We are encouraged by the VY announcement and believe this is a positive step forward in the effort to not-only revitalize the regional economy, but to l help with the loss of over 650 highly paid jobs and the impacts those job losses have on the lives of the VY employee families. While we remain concerned about the overall impact the closure of Vermont Yankee will have on the regional economy, today’s announcement is a very positive step which accelerates the path forward. Southeastern Vermont Economic Development Strategies has been working since 2007, and officially organized in 2011, to evaluate and strategize recovery of the 20 year economic decline in Windham County. The telltale symptoms of that decline have been stagnant wages, population loss, and loss of younger population. SeVEDS has successfully engaged both the public and private sector in supporting, developing, and implementing long term strategies for improving our economy.
SeVEDS has recently completed a draft of a federally recognized Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy which outlines strategies and actions for improving the regional economy including mitigating the VY closure impacts. This document can be found at http://www.seveds.com/ Today’s announcement allows the region to step up the implementation of critical projects resulting from the significant planning that has been underway.
On October 28, 2013 BDCC, SeVEDS, and Post VY testified to the House Commerce and Economic Development and House Natural Resources and Energy Committees about minimizing the economic impact that would result from the closure. That testimony can be found here: http://seveds.com/testimony/
SeVEDS is affiliated with and staffed by the Brattleboro Development Credit Corp (BDCC), the regional development corporation serving Windham County. BDCC has a 59 year history of helping to grow jobs in Windham County through business assistance and real estate redevelopment. Most recently, BDCC has taken the lead in business and economic recovery efforts from severe flooding in 2011 and continues to be engaged in those efforts.
SeVEDS and BDCC will continue working closely with the Windham Regional Commission, our local municipalities, regional businesses and state and federal government by taking swift and decisive action to not only stabilize but to reinvigorate the Southeastern Vermont economy.
Jenna Pugliese, Chair of Southeastern Vermont Economic Development Strategies (SeVEDS)
Stephan Morse, Chair of SeVEDS Post Vermont Yankee Task Force
Dan Normandeau, Chair of Brattleboro Development Credit Corporation