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House Commerce Committee Hears Economic Data from Vermont Future’s Project
The first testimony of the session in the House Commerce and Economic Development Committee was from the Vermont Chamber’s foundation, the Vermont Futures Project. Kevin Chu, the Executive Director, presented data on the need to increase the Vermont population to 802,000 by 2035 and housing inventory to 350,000 non-seasonal units by 2035. Members of the committee agreed that we need a new story for Vermont, one that encourages more people to live and work here.
Legislators, many of whom connected with the Vermont Futures Project in recent months during the statewide tour to inform the 2024 Economic Plan for Vermont, expressed enthusiasm for finding innovative solutions to recruit people to live and work in our state. The Vermont Chamber will be working with legislators this session to identify and advance policy solutions to our workforce crisis. In particular, we will continue to advocate on the need for a sustained multi-year investment to expand our image beyond a travel destination. This must be additional funding so that it complements the revenue from our tourism economy, instead of restricting it. This strategic approach to elevate Vermont’s achievements to combat our declining demographics will pay dividends for Vermonters, communities, and state revenue.