Green Mountain Power Corporation (NYSE:GMP) has beennamed to Business Week magazine’s list of top-performing small-capcompanies. The Company was ranked 25th out of 50 companies ranked and wasthe only Vermont-based company included. The list was compiled by rankingthe Standard & Poor’s SmallCap 600 stocks by one-and three-year totalreturns as of Feb 14.”It is very satisfying to see Green Mountain Power included in BusinessWeek’s list of top performing companies. We have vigorously pursuedimproving customer service while finding new ways to control costs. Theresults have clearly benefited our shareholders right along with ourcustomers,” said Christopher L. Dutton, president and chief executiveofficer of Green Mountain Power.According to the Business Week article, most of the best companiesprospered by increasing productivity and aggressively cutting costs.Green Mountain Power’s three-year total return was 181.5 percent.The article is available on-line at: www.businessweek.com/bw50/content/mar2003/a3826058.htm(link is external)and thelisting of the 50 companies is available at: www.businessweek.com/bw50/content/mar2003/a3826059.htm(link is external).
Gallagher, Flynn Launches Executive Compensation SurveyGallagher, Flynn & Company hasstarteda web-based executive compensation survey as an addition to theirsuccessful New England Salary Survey. This survey will provideinformation not currently available about competitive pay for seniormanagers in Vermont and across New England.”There is no good data that is easily available on executivecompensation in small private companies in Vermont and New England. Wewill change that with this survey,” said Frank Sadowski, partner incharge of this survey. “We get many calls asking for this information.With this survey, participants will have the information at theirfingertips whenever they need it.The New England Salary Survey represents the next big step in providingcompensation information that companies need. It provides perpetuallycurrent data to participants over the internet. The data can be dividedby industry, region, and size of company. It lets companies make thecomparisons they need for their own purposes. Adding the executivecompensation information will make the survey even better.”The New England Salary Survey currently has participants from Vermontand New Hampshire. More than 100 companies and non-profits will beparticipating by the end of September. Companies pay an annual fee(currently $375), put their data into the survey either over the web orby filling out a paper survey, then have access to the data from thewebsite (www.nesenglandsalarysurvey.com(link is external) ) for a year. The website’ssoftware updates all the salary averages with the addition of each newcompany’s data and drops any data over a year old from the calculations,keeping the data current. Data is being collected on over 300 jobscurrently, and good salary information is now available on more than 150positions. Benefit and bonus information is also available.The executive compensation section covers 17 positions, though anindividual company is not likely to have all of them. In addition to theCEO, COO and CFO, jobs like the top research and development executiveand the top fund raising executive (for non-profits) are included.Access to this information requires a separate access code so thatcompanies can determine who will have access to this data.To promote the executive compensation section, all subscribers to theNew England Salary Survey prior to October 1 will have free access tothe executive compensation section if they add their data. After October1, there will be a separate charge for the executive compensationsection.The New England Salary Survey will soon have data that is specific tomany different regions of Vermont. “We already have great data forChittenden and Washington Counties, and we should soon have dataspecific to Franklin and Addison Counties, the Upper Valley and severalother counties,”said Sadowski. In addition, marketing in New Hampshireis expected to increase the number of companies in the survey east ofthe Connecticut River. Eventually, the survey expects to include datafrom all the New England states.For more information about the survey, go to the website,www.newenglandsalarysurvey.com(link is external)or call Frank Sadowski at 802.651.7216.
