We heard from close to 50 community members about what matters most, what you struggle with, and what you envision for the future of Addison County and Vermont.
We listened and took careful notes on your input. Here are just a few of the the insights we heard:
- You are proud of your communities for the way you’ve worked together and taken care of each other during the pandemic. For example, the Vergennes partnership brought businesses together in support of the community, and Middlebury celebrated the value of “helping thy neighbor” with a sense of inclusion and willingness to help those who live right next door.
- Your communities are really struggling with workforce issues. We heard about young families struggling to find child care and affordable housing necessary to stay in the workforce, about the storefront vacancies in downtown Middlebury, and your concerns that your grown children cannot stay in Vermont because there is a lack of professional jobs. Some of you don’t know where to turn to get with writing a resume and finding child care so that you can look for work.
- You feel hopeful and, and you inspired us, with your ideas about how to seize this once in a lifetime opportunity to invest in Vermont’s future. You emphasized the necessity of broadband access so that all Vermont’s communities can thrive in our digital future, and the critical need for child care to support families coming to and staying in Vermont. You discussed innovative climate solutions that could lead to positive change across sectors by helping working people make modifications to their homes, generating energy and construction jobs, creating new affordable housing, and improving water quality and environmental health.
All this, and our listening tour has only just begun! We’ll combine your ideas with those that we collect from future regional conversations, from our online questionnaire, and through intentional outreach to individuals and groups who weren’t at the table. Before the Legislature convenes in January, we’ll conduct a careful analysis of ideas from all our conversations so that we can bring overarching themes and your insights to inform the Legislature’s policy and budgetary work.
Please consider taking a next step to help us ensure we’re hearing the many voices of Vermonters:
- If you didn’t complete a demographic survey during yesterday’s meeting, please click here to enter your information anonymously. Your response will help ensure that we include many different perspectives and experiences during our conversations.
- Click here to sign up for future email updates about the Investing in Vermont's Future process.
- If you were unable to attend last night’s events, or would like to invite friends and neighbors to add their voices to the conversation, people can use this link to share their thoughts through our online questionnaire.
- If you are interested in helping set up an intentional conversation with a community or group not typically heard in the Legislative process, please reach out to email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org.
Together, we are seizing this once in a lifetime opportunity to make significant investments in the future of our state. Thank you for your important contribution!
Speaker Jill Krowinski & Pro Tem Becca Balint