Scott signs $8.1B budget with historic level of federal aid

June 10, 2022 GMT

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — Vermont Gov. Phil Scott has signed an $8.1 billion state budget into law that will fund workforce development, housing, economic development, broadband and efforts to mitigate climate change.

Scott said the historic levels of federal aid and state surpluses presented a “once-in-a-lifetime opportunity” and said he was grateful to the Legislature.

“The investments we made this year will make a difference for Vermonters, building stronger communities, providing some tax relief, supporting kids and families and helping address long-term challenges like our workforce shortage and regional economic inequity,” he said in a statement on Thursday. “I know far too many Vermonters are struggling with the high cost of living and employers are struggling to fill good jobs.”

The budget includes $66 million to train and recruit more workers; $96 million for broadband; $104 million in water, sewer and stormwater infrastructure and $40 million in tax relief, Scott said. It also invests $225 million to help reduce carbon emissions, through investments in weatherization, efficient home heating, making communities more resilient and to help transition to electric vehicles, Scott said.

Among other investments, the spending package includes $.8.1 million to respond to opioid and addiction epidemic and $11 million to address public safety dispatch services.