IDX Systems wins Deane Davis Business of the Year AwardIDX Systems Corp of South Burlington was named winner of the Deane C Davis Outstanding Vermont Business Award during opening ceremonies May 25 for the Vermont Business & Industry Expo.IDX was a finalist along with Dufresne-Henry of North Springfield and Pompanoosuc Mills of East Thetford. Chairman and co-founder Richard Tarrant accepted the award from Governor Douglas. The award, now in its 15th year, is presented by Vermont Business Magazine and the Vermont Chamber of CommerceThe Deane Davis Award is given to a long-time, Vermont-based company that has shown business success within the Vermont ethos of community, employment and environmental awareness.IDX is a health care-related software developer with 2,400 employees worldwide. It added more than 300 employees just last year.
CVPS Donates Plug-in Car to UVM for Research on Hybrid Vehicles in Northern ClimatesUVM president Daniel Mark Fogel was handed the keys to a new car today. But he wont be taking it for a joy ride.Instead, he received the plug-in hybrid electric vehiclea modified Toyota Prius donated by Central Vermont Public Serviceon behalf of UVMs Transportation Center. UVM researchers will use the vehicle to explore how a new generation of hybrid cars, which recharge from a standard outlet, perform in the cold, hilly conditions of Vermont.Bob Young, president of CVPS, presented the vehicle to President Fogel and Transportation Center director Lisa Aultman-Hall as part of CVPSs “plug n go” program, the nations first utility program that allows customers to use plug-in hybrid electric vehicles to reduce driving costs and air pollution by substituting off-peak electricity for gasoline.UVM will conduct extensive testing on the vehicle in cooperation with the CVPS program.Were delighted to have an ongoing partnership with Central Vermont Public Service and deeply grateful for this generous donation, said Fogel, Our shared goal of developing a new generation of cleaner and smarter transportation choicesthat are practical for the people of Vermonttakes an important step forward today.UVMs expertise will provide valuable insights into these vehicles and the air emission reductions they offer, Young said. We are on the cutting edge of this technology, and UVM is in a unique position to complement the work we are doing.Making Vermont a global leader in clean energy technology, alternative fuel use and energy research will strengthen our economy and help us combat global climate change, said Governor Jim Douglas. I congratulate CVPS and the university for their groundbreaking partnership and focus on this important research.Vermont-specific ResearchWe know in general that plug-in hybrids have about 30% lower carbon emissions than other hybrids, said Richard Watts, a UVM researcher who will study the carsperformance, but we dont know specifically how they will do over different length trips and on different parts of our electrical grid. Will the performance be the same in Burlington as in Highgate Falls?To study this question and others, the researchers will ask a group of commuters, some local and some coming from long distances, to use the car for their regular drive. From all of these trips, theyll collect data about carbon emissions, electricity use, local variations in the electrical supply, and performance over differing distances and driving styles.The new car will also be used as part of an on-going research effort about the capacity of Vermonts electricity grid to handle 50,000, 100,000 or 200,000 plug-in hybrids.If everyone plugged in at 8 in the morning and 6 at night that would be a disaster, Watts said, because that is the peak period of demand. The additional draw on the grid would force power providers to buy more expensive, dirtier power from outside the stateor cause the grid to fail.But there are valleys in use overnight, Watts said, and his research, in collaboration with Stephen Letendre at Green Mountain College, is exploring ways that drivers could be encouraged to recharge their plug-in cars at these off-peak times. As part of the research, the test drivers of the new car will recharge it during the night.The UVM car is the second provided by CVPS to educational partners, the first donated to Green Mountain College last fall.HybridPlus Extension CordLike a conventional hybrid car, a plug-in hybrid runs on a battery pack when it can and then switches to a gas engine. But the plug-in hybrid can also recharge its batteries by connecting to a standard electrical outlet.Since Vermonts electricity supply is relatively clean compared to many other statesit has a high proportion coming from hydro and nuclear powercars that run on electricity could make a significant impact on the states overall greenhouse gas emissions.Nationwide, transportation produces about 28% of US greenhouse gas emissions, according the EPA. In Vermont, transportation produces 44% of the states greenhouse gas emissions, Watts reports.Switching 50,000 existing vehicles from gasoline to plug-in hybrid electric vehicles would reduce carbon emissions by 31 percent, Watts and Letendre wrote in a new report on these vehicles that was formally released at the car donation event today.In addition to donating the new vehicle, Central Vermont Public Service is helping to fund Watts research along with Green Mountain Power and the Burlington Electric Department.
The federal stimulus plan has helped push Vermont’s construction industry for 2009 above levels in 2008, despite reductions in both commercial and residential development. McGraw-Hill Construction today reported on December and year-end contracts for future construction in the state of Vermont. For year-end, overall construction was just over a billion dollars, up 39 percent over 2008. This was led by $593.2 million in road and bridge construction. Meanwhile, year-end results for residential construction was down 27 percent and commercial building was down 17 percent. Source: Research and Analytics unit of McGraw-Hill Construction. 1.25.2010. The firm produces Dodge Reports and Sweets Catalog Files.
