Rockingham Area Community Land Trust Receives $27,900

first_imgRockingham Area Community Land Trust Receives $27,900 to Support Foreclosure Prevention Counseling EffortsGrant provides much-needed boost to southeastern Vermont homeowners in danger of foreclosureSpringfield VT (December 5, 2008) – Today Rockingham Area Community Land Trust announced that it has received $27,900 to support southeastern Vermont foreclosure prevention counseling efforts. The much-needed boost will enable the NeighborWorks HomeOwnership Center of Southeastern Vermont to provide more foreclosure counseling than ever before to area homeowners in danger of foreclosure. Bruce Whitney, HomeOwnership Center Director, states: “We are very pleased to be able to bring these resources to families in the region. We will be making every effort to reach people early in the process when there are many more possibilities for a successful resolution. I urge anyone who thinks they might be late on a mortgage payment in the near future or who has missed a payment to contact us.”The grant to support the Center’s foreclosure intervention efforts was provided by funds from the National Foreclosure Mitigation Counseling Program. The initial funding was provided by Congress in the FY08 Consolidated Appropriations Act and additional funding was provided through the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008. The National Foreclosure Mitigation Counseling Program is administered through a competitive application process by NeighborWorks(r) America, within guidelines defined by Congressional legislation. NeighborWorks America is an independent, Congressionally-chartered non-profit organization based in Washington, D.C., with a mission to provide access to sustainable homeownership and safe, affordable rental housing.Foreclosure rates are increasing in southeastern Vermont. Vermont Banking Division data shows foreclosure filings in Windham and Windsor Counties was up by 56% in the third quarter of 2008 compared to the same time period of 2007. Whitney states: “While Vermont has so far been spared the levels of foreclosure happening elsewhere in the nation, nevertheless, more and more people are calling us every week to seek answers to their questions and get assistance in negotiating reasonable plans with the banks.” Vermont Housing Finance Agency and the Vermont Banking Division are working with the NeighborWorks Alliance of Vermont to bring resources to the people of Vermont facing foreclosure.For more information about the grant and how it will impact RACLT’s foreclosure prevention efforts, please contact Bruce Whitney (802) 885-3220 x 222.About Rockingham Area Community Land TrustRACLT’s mission is to maximize affordable housing opportunities for the people of southeastern Vermont. RACLT owns over 350 apartments in this region, has limited appreciation agreements with 60 homeowners, and operates the NeighborWorks(r) Homeownership Center of Southeastern Vermont. It is governed by a ten-person volunteer Board of Directors, and has 13 staff members.For more information about Rockingham Area Community Land Trust please visit raclt.org or call (802) 885-3220 x 210.###last_img read more

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Senate passes $110 million capital construction bill

first_imgThe Senate unanimously passed a capital construction bill, H. 445.  The bill is expected to provide jobs to thousands of Vermonters through renovation and construction of state buildings, water infrastructure projects, and improvements in forests and parks. Roughly $110 million will be invested into projects throughout the state, and the bill provides for $70 million in proposed borrowing, Additional funding comes from approximately $39 million in federal stimulus funds and about $400,000 from reallocations of previous capital projects.  The bill will now be considered by a Senate and House Committee of Conference.The bill spends $19.5 million of American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) dollars for water pollution control through sewer projects and $19.4 million of ARRA funds for drinking water projects.  These investments in our water resources will provide jobs and result in cleaner water for Vermonters for generations to come.The capital bill also includes $6 million to be invested into a state park renovation initiative.  This investment into our state s natural resources will include a parks conservation corps that will employ disadvantaged youth, a number of energy conservation and renewable projects and infrastructure improvements that will include building repair, wastewater projects and road upgrades.  A majority of these projects are shovel ready and will be handled by small contractors throughout the state. It has been my priority this session to provide good job opportunities for Vermonters, said Senator Shumlin.  The capital bill does just that by generating thousands of jobs for Vermonters. The state park initiative in the capital bill will create jobs in rural areas of our state and invest in the future of our state parks, said Senator Scott, Chair of the Senate Institutions Committee. Source: Senator Shumlin’s officelast_img read more

