In response to the difficult economic times that Vermonters are facing, we announced today the formation of a bipartisan joint Committee on Economic Recovery and Opportunity. The committee will analyze the work of the legislature and the Administration’s economic growth initiative and explore policies that will strengthen Vermont’s economy and address the pressures on Vermonters’ pocket books. Throughout this session the legislature has been addressing the softening economy by making painful yet necessary reductions and by investing in our future. This work is reflected in the budget as well as in our legislation on housing, energy, health care and transportation. The Committee on Economic Recovery and Opportunity will conduct a careful analysis of this work in order to understand its immediate effect on Vermonters’ pocketbooks and its long-term impact. The Committee on Economic Recovery and Opportunity will also review the Administration’s economic stimulus plan to assess how it will impact Vermonters’ lives today and for years beyond the current budget cycle. Governor Douglas’ announcement of his economic growth initiative last week signals that he has begun to understand the extent to which the recession is hitting Vermont families. We are pleased that he has included ideas that have been offered by the legislature and that have been in rejected by the Governor’s Office in the past. During difficult economic times Vermonters respond by tightening their belts while also making investments that improve their outlook in the long run; investments like education, or energy efficiency, for example. State Government is responding similarly – by belt tightening and making selective investments that carries long term benefits. With the formation of this special committee, we will now bring an even greater focus to the economic hardships confronting Vermonters and to ensuring our long-term economic vitality. We must do everything possible to respond to Vermonters’ economic struggles and do this in keeping with our Vermont values of sensibility, fiscal responsibility, long term thinking, and environmental soundness. The bipartisan committee consists of five House and four Senate members: Representatives Larson, Howard, Marcotte, Monti, and Otterman and Senators Carris, Condos, Snelling, and Starr. Representative Larson will chair the committee. In order to maintain thelegislature’s timely adjournment on May 2, we have asked the committee to begin today and to conclude their work by next week.
Home sursxobyh Speaker Symington and Senate Pro Tem Shumlin Release Statement Regarding Economic Recovery