Town of Randolph’s Request for Proposals – Local Hazard Mitigation Planning Services

Request for Proposals

Local Hazard Mitigation Planning Services

The Town of Randolph, in Orange County, Vermont, seeks the services of a qualified consultant to

create a new Local Hazard Mitigation Plan for the Town of Randolph (2010 pop. 4,778). A final

draft is to be completed no later than August 10, 2020. The plan approved by the Randolph

Selectboard will be submitted to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for approval.

Please contact Adolfo Bailon, Town Manager, with any questions regarding this request for

proposals. Inquiries may be made through email at abailon@randolphvt.org. Please include “LHMP

RFP” in the Subject line.

 

RFP for LHMP

GMEDC’s Disaster Revolving Loan Fund Awards First Loan

Green Mountain Economic Development Corporation (GMEDC) was awarded a Rural Business Development Grant from USDA to create a Revolving Loan Fund for businesses affected by disasters. GMEDC closed its first loan of $15,000 on August 25th in Hartford, VT to DJ Enterprises/AC Lawn Mowing following extensive storm damage July 1st. Water, mud, stone ballast and debris from the railroad embankment above their property on Old River Road in White River Junction crushed their main building, forcing cancellation of their business operations and vacated several tenants. The well-known local owners, Chuck and Alicia Gordon, were visited by Governor Scott and Commissioner of Labor Lindsay Kurrle the next day to view the devastation first hand. They assured the Gordons that Commissioner Kurrle would remain in contact afterward to work with federal, state and local agencies and help get them back on their feet.

GMEDC Executive Director Bob Haynes became their local point of contact for meetings with Ross Hart of SBDC to provide business planning and inspections by Ben Rose, Section Chief for Vermont Emergency Management Division, Lori Hirshfield, Director of Planning for the Town of Hartford and FEMA. Bob also worked closely with their attorney, Brad Fawley, of Downs Rachlin and Martin.

Alicia Gordon said “We are most grateful for the tremendous support and care provided by Lindsay and Bob and we don’t know what we would have done without them! They really care about us small fries and they did everything they could to help us. This is our life and they understand that.”

 GMEDC is eager to learn of other businesses that could benefit from this newly created Revolving Loan Fund. The loans are fairly small but are structured to meet individual needs with a 0% interest rate” explained Mr. Haynes. “Other programs are available for larger amounts. We work closely with VEDA, our state industrial bank, and federal loan programs to help protect our small businesses and their employees. As we experienced during Irene, it is a lot of work for us, but it’s an important part of what we do as a Regional Development Corporation. We are most appreciative of USDA for this support.

Business owners Chuck & Alicia Gordon, GMEDC Executive Director Robert Haynes, GMEDC Board Co-Chair Sperry Wilson and Commissioner of Labor Lindsay Kurrle at the August 25, 2017 Loan Closing.

Surveying the damage at AC Lawn Mowing

VtSBDC Training: Financial Statements 102

The VT Small Business Development Center (VtSBDC) will be holding a training on business accounting and budgets on February 8th in Wilder, VT.

Vermont Small Business Development Center

Financial Statements 102 – Room 102

Topic: Business Accounting and Budget
Wednesday, February 08, 2017 5:30 PM to 7:00 PM
CCV
Wilder

This workshop is appropriate for those business owners who have had exposure to basic accounting principles and have spent some time with their own statements and would like to learn more. It is a perfect follow up for those who took the Financial Statements 101 workshop. Among the topics covered will be an in-depth discussion on cost of goods sold, gross margins and how pricing and direct labor impacts them, and the importance of understanding cash flow. Participants are provided with a high quality workbook and encouraged to bring samples of their own statements so they can work individually with them. The instructor is available after the workshop to answer questions.

Speaker(s): Ross Hart

Fee: $ 25.00

Payments can be mailed to: VtSBDC, PO Box 188, Randolph Center, VT 05061 or you can call the main office at: (802) 728-9101 with a credit card number.