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VTrans receives nation’s top safety award

first_imgThe Vermont Agency of Transportation’s District 7 Maintenance Garage in St. Johnsbury has become the first public transportation entity in the nation to achieve a supplemental safety merit from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). The ceremony to honor this achievement will take place today at 1 pm at the garage.District 7 has been working to achieve this merit under the Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) with the Vermont  OSHA office for the past three years.  The program is intended to promote workplace health and safety through a collaborative effort between the employees and VOSHA.The program is 100 percent employee driven, and as such can only succeed if it is supported from within. The District 7 employees’ hard work and dedication to improve the safety of their workplace paid off, and this week OSHA announced that District 7 became the very first Public Transportation entity in the nation to achieve VPP STAR STATUS.STAR STATUS is the highest rating that can be achieved under VPP, and it means that District 7 is one of the safest places to work in the country.“The significance of this achievement cannot be overstated,” said VTrans Secretary David Dill. “These employees care so much about their own safety that they took it upon themselves to make incremental improvement over incremental improvement until they achieved something none of their peers have ever done. They have literally set a new standard for safety that will challenge highway workers across the nation to duplicate.”   VPP has traditionally focused on private sector businesses, with firms such as Earth Tech, General Electric, Ben & Jerry’s and Energizer successfully completing the process.  These firms all experienced improved work place safety, reduced workers’ compensation claims, and increased productivity because of their participation in the VPP process.The idea of a public sector transportation entity entering the VPP process was ground breaking, and District 7 wanted to be the first.“We reanalyzed everything we do from a safety perspective, which is very empowering,” said Tom Lewis, a VTrans’ foreman in District 7. “This was completely employee driven. Most everyone bought in, and the entire process has been great for morale. And when morale improves, everything improves right along with it.”  Source: VTranslast_img read more

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Helen Porter Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center receives national award

############ Source: Porter Healthcare Helen Porter Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center has been recognized as one of the 2009 recipients of the Step I National Quality Award presented by the American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL). This year 664 nursing and assisted living facilities from across the nation applied for the quality award at this level. Awards will be presented during AHCA/NCAL’s 60th Annual Convention and Exposition, October 4-7, 2009 in Chicago.“We applaud Helen Porter for having passed this first step that demonstrates their intention to begin a rigorous quality improvement program, and look forward to their moving forward to pursue the requirements for the Steps II and III awards in the coming years,” stated Bernie Dana, Chair, AHCA/NCAL National Quality Award Board of Overseers, one of the nine members that oversee the program.Applicants for the Step I level award have a clear vision and mission for their facility and acknowledge key challenges that are embodied in the organizational profile section of the Malcolm Baldrige criteria. The Step I award recognizes providers that have developed a foundation to begin a journey of continuous quality improvement, and that they have taken the first step in corresponding with any public measures of performance. AHCA/NCAL is a trade organization with approximately 11,000 members. Since 1996 AHCA/NCAL has used the concepts of the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award as the basis for its three step program for the long term care profession. At the Step I level, applications are reviewed by Examiners who have received special training to qualify as judges for the award program.“This recognition of the quality of care provided to our residents by a national organization is extremely gratifying,” said HPHRC administrator Neil Gruber. “It is a real testament to the dedication of our staff to provide outstanding care to our residents, strive to continuously improve our services, and work collaboratively in a very challenging environment.” Gruber points to the implementation of a new electronic medical record system as the most recent tangible achievement related to their ongoing efforts to continually improve quality, safety and efficiency. read more

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Improved and expanded Waterbury park and ride opens

first_imgThe Vermont Agency of Transportation today reopened the Waterbury Park and Ride, which had been closed for expansion and modernization since April 12. The new park and ride has 70 spaces, while the old one had 60 spaces, but since those spaces were not delineated fewer cars may have comfortably fit at times.The old facility had a recycled asphalt and gravel surface, which is why there were no marked parking stalls.  The new facility is not only paved and line striped, but the facility’s lighting is greatly improved.  The Green Mountain Transit Agency (GMTA), which suspended service to the park and ride during construction, will once again be picking up commuters near the entrance to the facility, where VTrans installed a newly constructed bus shelter.The Waterbury improvements are part of VTrans’ Park and Ride Program, which has a goal of doubling the amount of state-owned park-and-ride spaces between 2008 and 2018. The Agency’s FY2011 budget (which kicks in July 1) includes $3.1 million to fund the enlargement and improvements to two existing lots, as well as construction of three new facilities, which combined will create over 280 additional parking spaces.Aside from this current work, there are seven additional facilities in various stages of development that in the future will provide approximately 700 new or improved spaces. These spaces, combined with those under development, will nearly double the number of existing spaces at VTrans’ park-and-ride facilities from 2008 to 2018.Source: VTrans. 6.21.2010last_img read more

