Ben Kinsley

Ben has over a decade of experience in public policy, government relations, and advocacy here in Vermont. He served two tours of duty as a staffer for CFV and then as executive director. After working for several public officials, lobbying firms, and non-profits, Ben started his own public policy research and development consulting firm in 2017. Since then, Imperium Advisors has developed from in-depth policy research outfit to offering a whole suite of products and services around public policy and advocacy from ideation to implementation.

He has worked with dozens of clients across New England and is passionate about taking on intractable challenges with creative solutions – things that impact Vermont like education, health care, energy, public/private investment, and workforce development. Since leaving as Executive Director in 2017, Ben has remained on the CFV Board of Directors and continues to assist with executing on policy initiatives. He also enjoys helping his neighbors and volunteering for community groups.

Enjoying the outdoors is one of Ben’s favorite pastimes; hiking, skiing, and mountain biking are all regular activities. As a native Vermonter, he loves the state and is committed to seeing Vermont’s communities grow and prosper. 

Ben lives with his wife Kayla and their dog Pippa in Burlington, VT.


  • published CFV Fall Update in News 2021-12-07 20:26:23 -0500

    CFV Fall Update

    Friends, we have been busy here at the Campaign!

    We published one of our most significant reports of the year last month, which found that Vermont state employees and teachers are often in the top 25% of income earners in the state.

     

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  • published 2009 Memo on State Employee Compensation in News 2021-12-05 17:54:05 -0500

    2009 Memo on State Employee Compensation

    It turns out that some government officials have known for a while that state government salaries are competitive. This letter (dated October 29, 2009) from Jeff Carr to Governor James Douglas about a review of a VSEA memo to Donna Sweaney, Chair of Government Accountability Committee. Carr’s letter, over a decade old now, points to many of the same factors we found in our recent report around compensation levels and the growth rate of state employee compensation compared to the private sector.

    Download


  • published 2022 Legislative Priorities Survey 2021-11-29 11:26:48 -0500

    2022 Legislative Priorities Survey

    What do you think we should prioritize during the 2022 legislative session? We want to hear from you!

    Take the survey

  • Press Release: CFV Announces New Report on Pension Issues

    November 10, 2021

    CONTACT:
    BEN KINSLEY
    (802) 310-3904
    [email protected]

    Montpelier, VT – On Wednesday Campaign for Vermont (CFV) released a new report that compares the wages and benefits of teachers and state employees to the private sector and what that means for the current discussions around pension reform.

    “As a former Commissioner of the Department of Labor and Commissioner of Human Resources, I was surprised by what we found in this report,” said CFV President Pat McDonald, “I think everyone needs to read this report because there were a number of assumptions that were carried through the years that were just plain wrong.”

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  • published Fueling Vermont Tourism in News 2021-10-15 08:21:06 -0400

    Fueling Vermont Tourism

    Tourism was one of the hardest hit industries by the Covid-19 pandemic with an estimated loss of over $700 million in revenue in 2020. We identified re-energizing tourism as a key early initiative in our Plan for Economic Recovery this Spring.

    As we build back, we wondered what we can do to come back stronger and smarter than before. This lead us to hire Asher Crispe, an emerging technology consultant, to investigate how Vermont could leverage our brand and our place in the market to rejuvenate our small businesses that were hardest-hit by the pandemic.

    We are exited to be able to share our findings and recommendations with you so you can learn more about this iconic Vermont industry and what you can do to help rebuild it.

    Read more

  • published Legislative Update Survey 2021-07-08 21:51:27 -0400

    Legislative Update Survey

    During the 2021 legislative session Campaign for Vermont provided weekly updates on important legislative topics. We are looking for feedback from YOU about how helpful these updates were and how we can make them better!

    Take the survey

  • Press Release: One Third of Legislators Have Conflicts of Interest Around Pensions

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – June 14, 2021 (updated 6/24/2021)

    CONTACT:
    BEN KINSLEY
    (802) 310-3904
    [email protected]

    Campaign for Vermont (CFV) has long been an advocate for pension reform. After nearly a decade of obstinance, to our surprise, this year the legislature took the first steps towards meaningful action. While they passed on addressing benefits in the 2021 legislative session, they did set aside pre-funding for pensions and created a task force to look at benefits and bring back recommendations this Fall. We fully expect that the legislature will pass meaningful pension reform early in 2022 that balances our commitment to public employees and the liability for taxpayers. This is a critical balance to strike.

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  • published Legislative Update: End of 2021 Session in News 2021-05-24 09:02:55 -0400

    Legislative Update: End of 2021 Session

    The House and Senate have closed the book on the 2021 legislative session. This ended up being one of the least controversial conclusions of a legislative session in recent memory. Conference committees wrapped up their work quickly, no major budget disputes erupted, and the Governor has only promised veto action on one bill. Speaking of vetoes, the legislature is coming back for a brief veto session on June 22nd where additional legislation may be taken up. However, this seems unlikely.

     

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  • Press Release: CFV Offers Vision for Economic Recovery

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – May 13, 2021

    Montpelier - In response to a lack of comprehensive long-term planning on behalf of state leaders around economic recovery from the Covid-19 Pandemic, today Campaign for Vermont (CFV) releases a roadmap forward. “We were just frustrated,” said CFV Chairman Pat McDonald, “the legislature had lots of work being done all over the place but no overarching plan to tie it all together.”

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  • published Economic Recovery: Phase 3 - The Long Game. in News 2021-05-12 12:57:06 -0400

    Economic Recovery: Phase 3 - The Long Game.

    We are excited to be able to share the third and final phase of our economic recovery plan from Covid-19. Please consider supporting our efforts in the legislature to move forward these and other ideas. If you missed previous parts of the plan, you can find them here.