Already Registered? Sign in for more information.

Email: Send

Location

145 Billings Farm Road
White River Junction, VT

Public Forum: “Securing Vermont’s Economic Future” November 17th 4:00pm – 6:00pm

Vt Futures LogoThe Green Mountain Economic Development Corporation (GMEDC) and the Hartford Chamber of Commerce announce a public forum by the Vermont Futures Project, “Securing Vermont’s Economic Future,” on Thursday, November 17th, 2016 from 4:00pm – 6:00pm at the Quechee Club, 3268 Quechee Main St, Quechee, VT 05059.

The Vermont Futures Project’s Jeff Lewis and Jennifer Stromsten will present the data they have gathered so far from ten events across the state with over 400 Vermonters participating.  They will then open the discussion to get an accurate temperature reading on the economy of the Upper Valley as well as important regional issues and hopes for the future.

The Vermont Chamber Foundation launched the Vermont Futures Project in January 2016 with the goal of articulating a shared vision for a healthy state.  The Vermont Futures Project is a data-driven initiative designed to help secure Vermont’s economic future by providing opportunities for its residents.  More information about the Vermont Futures Project, including what they have gathered to date, can be found at www.vtfuturesproject.org.

For additional information, please contact Bob Haynes at 802-295-4231 (w); 603-448-8494 (m) or go to http://www.gmedc.com

There is no charge for the event but RSVP by contacting gmedc@gmedc.com.  Hors d’oeuvres will be provided and there will be a cash bar available.

Transportation Board holds White River Forum on Rail

 

The Vermont Transportation Board at 6 p.m. on November 16 will hold a public forum in White River Junction on transportation policy associated with trains, both passenger and freight. The Board wants to discuss railroad related issues with the public – including passenger expansion to Montreal, rail-side economic development and living with railroads as neighbors – to determine how future policy can be shaped to best position Vermont’s rail interests to meet the needs of the state residents.

The forum, which will be held at the Hotel Coolidge at 39 South Main Street, is one of seven such public conversations the Board is holding around the state. Topics the Board plans to discuss include:

  • Living with railroads as neighbors, and the issues they present.
  • Passenger rail expansion along Vermont’s western corridor between Rutland and Burlington.
  • Passenger rail expansion from various points in Vermont to Montreal.
  • Truck traffic through villages and town centers, and the effect of rail expansion.
  • Adjacent rail-side economic development and planning for increased rail activity.
  • Starting commuter rail service linking Brattleboro to various points in Massachusetts.
  • Rail Safety, including crossings, trespassing and response to potential emergency incidents.

“Vermont is poised to significantly expand passenger rail in the very near future, while at the same time the state also is seeking growth opportunities for both the movement and off-loading of freight,” said David Coen, Acting Chair of the Transportation Board. “As a result, we want to have a conversation with Vermonters to both hear their suggestions as well as understand their concerns regarding these new services and how the state uses its rail lines.”

People who cannot attend a forum can submit written comment by visiting the Board’s website at http://tboard.vermont.gov/. For more information, contact John Zicconi at john.zicconi@vermont.gov or by calling 802-828-2942.

Press Release: Public Forum Focused on the Depressed Forest Products Sector  

(Bradford) An informative public conference took place in the old Bradford Academy on October 5th sponsored by the COHASE Chamber of Commerce, Green Mountain Economic Development Corporation (GMEDC) and the Vermont Working Lands Enterprise Initiative, directed by the Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development (ACCD).

