The North American Snowsports Journalists Association (NASJA) has announced its first Annual 2002 Survey of Winter Resort Favorites. Members of NASJA, who cover all aspects of mountain resorts in North America, selected their top picks in nine “best of” categories amongall of the resorts in the country.Okemo Mountain Resort received the top-honors and the most votes for its immaculate slopes in the “Best Grooming” category for the East. Okemo has become renown for its snowmaking, grooming and consistently good snow conditions. With one of the largest snowmaking capabilities in the East and a Mountain Operations team that is passionate about what they do, Okemo continues to receive raves year-after-year. Deer Valley was chosen as the #1 choice for the Western region.The North American Snowsports Journalists Association is a professional organization comprising more than 400 journalists thatinclude writers, photographers, broadcasters, film makers, authors and editors, who cover many aspects of skiing, snowboarding, cross countryskiing, snowshoeing and other activities at mountain resorts. Okemo is a proud member and supporter of NASJA.
CVPS begins synchronous condenser project, demand-control effortWINHALL — Construction has begun on a new Winhall substation and voltage support equipment known as synchronous condensers to improve electric system reliability in southern Vermont, while a new program is being kicked off to help reduce energy demand by paying large customers to reduce their load.”Thanks to public and regulatory input, we are being very creative in how we address growing demand and reliability issues on the transmission system in southern Vermont and the region,” CVPS President Bob Young said.CVPS and Vermont Electric Power Company (VELCO) are working to improve reliability in southern Vermont and the greater New England region, which face growing demand. Through an extensive public outreach process, the companies agreed to a series of solutions, including non-transmission solutions, to address transmission constraints.Other elements include: targeted efficiency programs; encouraging development of combined heat and power projects; a new VELCO transmission line from Vernon to Cavendish for regional reliability, known as the Coolidge Connector; and a new VELCO substation in Newfane to provide support for customers in Bennington and Windham counties. The transmission line and Newfane substation continue to undergo regulatory review.The two synchronous condensers and Winhall substation are expected to cost $11.2 million. Crews are working on site preparation, and will start construction of the substation and building early this summer. The building that will house the synchronous condensers off Kendall Farm Road is designed to look like a horse barn. “This should fit nicely with the rural area,” CVPS spokesman Steve Costello said. “That’s been a key goal.”Synchronous condensers are devices that control voltage on a transmission or distribution system. A synchronous condenser has internal parts that spin like a motor or generator to support voltage, and outwardly resembles these devices. But synchronous condensers do not actually produce power.CVPS has signed a contract with ConsumerPowerline, a leading strategic energy asset management firm, to target demand in the area around the Coolidge Connector project, which includes most of Vermont except for the Southern Loop and extreme northeastern Vermont. ConsumerPowerline will work through May 2011 to bridge reliability concerns until the Coolidge Connector line can be approved, built and operated.ConsumerPowerline will create the Vermont Reliability Program to address the increasing demand for power. VRP will provide contracted commercial and industrial customers with monthly incentive payments to commit to reduce energy consumption to a pre-determined amount during a capacity shortage. This will reduce stress on the grid during high-load periods, enhance transmission system reliability, and help ensure a consistent supply.VELCO President and CEO John Donleavy lauded CVPS’s “forward-thinking approach that will provide our companies with additional tools to ensure system reliability.”VRP is an add-on to the ISO-New England Real Time Demand Response program, one of the most successful in the nation. ISO-New England is the independent system grid operator. Through the VRP, ISO-NE and VELCO will be able to call contracted CVPS customers, with 30 minutes notice, to curtail load in emergency conditions.”Central Vermont Public Service is at the forefront of deploying demand response to relieve stress on its electrical grid and ensure a more reliable supply of electricity to its customers,” said Gary Fromer, chief executive officer of ConsumerPowerline. “We are very pleased to work hand-in-hand with CVPS to deliver value to its customers in the targeted region.”ConsumerPowerline will work with medium-sized to large customers near the Coolidge Connector portion of the CVPS service territory to evaluate electricity consumption and provide load-reduction recommendations and plans that will not impact a customer’s core operations. ConsumerPowerline manages the full process on behalf of customers, including enrollment, participation, reporting and payments. Customers receive payments for their participation, and do not incur any out-of-pocket expenses.
