February 20, 2019

Hub Happenings

Wendy Rogers

PT360 welcomes new ownership and employees

Wendy Rogers transitioned earlier this year from employee to owner at PT360’s Williston office. Also in Williston, Lindy Gramling joined PT360 as a physical therapist.

Rogers worked in education before joining PT360 as an office administrator.

Gramling comes from a background in general orthopedics, women’s health and pediatrics. She has also completed professional training in myofascial release and dry needling techniques.

At PT360’s Shelburne location, Michele Lawrence has been hired as an office administrator.

PT360 is the only employee owned physical therapy co-op in the U.S.

Professional licensing gets federal boost

The United States Department of Labor recently awarded the Vermont Office of Professional Regulation $450,000 to support occupational licensing reform. The Office of Professional Regulation, a Division of the Secretary of State’s Office, regulates 50 professions in Vermont.

“… We have undertaken ambitious efforts to cut red tape, making it more convenient and less expensive for qualified professionals — from the beauty professions to the medical sciences — to live and work in Vermont. Federal funding for these efforts will be a huge help,” said Vermont Secretary of State Jim Condos.

Among the funded projects are reforms in the licensure of barbers, cosmetologists, estheticians and salons; more efficient, simplified licensure for private investigators and security guards; assessment of participation in the Interstate Nurse Licensure Compact; reforms enabling funeral service professionals to earn licensure at lower cost, without having to leave the state as they now do; and a complete review of the way the state regulates real estate professionals.

School makes legal help available to Burlington startups

Vermont Law School in June announced the launch of an “entrepreneurship and legal lab” called VSELL to assist Vermonters looking to launch green, sustainable businesses with free or low-cost legal assistance.

VSELL is a collaboration of attorneys, business leaders and government officials designed to encourage business startups. Its first focus will be startups in the Burlington area. The program will also train Vermont Law School students in how to practice business law.

“We want to build on Vermont’s strong reputation for innovation by providing legal support to our talented entrepreneurs when they most need the help, but can least afford it,” said Trey Martin of Downs Rachlin Martin.

Martin, a graduate of Vermont Law School, will serve as an adviser to VSELL and help run the program.

“I am excited by the chance to help grow Vermont businesses that contribute to the triple bottom line of social, environmental and financial benefits for our state,” he said.

Vermont Law School received a grant from the City of Burlington to help launch the program. Over time, the school hopes to expand VSELL’s service statewide.

Vermont Maple Sugar Makers’ hires new executive director 

The Vermont Maple Sugar Makers’ Association (VMSMA) recently hired Amanda Voyer as its next executive director. Voyer had been the association’s communication director and is ready to take on a larger leadership role for Vermont’s maple industry.

“Having grown up in Cabot, I saw at an early age how important farming and maple production are to Vermont’s economy and identity,” Voyer said, “and I am honored to continue the work I have been doing at VMSMA. With the sharp increase in Vermont’s maple production over the past decade coinciding with growing consumer interest in where food comes from, there is a great need and opportunity for expanding maple markets, and it is exciting to be a part of those efforts.”

Voyer has helped organize events like Maple Open House Weekend and the 2016 International Maple Conference in Burlington. She takes over for Matt Gordon, who was the association’s first executive director and held the role for about five years.

Bradley honored with Beyney Award

The Greater Burlington Industrial Corporation recently presented the 2018 C. Harry Behney Lifetime Economic Development Achievement Award to Jo Bradley, CEO of the Vermont Economic Development Authority. Given each year since 1995 in honor of past GBIC president C. Harry Behney, the award recognizes Vermont leaders for their contributions to advancing the economic wellbeing of Vermonters.

Bradley has been CEO of VEDA since 1997.

Unemployment tax reduced, benefits rise

Changes to the Vermont Department of Labor’s Unemployment Insurance program that began this month will reduce the cost of Unemployment Insurance tax for employers and increase benefits for unemployed workers.

Individual employers’ reduced taxable wage rates will vary according to their experience rating, however, the rate reduction will lower the highest Unemployment Insurance tax rate from 7.7 percent to 6.5 percent. The lowest tax rate will see a reduction from 1.1 percent to 0.8 percent. Also, the maximum weekly unemployment benefit will rise to 57 percent of the average weekly wage. The current maximum weekly benefit amount is $466, which will increase to $498.

Vermont Business Roundtable adds to membership

At its 31st Summer Membership Meeting held recently at Sugarbush Resort, the Vermont Business Roundtable elected five new members to the organization including: Dan Bennett, CEO of Gifford Health Care; Phelan Fretz, executive director of ECHO Leahy Center; Sarah Morris, fifth generation host at Basin Harbor Resort & Boat Club; Premila Peters, president and CEO of Data Innovations; and Dawn Terrill, president of Jani-Tech.

The Roundtable also welcomed newly installed CEOs of existing member companies including: Joanne M. Conroy, president and CEO of Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center; Jay Fayette, CEO of PC Construction; Scott Finn, president and CEO of Vermont Public Radio; Peter Kunin, managing partner of Downs Rachlin Martin; and Ralphine O’Rourke, shareholder of Primmer Piper Eggleston & Cramer.

Videos explain new pregnant worker rules

At the start of 2018, pregnant workers in Vermont were granted new legal protections.

Employees experiencing healthy, uncomplicated pregnancies and needing workplace accommodations are protected when making those requests: Unless they impose an undue hardship, employers must grant them.

Several state government agencies came together to launch a public communications campaign to help employees and employers know their rights and responsibilities under the new law, including two short videos posted to YouTube. The videos can be found by searching “Vermont pregnancy for employees.”

Employers are encouraged to watch and share the videos with human resources staff.  Vermont workers are encouraged to watch them to learn about asking for what they need stay healthy on the job.

All this weeks News Articles