Nevada Trust Company has announced an affiliation with Fraser Management Associates. Fraser is a nationally respected Registered Investment Advisor firm, which owns the Contrary Opinion Forum. For the past 50 years, investment professionals from across North America, Europe and Asia have gathered each year in Vermont to share investment ideas and listen to respected pioneers in the business. The Forum is believed to be the longest continuously running investment related conference in the nation. Explained David Thorson, vice president and treasurer of Nevada Trust Company, ‘ Our affiliation with Fraser is the latest in a series of strategic affiliations for Nevada Trust. In June of last year, we formed a similar affiliation with Rutherford Investment Management, LLC of Portland, Oregon. The addition of the Fraser affiliation brings one of the most respected, effective contrarian investment teams in the business. At the same time, clients of both Fraser and Rutherford benefit through access to Nevada Trust Company’ s market analysis and institutional resources. It also gives clients of both firms access to the State of Nevada’ s trust friendly legal environment, which provides unparalleled asset protection, tax and privacy laws. Nevada Trust Company executives utilize the trust operating software, securities custody, and investment advisory support of a national institution administering $4.4 trillion and managing $662.2 billion. Through this special relationship, Nevada Trust Company provides clients with state-of-the-art technology and up-to-the-minute investment information. ‘ Trusts in Nevada enjoy an unparalleled tax and regulatory climate,’ said W. Alex Seagle, principal of Fraser Management Associates. ‘ In discussing this affiliation, our clients are astounded when they learn that state income taxes are virtually prohibited under the Nevada State Constitution. Strict privacy laws in place in Nevada, and the regulatory climate is markedly pro-business. We look forward to a strong alliance with Nevada Trust Company.’ Fraser Management Associates is also internationally known for its study of the earth’ s climate and environment, with respect to investment opportunities. Rather than studying man’ s effect on the Earth’ s climate, Fraser’ s study is focused on the Earth’ s effect on man and global markets. For more than 35 years, Fraser has collaborated with world-renowned climatologist Evelyn Browning-Garriss to publish The Browning Newsletter. This outstanding monthly publication affords Fraser and its clients access to ideas and insights no other money manager captures. The newsletter is simply the best long term climate forecasting tool in the world, and has subscribers literally around the globe. As contrarian investors, Fraser Management Associates follows an approach with a unique discipline that begins with identification of overlooked or underappreciated trends and themes. Overriding, yet overlooked issues such as the environment, water scarcity, aging, Hispanic migration and massive demographic shifts may make headlines, but they also offer changes in the global economy, which no knowledgeable investor should overlook. About Nevada Trust CompanyNevada Trust Company is the only full-service independent trust company in Nevada. Established in 1995, Nevada Trust Company competes with the finest trust and investment management services available anywhere in the United States. Founded to serve the needs of successful individuals, families and closely held companies, Nevada Trust Company executives focus on highly personalized service and innovative solutions. For more information, visit www.nevadatrust.com(link is external)About Fraser Management AssociatesFraser Management Associates is an independent investment management firm. Fraser manages its equity portfolio primarily for clients of wealth managers, family and multi-family offices, high net-worth individuals and foundations and endowments. Investment management is Fraser’ s sole focus and passion. Fraser applies the Theory of Contrary Opinion to the investment management process, which makes the firm stand apart from traditional money managers in many respects. Fraser’ s value is derived from its identification of overlooked and under-appreciated themes. The firm studies human behavior, market psychology and global and industry trends, applying its findings to the security selection process. For more information, visit www.fraseradvisors.com(link is external)Nevada Trust Company 2.27.2013
