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Governor-elect Shumlin names Jeb Spaulding to lead his administration

first_imgAlexandra MacLean is a native Vermonter who most recently served as Governor-elect Shumlin’s campaign manager. In this role she successfully helped Governor-elect Shumlin win both the primary and the general election to become Vermont’s next governor. Prior to the campaign, Alex served as Shumlin’s aide in the Senate President Pro Tem’s office. In addition to serving for three years in these roles, she holds a master’s degree in history from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland. Alex grew up in the North East Kingdom and continues to reside there today. Beth Robinson is a partner in the Middlebury and Burlington law firm of Langrock Sperry & Wool LLP. She was one of the leaders of Vermont Freedom to Marry, a group that successfully advocated for Vermont’s same-sex marriage law, which passed in 2009.Susan Barlett, a long serving member of the state Senate from Lamoille County, was one of Shumlin’s opponents in the Democratic primary. Despite that, she campaigned hard for Shumlin in the general election against Lieutenant Governor Brian Dubie. Bartlett is frequently praised for her no nonsense approach to budgetary matters.Shumlin said he probably would not name any more staff before Thanksgiving, but did not entirely rule it out either.Spaulding was the highest vote getter in any race of the just concluded elections, receiving more than 90 percent of the vote. He was first elected in 2002, the same year Governor Douglas first won. Once Shumlin is sworn in Spaulding will officially step down, thus allowing Shumlin to appoint a new treasurer. Speculation on who would fill that position began immediately.Biographies of Senior AppointmentsJeb Spaulding has served as Vermont’s State Treasurer since 2003 and is currently immediate past president of the National Association of State Treasures. His Office is responsible for the State’s cash, debt, and investment management. During his tenure as Treasurer, Vermont regained a triple-A bond rating for the first time since the 1970s and now has the most favorable credit rating of all New England states. Spaulding has been tapped by the Vermont Legislature on multiple occasions to develop solutions to ongoing fiscal challenges, such as escalating pension costs and funding for deteriorating roads and bridges. As State Treasurer, he serves on the boards of the Vermont Student Assistance Corporation, the Vermont Economic Development Authority, the Vermont Housing Finance Agency, the Vermont Municipal Bond Bank, and several other state-sponsored entities. Prior to being elected State Treasurer, Spaulding served eight terms in the Vermont State Senate from 1985-2000, where he served as chair of the Appropriations, Education, and Joint Fiscal Committees. Spaulding was a founder and General Manager of WNCS-FM in Montpelier and a partner in Precision Media, Inc. He has also served as the Director of the Vermont Academy of Science and Technology at Vermont Technical College, an adjunct instructor at Norwich University, and as Director of Adult and Technical Education at the Vermont Department of Education. Treasurer Spaulding earned a Bachelor of Arts and a Master’s degree in Education from the University of Vermont. Pictured: Beth Robinson, Bill Lofy, Governor-elect Shumlin, Susan Bartlett and Alexandra MacLean. Jeb Spaulding is behind Shumin. Photo: Vermont Business Magazine Bill Lofy has 16 years of experience managing political and policy initiatives at the state, national, and international levels. In addition to serving for seven years as a senior advisor to Senator Paul Wellstone of Minnesota and advisor to the Vermont legislative leadership in 2006-2007, he holds a master’s degree in public affairs from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University. For the past three years, Lofy has served as Deputy Political Director for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, where his responsibilities included managing the transition for Senator Al Franken. Lofy is the author of an acclaimed biography of Wellstone and co-author of two campaign management books. A former Peace Corps Volunteer in the Cape Verde Islands in West Africa, Lofy also served as a development worker in the Democratic Republic of Congo. MacLean was Shumlin’s popular campaign manager and spokesperson and previously worked for him in his role as president pro tem of the Senate. Vermont State Treasurer Jeb Spaulding as Secretary of Administration was the most surprising name among the small group of senior appointments announced by Governor-elect Peter Shumlin this afternoon at his transition office in Montpelier. The four others named were Bill Lofy as chief of staff, Alexandra MacLean as Secretary of Civil and Military Affairs, Beth Robinson as counsel and Susan Bartlett as special adviser. See biographies below.While Spaulding was an early supporter of Shumlin’s and was often cited as a possible senior member of the governor-elect’s staff, there had been no acknowledgement by Spaulding that he was being considered. Spaulding stated at the press conference that he was content to keep his current job, but that when the governor-elect asked him to serve that that is what he felt he should do.Lofy was previously named as one of the senior members of Shumlin’s transition team. He formerly had worked for US Senator Paul Wellstone of Wisconsin. Lofy has held important positions in the national Democratic Party. Beth Robinson is a partner at the Middlebury and Burlington law firm of Langrock Sperry & Wool, LLP, where she has practiced since 1993. Her work spans a broad range of areas from groundbreaking constitutional litigation to representing claimants in workers’ compensation cases. She has been recognized in The Best Lawyers in America for her work. Beth may be best known for her role in Vermont’s freedom to marry movement. She served as co-counsel to the plaintiffs in Baker v. State, Vermont’s landmark case involving the constitutional rights of same-sex couples, helped lead the lobbying effort which led to the passage of Vermont’s civil union law in 2000, and helped lead the effort in 2009 that culminated in the Legislature’s passage of a bill extending the legal right to marry to same-sex couples. The Burlington Free Press named her Vermonter of the Year in 2009 in recognition of her efforts. Beth graduated summa cum laude from Dartmouth College in 1986 and from the University of Chicago Law School, Order of the Coif, in 1989.Susan Bartlett was a candidate for the Democratic nomination for Governor in 2010. She was a small business owner in Stowe and in 1992 was elected as the first woman and first Democrat to represent Lamoille County in the Vermont Senate. She has served on the Appropriations Committee since 1994 and has been its Chair since 2001. She holds a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Vermont and a Master’s degree in educational administration from Johnson State College.Source: Vermont Business Magazine. 11.15.2010. Jeb Spaulding photo State of Vermont. Biographies supplied by Shumlin’s office.last_img read more

