Economic Development Resources for Municipalities:
- The Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development (ACCD) is the go-to resource for information and programs surrounding both economic and community development. The ACCD’s downtown program is particularly relevant for municipalities; for more informaiton, contact the ACCD’s downtown program coordinator Gary Holloway at 802-828-3220.
- The Vermont Attorney General’s office and Vermont Secretary of State office each provide businesses with information about the steps required to start a business in the state of Vermont. They are the primary ways in which businesses interact with the state and are a good place to forward interested constituents.
- The Vermont League of Cities and Towns (VLCT) is a non-profit organization dedicated to assisting Vermont’s municipal governments. To support this mission, the VLCT employs a team of professionals with expertise in areas such as municipal law, public administration, human resources, and more. The VLCT also hosts an annual economic development conference, which will occur on June 14th 2018 this year. For information about registration, click here.
- The US Department of Agriculture’s Rural Development program is a strong resource for towns and runs over 50 financial assistance programs for municipalities.
- The Vermont Association of Planning and Development Agencies (VAPDA) is devoted to communal planning and seeks to strengthen the capabilities of local governments. Their goals are accomplished through a combination of environmental and economic planning strategies which is planned to serve the needs of residents.
- The Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation is a division of the Department of Natural Resources and offers a variety of programs to municipalities, including certain finance based programs.
- The Vermont Planners Association (VPA) is a statewide, non-profit, membership-based organization of planners and developers. VPA can be a useful resource for municipalities in terms of connecting to planning and development resources. Specifically, VPA can help your municipality connect to professional and citizen planners, landscape architects, engineers, housing and economic development specialists, developers, and more.
- The Vermont State Website can be useful for municipalities in terms of worker attraction, as it provides information about moving to Vermont and promotes the Vermont lifestyle.
- The Windham Regional Commission (WRC) is a helpful resource for municipalities in terms of providing a link between local, state, and federal government. The WRC focuses on assisting towns on planning and zoning, regional plans, transportation, community development, and more. Every tow in Windham County has two representatives on the WRC (with the exception of Somerset, whose commissioner is appointed by the Governor).
Town Level Economic Development Resources:
- The Vermont Downtown Designation Program is a community development program run through the Vermont ACCD that provides “financial incentives, training and technical assistance supporting local efforts to restore historic buildings, improve housing, design walkable communities and encourage economic development by incentivizing public and private investments”.
- The Building Communities Grants Program is designed to provide financial assistance to projects that “help communities preserve important historic buildings and enhance community facilities.” This programs consists of five individual grants and is designed for municipalities and non-profits.
- The Vermont Downtown Development Program is an affiliate of the National Main Street Center and exists to provide support to towns looking to revitalize their downtown, primarily through courses and technical assistance.
- The Vermont Planning Advance is a program run through the state’s Department of Environmental Conservation that provides financial assistance to towns looking to create, improve, or study their town’s waste and general water systems. Repayment is only obligated for projects that are completed.
- The ACCD also offers a wide variety of grants and funding opportunities for community development that are available to towns.