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The event was attended by over 100 participants including: loggers, foresters, truckers, saw mill and power plant operators, land owners, legislators and staff from Vermont’s congressional offices as well as state and federal officials. It was conceived by Marvin Harrison, a key driver of the Cohase Chamber and a local commercial banker with Wells River Savings Bank and Bob Haynes, the Executive Director of GMEDC. The decision to host a public forum followed discussions on behalf of clients in the region who are experiencing financial difficulty with businesses related to the forestry industry in all aspects. As Mr. Harrison said in his introductory remarks, “This is a major problem for all of us who live and work here, not just those of us who are employed in the woods. Bob and I wanted to assemble a group of local folks to share observations and ideas and see what could be done about it.”  Haynes seconded this sentiment and explained that he reached out for assistance from Joan Goldstein, Vermont’s Commissioner of Economic Development and Jared Duval, the Director of Working Lands Program in Vermont.  “We wanted to introduce people directly involved with forest products – “boots on the ground” – to state and federal agency staff and elected officials to discuss the forces at work and possible solutions. The stakes are high and we’re not sure that the average person recognizes how difficult the situation has become.”

Harrison, Haynes and Duval spent several weeks planning the event with the expressed hope to conduct an open and respectful session.  The program began with a panel discussion including:  Peter Condaxis, Chief Forester of the Ryegate Power Station, Bob Moses, President of Britton Lumber, Ryan Kilborn, Chief Forester/Principal with Meadowland, LLC, Marcus Bradley, Co-owner, Redstart Forestry and Bruce Limlaw, Owner of Limlaw Chipping and Land Clearing. Each gave his perspective of problems, opportunities for relief and suggestions about how best to proceed. The audience was invited to respond and several exchanges took place which highlighted items that need more analysis and attention from the state legislators. Sales taxes on forestry equipment and the high cost of Workers Compensation as compared to neighboring states was referenced by several speakers as well as the importance of promoting biomass heat for schools, hospitals and other public buildings. A central theme was that unfortunately, biomass has become a poor stepchild of the renewable energy market as compared to solar and wind. Ironically, it should be considered the only renewable source since it can provide direct benefits to the region perpetually and not just the owner of an energy device (solar or wind).  For example, Ryegate Power and Burlington Electric purchase approximately $150M of wood chips annually and most agreed that the legislature and Public Service Board should be advised to reconsider their support or opposition.

Jared Duval then introduced Steve Sinclair, VT Director of Forests who spoke briefly and introduced Paul Frederick, the Wood Utilization and Wood Energy Program Leader for the VT Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation. Mr. Fredericks gave a Power Point presentation he called “A 30,000 foot view of Drivers and Trends” describing the Vermont forest products industry from a historical perspective to its current status. His central message was that the forces at work are substantial, are effected by national and international issues and that the New England Region in particular is suffering badly as a result.

The balance of the three-hour meeting was spent with a “town hall” style discussion. Among the participants was Mark Scarano, the Federal Co-Chair of the Northern Border Regional Commission whose district includes upstate NY, VT, NH and Maine. Scarano thanked the sponsors for taking the initiative to hold the event and expressed how important the discussion is. He promised that it is receiving appropriate attention on the federal level and that similar meetings will take place soon and that coordination with other communities in the region will be an important component to finding meaningful long term solutions.

A sign up list with contact information was gathered and notices of subsequent meetings and updates will be circulated. For further information, please contact Bob Haynes at 802-295-4231 (w); 603-448-8494 (m), or go to http://www.gmedc.com

Vermont Wood Products Forum – Oct 5th

Save the Date & Call to Action

The Vermont Wood Products Industry

You are cordially invited to attend a public forum co-sponsored by the Cohase Chamber of Commerce, Green Mountain Economic Development Corporation, and the Vermont Working Lands Enterprise Initiative.

Wednesday, October 5th, 2016

1:00 to 3:00 pm
Bradford Academy Auditorium
172 North Main Street
Bradford, VT 05033

We will be joined by forest products businesses, legislative representatives, state and regional economic development officials, technical assistance providers and lenders with programs specific to the forest products sector as we work together to:

  • Frame industry challenges and market trends
  • Provide information on existing resources
  • Exchange ideas and coordinate efforts to improve markets

RSVP

Marvin Harrison mharrison@wrsb.com or 802-222-2991

Bob Haynes rhaynes@gmedc.com or 802-295-3710

Jared Duval jared.duval@vermont.gov or 802-272-2461

All are welcome to attend

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