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Sugar Mountain’s Revamped Downhill Mountain Bike Park

first_imgOn June 30, and after a $300,000 investment, Sugar Mountain has reopened its doors to mountain bikers.Along with their classic technical terrain, the park features newly built beginner and intermediate trail systems. Wide open berms, rollers, tabletops, rock gardens, and drops pose unique challenges for riders at Sugar Mountain. Every trail features multiple line options and obstacles for all types of downhill mountain biking. For more information, check out their updated trail map.Lead by PJ Noto, the former Lees McRae College trail construction specialist, the trail expansion will gradually improve upon the existing system. The lifts are updated too!Magic Cycles Bike Shop, located in the base lodge, has everything you need for a day at Sugar Mountain. Bike rentals are available and include pads with a full-face helmet. Don’t need a bike? They rent gear individually as well.Located in Sugar Mountain, N.C., the resort is under a 30-minute drive from nearby Beech Mountain. It will take you about an hour to get there from Johnson City, Wilkesboro, and Morganton. From Asheville, you’ll be there in just under two hours.Check out this video for more on the mountain and a first-person look at their updated trails!Justin Forrest is an outdoor writer, fly fishing addict, and co-founder of Narrative North—based in Asheville, N.C. He posts pictures of cats and fishing on Instagram sometimes.last_img read more

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CUNA’s Nussle, Donovan, Gose talk post-election picture for CUs

first_imgCUNA staff prepares for a post-election webinar breaking down Tuesday’s election results. Credit unions are well positioned after Tuesday’s election into the 116th Congress, CUNA President/CEO Jim Nussle said during CUNA’s post-election webinar Thursday. Nussle was joined by Chief Advocacy Officer Ryan Donovan and Chief Political Officer Richard Gose to break down the election results, which can also be found in great detail in CUNA’s post-election whitepaper.“In the wake of this election, our goal remains the same, to move forward in the best interests of America’s credit unions,” said CUNA President/CEO Jim Nussle. “CUNA, our political action committee – the Credit Union Legislative Action Committee (CULAC) invested nearly $7 million in 388 House and Senate races this year, we’ve won 349 of them, with the total number to rise as more races are called. That’s an incredibly strong performance and ensures that we will have a credit union friendly Congress. I cannot stress enough the great work all of us did to ensure we had a successful outcome.”Gose credited CUNA’s Member Activation Program and CUNA’s league partners and credit unions for generating “Get Out The Vote” buzz using CUNA’s “Credit Unions Vote” MAP Campaign, which CUNA launched in September. ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrcenter_img continue reading »last_img read more

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Tourism will take at least a year to recover from COVID-19 outbreak: Economists