by Andrew Stein July 19, 2013 vtdigger.org The state will allow insurance brokers in the state’s new health insurance market to charge $20 per person, per month. Health officials plan to dole out $2 million in federal money to subsidize small businesses that want to use a broker.On Jan. 1, 2014, it will become illegal for health insurance companies in Vermont to bake broker fees into their rates.For years, health insurance premiums included fees for agents who sold health insurance, regardless of whether a health insurance consumer used an agent. Insurance companies paid agents based on commission, or the amount of insurance the broker sold. Act 171, which passed the Legislature in 2012, will do away with the practice for the state’s new health insurance exchange, called Vermont Health Connect.‘We think the commissioner really took the public comment period to heart and gave it thoughtful consideration and understood the economic impacts of what it would mean for the brokerage community and consumers in Vermont.’Mary Eversole, Vermont Insurance Agents AssociationLegislators decoupled broker fees from premiums for the new market in an effort to prevent cost shifting and make insurance fees more transparent.In 2014, the exchange will become the sole health insurance marketplace for more than 100,000 Vermonters who purchase insurance individually or through a small business with 50 or fewer employees. In this market, brokers won’t sell insurance; they will advise customers. Instead of earning a commission, agents will receive a $20 fee set by the state, which customers will pay.Originally, the Department of Vermont Health Access proposed a $15 per person monthly charge for 2014. But the department met resistance from the Vermont Insurance Agents Association, which called for a $22 fee.‘The challenge was that if we went too low, brokers would back out and we would lose access to their support. If we went too high, small businesses wouldn’t pay,’said Mark Larson, commissioner of the department.In the end, the parties agreed on the $20 monthly charge, and Mary Eversole, director of the association, said her members are satisfied.‘We are very happy with that outcome, considering where we left off with that original proposal,’Eversole said. ‘We think the commissioner really took the public comment period to heart and gave it thoughtful consideration and understood the economic impacts of what it would mean for the brokerage community and consumers in Vermont.’Larson said the insurance association was the only entity to submit a recommended rate that was different from what his department proposed.Robin Lunge, director of health care reform for the Shumlin administration, said it is important to have brokers on board with the exchange, though they won’t be selling insurance.‘People are used to using brokers. For someone who hasn’t paid attention and is waking up to the fact that maybe they should learn about this, they are going to go to their broker first because that’s whom they are used to dealing with,’she said. ‘I think it’s in everyone’s interest to make sure that system is working well.’The state is offering $2 million in subsidies to small businesses that want to use broker services in the first year of the exchange. Larson and Lunge have not yet determined what percentage of those fees the state would fund. That decision should come in the next month or two, they said.The state has also paid more than $2 million to organizations offering free guidance for Vermonters who are buying insurance on the exchange.More than 170 so-called ‘navigators’recently received training to help Vermonters understand the exchange. Open enrollment begins Oct. 1.- See more at: http://vtdigger.org/2013/07/19/state-sets-fees-for-insurance-brokers-inv(link is external)…
2013 Next Generation Manufacturing Study Reveals Opportunities for Manufacturers to ExcelRandolph Center, VT – In conjunction with National Manufacturing Day activities being held during the month of October across Vermont, the Vermont Manufacturing Extension Center (VMEC) is pleased to announce the release today of the “2013 Next Generation Manufacturing (NGM) Study.” The NGM Study measures manufacturers’ readiness, support systems, resources, and performances in six key strategic areas necessary for world-class manufacturing and future success. Those key areas include: 1) Customer-focused Innovation; 2) Engaged people / human capital acquisition, development and retention; 3) Superior processes / improvement focus; 4) Supply chain management and collaboration; 5) Sustainability; and 6) Global engagement. The American Small Manufacturers Coalition (ASMC), in partnership with The Manufacturing Performance Institute (MPI), part of The MPI Group, chose National Manufacturing Day to release a summary of its results from the 2013 Next Generation Manufacturing (NGM) Study based on recent survey responses by manufacturing executives from Vermont and across the United States. Current data shows that manufacturing organizations that achieve world-class status in at least two of the six NGM strategies, and maintain industry-average levels in the other four areas, are in the best position for long-term survival and success. However, the 2013 data finds that most of these manufacturers ‘ successful as they are today ‘ are not sufficiently investing in the strategies that will carry their firms into tomorrow. ‘The study data identifies an enormous execution gap ‘ the difference between the numbers of firms that recognize the importance of a particular NGM strategy, and the number that comes close to or that achieved world-class status in that strategy,’ said John Brandt, Founder & CEO of MPI. For example, the study found: 90% of manufacturers believe superior process improvement is important, whereas only 44% of those manufacturers are near or currently at world-class status in process improvements.While human capital management is an issue, NGM data suggests few manufacturers are taking initiative to address