Businesses Need Immediate Financial Assistance, and Time, to Recover

The House Commerce and Economic Development Committee and the Senate Economic Development Committee held a joint hearing on flood recovery and relief. In testimony, the Vermont Chamber urged legislators to consider that this climate disaster comes on the heels of years of economic disaster for businesses. Our team is encouraging legislators to consider a grant push now and additional funding when they return to the State House in January. We are also advocating for time. Time to recover from all the chaos in the last several years. Policymakers will need to be committed to business recovery for the long haul. Looking ahead to January, they must remember these hearings and hold the anxiety of these businesses in their deliberations. 

Over the last 12 months, businesses have dealt with an economic disaster with quickly rising interest rates and inflation on top of workforce and housing shortages. While inflation is now down to 3% from a high of 9%, the lack of workers in Vermont shows zero signs of change. Additionally, there are new taxes and regulations effective this year that must be incorporated into business plans and the lingering financial and mental impacts of the pandemic. Many businesses are being forced to decide if they have enough mental and financial fortitude to continue to operate. Meanwhile, Vermont cannot afford to lose them. They are the pulse of our economy.