Montpelier, VT – Cambium Group, LLC, a leading web site development firm specializing in innovative web site designs and content management systems announced the launch of a new web site today for Local Government Federal Credit Union (LGFCU), headquartered in Raleigh, North Carolina. The web site, www.lgfcu.org(link is external) is the end result of an enormous team effort between the credit union and Cambium Group.The main objective for the completely renovated site is to provide more information on LGFCU products and services in a more user-friendly manner for their self-service oriented members. Cambium Group and LGFCU worked closely over several months to develop a web site that not only provides extensive information on LGFCU, but also highlights LGFCUs members.”The Cambium team has proven themselves to be resourceful, insightful, and creative. It is a pleasure to lineup with an organization that shares our commitment to quality.” commented Maurice Smith, President of Local Government Federal Credit Union. “We wanted to make a spectacular statement about the membership culture of Local Government Federal Credit Union. The outcome is a web site that demonstrates functional as well as visual distinction.”An endless list of new and improved features include intuitive navigation that allows members to maneuver through only three levels of navigation with ease, a brochure stand much like members see in a physical branch location that allows them to select and read a brochure in pdf format online, a quick-search for ATM or branch locations by county, city or zip code, an online web library (OWL) which will build a database of knowledge about LGFCU, credit unions and financial matters for members and visitors to the site. Most notable is that the site contains no stock photography. Only photos of North Carolina locations and people are featured throughout the web site, including member photos and profiles.LGFCUs site fully demonstrates another credit union setting new standards for a financial web site commented Scott Wells, Cambium Groups owner & founder. We plan to take the site to even greater heights of service for their members through the strategic partnership weve formed with LGFCU. This is only the beginning!LGFCU has the ability to control the entire web site using Cambium’s exclusive, feature-rich content management system. The system provides the credit union a comprehensive rate management system, navigation control, an online survey builder, message board system, PDF/document uploader, event management system, custom website traffic statistics, an archive system and many more management tools.###
In an awards ceremony Wednesday evening, NRG Systems of Hinesburg and BioTek of Winooski were the big winners at the 2009 Best Places to Work event hosted by Vermont Business Magazine, the Vermont Chamber of Commerce and the Vermont Society of Human Resource Management. The event was held at the Main Street Landing Film House in Burlington. The companies were honored based on the results of surveys given to each company’s employees. The awards honored five large companies (Over 150 employees) and 10 small & medium sized companies (15 to 149 employees). NRG was named the top company to work for in the small/medium sized category and BioTek was named the large company winner. Of the many companies whose employees were surveyed by Best Companies Group from Pennsylvania, only these 15 were named the Best Places to Work in Vermont.The recipients of this year s awards were:Small/Medium Companies: Edward Jones Instrumart MBF Bioscience NRG Systems. Inc Resource Systems Group Inc Small Dog Electronics TPW Management VELCO (Vermont Electric Power Company) VocRehab Vermont Wells River Savings BankLarge Companies: BioTek Instruments, Inc. Gardener’s Supply Company Green Mountain Power King Arthur Flour Company Merchants BankSmall/Medium Size companies (15 – 149 employees)10) VocRehab VermontVocRehab Vermont takes pride in creating an environment that values and empowers all their employees. Their mission is to help people with disabilities find and maintain employment and help employers find qualified job applicants. Their employees enjoy a high degree of autonomy. They trust their judgment and ability to make wise decisions about the services they can provide to their customers. Their belief is that when employees are treated from a strengths-based, holistic perspective, they will do the same when assisting their customers and will achieve amazing results. The fruit of this philosophy is borne out in them being ranked the number one state vocational rehabilitation organization in the country two years in a row.9) Resource Systems GroupGiven that RSG was founded in 1986 by three Dartmouth professors, it s no surprise that their offices have a campus casualness and a buzz of intellectual curiosity and spirited hallway conversation. Their 60+ employees in their White River Junction headquarters and other offices, including Burlington, enjoy dog-friendly workplaces, flexible schedules, varied assignments, and weekly catered seminars to learn about peers and projects. Last year s carbon offset challenge to work and lifestyle choices took their corporate environmental principles and made them personal. With Vermont offices on the