Is There a Fix for the Workforce Shortage?

Businesses across every sector of Vermont’s economy are experiencing a severe shortage of workers. According to the Department of Labor, there are only about 8,000 unemployed Vermonters and over 20,000 job openings. The Vermont Chamber will lobby for program funding to encourage people to return to work, and to attract more workers to Vermont. Those include:  

  • The Vermont Training Program which gives Vermonters the ability to upskill and enter high-need industries like advanced manufacturing, health care, food systems, and green building.  
  • The RETAIN initiative to help workers with injuries and illnesses stay at or return to work.  
  • CTE programs for high school students and adult learners.  
  • Relocation grants and the Stay-to-Stay program which are even more critical now as the labor shortage puts pressure on an insufficient number of workers. The Vermont Department of Financial Regulation recently released a report quantifying the effectiveness of the incentive programs, further illustrating how these programs are a key component of the State’s strategy to attract and retain new workers. Additional funding for refugee resettlement programs to support the 100 Afghan refugees being resettled in Vermont.  
  • military retirement pay tax exemption to better incentivize military retirees to move to Vermont, increasing the diversity of our communities while also strengthening our workforce.