(Host) Democratic Gubernatorial candidate Peter Clavelle on Wednesday outlined a ten-point plan for economic development in Vermont. Among the points: universal health care and more money for colleges.
VPR’s Steve Zind reports.
(Clavelle) “Let me start by offering you a premise and a promise…”
(Zind) Clavelle told a group of Burlington area business leaders that Vermont’s economy is fragile and job growth is anemic. That’s his premise. He said his promise is a coherent policy for economic development – something he says is the administration of Governor Jim Douglas lacks.
(Clavelle) “What’s really missing, despite all the rhetoric about job creation, is a coherent strategy for sustainable development in our state.”
(Zind) Clavelle outlined what he called a comprehensive strategy for economic development. At the top of his list of ten items is a call for universal health care. Without detailing how he would ultimately provide health care for all Vermonters, Clavelle said he would begin by helping small business owners provide coverage for employees.
Clavelle also promised to increase funding for higher education in Vermont, which he said would help attract and retain skilled workers.
(Clavelle) “We cannot provide these opportunities when we’re 49th in the nation for funding of higher education. As governor, I will increase our support for Vermont state colleges and UVM.”
(Zind) As Clavelle ticked off his ten points – including investing in affordable housing, improving transportation infrastructure, investing some of the state’s pension fund money in economic growth, and permit reform – he repeatedly reminded his audience of the economic growth that has taken place in Chittenden County over the time he’s been mayor of Burlington.
(Clavelle) “I’ve also remained constant in my support of, and relationship with, the Burlington business community.”
(Zind) Clavelle says in the weeks ahead he’ll explain the details of his initiatives and how to pay for them.
For Vermont Public Radio, I’m Steve Zind in Burlington.