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Currier’s Quality Market of Glover named ‘Retailer of the Year’ by Grocers’ Association

first_imgJim Currier and his Currier’s Quality Market in Glover, was honored by the Vermont Grocers’ Association with the VGA ‘Retailer of the Year’ award during the association’s annual convention at the Sheraton Burlington. The award was presented in recognition of their involvement with the community, food industry, store operations and customer service.Currier’s is a true Vermont general store owned and operated by Jim Currier and his family 43 years ago. They stock just about everything from gas, hardware, paint, full line of meats, deli, clothing, footwear, groceries, plumbing supplies and you name it. They also serve as the Glover post office. The market dates back to the 1800’s and was rebuilt following a fire in 1908. The Curriers have expanded the store several times. It is a museum of stuffed animals of just about anything found in Vermont, including a full size moose. Family members joining Jim in the business include children Jeff and Sheri, daughter in law, Wendy and grandchildren Abby and Bret.They believe strongly in community service, and donate regularly to various local non-profits and charities. Jim is active in the Glover Community Church and a former board member of the Community National Bank. The market is a member of the Vermont Grocers’ Association, The Vermont Alliance of Independent Country Stores and a member-owner of the store’s primary wholesaler, Associated Grocers of New England.  ‘We are very pleased to see Jim and his store recognized with this award. They are dedicated to serving their customers and community,’ said Jim Harrison, VGA president, who presented the award. ‘They represent the best of being a country storekeeper in Vermont, always taking care of the customer first.’The Vermont Grocers’ Association is a statewide organization representing approximately 700 stores and 245 suppliers to the industry. The presentation took place at the association’s annual convention at the Sheraton Burlington Hotel on September 25, 2010.A photo of the award presentation can be found at: http://www.flickr.com/photos/vtgrocers/5038578853/(link is external)Caption: Jim Currier (2nd from right) of Currier’s Quality Market along with Vermont Speaker of the House Shap Smith (left), Celia Lantham and Jim Harrison, Vermont Grocers’ Association president (right) with the VGA Retailer of the Year Award at the association’s convention September 25 at the Sheraton Burlington. A video of Currier’s showed at the award presentation can be found at: ftp://maltedmedia.com/vga/ROY-2010-Curriers-79.mpg.  Source: Vermont Grocers’ Association. 9.30.2010last_img read more

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Study: Growth in Midwestern Clean Energy Employment

first_imgStudy: Growth in Midwestern Clean Energy Employment FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Toledo Blade:The number of American workers holding clean energy jobs will soon pass 600,000, and Ohio and Michigan are home to a large portion of the workforce, according to a report released Thursday.The 2017 Clean Jobs Midwest report was compiled by Clean Energy Trust and Environmental Entrepreneurs, a non-profit group of business owners and investors. Job figures and economies for Ohio, Michigan, and 10 other Midwestern states (Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, Nebraska, South Dakota, and Wisconsin) were examined.The Midwest added more than 30,000 clean energy jobs last year — a 5.41 percent increase from 2015 — to bring the region’s total to 599,775. Such jobs include those in energy generation roles and those involved in the production and maintenance of hybrid and electric vehicles.“These people are going to work every day with jobs in energy efficiency, solar, wind, geothermal, clean cars, manufacturing, and construction jobs,” said Environmental Entrepreneurs spokesman Gail Parson. “There are twice as many people with clean energy jobs in the Midwest than computer programmers in the entire country.”More: Ohio and Michigan leading the way in clean energy jobslast_img read more

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Quarter Of Nuclear Plants Are Losing Money—Bloomberg

