The EAI Blog is a forum for our members and followers to post and share a variety of perspectives on topical issues. We encourage diverse, and civil debate. These opinions do not necessarily reflect the position of the Institute.

Government Is Screwing Up the Labor Market, and More

A story in the Mountain Times, Woodstock struggles to solve restaurant shortage, describes in detail the tourist town’s “impossible equation” with labor, regulatory, and supply issues that are hampering the overall ability to meet the needs of visitors. Many restaurants can’t open seven days a week because the federal government is paying workers not to work. It’s gotten so bad that when a tourist bus showed up in the popular Vermont tourist town and disembarked 44 hungry people, there was no place open for them to eat. Can you say “hangry”? The tour company subsequently canceled its future bus trips to Woodstock.

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The Salisbury Digester: Turning Waste into Energy

       Vermont Digger published a noteworthy story July 21 by reporter Sophia McDermott-Hughes. It’s about the largest anaerobic digester in the Northeast that has just begun full-scale production of renewable natural gas on the Goodrich Family Farm in Salisbury.

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Civil Society Supporting Farmers

The 2020 annual report of the Vermont Community Foundation describes some of its work to strengthen our local food system especially in the disruptive year of COVID.

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The Ones Who Gave Residential Solar a Price Hike

If you have solar panels connected to an electric grid in Vermont, you may have been caught off guard recently by a sizeable increase in a subtle change to the “Energy Efficiency Charge (EEC).”

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VT Implications after 18 year old wins Gun Rights ruling

Three years ago Vermont raised the age for purchasing any firearm from 18 to 21. But on July 13, a three judge panel of the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that a Federal law barring the sale of handguns to persons under 21 was unconstitutional, calling into question Vermont’s 2018 action.

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The Terrors of Climate Change

       Last week I reviewed the new book by physicist Steven Koonin entitled Unsettled: What Climate Science Tells Us, What It Doesn’t, and Why It Matters, in which he explains how most of what you hear about climate science is, to put it mildly, exaggerated or insupportable.

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An Unsustainable Appetite for Spending

Steve Klein of the Joint Fiscal Office briefed the Pension and Benefits Task Force, which is looking into how to fix the state’s $6 billion unfunded pension liabilities, on the current state budget as well as impending budget pressures in the pipeline. Klein’s slide show revealed a frightening increase in spending with daunting implications for Vermont taxpayers.

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Two More Act 250 Horror Stories

The Burlington Free Press’s excellent reporter Dan D’Ambrosio reported last Thursday on two more horror stories from the application of  Act 250, the development control law.

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Can Vermont Follow New Hampshire's Tax Rate Reduction?

Drew Cline of the Josiah Bartlett Center in New Hampshire noted that New Hampshire’s Business Profits Tax rate was 8.5% in 2015, making it the third-highest corporate income tax in New England, after Maine and Connecticut.

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A Thorny Question Indeed!

At the July 26 meeting of the Vermont Climate Council, member Richard Cowart raised what he admitted might be “a thorny question.” Thorny or not, it was a very good one. It illustrates very clearly how government interventions in the free market, using carrots and sticks to influence people’s behavior in singular, predetermined ways can lead to disastrous conclusions.

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