talent shortages: 69% of manufacturing executives have the leadership and talent to drive world-class customer-focused innovation, but only 37% have talent development programs to support world-class customer-focused innovation.Most manufacturers have the tools, technologies and business equipment they need today, but those tools won’t meet the needs of the future. Only 11% of manufacturers describe their tools and business equipment as ‘state-of-the-art’ and capable of providing long-term support for world-class supply-chain management.33% of manufacturing executives anticipate a planned leadership succession in the next five years, and another 28% of executives indicate a succession may occur.Similar to 2011, manufacturers continue to seek external support from outside organizations in dealing with a range of activities from compliance issues, to strategic planning, to supply-chain development. Of those manufacturers that have used outside resources, they report a positive impact.According to Bob Zider, VMEC Director / CEO, “Clearly, small and medium-sized Vermont manufacturers must continue to transform and stay focused wherever possible on closing the execution gaps across all six NGM strategies in order to remain competitive long term, and that unfortunately isn’t happening rapidly enough when you compare the 2013 NGM survey results against results from the 2009 and 2011 NGM Surveys.’ About VMEC – Since 1995, VMEC has operated as a not-for-profit with a primary mission “To improve manufacturing in Vermont and strengthen the global competitiveness of the state’s smaller manufacturers.” This is done through confidential consulting, coaching, hands-on implementation assistance and training to help Vermont manufacturers achieve profitable growth through innovation, increase their productivity, improve their manufacturing and business processes, reduce costs, improve competitiveness, and create and retain good paying jobs. Through the VMEC PSG business unit established in 2006, VMEC also brings its deep process and strategy expertise to selected non-manufacturing sectors in Vermont, including but not limited to healthcare, higher education, government, and financial services. Visit www.vmec.org(link is external) for more information. Randolph Center, VT – 10.4.2013
by John Herrick vtdigger.orgSenate lawmakers are concerned that a bill designed to give towns more say in the location of solar projects may prevent the state from moving towards its renewable energy goals.At a Senate Democratic caucus Tuesday, lawmakers discussed a committee bill, S191, which would require state regulators to uphold town energy plans when deciding whether to approve energy projects.Sungen solar farm in Sharon off I-89. Photo by Roger Crowley/for VTDiggerThe bill comes after towns raised concerns over the rapid growth of the solar industry’s expansion into rural areas of the state.Renewable energy advocates who oppose the bill say it could prevent the state from moving toward its energy goal to source 90 percent of its power from renewables by 2050, as described in the state’s comprehensive energy plan.The bill will be taken up by the full Senate Wednesday, but some lawmakers are concerned about what the new rules could mean for the state’s energy goals.“My fear is that we are chipping away at the public good theory when it comes to utilities and also undermining our ability to comply with our comprehensive energy plan and move toward renewables,” said Sen. Anthony Pollina, P/D/W-Washington, at the Senate Democratic caucus meeting Tuesday.“We may be setting standards for solar installations – even relatively small ones – that is harder or tougher than it would be for an ugly hotel,” he said.The Senate Natural Resources and Energy Committee voted unanimously to support the bill last week after hearing testimony from residents and town officials in Rutland and Charlotte who are concerned about the recent growth of the solar industry and its impact on the aesthetics of their towns.The quasi-judicial Public Service Board reviews energy generation projects through the Section 248 process. This process is guided in part by the state’s renewable energy goals and towns must intervene in the process to voice their concerns.Sen. Diane Snelling, R-Chittenden, supports the bill and says she recognizes the complexity of balancing statewide energy goals with local control.“This legislation is a response to towns that felt that their screening and setback requirements were not honored in the PSB process. Therefore, it gives their screening and setbacks jurisdiction in the Public Service Board process,” she told Senate Democrats Tuesday.Snelling said the committee is trying to balance decades of land use planning with the rapid growth of the solar industry (and other renewable energy projects) to supports the state’s clean energy goals. “How do we have those coexist in a way where we honor both local planning and the PSB process in balance?” she said.Sen. Bob Hartwell, D-Bennington, chair of Senate Natural Resources said the bill is not designed to “zone out” solar projects from towns. He said the committee’s intent is to require the board to consider local setback and screening bylaws in the review process for all energy projects.