Learn What Matters at Saint Michael’s College, The Edmundite Catholic liberal arts college, www.smcvt.edu(link is external). Saint Michael’s provides education with a social conscience, producing graduates with the intellectual tools to lead successful, purposeful lives that will contribute to peace and justice in our world. Founded in 1904 by the Society of St. Edmund and headed by President John J. Neuhauser, Saint Michael’s College is located three miles from Burlington, Vermont, one of America’s top college towns. It is identified by the Princeton Review as one of the nations Best 371 Colleges, and is included in the 2011 Fiske Guide to Colleges. Saint Michael’s is one of only 280 colleges and universities nationwide, one of only 20 Catholic colleges, with a Phi Beta Kappa chapter. Saint Michael’s has 1,900 undergraduate students, some 500 graduate students and 100 international students. Saint Michael’s students and professors have received Rhodes, Woodrow Wilson, Pickering, Guggenheim, Fulbright, and other grants. The college is one of the nation’s Best Liberal Arts Colleges as listed in the 2010 U.S. News & World Report rankings.-30- Saint Michael’s College,Saint Michael’s College earned the rank of 93rd amongst National Liberal Arts Colleges in the 2011 edition of Best Colleges by U.S. News Media Group. U.S. News, the original rankings program, covers various categories of national and regional colleges and universities. The rankings are available today at www.usnews.com/colleges(link is external), and will also be published in the September issue of U.S. News & World Report, on newsstands starting August 31.Saint Michael’s shares the 93rd position with Allegheny (PA), Birmingham-Southern (AL), Millsaps (MS), St. Mary’s (IN), and Washington (MD) Colleges. Last year Saint Michael’s ranked 105th in the national liberal arts category, and before that Saint Michael’s ranked in the top 15 of the North Regional Master’s Universities for 17 years. Saint Michael’s was switched last year to the liberal arts category in the U.S. News arena as a result of a change in Carnegie classifications.Over the past two decades, the U.S. News college rankings, which group schools based on categories created by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, has grown, according to U.S. News, to be the most comprehensive research tool for students and parents considering higher education opportunities.‘The U.S. News rankings have always been of interest to students and parents, and of course that matters to us,’ said Saint Michael’s President John J. Neuhauser. ‘We hope this jump in our position brings Saint Michael’s College to the attention of those students who can benefit from the exciting, intellectual, welcoming community of this college,’ Dr. Neuhauser added.Among the many factors weighed in determining the rankings, the key measures of quality are peer assessment, graduation and retention rates, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, alumni giving, and, for National Universities and National Liberal Art Colleges, “graduation rate performance” and high school counselor ratings of colleges. U.S. News has made some significant changes to the 2011 Best Colleges’ ranking methodology and presentation. For more details on these changes, go to www.usnews.com/collegemeth(link is external).The University of Vermont ranked 94th in the National Universities category, and was 88th last year; Middlebury ranked fourth in the Liberal Arts Colleges national category, this year and last year. Champlain College ranked 17th in the North Region Baccalaureate Colleges, and was 13th last year.Source: Saint Michael’s. 8.17.2010
GlobalFoundries,IBM issued the following statement yesterday regarding conversations its executives have had with Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin and his staff concerning the administration’s health care reform effort. IBM, as many large companies, is self-insured. It previously has expressed concern over the health care refomr making its way through the Legislature, in particular proposals that the plan would be funded through a payroll tax on all Vermont workers and their employees. IBM has suggested that this would constitute a kind of double insurance premium for itself and its employees. The most recent meeting between IBM and the governor was last week. IBM issued this statement concerning the meeting: “IBM Senior Vice President for Human Resources, Randy MacDonald, met with Governor Peter Shumlin and had a productive discussion on the Governor’s health care reform legislation. There were several outcomes.