Senator Patrick Leahy Thursday announced that the U.S. Navy will award Goodrich a new $13,642,763 contract for continued work on the company’s helicopter diagnostic system, which is managed by the firm’s facility here. The innovative system for helicopter safety and maintenance already has earned the company more than $100 million in defense contracts, and Leahy last month joined Goodrich employees at the facility to mark shipment of the 2000th system. Work on the new contract is expected to be completed by 2011.Goodrich’s Health and Usage Monitoring Systems (HUMS) give mechanics feedback on a helicopter’s engine performance, structural performance and rotor function and wear, allowing a helicopter to be serviced before major system failures. Before the use of HUMS units, helicopters were taken out of service for routine preventative maintenance. This practice unnecessarily grounded some helicopters that did not need servicing while failing to anticipate mechanical failures in some others. The HUMS units now are onboard a variety of military and commercial helicopters including the Blackhawk, Chinook, Huey, Cobra and Lakota. The Vermont Air National Guard’s newly arrived Blackhawk helicopters stationed in Burlington feature HUMS units. “The success of HUMS is a win for our pilots, for Addison County’s economy and for taxpayers,” Leahy said in a statement. “This work helps keep our helicopters flying safely, and these jobs are an important factor in our economy.” He met with Goodrich employees at the Vergennes plant on March 8 to celebrate the shipment of the 2000th HUMS system. Leahy has led in supporting the HUMS program through his work as a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee and of its Defense Subcommittee, which handles the Senate’s work in writing the annual Defense Department budget bill.Source: Leahy’s office. VERGENNES, Vt. (THURSDAY, April 1, 2010) –# # # # #
The Travel Channel is scheduled to cover the May 16, Williston, Vermont, kick-off of the international adventure Spartan Race Series (www.spartanrace.com(link is external)) that will feed qualifiers into the now-infamous Death Race (www.peakraces.com(link is external)) held annually in Pittsfield, VT.After Burlington, the Spartan Race Series fans out to Montreal, Toronto, New York, Chicago and two locations in the UK. The US races benefit St. Jude Children’s Hospital in their battle against cancer; additional partner charities for Canada and the UK will be announced.A Spartan Race is a much shorter version of Death Race that many say is amongst the toughest races on the planet, renowned for its 24 hours of relentless physical and mental challenges and utilizing the gnarly mountain terrain and cornpone tasks of rural life to push competitors to their breaking point and beyond. Ninety percent who enter falter in the opening hours of the race. In a Spartan Race, adventure racers of all stripes will hurtle, climb, crawl, muck and spear throw through more than a dozen obstacles over a two-mile course that takes its inspiration from Spartan and Navy Seal training, American Gladiator and adventure races. The overall winner of each Spartan Race will receive an authentic Spartan helmet with second and third place receiving traditional Spartan spears and the chance to test their mettle in the world championship race.Whereas 300 Spartan warriors marched into battle with the Persians, race organizers anticipate hundreds of competitors with different goals in mind, from the elite athlete seeking something more to test his ingenuity and physical prowess than the average triathlon, to the weekend warrior looking for a thrill that stretches beyond the video console.Though the Spartan Race draws its inspiration from the fierce, disciplined and ascetic Spartans, it does so with tongue firmly implanted in cheek. Competitors are encouraged to arrive donning their finest tunics, sans weaponry, and whatever else will stoke their spirit of adventure while they still have the time of their lives. And as, at least in the imagination of Hollywood, the brutal Spartan Warriors of old all maintained perfectly rippled abs, the race will offer prosthetic spray-on versions for those who find themselves a bit soft in the middle at the starting gate.Additional festivities for the spectators will include live entertainment, feats of strength, Spartan models, archery, mud wrestling and a tug of war. Once the top Spartan warrior is crowned, a post race party with a live band and DJ hosted by Nectar nightclub and Long Trail Brewery will ensue including a spit roast barbeque, food, beer and revelry. Each competitor will be rewarded with two free beers.Check in at the Burlington competition begins at 8 a.m. with heats of up to 250 people starting at 30-minute intervals. The event is at the Catamount Outdoor Center at 592 Governor Chittenden Rd., Williston, VT.Participants may register online and for more information visit: http://www.spartanrace.com(link is external)Links The Death Race: http://www.youmaydie.com(link is external)Source: Spartan Race. PITTSFIELD, VT, April 14, 2010
Jay Peak putting EB-5 to work | Vermont Business Magazine Sep 14, 2009 … Known as the EB-5 program, this initiative also covers the immediate families of those who invest at least $500000 in a job-creating venture … Governor Jim Douglas yesterday departed for Japan on the first leg of a 12-day EB-5 trade mission to Asia to help Vermont employers attract foreign investment and create jobs. The EB-5 program is a federal investment program run by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The goal of the program is to incent investment and create American jobs by setting aside a pool of green cards for qualified foreign investors that invest capital into approved EB-5 projects. The Vermont EB-5 Regional Center is run through the Agency of Commerce and Community Development and has raised over $100 million in new capital for companies and projects.Governor Douglas and the delegation will be traveling to Tokyo, Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai and Vietnam between October 14 and October 26. Source: Governor’s office. 10.13.2010 http://www.thinkvermont.com/Programs/EB5/tabid/389/Default.aspx(link is external)