by Morgan True vtdigger.org The House Health Care Committee is working this week on revisions to a Senate-passed health care reform bill, S.252, which is likely to see significant changes before it hits the House floor.Much of the bill focuses on requirements that the Shumlin administration furnish legislators with information they need to craft laws defining the contours of Green Mountain Care, Vermont’s planned universal health care program.The Vermont Workers’ Center sponsors a Health and Diginity Rally in the Cedar Creek Room of the Vermont Statehouse in Montpelier on opening day of the 2014 legislative session. Photo by Roger Crowley/for VTDigger“We’re trying to identify information points that we don’t have answers for at this point,” said Rep. Chris Pearson, P-Burlington, explaining the overarching goal of the legislation.But there are substantive policy proposals that will impact the implementation of universal health care in both the Senate and House versions of S.252.The Senate bill defines the benefits package for Green Mountain Care as those now covered under the essential health benefits packages for Vermont Health Connect, the state’s health care exchange program.Health care reform advocates say that tying benefits to the lowest tier of coverage under Vermont Health Connect could curtail debate on benefit levels.Act 48, the state’s health care reform law, requires the Green Mountain Care Board to define the benefits package, and advocates want to strictly adhere to that process to ensure an open and public discussion of what services should be covered by the program, said Mary Gerisch, president of the Vermont Workers’ Center, an advocate of universal health care.“Ideally we would want to move away from the idea of a benefits package at all, and Vermonters would just get the health coverage they need through Green Mountain Care,” Gerisch said.The concept of covered services originates from the health insurance industry, Gerisch said, where health care is viewed as a commodity that must yield a profit.One of the goals of a universal health care system, according to Gerisch, should be to move from coverage to care, or providing people the services they need to stay healthy, instead of the services their health plan will pay for.“We also know that the Legislature is interested in defining a benefits package to help them understand how much the program will cost,” Gerisch said.In recognition of that reality, the Workers’ Center partnered with Rep. Kristy Spengler, D-Colchester, to draft language that would set the more generous Vermont State Employees Association health plan’s benefits package as the floor for Green Mountain Care. The actuarial value of the VSEA plan is 94 percent.Reports, contracting and reports on contractingThe Senate version of S.252 sets dates by which the administration must contract for administrative and other services.When the bill was being drafted in the Senate, Robin Lunge, director of Health Care Reform, asked lawmakers not to put deadlines in statute.The exchange between Lunge and members of the Senate underlined a fundamental tension between the administration and the Legislature.Sen. Claire Ayer, D-Addison, said the two sides need to find a balance “between not pushing ourselves to go forward when we’re not ready, but pushing ourselves to be ready.”Proposed changes in the House version would eliminate the deadlines for contracts, and roll progress updates on contracts into broader quarterly reports on health care reform from the administration.Rep. Mike Fisher, D-Lincoln, chairman of the House Health Care Committee, hears testimony at the Statehouse in Montpelier. Photo by Roger Crowley/for VTDiggerThat’s the approach favored by Rep. Mike Fisher, D-Lincoln, and chair of House Health Care.“We all know things don’t go as planned,” Fisher said. “What we need to do is set goals and expectations and build a process where the administration regularly updates us on its progress.”The Senate version of the bill called for the administration to write nine reports on different aspects of health care reform to be submitted over the next two years.Spengler and the Workers’ Center also propose additional transparency measures in the contracting of a third party administrator.Their language would require each bidder to disclose their financial and other interests in Vermont and multi-state health systems reform in order to identify any conflict of interest, Gerisch said.