Connecticut River and Lake Champlain, loving where they work comes naturally.8) VELCOVelco obviously can t be sure, but they believe they may have won this award because of their commitment to building a collaborative environment built on trust and integrity. That requires honesty. Honesty in sharing with each other what works and the much more difficult task of identifying what doesn t. This honor is particularly meaningful because of the honest feedback from their Associates. VELCO is powered by passionate people in an industry that is in the midst of a transformation and while there is still work to be done, they take great pride in this achievement and are reaffirmed that integrity is the essence of everything worthy of success.7) MBF Bioscience We are honored to receive this recognition,” says MBF Bioscience President Jack Glaser. MBF Bioscience strives to create an environment that fosters creativity, teamwork, and innovation, and they recognize that their employees are the most important determinant of their success. Their products are designed to help scientists pursue their research in curing diseases and better understanding human health. Their work environment and the creativity of its employees translates into cutting-edge products and great service for their customer.6) Small Dog ElectronicsThere are many facets to working at Small Dog that would explain why they are one of the Best Places to Work. They are a socially responsible company, which means they have a multiple bottom line the effect they have on the environment, community, customers and employees is just as important as maintaining their profitability. People, planet and profit. Small Dog does not exist solely to make money, they exist to do good, to make good jobs, to have a great workplace, to be involved in their community, to protect their planet and to be a different type of company. They like to think of themselves as a family at Small Dog Electronics. They are committed to providing employees a livable wage and excellent benefits5) TPW ManagementTPW Management remains one of the Best Places in Vermont to Work due to its core principles; Honesty, Integrity and Communication. These principles are valued by all those within the TPW family. As a family-owned, Vermont-based Company, TPW has grown to be the # 1 community management company in Vermont. With better satisfaction of their customers, their motto stands on its own, GO PLAY, LEAVE THE WORK TO US. In addition to a great place to work, TPW encourages its employees to have fun and at the same time be civic minded. This past year the TPW family has helped a number of causes; among the many are the Stratton Foundation, Susan G. Komen VT Race for a Cure, Burr & Burton Academy and the Make a Wish Foundation of Vermont. This, once again, provides the employees of TPW a sense of belonging and reaffirms that TPW is one of the Best Places in Vermont to work . 4) Wells River Savings BankWells River Savings Bank has a caring and understanding environment where decisions are generally made based on what is the right thing to do for staff and less on how it affects the bottom line. Many of their employees have worked together a long time–26% of their staff has been there more than 20 years, with the average tenure of their current staff at twelve years. As a result, they go through all stages of life together, celebrating the good times and helping out in the bad times. This is part of the reason that employees often refer to the bank as being more like a family than an employer. The bank and its employees frequently combine their efforts and resources to help out an employee or community member in need. They have maintained this family atmosphere as they have added employees and branches, all the while keeping pace with advances in technology by continually updating their systems and providing opportunities for growth and advancement for their employees.3) Edward JonesEdward Jones is a partnership possibly the country s largest operating partnership with more than 11,000 limited partners, including more than one-third of the firm s associates. Associates see how they personally have an impact on the firm s success and helping each other is part of that partnership. Sharing the success and supporting each other is great for morale, which naturally is great for business. Everyone has the opportunity to become a partner in the firm, and to earn trimester bonuses and profit sharing when the firm is profitable. Each branch traditionally includes one financial advisor and one BOA, who have the freedom to set their own hours, work on community projects they enjoy, as well as serve clients well the way they best see fit. Many branches employ part-time BOAs, each working different days and times, according to their individual needs. Edward Jones offers a mountain of opportunities and the tools, training, guides and maps to climb it. Associates need only passion, stamina and determination to strike out for lofty goals. Unlimited opportunity is part of the package at Edward Jones.2) Instrumart It is great to have fun at work, but Instrumart takes exceptional care of its employees too. All employees get full health and dental benefits, free gym membership, 401k and profit-sharing, and other “perks” that are