· IBM underscored concerns about the effect of the proposed legislation on the healthcare choices and costs.· IBM understands that it is not the intent of Governor Shumlin’s administration to remove IBM’s ability to manage its own health care plans by seeking a waiver from the federal government from ERISA pre-emption. · IBM made clear that if it chose to continue to provide employees in Vermont with coverage under the company’s national health care program and is included in the state plan’s payroll tax financing, we would be compelled to oppose the plan.· IBM agreed to work with the Governor and the legislature to help develop a reform plan that cuts costs, transforms service delivery, and improves the health and wellness of Vermont citizens. We appreciated the discussion and the explanation provided by the Governor and his staff.” Source: IBM. April 14, 2011
There were 1,076 new regular benefit claims for Unemployment Insurance last week. While this is a decrease of 103 from the week before, this is still a very high level of claims as a result of the economic impact of tropical storm Irene. Two weeks previous saw a seasonal low of fewer than 500 claims. Altogether 6,800 new and continuing claims were filed, a decrease of 69 from a week ago and 578 fewer than a year earlier. The Department also processed 1,458 First Tier claims for benefits under Emergency Unemployment Compensation, 2008 (EUC08), 12 fewer than a week ago. In addition, there were 735 Second Tier claims for benefits processed under the EUC08 program, which is a decrease of 4 from the week before. The Unemployment Weekly Report can be found at: http://www.vtlmi.info/(link is external). Previously released Unemployment Weekly Reports and other UI reports can be found at: http://www.vtlmi.info/lmipub.htm#uc(link is external) Vermont’s unemployment rate increased two-tenths in July to 5.7 percent. See story HERE. Vermont Labor Force StatisticsSeasonally Adjusted July 2011 June 2011 July 2010 June 2011 July 2010 Total Labor Force359,800361,400360,200-1,600-400 Employment339,300341,500338,300-2,2001,000 Unemployment20,50019,90021,900600-1,400 Rate5.7%5.5%6.1%0.2-0.4 Change to July 2011 from
Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin’s schedule for Thursday, September 15, 2011.9:00 ‘Feed the Hungry Donation with UFCW,’ VT Foodbank – Smithfield donation; 33 Parker Road, Wilson Industrial Park, Barre 10:30 Vermont State Dental Society; Sheraton Hotel and Conference Center, Burlington 11:45 Bike Path Opening, South Burlington Recreation & Parks Dept.; Tilley Drive & Community Drive 12:20 Comcast Internet Essentials; The O’Brien Center in Winooski, 32 Mallets Way Ave. 1:30 Press Conference on Jobs; On the Rise Bakery, 39 Esplanade, Richmond 3:00 Tour Waterbury Downtown damaged by Tropical Storm Irene, starting at Fire Station on Main Street 5:50 5 x 5 x 5. Vermont Business Awards; Doubletree, South Burlington6:30 Governor’s Lakeside Gathering, Community Sailing Center; 234 Penny Lane, Burlington
The Vermont Attorney General’s Office has entered into an Assurance of Discontinuance filed in Washington Superior Court, with Subaru of Keene owner William Fenton. In 2010 Subaru of Keene ran radio and newspaper ads offering Vermont consumers the opportunity to buy at ‘employee prices’ and to ‘pay what the dealer pays’.An Attorney General investigation discovered that there was no employee pricing and employees and consumers negotiated the sales price of their car with no special employee or dealer reductions. The dealer also did not disclose the dealer rebate received on car sales.‘Dealers that falsely advertise to lure consumers mislead consumers and also steal business from dealers that follow the rules,’ said Attorney General William H. Sorrell. ‘Consumers need to question advertising and make sure they understand the true cost of a vehicle to the dealer, including dealer rebates.’Subaru of Keene cooperated fully with the investigation and will pay a penalty $8,500.00 to the State. The dealership has also agreed to comply with Consumer Fraud Rules that regulate automobile advertising, inform all management and sales supervisors of the advertising rules requirements and make available to the Attorney General’s Office until 2014, any advertising scripts or copy used by the dealer. Vermont Attorney General, October 20, 2011