“We need to make sure we know exactly what (the contractor) is going to get out of it,” she said.It also calls for the “social value” of a contract to be considered, how it will impact the economic and social wellbeing of the state and residents.Parity among the payers?One report under consideration in the House would require the administration to study the impact of raising the Medicaid reimbursement rate for providers to the Medicare level.Low Medicaid reimbursement rates compensate providers at roughly half the cost and at a much lower rate than Medicare; providers make up the difference by charging a higher rate to commercial insurers, who then build that back into the premiums they charge.That’s known as cost shifting. Addressing the disparity among payers could reduce commercial premiums in the short term, said Pearson, who authored the proposal.It’s also an important consideration in the transition to Green Mountain Care, he said.If private insurance is no longer a payer in Vermont’s health care system, then providers will no longer be able to recoup Medicaid losses by charging more to commercial insurance.Increasing the Medicaid reimbursement rate would take pressure off the rate Vermont would need to set for Green Mountain Care, said Mark Larson, commissioner of the Department of Vermont Health Access.Vermont’s Medicaid budget is close to $1.2 billion, with 55 cents of every Medicaid dollar coming from the feds. Increasing the Medicaid rate would increase the portion of the state’s health care costs borne by the feds under Green Mountain Care.Raising the reimbursement rate for Medicaid to the higher Medicare rate would cost the state between $44 million and $60 million, Larson said.That’s only for the health services administered by his department, which covers the majority of Medicaid services. The cost estimate would be higher if it included Medicaid costs for the Department of Mental Health and Department of Disabilities, Aging and Independent Living, Larson said.A far more modest, 2 percent increase in Medicaid reimbursement rates included in the governor’s proposed budget, was slashed in the budget recently passed by the House.It’s unclear if lawmakers would be willing to substantially increase the rate to take pressure off private premium payers in the short term, but increasing the rate when the state transitions to Green Mountain Care will be an important consideration.
People of color considering a move to Vermont can now access a website to learn about the experiences of others who have moved to the Champlain Valley Region of Vermont. The website, www.iamavermonter.org(link is external), is funded by KeyBank and features testimonials from individuals who have moved to Vermont over the past twenty years. Testimonials describe personal experiences before and after a move, and tips for making the transition work for spouses and family. The Lake Champlain Regional Chamber of Commerce’s website will feature a link to iamavermonter.org(link is external).“iamavermonter.org(link is external)” was conceived in 2009 by Dr Dan Balón who at the time was diversity director at the Burlington Schools. Dan passed away in January, 2013. He aspired to bring more people of color to the Champlain Valley to help diversify the region’s and state’s work forces. According to the US Census, Vermont is 95% white; the City Burlington is 87.3% white.“We cannot hope to expand Vermont’s economy in the absence of attracting talent in the multi-cultural marketplace,” said Curtiss Reed, Executive Director at Vermont Partnership for Fairness & Diversity in Brattleboro. “The iamavermonter website sends a clear and unambiguous message to the rest of the country that our state is open for business,” he said.Thirteen residents of the Champlain Valley area are featured, including Tracy Griffith, Associate Professor of Media Studies, Journalism & Digital Arts at St. Michael’s College, and Hal Colston, founder of Good News Garage and recipient of the 2014 Vermonter of the Year award from the Burlington Free Press. The website features only testimonials. It is not designed to list employment opportunities.If you’re a person of color with a story you’d like to share, please send them to [email protected](link sends e-mail) for consideration.
