is the largest single-year investment the agency has made in Vermont’s environmental infrastructure since the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. “Communities across the state are taking important steps to ensure that Vermonter’s can access safe drinking water and to protect our rivers, lakes and streams,” said Ted Brady, Vermont and New Hampshire State Director for USDA Rural Development. “USDA Rural Development supports towns and non-profits in these efforts by providing low interest loans and grants that incentivize a town to act immediately, while interest rates are low and construction costs are manageable.”Brady joined officials and community members from the Town of Randolph to celebrate the completion of the Randolph Sewer District’s new wastewater treatment plant funded by an $8,867,000 USDA loan/ grant package beginning in 2013.  Randolph town manager Mel Adams noted that the plant replaces a four-decades-old facility that reached the end of its useful life. The newly constructed plant will be more cost effective to run, due in part to new energy efficient technologies, and will treat the water for nitrogen helping to improve water quality in the Connecticut River Basin and Long Island Sound. Adams stated that the new plant will serve roughly 2,000 residents as well as major community institutions including Vermont Technical College.At the ribbon cutting, Brady announced that 18 Vermont communities will use USDA funding this year to make water and wastewater improvements in the coming years. For a full list of funded projects, see chart below.  Projects include construction of new stormwater infrastructure for the Town of Bristol, a new water storage tank in Wells River to replace a century-old tank, and a $175,414 grant to help the Town of Berlin make water main improvements to guarantee potable drinking water to residents.  These projects result from a strong partnership between the USDA, the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation and local partners. The projects ultimately aim to improve water and wastewater systems serving nearly 30,000 Vermonters.Brady noted that USDA Rural Development funded these projects through its Water and Environmental Program(link is external) that provides support to municipalities and non-profits that seek to improve the water, wastewater and stormwater infrastructure serving their communities. Since the beginning of the Obama Administration, the Water and Environmental Program has directly impacted 18 million rural residents nationwide, including more than 84,000 Vermonters.USDA, through its RD mission area, administers and manages housing, business and community infrastructure programs through a national network of state and local offices. Rural Development has an active portfolio of $214 billion in loans and loan guarantees. These programs are designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities, businesses, residents, farmers and ranchers and improve the quality of life in rural areas.USDA Rural Development2016 Vermont Water and Environmental ProjectsProject Barton Village, Inc. Town of Readsboro $30,000 grant to produce preliminary engineering and environmental reports to assess improvements to the Readsboro water system. $2,164,000 loan and $882,200 grant to upgrade the existing wastewater treatment facility and construct a new treatment facility. Town of Brandon $756,000 loan to improve water mains in the town and a water main extension to serve Woodland Apartments. $29,900 grant to perform a planning study to assess improvements for the water treatment and distribution system. $81,000 loan and $107,575 grant to upgrade the water and wastewater systems at the Armstrong Mobile Home Park. Town of Williamstown* Waterville Fire District No. 1 $12,000 grant to improve the water treatment system. Description Town of St. Johnsbury Town of Sutton $22,000 grant to produce preliminary engineering and environmental report to assess improvements to the Lake John Dam and the Royalton water system. Burke Fire District No 1last_img read more