first_imgTopics : Faisal said that when Indonesia’s tourist destinations were hit by natural disasters, such as Lombok’s earthquake in 2018, tourists needed time before traveling there again. Even six months after the Lombok earthquake, tourist numbers had not yet returned to normal.He predicted that COVID-19 would have a deeper impact than natural disasters, as people could not predict when the pandemic would be totally over. “Thus, the tourism outlook this year will really depend on how this virus spreads. If the virus subsides in the third and fourth quarter this year, we predict that the tourism sector will recover in 2021, but it will not be fully recovered yet,” said Faisal.Indonesia Travel Agent Association (Astindo) general secretary and director of Elok Tour, Pauline Suharno, said even if the outbreak slowed down in June, the after effect on the industry would continue, as it needed time to recover.A Flourish chart Indonesia’s tourism sector, the industry hardest-hit by COVID-19, is projected to take a long time to recover, although the pandemic is expected to slow down in the third quarter this year, economists and business players estimate.Economist and director of the Center of Reform on Economics (CORE) Mohammad Faisal said the tourism sector really depended on the people’s psychology, and was very sensitive to safety and security aspects. In the recovery period, regaining people’s trust to travel again after the pandemic would be a challenging task, he said.“During the recovery period, unlike other business sectors, tourism will take a longer time to return to normalcy because tourists need to ensure that the situation is really safe and secure before they travel again. So it will take time,” Faisal told The Jakarta Post on April 2.center_img “We will not be able to sell [tourism packages] right away. It really depends on the economic situation as well. With the economy disrupted, it also reduces people’s desire to travel,” she said.COVID-19 has hit tourism and left tourist destinations across the county empty of visitors. Some popular tourist sites are temporarily closed, such as Borobudur Temple in Central Java and Komodo National Park in East Nusa Tenggara. Statistics Indonesia data show that Indonesia had only 885,067 foreign tourist arrivals in February, a 28.85 percent decline from February last year. Meanwhile, from January to February, Indonesia recorded 2.16 million foreign tourist visits, an 11.8 percent drop from the 2.45 million tourists recorded during the same period last year.“Visitor numbers in February have declined at all entrance points. Considering the current situation, tourist visits are predicted to drop further in March than in February,” said Statistics Indonesia head Suhariyanto on Wednesday.  Suhariyanto said that almost all tourists from countries known as Indonesia’s main tourist markets such as China, Malaysia, Singapore and Australia fell in February. Tourist visits from China alone fell by 93.5 percent to only 11,780 people in February from 199,960 tourists in the same period last year.Astindo recorded a 90 percent drop in sales following booking cancellations in March with potential losses expected to reach Rp 4 trillion, the same amount they reported losing in February. With the current situation, many travel agents have been forced to lay off their non-permanent workers such as drivers and office boys.“The contracts of most non-permanent workers will not be extended. Travel agents also experienced difficulty to pay operational costs and wages in February and March. If there is no help from the government, many businesspeople [travel agents] will not be able to pay employees’ salaries in April,” said Pauline.The PHRI reported the country’s hotel overall occupancy rate had fallen to 30 to 40 percent since early January. PHRI chairman Hariyadi Sukamdani reported last week that 698 hotels across Indonesia had closed due to COVID-19.To help the tourism sector and all businesses recover quickly after the pandemic, the chairman of the Indonesia Tourism Intellectuals Association (ICPI), Azril Azahari, shared several actions that must be carried out such as disinfecting major tourist destinations.“Perform the disinfection at all tourist destinations including hotels, in order to regain people’s trust that tourist destinations and accommodation in Indonesia is all free of COVID-19, so they can feel safe,” stated Azril in its statement.A Flourish chartHe also called on the government to provide financial incentives in the form of loan repayment relaxation to business players in the tourism sector, especially small and medium enterprises, and give cash assistance to employees working in the tourism sector.COVID-19 will severely affect tourism globally. The UN World Tourism Organzation estimated that international tourist arrivals could decline by between 20 and 30 percent globally in 2020, from 1.46 billion tourist arrivals in 2019 to only 1.02 to 1.17 billion tourists this year. This could lead to financial losses of US$300 billion to $450 billion in international tourism exports.last_img read more

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Alpena DDA to host second virtual shopping event

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to MoreAddThisALPENA, Mich. — The Alpena Downtown Development Authority will be hosting a Downtown Virtual Night on Thursday, June 4 from 4 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Seven downtown merchants have signed up to participate, including: Great Lakes Divers , Olivet Book & Gift , Family Enterprise, Soaps And Such , The Local Basket Case LLC – Alpena , Traveling Ladders and Yarns to Go & Fabrics.The participating downtown merchants will be going LIVE on their own Facebook Pages at the start of every half hour. Some merchants will be selling their products, some may be giving virtual tours of their stores. Those interested in attending the event are encouraged to like and follow each participating business’ page so they’ll be notified when they go live. When attendees join the Facebook Lives, they’ll be able to engage with each merchant in the comments. If the business is selling products or items, they can comment on what they’d like and each merchant will follow up after they’ve ended their Facebook Live to organize payment and pick-up, shipping, or delivery.The official schedule of Facebook Lives for this Thursday is as follows:4 PM – 4:30 PM Olivet Book & Gift4:30 PM – 5:00 PM Family Enterprise Inc.5 PM – 5:30 PM Traveling Ladders5:30 PM – 6 PM Soaps and Such6 PM – 6:30 PM Yarns to Go & Fabrics6:30 PM – 7 PM Great Lakes Divers7 PM – 7:30 PM The Local Basket Case“There are a few reasons to continue hosting virtual events like this. The first is that even as things are reopening, a lot of people don’t feel safe shopping for non-essential products still. The second is that social media can be a powerful tool to show potential customers and people who have never been in a store what they can expect. These events help develop relationships between customers both locally and state-wide who don’t shop downtown,” said Kingsli Kraft, Marketing and Outreach Coordinator for the Alpena DDA.For more information about the Downtown Virtual Shopping night, the Alpena DDA Facebook page.AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to MoreAddThisContinue ReadingPrevious Dental offices resume normal operationsNext Pets of the Weeklast_img read more