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Bloomberg:More than a quarter of U.S. nuclear power plants don’t make enough money to cover their operating costs, raising the threat of more early retirements.Of the 66 nuclear power plants operating in the U.S., 24 are either scheduled to close or probably won’t make money through 2021, according Nicholas Steckler, an analyst with Bloomberg New Energy Finance. These at-risk sites have total generating capacity of 32.5 gigawatts, more than a quarter of the entire fleet, Steckler wrote in a report Tuesday.It would cost about $1.3 billion a year to plug the revenue gaps for these struggling sites, Steckler and co-author Chris Gadomski said in the report. The study follows a similar analysis in March that showed that half of U.S. coal-fired power plant capacity is on shaky ground.It’s not all grim for nuclear operators, though. The average U.S. nuclear plant still is expected to make money before taxes, especially on the East Coast. And the industry has had success convincing policy makers in New York, Illinois and New Jersey to take steps toward bailing out struggling plants thanks to their emissions-free generation and concerns about job losses. And the U.S. Energy Department is currently weighing a March request from FirstEnergy Corp.’s competitive power unit for government aid to help keep money-losing nuclear and coal-fired power plants online.That said, the industry is increasingly challenged by sluggish power demand, cheap natural gas and the rise of renewable energy—especially in the Midwest where wind power is ascendant.More: One-Fourth Of U.S. Nuclear Plants Are At Risk Of Early Retirement Quarter Of Nuclear Plants Are Losing Money—Bloomberglast_img read more

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Argentina completes construction at 312MW solar farm, eyes 200MW expansion

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Renewables Now:Argentina’s northernmost province Jujuy announced on Saturday the completion of construction works and start of testing operations at the Cauchari I photovoltaic (PV) power plant, the last phase of the 312-MW Cauchari complex.Previous stages: Cauchari II and III, were completed in October this year. Together, the three phases represent an overall investment of about USD 390 million (EUR 352m), with financing coming in 85% from state-owned bank Export-Import Bank of China and the remainder by the local government of Jujuy via a green bond placement.The complex, touted as Latin America’s largest solar power plant, secured a 20-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with CAMMESA at an average price of USD 60 per MWh during the country’s 1-GW Round 1.0 RenovAr tender held in 2016.The provincial energy company Jujuy State Energy and Mining Society (JEMSE) will manage the operation of the solar power complex while construction was executed by Shanghai Electric Power Construction (SEPC), a subsidiary of the construction group Powerchina. Talesun, also a Chinese company, supplied the 1.18 million solar panels and Huawei provided the inverters.The 312 MW complex is expected to generate close to USD 1 billion in revenue to Jujuy over its first 15 years of operation, Governor Gerardo Morales said at the inauguration on Saturday. A 200-MW expansion of the complex, Cauchari IV and V, was agreed last year and is currently at an advanced stage of development, negotiating a PPA. [Lucas Morais]More: Argentina’s 312-MW solar power complex Cauchari completes construction Argentina completes construction at 312MW solar farm, eyes 200MW expansionlast_img read more

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Siemens plans to have Bavarian green hydrogen project online by the end of 2021

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享TradeArabia:Siemens Smart Infrastructure and Infrastructure and hydrogen specialist WUN H2 have signed a contract to build a large CO2-free hydrogen production plant running solely on renewable energy in Germany.It will be built in Wunsiedel in the north of Bavaria with a power intake of six megawatts in the initial development phase. The electrolysis plant from Siemens Energy will have the capacity to produce over 900 tons of hydrogen per year in this first phase. When fully expanded, it will be able to supply up to 2,000 tons. Groundbreaking is scheduled for the end of this year and commissioning at the end of 2021.The plant will convert the renewable energy available in this region, e.g., from photovoltaics and wind power, into storable hydrogen (H2), making it available for applications in mobility and industry. This is especially useful when, on sunny and windy days, more energy from renewable sources is produced than needed.The electrolysis plant will be built in the Wunsiedel Energy Park next to the Siemens manufactured battery storage facility already in operation, complementing the forward-looking energy concept.“This project is another element of a practised, successful technology partnership between Siemens and SWW Wunsiedel GmbH. We want to achieve locally already today what Germany is targeting for 2050, namely a complete energy transition across all sectors,” stated Uwe Bartmann, CEO of Siemens Germany and CEO of Smart Infrastructure Regional Solutions & Services Germany.When hydrogen is produced from water electrolysis using only power from renewable energy sources, it is known as “green” hydrogen. A Silyzer 300 from Siemens Energy will be used in Wunsiedel. The plant will feature high efficiency at high power density as well as low-maintenance and reliable operation – without chemicals. The PEM (proton-exchange membrane) electrolysis process will be applied, in which electricity is used to split water into hydrogen and oxygen.More: Siemens plans CO2-free hydrogen plant in Germany Siemens plans to have Bavarian green hydrogen project online by the end of 2021last_img read more

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