unusual for a small business to offer. Employees take Instrumart’s success personally, and everyone there works as if it was his or her own company. Their employee retention rate is 100% over the past 5 years. Although they are now 33 employees strong, it still feels like a “family” business.1) NRG Systems NRG Systems, manufacturer of wind measurement equipment, strives to build and maintain an exceptional workforce and workplace. Their employees share a common goal: to provide a renewable energy future for their children and for the planet. Through their products and practices they aim to walk the talk every day, whether it s through their LEED-gold certified building, their lean operations, or their green benefits. They don t see these as trade-offs to profitability, but rather practices that drive their profitability. The most remarkable aspect of NRG Systems workplace, on the face of it, may seem very basic. It is the sense of challenge, autonomy and responsibility employees feel for their work. It is that essence of meaningful work that keeps turnover close to zero and makes NRG Systems a dynamic and exceptional place to work.Large Companies (150 or more employees)5) Gardeners SupplyGardeners Supply is an employee owned (ESOP), open book company. They couple employee ownership with education, so each employee understands their business and how he or she can make a difference in their results. They also offer extensive gardening education. They foster a culture in which they expect everyone to be an active participant in achieving their company s mission & goals. They have nine staff meetings each year and have an employee newsletter, As The Compost Turns , published about six times a year. Their annual Town Meetings are an opportunity for everyone, in groups of 10-20 employees, to meet with the CEO to ask any question and discuss any topic they would like. They shut down the entire company for their annual shareholders meeting. Their ESOP Committee actively solicits input from employees twice a year in a process called A Brownie for Your Thoughts . They also fulfill their triple bottom line (profits, people and planet) by involving employees in community activities, including employee directed donations and paid volunteer time.4) King Arthur FlourKing Arthur Flour is America s oldest flour company and premier baking resource, and has twice been named Vermont s Best Place to Work. King Arthur Flour offers its employees an open-book management philosophy, a family-friendly work environment, a commitment to social and environmental responsibility, and much more. Perhaps most important to King Arthur Flour s success is the culture of respect and inclusion cultivated through employee-ownership. Employee-owners understand that their contributions shape the success and the future of the organization. Employee-owners are honored for their passion and dedication, and they re empowered and encouraged to share suggestions and concerns, successes and challenges. This respect and caring is felt by customers and business partners, too, who find the passion and enthusiasm at King Arthur Flour inspirational.3) Green Mountain PowerConsistent with its corporate values, Green Mountain Power stands out in the way it has created a positive work environment for all employees. The corporate culture is open, transparent, and nimble. An open physical environment fosters productive personal interactions and creates a team approach to problem solving. Profit sharing engages employees and empowers them to make the best decisions. Employees are given the technology and tools they need to get the job done safely, effectively, and efficiently. A culture of responsibility encourages a team approach to tackling challenges, recognizes and rewards success, while always looking for opportunities to improve. employees are encouraged to participate in community projects, including a company volunteer day packing food at the FoodBank and working with Mobius, The Mentoring Movement. GMP s benefits are consistent with corporate ad social values.2) Merchants BankMerchants was named among the top five “Best Companies to Work for in Vermont” in the Large Company category (150+ employees), recognized for high marks for overall work environment, role satisfaction, corporate culture and communications.”Merchants Bank is honored to be given this award and recognized for its efforts to create a positive work environment for its employees,” commented Merchants Bank’s President and CEO, Michael R. Tuttle.1) BioTekBioTek is more than just a job, it s a second family. Summer barbeques, yearly company parties, and departmental potlucks help foster a fun atmosphere of team building and mutual respect. The owners of the company regularly communicate strategic goals and encourage employee feedback. They are completely involved and know every employee (and their children) by name. The accessibility to executive level leadership and the autonomy and trust that they provide their employees is truly unique.This family atmosphere and culture of mutual respect, as well as flex time, good benefits, and profit sharing contribute to the average 11+ year tenure of a typical BioTek employee. BioTekkers enjoy coming to work and we know that each one of them is making a difference.