The Vermont Manufacturing Extension Center (VMEC) has announced the election of Brenan S. Riehl to its Advisory Board. Brenan (Ben) Riehl is the President and CEO of GW Plastics headquartered in Bethel, VT. GW Plastics is a highly respected global manufacturer of very close tolerance plastic components and assemblies for Fortune 500 companies in the medical device market and the automotive safety market. The company employs about 800 people, with 300 in Vermont.In addition, five current Board members were re-elected to additional 2-years terms, including: Dave Blittersdorf, President and CEO of AllEarth Renewables in Williston; Tommy Harmon, President of Sonnax Industries in Bellows Falls; Dr. Cy Jordan, MD, Administrator of Research and Educational Programs, Vermont Medical Society Education and Research Foundation; Joe Perrotto, President and CEO of Country Home Products in Vergennes and Ed Townley, Executive Vice President and CFO of Agri-Mark, Inc. in Montpelier. Mike Rainville, President of Maple Landmark, Inc. in Middlebury, was re-elected as Board Chairperson.About VMECSince 1995, VMEC has operated as a not for profit with a primary mission “To improve manufacturing in Vermont and strengthen the global competitiveness of the state’s smaller manufacturers.” This is done through confidential consulting, coaching, hands-on implementation assistance and training to help Vermont manufacturers achieve profitable growth through innovation, increased productivity, improved manufacturing and business processes, reduced costs, improved competitiveness, and creating and retaining good paying jobs. Through the VMEC PSG business unit established in 2006, VMEC also brings its process and strategy expertise to selected non-manufacturing sectors in Vermont, including but not limited to healthcare, higher education, government, and financial services. Visit www.vmec.org(link is external) for more information.
The percent of delinquent and foreclosed mortgages in Vermont continues to increase slowly, as the 2011 increase in non-current mortgages was 7.9 percent. The November Mortgage Monitor report released today by Lender Processing Services, Inc. (NYSE: LPS) shows that while mortgage delinquencies at the end of November 2011 were nearly 25 percent less than the January 2010 peak, the trend toward fewer loans becoming delinquent, which dominated 2010 and the first quarter of 2011, appears to have halted. At the same time, new problem loans – those loans seriously delinquent as of the end of November that were current six months prior – have not improved significantly in the last year. This degree of stagnation indicates that while the situation is not getting markedly worse, it is not improving either, and inventories of troubled loans remain significantly higher than pre-crisis levels across the board.The November mortgage performance data also showed both new and repeat foreclosure starts dropped sharply in November, down nearly 30 percent from the month prior. As late-stage delinquencies in the pipeline still number close to 2 million, the sharp drop is more indicative of the impact of ongoing document reviews, additional state legislation and new regulatory requirements rather than a shift in trend.Prepayment activity – a key indicator of refinances – remained strong after several consecutive months of growth; however the October origination data showed a month-over-month drop of nearly 12 percent. While still the second highest level for the year, originations through October 2011 were down 21 percent vs. the same period in 2010 and down almost 30 percent vs. 2009. As reported in LPS’ First Look release, other key results from LPS’ latest Mortgage Monitor report include:Total U.S. loan delinquency rate: 8.15%Month-over-month change in delinquency rate: 2.7%Total U.S. foreclosure pre-sale inventory rate: 4.16%Month-over-month change in foreclosure pre-sale inventory rate: 3.0% States with highest percentage of non-current* loans: FL, MS, NV, NJ, ILStates with the lowest percentage of non-current* loans: ND, AK, WY, SD, MT*Non-current totals combine foreclosures and delinquencies as a percent of active loans in that state.Notes:(1) Totals are extrapolated based on LPS Applied Analytics’ loan-level database of mortgage assets.(2) All whole numbers are rounded to the nearest thousand.About the Mortgage MonitorLPS manages the nation’s leading repository of loan-level residential mortgage data and performance information on nearly 40 million loans across the spectrum of credit products. The company’s research experts carefully analyze this data to produce a summary supplemented by dozens of charts and graphs that reflect trend and point-in-time observations for LPS’ monthly Mortgage Monitor Report. To review the full report, visit http://www.lpsvcs.com/NEWSROOM/INDUSTRYDATA/Pages/default.aspx(link is external).About Lender Processing ServicesLender Processing Services, Inc. (LPS) is a leading provider of integrated technology, services and mortgage performance data and analytics to the mortgage and real estate industries. LPS offers solutions that span the mortgage continuum, including lead generation, origination, servicing, workflow automation (Desktop®), portfolio retention and default, augmented by the company’s award-winning customer support and professional services. Approximately 50 percent of all U.S. mortgages by dollar volume are serviced using LPS’ loan servicing platform, MSP. LPS also offers proprietary mortgage and real estate data and analytics for the mortgage and capital markets industries. For more information about LPS, visit www.lpsvcs.com(link is external). JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Jan. 6, 2012 –