Gov. Phil Scott on Friday announced the resumption of additional business operations, including outdoor seating at restaurants and bars, hair salons and barber shops and some additional health services. “I believe these steps forward will be welcome news for many and because Vermonters are being smart to stay safe, our data continues to show we’re still moving in the right direction,” Scott said in a press release. “As more Vermonters get back to work and there are more places to visit and meet with others, it is more important than ever to stay vigilant about your health and the health of...
MIDDLEBURY — The small town of Middlebury will have a big impact in shaping the Northeast’s economic recovery from COVID-19. Fred Kenney, executive director of the Addison County Economic Development Corp., said Middlebury has been selected as one of only three Vermont communities that will participate in a federally funded survey, through which local business leaders and municipal officials will be asked their most pressing needs in order to rebound from the financial devastation wrought by COVID-19. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) District 1 has hired the Global Resilience...
ADDISON COUNTY — The Addison County Recovery Team is going over the results of its own survey of the local economy. The online survey garnered an impressive 275 responses from a diverse array of area business sectors, according to Fred Kenney, executive director of the Addison County Economic Development Corp. Retail respondents topped the list at 13%, followed closely by construction and home services (11%) and food & beverage businesses (11%). Of the 275 respondents, 97 (36%) indicated they’re temporarily closed (26% forced, and 9% voluntarily). The remaining 177 (64%) respondents...
ADDISON COUNTY — Anyone interested in the local economy is invited to join members of the Addison County Recovery Team at a community town hall event next Tuesday. Members of the team will share survey results and talk about next steps in the recovery process. The local recovery team pledged to listen to participants’ challenges, share innovations and hear what people need to move toward a successful recovery. Addison County Recovery Team Hosts Community Town Hall will take place Tuesday, May 26, at 3 p.m. online via Zoom. There is not charge to take part. To register head online to tinyurl....

Round Robin resale shop in Middlebury will have masks and hand sanitizer ready for customers who need them when it opens on Monday, according to the shop’s Facebook page.
Vermont retailers, closed for seven weeks to halt the spread of coronavirus, will begin a “gradual reopening” starting Monday, Gov. Phil Scott announced this week. Scott said that all employees at retail outlets will need to wear face covering and maintain a distance of 6 feet, according to Stores will also be required to stay under 25% of their maximum legal capacity, and to conduct health and safety training on following state guidelines if they have more than 10 employees. Round Robin, the Middlebury resale shop that raises money for Porter Medical Center, on Friday said it...

VERGENNES RESIDENTS MEGHAN and Rodney Olsen, both veteran special educators, have just opened Olsen’s Ice Cream in their hometown in the former site of Main Scoop. Doing so fulfilled Rodney’s longtime dream of owning an ice cream shop. Independent photo/Andy Kirkaldy
VERGENNES — During his childhood, Vergennes resident Rodney Olsen said ice cream was a regular on the family menu. “We’d always sit around, and some of our great memories are getting a big bowl of ice cream and watching a hockey game together,” said Olsen, a 54-year-old retired special educator and owner of a hardwood flooring company. Olsen and wife Meghan, a special educator at Vergennes Union High School, are now also the owners of one of the newest ventures in their hometown, one that harkens back to Rodney’s youth — Olsen’s Ice Cream, next to Champlain Farms at the intersection of Main...

Gov. Phil Scott at a press conference on March 20, 2020. Photo by Mike Dougherty/VTDigger
If Vermont’s low rate of COVID-19 infection continues, the state’s manufacturing, distribution and construction companies will be able to reopen for business May 11 under new health and safety restrictions, Gov. Phil Scott said on Friday. Scott opened the door for those businesses to increase the number of people allowed to work together from five to 10, effective on May 4. And on May 11, “manufacturing, construction, and distribution operations may restart with as few employees as necessary to permit full operations while continuing to maintain health and safety,” the governor said in an...

ECONOMISTS JEFF CARR, from right, and Tom Kavet, deliver their economic revenue forecast to the State Emergency Board at the Statehouse in Montpelier on Tuesday, Jan. 22, 2019. File photo by Glenn Russell/VTDigger
The Vermont Legislature’s economist projects revenue losses from the COVID-19 crisis will triple in the upcoming fiscal year and that the state could see tax receipts drop by $430 million. Lawmakers are already contending with a massive budget gap in the current fiscal year, with the state expected to lose $144 million in revenue across all of its funds by the end of June. But the economic strain from the virus is only expected to deepen in fiscal year 2021, which begins July 1, according to an initial forecast. Tom Kavet, the Legislature’s economist, this week said that state revenues and...

Photo by Steve James
VERMONT — If you have a farm, forest or maple business and are experiencing disruptions or challenges due to the COVID-19 situation, University of Vermont Extension can help. Agricultural business experts are available to answer questions, assist with locating resources and offer business coaching, all remotely. They also can consult on critical business decision-making, assessing changes to markets, financial planning, farm labor issues and related concerns. Appointments may be made by voicemail or email to confer with any of the following individuals: •  Mark Cannella (farm and maple...

AARON CRYSTAL, ABOVE, and Greg Borah of Shoreham Carpentry got back to work rebuilding a deck at a Buttolph Acres home in Middlebury after Gov. Scott loosened restrictions on his stay-at-home order. The change allowed crews of two to work together outdoors if they followed social distancing guidelines. On Friday, Scott expanded the number of businesses that could return to operation. Independent photo/Andy Kirkaldy
Gov. Phil Scott on Friday made another turn of the proverbial spigot re-opening Vermont’s economy, loosening restrictions on construction, manufacturing and some other outdoor employers who can now deploy crews of up to five people. With coronavirus cases having plateaued for more than a week now, Scott said that he was comfortable easing up on restrictions he placed on nonessential businesses in March. “Because we’ve been so dedicated, our data shows we can allow a few more people back to work,” Scott said at the start of his press conference, emphasizing that all businesses must continue to...


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Addison County Independent

58 Maple Street
Middlebury, VT 05753

Phone: 802.388.4944
Fax: 802.388.3100