CFV Introduces Recommendations to the Legislature Around Workforce Development

The following is a letter sent to the Senate Economic Development and House Commerce Committees on Friday April 22nd, 2022.

Legislative Update - April 17, 2022

There was lots of action this week as the legislature heads into its final month of the session. The ethics bill passed the House unanimously this week and is now headed back to the Senate where we expect final approval before being sent to the Governor.

In a surprise turn of events, the House is now considering the pursuit of defined contribution plans for new hires. This has the potential to address the remaining $2.3B in unfunded liability that will remain in our public pension funds if S.286 passes (the bill currently only addresses about $2B of the $4.3B overall liability).

Workforce, housing, and economic development bills are all progressing towards final passage but there are concerns around "poison pills" added by environmental advocates that could draw a gubernatorial veto. All three of these bills are critical to addressing Vermont's short and long-term economic challenges.

Read more

Legislative Update - April 10, 2022

The bill creating a statewide code of ethics is headed to the House floor this coming week after the Government Operations Committee agreed with most of the provisions we and others asked for.

Pensions are heating up again, on multiple fronts. The "benefits overhaul bill" is being worked on in the House and there are two bills in the Senate that could negatively impact pension liabilities. One that would divest fossil fuels from the investment portfolios and another that would potentially allow retired teachers to temporarily come back to work while retaining their pension benefits.

Other bills, such as workforce development and housing are also gaining steam in the House and Senate. We are likely to see those bills move to the floor in the next week or two.

Read more

Letter to House Gov Ops 4/7/2022

Dear Members of the House Government Operations Committee,

I have been working since 1964 - a lot of years, I know. Much of that time I was involved with Human Resources and one of the persons responsible for overseeing pension plans. I was Vermont’s Commissioner of Personnel and Human Resources twice during my career and served on the House Government Operations Committee – the same seats you now sit in.

Read more

Legislative Update - April 4, 2022

While we are still wrapping our arms around it, the Senate passed the pension bill this week. The ethics bill is off to a good start in the House. Workforce development and housing efforts are making progress in both the House and the Senate. All in all, it was a pretty good week.

Read more

Coates & Crow: The Art of the Possible... Not Really

Recently the Pension Benefits, Design, and Funding Task Force (Task Force) released their final report, which included recommendations to fix the retirement systems for state workers and teachers (Retirement Systems). Given the stakeholders involved and the desire to have majority approval, the report’s recommendations were seen as the best that could be done for now. A good start considering the circumstances, but they do not include the systemic solutions needed to make the Systems sustainable.

Read more

LETTER: House Government Operations on S.171

Members of the House Government Operations Committee,

Through Campaign for Vermont, I have been working with the Administration and Legislature since 2015 to encourage the passage and strengthening of ethics laws in Vermont. Today I am writing because you are beginning to take testimony on S.171. I know this bill may be confusing in how it interrelates with existing rules, policies, and practices across different branches of government. It is not always easy to step back and see the broader picture of how these all tie together.

Read more

Legislative Update - March 27, 2022

Legislators found out this week that the Vermont child tax credit bill may need a haircut. The workforce development bill received such a large haircut that we may have a headless horseman situation.

In case we scared you, the economic development bill passed out of committee this week and is headed to the Senate floor (mostly intact). Some provisions in the bill received push-back around what business would have access to funds and whether or not revenue replacement is the role of government (that question as largely been decided by ARPA). The workforce bill was passed by the House this week as the House and Senate exchange their flagship bills.

Also, the ethics bill received a warm welcome in the House and we are looking forward to testifying on that legislation next week.

Read more

Legislative Update - March 20, 2022

The legislature was busy this week moving bills onto the floor in both chambers to meet the looming cross-over deadline (all bills must pass from one chamber to the other before crossover in order to be acted upon this year). Many last-minute requests were denied and a number of bills saw floor action. This includes the ethics bill we have been working on, which was passed by the Senate this week.

Other bills we have been following, including the workforce development, housing, and economic development are all slated for the floor of the House and Senate early next week.

Read more

Legislative Update - March 13, 2022

There was progress on several fronts this week with the ethics bill moving to the Senate Floor and the workforce development bill appears to be ready to move by Wednesday.

A bill that steers the state towards divestment of fossil fuels from our public pension systems is also headed to the Senate Floor. This bill is concerning for several reasons, read more below!

Read more

Donate Volunteer Reduce Property Tax Burden


get updates