Working Lands Bill Passes
The legislature passed a bill that will support the businesses that rely on – and in the process, help conserve – Vermont’s rural, working landscape.
VNRC was one of six organizations that comprised the Working Lands Coalition, the core group pushing for the bill. VNRC staff testified several times in support of the legislation, H.496, as it made its way through the House and Senate.
The bill enjoyed bipartisan support in both chambers of the Legislature. Senate President Pro Tem and bill co-sponsor John Campbell called the measure one of the most important economic development bills of this session.
The executive director of the Vermont Council on Rural Development, the lead group advocating for the bill, hailed its passage. Paul Costello said “this bill raises a flag in Vermont for our natural resource economy and lets the nation know that agricultural and forest products entrepreneurs are welcome here. Vermont will be known as the ‘value-added’ state. This initiative is an economic development strategy that supports rural prosperity.”