Economists Say Vermont Heading Toward Recovery

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(Host) Two economists say they expect to see signs of an economic recovery in Vermont by the end of the year. Speaking last night on VPR s Switchboard program, state economist Jeffrey Carr said there could be more job cuts in Vermont before a turnaround takes place.

Thomas Kavet, the economist for the Legislature, says any increase in state revenues will lag behind an economic recovery. Kavet says that means the state will have to make more budget cuts to offset a revenue shortfall. And he says the remaining $18 million in the Vermont s emergency rainy day fund will have to be used.

(Kavet) I think it s very likely that that will be exhausted in the not too distant future. That s probably unavoidable. The size of the fund just wasn t adequate from the start. This was mentioned to people back a few years, but it was politically, basically, all that could be socked away and consistent with what other states were doing.

(Host) Kavet says much of Vermont s economic slump has been concentrated in manufacturing while other sectors of the state s economy, like residential construction, have fared well. Despite predictions of a pending economic turnaround, Kavet and Carr said there are uncertainties about the strength and duration of any recovery.

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