Vermont Business Magazine Each year the Vermont Recreation and Parks Association presents the coveted Theresa S. Brungardt Awards to a professional, friend and organization who has made significant contributions to parks and recreation in Vermont. At the recent Vermont Conference on Recreation held at Lake Morey Resort, Brungardt Awards were presented to Thomas Hark of Williston (Friend), Local Motion based in Burlington (Organization), and Hartland’s recently deceased Recreation Director Ray Sapp (Professional).Thomas Hark recently retired after thirty years of service as the Executive Director of the Vermont Youth Conservation Corp. Over the course of those 30 years, the Vermont Youth Conservation Corps flourished and now employs more than 350 young people each year. The VYCC has completed tens of millions of dollars’ worth of high-priority conservation projects throughout the State of Vermont, all under the passionate leadership and expansive vision of Thomas Hark. For thirty years, VYCC and Thomas Hark have provided transformational learning experiences to nearly 6,000 young people, and as adults, they are effecting positive change in their communities and the environment across the nation.Local Motion was founded in 1999 to pursue the idea of re-connecting the Burlington Bike Path and the Colchester Causeway. In time, the organization broadened its sights on making the Greater Burlington area a better place to walk, bike, run and ski. The organization flourished and today Local Motion helps communities build more sidewalks, trails and safe streets; hosts events like Intervale XC Skiing and Great Ice to keep people active all year long; runs a community bicycle shop in Burlington’s Old North End; operates the Causeway Bike Ferry; operates a Trailside Center on the Burlington waterfront providing maps, rentals and advocacy information; and manages the Trail Finder — a free online mapping resource for all area trails. Just this past summer, more than 14,000 people rode the Island Line Bike Ferry between Colchester and South Hero.The Professional Award was presented posthumously to Ray Sapp, Past-President of the Vermont Recreation & Parks Association and Director of the Hartland Parks & Recreation Department until his untimely death this past July. Ray was remembered for being a passionate professional who would coach multiple teams and officiate games within a single sport’s season, set up all the games and paint the fields where the games were played. Former employee and current VRPA president, Andy Cappello, recalled that whenever VRPA needed help, the organization could always turn to Ray Sapp. He was the only individual to ever serve the association as president for three years. Andy recalled that Ray applied careful measurements to all of his decisions and with tough decisions, Ray always sided with the child, making every effort to ensure that recreational opportunities were available to everyone who wanted to play. Ray’s son, Josh, accepted the award on behalf of his father.Theresa S. Brungardt was a pioneer and outstanding leader of parks and recreation in Vermont. She was Vermont’s first state Director of Recreation, having been appointed by Governor Wills in 1943. She traveled tirelessly throughout Vermont to help communities with their recreation programs. Many of the community recreation departments today could trace their origins back to technical assistance and inspiration provided by Mrs. Brungardt. She was nationally recognized for her expertise and in 1952 was elected the first female president of the American Recreation Society. She was inducted into the NRPA (National Recreation & Parks Association) Hall of Fame in 1997.In 1975, the Vermont Recreation and Park Association, in cooperation with the Recreation Section of the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation, established the Theresa S. Brungardt Award – to encourage the improvement of recreation and park services in Vermont by recognizing outstanding recreation and park professionals, lay members, and organizations. The awards are presented to a professional, friend, and organization every year at the Vermont Governor’s Conference.Photo: 2015 Brungardt Award recipients with five of Mrs. Brungardt’s relatives. (far left) Sandy and Joshua Sapp, (center) Thomas Hark, and (far right) Emily Boedeker and Brian Costello from Local Motion.
