VBSR Logo Vermont
for Social Responsibility

Andrea CohenGreetings!

Although it is summer, there is plenty of VBSR public policy activity to report.  VBSR continues to advocate for socially responsible public policy initiatives that benefit our member businesses, and their employees, environment, and community.  We provide a needed business perspective not offered by other business organizations so thank you for your continued support and input.

Policy Survey - Do you support publicly financed health care? Should nuclear energy be part of Vermont's energy future? How should Vermont best invest in Economic Development? There are a few days left to complete the VBSR 2008 Public Policy Survey. Please take 10 minutes and help shape our 2009 legislative agenda.  The data is also useful throughout the session as we offer VBSR testimony in legislative committees.  Please participate by mid-night Sunday, July 18.  Take Survey Now!

VBSR Gubernatorial Candidates Debate -  Gov. Douglas, Gaye Symington, and Anthony Pollina have been invited to the first VBSR Gubernatorial Debate which is planned for the morning of Sept. 25th at the Filmhouse at College and Lake Streets.  The Governor has not yet confirmed participation but we hope the event will be a "go".  We will be back in touch regarding.

Fall Public Policy Forums - The policy commitee is also planning fall public policy forums around the state (Burlington, Central Vermont, Manchester, Brattleboro, St. Johnsbury).  These forums provide a great opportunity to talk policy with legislators and other VBSR members in your region.  Stay tuned for dates and times.

Policy Study Committees - The public policy committee has officially launched two policy study committees:

  • Economic Sustainability Through Development of Local Food Production and Local Energy Generation, and
  • Vermont's Future Energy Supply- The Role of Nuclear Energy and Vermont Yankee.   

We will be developing web pages for each group so members can see committee work products.  Check the public policy web page over the summer and fall for updated information.

2008 VBSR Legislative Report - In case you missed it, you can access the 2008 end of session report on-line.  Overall, it was a challenging session given our ambitious objectives, the highly partisan atmosphere (greatly due to last session's energy bill veto and unsuccessful veto over-ride), and the challenging economic news delivered towards the end of the session.  In spite of this, VBSR did see some forward movement on a variety of business, energy, and environmental related initiatives. 

Please be in touch with an ideas, thoughts, and questions.  Thank for the opportunity to represent your interests.  

Be well-

Andrea Cohen
Public Policy Manager, VBSR


In This Issue
VBSR Events
Last Chance to Participate in VBSR Public Policy Survey
TruexCullins Designs Ben & Jerry's Glass Truck Bed-In
LineSync Architecture Featured in 'From House to Home' Magazine
groSolar Acquires Chesapeake Solar
VBSR Bookshelf - Finding Your True North
Networking, Social Responsibility and Service Events
Save the Date for the VBSR Fall Conference!
8:30 - 5:00, Thurs, Oct 30, Latchis Theatre, Brattleboro

VBSR Community Service Project at Healthy City Youth Farm at the Intervale

11:00 - 4:00, Thurs, Jul 24, Healthy City Youth Farm at the Intervale, 180 Intervale Farm Road, Burlington
Volunteer at the Healthy City Youth Farm prior to the Intervale/Sugarsnap Get-Together. Healthy City is a farming intensive program that teaches at-risk youth to grow and market produce. Hear about the work and the mission over lunch at eleven.  After lunch we'll roll up our sleeves and help work on the farm for the afternoon! We will finish at 4:00 p.m.  For complete details, visit the event listing.  To register or for more information call 802-862-8347 or e-mail info@vbsr.org.

VBSR Get Together Co-Hosted by Sugarsnap and the Intervale Center
5:30 - 7:30, Thurs, Jul 24, Intervale Center Barn, Burlington
The work of the Intervale Center to support small enterprises like take-out restaurant, Sugarsnap, is a wonderful illustration of businesses working in partnership to create the kind of economy that sustains Vermont.  For complete details, visit the event listing.  To register or for more information call 802-862-8347 or e-mail info@vbsr.org.