Source: Governor’s Office Governor Jim Douglas today announced that $300,000 in brownfield grants have been awarded to help revitalize former industrial and commercial properties in Barre, Brattleboro, Burlington, Johnson Village, Springfield and Wells River.Brownfields are properties where expansion, redevelopment, or reuse may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant or contaminant.“The brownfield program is a great example of our ability to balance environmental protection and economic development,” Governor Douglas said. “Redevelopment of brownfields properties stimulates local economy by getting unproductive properties back on the tax rolls, strengthening downtowns and creating jobs.”The brownfield reuse program at the Department of Environmental Conservation has awarded almost $1 million in grants in the last three years to 20 projects across Vermont.The following projects received grants:In Barre: $20,000 for assessment work at an old granite shed on Granite Street. ReCycle North of Burlington hopes to reclaim the building to expand its current reuse and job skill training operations.In Brattleboro: $15,000 for assessment work at the former TriState Auto building located on the New England Youth Theater campus for the future home of FulcrumArts. FulcrumArts, which won the 2007 Brattleboro Development Credit Corp.’s business plan contest, plans to create a downtown arts facility.In Burlington: $100,000 to remove contaminated debris and sediment at the former Moran plant, along the waterfront.In Johnson Village: Up to $11,000 for a corrective action plan at the former Vermont Electric Co-Op facility on School Street. Housing Vermont and Lamoille Housing Partnership are cooperating to create 24 units of affordable housing for seniors and families.Additionally, there are plans to build a distribution center for a local organic farming group.In Springfield: Up to $94,000 to remove the chip shed and boiler house building and other cleanup at the former Fellows Gear Shaper site on River Street.In Wells River: $60,000 for indoor air sampling, surface cleaning and removal of underground storage tanks at the former Adams paper mill on Main Street, which will eventually become warehouse space and general commercial space for lease.About the Brownfield Reuse Initiative Program: The Department encourages brownfields reuse as a means of achieving positive environmental and human health impacts while advancing sound land-use practices. Reutilization of historically productive properties supports sustainable development trends and promotes community and economic growth. An acre of brownfields redevelopment preserves 4.5 acres of open space.The Department of Environmental Conservation’s initiative comprises several programs and provides one-stop shopping where brownfields developers can obtain the tools needed to deliver projects in a safe, timely and cost-effective manner. Most projects can be completed within a 9- to 18-month time frame, and work can be expedited to meet developer needs.DEC takes a holistic approach to project management, providing technical assistance with the purchase and cleanup of properties; securing financial assistance to leverage developer investment; and coordinating the involvement of related programs offered by regional planning commissions, the state’s Agency of Commerce and Community Development and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.Additional brownfields assistance programs available in Vermont include regional planning commission grants for environmental investigation, and grants and low-interest loans for brownfields cleanup through the Agency of Commerce and Community Development’s brownfields revitalization fund.
Source: Governor’s office. Sept. 11, 2009### The Douglas Administration marked the first anniversary of RGGI auctions by announcing that Vermont will receive $471,319 as its share of this week’s cap-and-trade carbon allowance sale.“Vermont, along with our RGGI partners, continues to lead the country in combating climate change,” Governor Douglas said. “As we work for a cleaner environmental future, Vermonters will also see the economic benefits that come with new green jobs and lower energy bills.”Vermont was the first state to join the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) as part of the Governor’s platform of climate change initiatives. In the first year since RGGI auctions began, the state has earned $3.2 million in five auctions. These proceeds will be invested in energy efficiency, renewable energy, technology development and other programs that return the value of the allowances to consumers.Since last September more than 100 bidders, including electric utilities, manufacturers, financial institutions, environmental groups, and individuals have participated in the RGGI auctions for CO2 allowances. Trading volumes on national, regulated exchanges now match volumes in other established carbon markets, such as the Kyoto Clean Development Mechanism. And every major power plant in the 10-state RGGI region now reports quarterly CO2 emissions to the public in an emissions and allowance tracking system.In the latest auction, the selling price for 2009 allowances