Several prominent area business organizations have joined forces to create a new alliance, the Business Alliance for a Clean Lake (BACL), first announced in January 2010. The BACL will bring their member organizations to the Statehouse on Friday, February 19th, to meet with legislators and introduce them to the issues the BACL supports. They will be in the Statehouse cafeteria from 7:45 to 9:30. A brochure describing their program will be available.Founding members of the BACL are: Franklin County Industrial Development Corporation Franklin County Regional Chamber of Commerce Friends of Northern Lake Champlain Lake Champlain Islands Chamber of Commerce Lake Champlain Regional Chamber of CommerceParticipating organizations:- Addison County Chamber of Commerce- Burlington International Airport- Burlington Business Association- Church Street Marketplace Commission- Farmers’ Watershed Alliance- Franklin County Board of Realtors- Greater Burlington Industrial Corporation- St. Albans Area Watershed Association- Vermont Convention BureauMission Statement of Business Alliance for a Clean Lake: Lake Champlain is an incomparable natural, social and economic resource. The Mission of BACL is to support efforts to clean the lake, to prevent further man-made impacts that would reduce its safe and enjoyable use, and to protect the Lake for the future of our economy and for future generations.
The total value of Vermont construction contracts this year through October were down 23 percent as federal funding for highway and bridge construction waned. But both residential and commercial spending showed modest gains after two years of sluggish building in each. Residential was up 16 percent for the year-to-date and commercial was up 12 percent. New Hampshire showed a similar rebound in residential and commercial construction.Meanwhile, total US construction spending increased by 0.7 percent in October, driven largely by growing demand for power projects and public construction, the Associated General Contractors of America noted today in an analysis of new Census Bureau data. The new data, however, indicated continued weakness in many construction categories, including private nonresidential and single family construction, association officials observed.‘Without any upward trend in key private-sector construction components like homes and office buildings, it is hard to feel optimistic about the near future,’ said Ken Simonson, the association’s chief economist. ‘With public construction at risk of cutbacks, it is premature to conclude that construction has awakened from its long nightmare.’Simonson commented that power construction increased by 8.8 percent between September and October at a seasonally adjusted rate, although the total remained 3.9 percent below the year-ago level. Public construction, aided by federal spending on stimulus, military base realignment and Gulf Coast hurricane-control projects, edged up 0.4 percent for the month and 2.2 percent year-over-year.Private nonresidential construction, however, slumped 0.7 percent in October, leaving the total 20.7 percent below the October 2009 figure. All 11 of the Census Bureau’s private nonresidential categories were below year-ago levels, Simonson added, with only private power and transportation showing gains from September.Private residential investment jumped 2.5 percent for the month. However, Simonson cautioned that the apparent leap is attributable to a 3.2 percent advance in new multi-family construction and a 6.2 percent rise in improvements to existing properties, whereas single-family construction sank 1.2 percent for the month.Association officials said that a proposal released today by the Deficit Commission to increase investments in highways, bridges and transit system construction provided some room for optimism. They urged Congress to embrace the transportation proposal, noting it would help the economy over the long run while giving a much-needed boost to short term construction demand.‘The best way to reduce the deficit and simultaneously support a strong and expanding economy is to invest in our aging network of highways, bridges and transit systems,’ said Stephen E. Sandherr. ‘Even as the broader report calls for dramatic reductions in federal spending, it is clear that our country can’t afford to neglect its infrastructure.’View Census Bureau data.
Teachers at both Union-Endicott and Johnson City said the day went relatively smoothly besides a couple of adjustments with students working remotely. They said students knew what rules to expect and were happy to follow along with new guidelines to keep everyone safe. With the new year, there are changes happening inside and outside of the classroom including wearing masks, social distancing, remote learning and small group snack time. And as staff have been anticipating challenges for months, Johnson City eighth grade teacher Jackie Townsend said now, “I think our main worry as teachers is just making sure our students feel connected to us and making sure that they feel excited to be there, excited to jump on the computer when they’re remote and just welcomed and safe because it was such a crazy time, so I think making sure that they feel comfortable and confident and happy is our biggest, my biggest worry.” Teachers and students told 12 News they are thrilled to be back in school and reunited with their students and peers. Some children said they haven’t seen their classmates since back in March. One child expressed concern over the possibility of getting sick. BROOME COUNTY (WBNG) — As schools in Broome County headed back to school Monday, the new year brought excitement, many pandemic-related changes and some worry. Check out a slideshow of back-to-school photos from families in our area here.