VBSR Community Service Project at ReNew Building Materials & Salvage
11:00 - 4:00, Wed, Aug 6, ReNew Building Materials & Salvage, Brattleboro
To register or for more information call 802-862-8347 or e-mail info@vbsr.org.

VBSR Get-Together Hosted by New Chapter
5:30 - 7:30, Wed, Aug 6, New Chapter, Brattleboro
Join us to learn about this company's passion to promote health through innovative botanical formulations made with 100% real foods and herbs and the company's mission to deliver the wisdom of nature to all people interested in natural wellness. You will also hear about New Chapter's commitment to sustainability and its philanthropic partnerships to support communities in need, both overseas and locally in Brattleboro and Vermont. For complete details, visit the event listing.  To register or for more information call 802-862-8347 or e-mail info@vbsr.org.

VBSR Get-Together Hosted by Common Ground Center
5:30 - 7:30, Tues, Aug 26, Common Ground Center, Starksboro
To register or for more information call 802-862-8347 or e-mail info@vbsr.org.

VBSR Get-Together Hosted by Smuggler's Notch
5:30 - 7:30, Thurs, Sep 18, Smuggler's Notch, Jeffersonville
To register or for more information call 802-862-8347 or e-mail info@vbsr.org.

For a more complete listing of events helpful to your business, visit VBSR's Events Calendar.

If you are interested in sponsoring or hosting a VBSR event, contact Rita Bevacco at 802-862-8347 or at ritab@vbsr.org

VBSR Public Policy Priorities
Capital Dome in SpringLast Chance to Participate in the 2009 VBSR Public Policy Member Survey!

This important tool helps shape our
2009 public policy agenda.  We rely on the data throughout the legislative session so your voice counts!  Please participate by Sunday July 20!

Take Survey Now!

To get involved in the public policy group, contact Andrea Cohen at andreac@vbsr.org or call 802-862-8347.

Get Involved in a VBSR Study Committee
The VBSR policy committee is launching its work on two study committees this summer/fall.  The topics are: 
  • Economic Sustainability Through Development of Local Food Production and Local Energy Generation
  • Vermont's Future Energy Supply- The Role of Nuclear Energy and Vermont Yankee
To get involved in the public policy group, contact Andrea Cohen at andreac@vbsr.org.

Green Mountain Power's SolarGMP Approved by Vermont Public Service Board

New Solar Incentive Takes Effect July 1

COLCHESTER, Vt. (July 1, 2008) --- Green Mountain Power's groundbreaking new approach to accelerate the adoption of solar energy by Vermont homes and businesses has been approved by the Vermont Public Service Board. The program became available July 1, 2008.

"We are so pleased that our customers will now receive the appropriate financial incentive to install solar generation at their homes and businesses," said Mary Powell, incoming president and chief executive officer of Green Mountain Power. "SolarGMP will help increase the amount of renewable energy resources powering Vermont in the future."

TruexCullins designs Ben & Jerry's Glass Truck Bed-In
To launch new flavor "Imagine Whirled Peace" and promote peace campaign

B&J Bed-In Truck

Burlington, VT - Ben & Jerry's Flavor, in a joint effort with the Lennon Estate, has created a new flavor, Imagine Whirled Peace, to raise global awareness of the UN day of global ceasefire and non-violence on September 21st annually.
To promote the peace campaign and launch the new flavor, Ben & Jerry's re-created the historic "bed-in for peace" of John Lennon and Yoko Ono with a custom-designed glass truck, decked out to look like the hotel room where the 1969 demonstration took place.