    Phase 3 – The Long Game. It’s not enough to have a thriving tourism industry and universal broadband access in our state. Tourism is important, but most of its jobs are low-wage with limited growth opportunity. Broadband is an important for a whole host of reasons, but it won’t solve all of our problems.

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  • published Legislative Update - May 10, 2021 in News 2021-05-10 21:48:47 -0400

    Legislative Update - May 10, 2021

    We are getting close to the end of the legislative session. Many major bills have now been passed by both chambers. Some of which we are excited about, some of which could be better. Pension reform and student weighting factors are headed for summer study committees. Economic development and broadband were stripped of key components that would generate both short and long-term success. The Ethics Commission will get the additional staff it needs, but a comprehensive code of ethics will wait until next year. It's a mixed bag.

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  • published Legislative Update - May 4, 2021 in News 2021-05-04 09:12:08 -0400

    Legislative Update - May 4, 2021

    The major event this week was the House killing the project-based TIFs. CFV also sent a letter to the Senate Government Operations Committee on the pension bill this week and released Phase 2 of our economic recovery plan.

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  • CFV Letter to Senate Government Operations RE: Pensions

    Senate Government Operations Committee

     

    Dear Madame Chair and Committee Members,

    Campaign for Vermont Prosperity (CFV) has been following the Pension Liability issue throughout this legislative session and has weighed in from time to time.   Before we comment further on H.449 we would like to recognize the work that the House and Senate Government Operations Committee, the Treasurer and so many others have done to bring the attention due to this critical issue. The comments below are reflective of the “Draft – As Amended After Second Reading 2021” document.

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  • published Economic Recovery Plan - Phase 2: The Courtship in News 2021-05-01 17:56:43 -0400

    Economic Recovery Plan: Phase 2 - The Courtship

    We are excited to be able to share the second phase of our economic recovery plan from Covid-19. Please consider supporting our efforts in the legislature to move forward these and other ideas. If you missed our introduction or Phase 1 of this plan, you can find them here.

    Phase 2 – The Courtship. There is little doubt that Covid-19 has changed our world for good. One of the most meaningful ways is how we work. Many employers have discovered the benefits and limitations of remote work. Major corporations like Microsoft, Google, Facebook, Twitter and Spotify have gone remote. Salesforce even went as far as to declare that the 9-5 workday was dead. Office buildings in downtown San Francisco and Manhattan are now empty. What’s more, the majority of workers prefer to continue working remotely even after restrictions are lifted. Experts are predicting that 25-30% of the US workforce will still be working from home, at least part-time, at the end of 2021.[1]

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  • published Why Rural Broadband Matters in News 2021-05-01 14:15:05 -0400

    Why Rural Broadband Matters

    There is little doubt that Covid-19 has changed our world for good. One of the most meaningful ways is how we work. Many employers have discovered the benefits and limitations of remote work. This presents a massive opportunity for Vermont. We are within the drive market of multiple major metropolitan areas, we have an international airport, and our quality of life was ranked #2 (behind Hawaii) by CNBC in 2019.[2] This allows workers the flexibility to live a rural lifestyle but have relatively easy access to international travel or corporate offices should the need arise.

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  • published Pension Accountability Project in Contribute Now 2021-04-24 12:49:08 -0400

    Pension Accountability Project

    Thousands of state employees and teachers are counting on the stability of pension funds and the longer we wait the worse the problem gets. Two weeks ago we called on the legislature to pass balanced pension reform that does not put the burden of solving the issue solely on taxpayers or employees. If you missed it, you can find our press releases here.

    In order to further our goal of accountability and meaningful action on pension reform, we would like to investigate potential conflicts of interest that lawmakers might have. For example a legislator who is currently receiving pension fund benefits or a spouse who is a covered employee. But, we need your help to do it. We need to raise $2000 to complete a review of all 30 members of the Senate.

    Your pledge of support will allow us to do this work and publish a list of legislators who should recuse themselves when a pension bill comes up for a vote on the floor.

    $1,285.00 pledged
    $2,000.00
    Pledge now

  • published Economic Recovery: Phase 1 - A Shot in the Arm in News 2021-04-17 11:36:15 -0400

    Economic Recovery: Phase 1 - A Shot in the Arm

    We are excited to be able to share the first phase of our economic recovery plan from Covid-19. Please consider supporting our efforts in the legislature to move forward these and other ideas. If you missed our introduction to this plan, you can find it here.

    Read more

  • published Breaking: Pandemic Recovery Plan in News 2021-04-10 17:02:28 -0400

    Breaking: Pandemic Recovery Plan

    Alright folks, here’s the problem; no one knows what the heck to do about economic recovery from Covid-19 and perhaps rightly so. The last time it was done was over 100 years ago and today’s economy looks much different than at the end of the last pandemic in industrial 1918 United States.

    Read more

  • published Legislative Update - March 14, 2021 in News 2021-03-16 22:58:30 -0400

    Legislative Update - March 14, 2021

    The legislature was in overdrive this past week as they raced to meet crossover deadlines. The results were surprising. A couple bills that appeared to either not have legs or lacked meaningful change now appear to be positioned to move forward.

    Read more

  • published Legislative Update - March 1, 2021 in News 2021-03-03 18:23:33 -0500

    Legislative Update - March 1, 2021

    We have reached the mid-session break for Legislators. This is a great time to reach out to your Senator or Representative or talk to them a town meeting about issues that you care about and to provide your feedback on their work during the first half of the legislative session. A couple weeks from now will be crossover, a deadline for when the House and Senate need to have voted our their respective bills so the other body can work on them. If a bill is to pass this session it must make the crossover deadline so Committees will be buckling down on must pass issues when they return from the Town Meeting break.

     

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Public policy aficionado. Outdoor enthusiast. Lover of all things Vermont.

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