was $2.19 while 2012 futures sold for $1.87.About RGGIThe 10 Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states participating in RGGI are Vermont, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Hampshire, New York and Rhode Island. RGGI states have designed the first market-based, mandatory cap-and-trade program in the U.S. to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Power sector CO2 emissions are capped at current levels through 2014. The cap will then be reduced by 2.5 percent in each of the four years 2015 through 2018, for a total reduction of 10 percent.A CO2 allowance represents a limited authorization to emit one ton of CO2, as issued by a respective participating state. A regulated power plant must hold CO2 allowances equal to its emissions to demonstrate compliance at the end of each three-year control period.For more information, turn to: www.rggi.org(link is external)
The Vermont Department of Labor (VDOL) is providing information today on the recent passage of the Federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation 2008 (EUC 08) program. Congress passed legislation last week to retroactively extend the Federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC08) program. Based on the passage of this legislation Vermont is now authorized to establish entitlement under the EUC08 program for eligible claimants. Vermont currently qualifies for the first two Tiers of the EUC08 program. Tier 1 provides up to 20 weeks and Tier 2 provides up to 14 weeks of additional benefits. Claimants can file up to 26 weeks of state benefits before shifting to the extended federal program which in Vermont consists of up to 34 weeks of emergency compensation. The maximum number of weeks currently available in Vermont is 60 weeks.Payments for claimants who elected to continue to file claims and report work search on-line have already been released and mailed. Claimants who exhaust regular unemployment insurance that are found eligible for the EUC08 program are required to report to their local career resource center to register for the EUC08 benefits.The Vermont Department of Labor has 12 career resource centers and satellite offices that will continue to provide Vermonters assistance with job seeking skills and strategies including a compilation of occupational data for those interested in career changes or new entrants to the workforce. In addition, the Department continues their collaboration with Community College of Vermont to offer the Career Readiness Certificate training, free of charge, to Vermonters interested in bolstering their work readiness skills. The Department has a variety of federal and state training programs to assist unemployed individuals seeking work and/or employers needing to train new hires. Regional career resource center staff can assist folks interested in learning more about these opportunities. For a list of the Department’s resource centers and other information, please visit our website at www.labor.vermont.gov(link is external). Source: VTDOL. 12.22.2010
Burlington Telecom,The City of Burlington has issued a response to the report by Larkin and Associates with respect to Burlington Telecom (’Larkin Report’). The Larkin Report was initiated in October 2009 by the Vermont Department of Public Service in relation to proceedings on BT before the Vermont Public Service Board. The Report was released over a year later on December 10, 2010 and contains several conclusions related to BT’s compliance with its CPG, knowledge of those compliance issues, accounting practices, and the viability of Burlington Telecom.The City’s response addresses Larkin’s methodology in developing the report, Larkin’s conclusions related to BT as a going concern, the City’s response to BT’s finances, Condition 60 of BT’s Certificate of Public Good, and several accounting matters.In a memo to the City Council regarding the report, Mayor Bob Kiss stated: ‘I encourage you to review these issues carefully. The Larkin report omits critical facts, contains inaccuracies, fails to verify assumptions and relies on dated information. Moreover, Larkin did not engage person-to-person with key City staff or the City’s auditing firm and financial consultants.’Mayor Kiss adds that ‘while we have several concerns about the Larkin Report that needed to be addressed, our focus is to continue to move forward to preserve Burlington Telecom as an asset providing significant value to Burlington and potentially Vermont.’The full response can be found at: www.ci.burlington.vt.us/docs/3367.pdf(link is external).In partnership with the City Council, Mayor Kiss has called a special City Council meeting on BT for January 27 at 6:30 pm in Contois Auditorium. The meeting will be an opportunity for the public to get information about the status and future of Burlington Telecom and have questions answered. The City is encouraging those with questions to submit them in advance, to be answered at the meeting. In addition to asking questions at the meeting, questions may be submitted in advance at www.ci.burlington.vt.us/bt(link is external).January 25, 2011 – Burlington, VT. January 25, 2011 – Burlington, VT. January 25, 2011 – Burlington, VT.