Vermont Business Magazine The University of Vermont Medical Center was recognized this month by The Joint Commission as a Top Performer on Key Quality Measures for 2015. The quality measures cited by the commission were the medical center’s performance in treating heart attacks, heart failure, pneumonia, surgical care and stroke. The Joint Commission accredits and certifies nearly 21,000 health care organizations and programs in the United States. Joint Commission accreditation and certification is recognized nationwide as a symbol of quality that reflects an organization’s commitment to meeting certain performance standards.In the notification letter to the medical center, Joint Commission President and Chief Executive Officer Mark R. Chassin, M.D wrote, “This achievement demonstrates your hospital’s commitment to assuring that evidence-based interventions are delivered in the right way and at the right time – because it’s the right thing to do for your patients.”“We are thrilled to receive this recognition,” said Eileen Whalen, MHA, RN, president and chief operating officer, UVM Medical Center. “It is high-level recognition of the commitment of our staff to our patients and their families and excellent health care the staff delivers every day.”University of Vermont Medical Center 11.24.2015
Vermont Business Magazine The Northern Border Regional Commission, a federal-state partnership for economic and community development, has announced the availability of $1.7 million in grant funds for projects in Essex, Orleans, Caledonia, Lamoille, and Franklin counties and the towns of Alburgh, Isle La Motte, and South Hero in Grand Isle County. The commission seeks applications from public bodies, non-profit organizations, or Native American tribes for projects that will directly or indirectly result in job creation and positive economic impact.Information sessions for interested applicants will be held on:Thursday, February 18 from 2-4 pm at the Morristown Town Offices, 43 Portland Street, MorrisvilleTuesday February 23 from 2-4 pm at the Northeastern Vermont Development Association, 36 Eastern Avenue, Saint JohnsburyWednesday March 9, from 1-3 pm, at the Swanton Village Offices, 120 First Street, Swanton.The information sessions will also include an overview and opportunity to comment on the new Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy for the six northern counties. The development strategy sets goals and priorities for the region to ensure coordinated economic development and guides priorities for state and federal grants.Grant proposals to the Northern Border Regional Commission can be for any of the following purposes: transportation, telecommunication, and basic public infrastructure; workforce development; entrepreneurship, technology, or business development; resource conservation, tourism and recreation; or community-owned renewable energy development. In the counties of Essex, Orleans, and Caledonia, projects for basic health care and other public services are also eligible.Staff from the Northern Border Regional Commission and the Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development will provide an overview of the grant opportunity, laying out the application process, timeline, and selection criteria. The information sessions are being co-hosted by the local Regional Development Corporations and Regional Planning Commissions and also by Vermont’s Congressional Delegation, including the Offices of Senator Leahy, Senator Sanders, and Congressman Welch, who together made these grants possible.Applications for grants will be available by mid-March and due in early June. In 2015, the Northern Border Regional Commission awarded $1.2 million in grants for six Vermont economic development projects, including the renovation and expansion of the Fairbanks Museum, infrastructure improvements at Willoughby State Forest, development work by the Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund on behalf of Vermont’s forest sector, expansion of the Franklin County Industrial Development Corporation Industrial Park, recreational and public space improvements in the Village of Enosburg Falls, and a new septic system at the Newport State Airport.Created by the US Congress in 2008, the Northern Border Regional Commission is a federal-state partnership whose mission is to help alleviate economic distress and encourage private sector job creation throughout the northern counties of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, and New York. In its short five-year history, the commission has awarded seventy-five grants amounting to more than $14.2 million across the four states, with 19 projects and $3.6 million in Vermont.
Grace Cottage Hospital,Vermont Business Magazine Grace Cottage Hospital (Townshend) Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) Louise McDevitt is the author of a new book for clinical practitioners. Orthopedic Physical Assessment, published by Fitzgerald Health Education Associates and co-authored by McDevitt and FNP Monica Tombasco, is a reference guide to help Nurse Practitioners (NPs), Physician Assistants, medical students, and seasoned clinicians alike with orthopedic diagnosis and treatment.The guide is a spiral-bound book in cue-card format, making it easy to find information quickly. It provides a comprehensive compendium, with diagrams, glossary, and references for further information.McDevitt has been a certified Nurse Practitioner since 1989. She is triple certified as an Adult Nurse Practitioner, a Family Nurse Practitioner, and an Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, and was inducted as a Fellow in the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) in 2012. She has practiced at Grace Cottage Hospital since 2003.In addition to seeing patients at Grace Cottage, McDevitt is a Senior Lecturer for Fitzgerald Health Education Associates, a leader in NP licensing preparation and continuing education. She has created and presented orthopedic and other clinical skills workshops, including suturing, advanced suturing, and common office procedures, at numerous national NP conferences. She is also assistant clinical instructor at the University of Vermont Medical School and its Graduate School of Nursing FNP Program.“We are quite proud of Louise’s professional accomplishments,” says Elaine Swift, Grace Cottage Family Health Practice Director. “Her patients are fortunate to have her level of expertise.”