LineSync Architecture Featured in 'From House to Home' Magazine
From House to Home Cover

Dream Homes Really Do Come True
This Wilmington Home Houses One Woman's Dream Year Round

There is nothing ordinary about this home.  From the moment it was conceived, it was unique.  Begun in 1961 with a whopping $500 capital investment, it remained for many years an imaginary vacation home that, despite its additions through the years, was in reality no more than a wooden tent.

groSolar Hits Home Run with Fenway installation
Boston Red Sox Unveil Heating System Installed by groSolar

by Josh O'Gorman, Rutland Herald Staff on May 22nd, 2008

WHITE RIVER JUNCTION - The left field wall might not be the most impressive "green" feature at Fenway Park - at least not from an environmental point of view. On Monday, the Boston Red Sox formally unveiled a solar heating system, which consists of 28 Heliodyne solar hot water collectors and four 400-gallon storage tanks tied to the historic ballpark's water system.

While Heliodyne Inc. of Richmond, Calif., manufactured the panels, the system was installed by groSolar - a Vermont-based company.

Between May 7-12, groSolar installed the panels through the media level on the fifth floor. The panels face south and will only be covered by shadow for a few hours during the winter solstice. The hot-water heaters are located in a mechanical room on the roof in close proximity to the panels.

Vermont Soapworks
2007 Employer Guide Banner
by Joe Schmidt, as published by Vermont Business Magazine, July 2008

Larry Plesent feels "entrepreneurs" are born not raised.  As a teenager on Long Island beside a paper route he dismantled junked bikes using the parts to build rideable machines.  To support his college studies, he started a window washing business, specializing in the more profitable "high work."  On tall buildings he often descended from the roof by rope to clean glass on upper floors. 

South Farm Homes: Winner Best of the Best Award
May 29, 2008, Burlington, Vermont - South Farm Homes, Hinesburg, Vermont received the Best of the Best Award at the Better Buildings by Design Conference sponsored by Efficiency Vermont earlier this year.  South Farm Homes is a collaborative project between project designers Rolf Kielman, AIA and Lee Grutchfield, AIA at TruexCullins Home Studio and Reiss Building and Renovation that focuses on sustainable design.

Newsletter Sponsorship
Ef VT Click Here logo

Efficiency Vermont

INTERESTED IN SPONSORING VBSR'S NEWSLETTER?  E-mail info@vbsr.org or call 802-862-8347 to secure a space today.

VBSR Bookshelf
Finding Your True North

by Bill George
Andrew McLean
 & Nick Craig

Book True North

VBSR Bookshelf Information Courtesy of Northshire Bookstore:

2007 Employer Guide Banner
Welcome New VBSR Members!
Cimbria Badenhausen

Jim Bride

Scott Buckingham

Century 21 Jack Associates

Cheryl Eaton

Glenn Moody / Photography


Park Place Financial Advisors, LLC

Sarah Perry

William Robb

Kenneth Russell

Shelburne Farms

Spirited Living Inc.

David Pawlik

Businesses Recognized for Employing People with Disabiltiies
At this month's 5th Governor's Summit for the Employment of People with Disabilities, eight businesses were recognized by the Governor's Committee on Employment of People with Disabilities (GCEPD) for their efforts to promote the employment of Vermonters with physical, mental, emotional and/or other disabilities:

Supported Employment
 Nathaniel Group
VERMED, The Medical Sensor Company

Price Chopper

Small Business
Bouchard's Expert Automotive Repair

Turning Point Club

Design and Accessibility
Omni Medical Systems

Media/Public Education
Small Planet, Inc.

 Outstanding Effort
Omega Optical, Inc.
Civic Hybrid
Honda Raffle
Civic Hybrid
To benefit Vermont Adaptive Ski and Sports Year Round Programs

Tickets $100
Odds 1 in 500

Drawing Oct 22
Pico Mountain
Tickets available online at
or by calling

VT Adaptive Ski Sport Logo
test image

60 Lake Street, Suite 3G
Burlington, VT 05401

Our mission is to foster a business ethic in Vermont that recognizes the opportunity and responsibility of the business community to set a high standard for protecting the natural, human, and economic environments of our citizens.

We are commited to a multiple bottom line approach to business that values people, planet and profit.  For more information about our organization visit info@vbsr.org

Membership Information