State Treasurer Beth Pearce and Vermont Community Loan Fund Increase Investments in Local Economy
MONTPELIER, Vt.— State Treasurer Beth Pearce today announced a new agreement with the Vermont Community Loan Fund (VCLF) to invest up to $1.5 million to support local investment in Vermont communities, increasing VCLF’s capacity to offer flexible financing so businesses and organizations can grow their missions and stimulate economic activity across the state.
“All Vermonters benefit when we invest dollars in our local communities,” said Treasurer Pearce. “We are thrilled to increase by 50 percent the capacity we provide VCLF. These dollars will move into the hands of local businesses and community organizations, where they will create jobs throughout the state. We look forward to continuing our partnership with VCLF to invest in entrepreneurs and community leaders who spur economic opportunities for Vermonters.”
The Office of the State Treasurer first collaborated with VCLF in 2004 when $200,000 was authorized for lending. Treasurer Pearce has advocated to expand the capacity, achieving increases to $500,000 in 2013, and $1 million in 2016. During the 2019 legislative session, the Treasurer’s Office worked with the General Assembly’s Economic Development Committees to increase VCLF’s authorization to $1.5 million, a 50 percent increase over the previously authorized level.
These funds will build on recent investments to support Vermonters that seek capital through VCLF’s Food, Farms, & Forests Fund. Since its 2015 inception, the Food, Farms & Forests Fund has financed 27 working lands entrepreneurs, creating or preserving jobs for 222 Vermonters managing 1,473 acres of working landscape to produce almost 8 million pounds of local food. 2019 Food, Farms & Forests Fund projects include East Hardwick’s Snug Valley Farm, Montpelier’s North Branch Vineyards, and Barton’s Drip Drop Acres.
“We’re so grateful for the Treasurer’s commitment to activating state funds for the public good, investing in Vermont through the Vermont Community Loan Fund,” said VCLF Executive Director Will Belongia. “The Treasurer has always championed Vermont’s working lands entrepreneurs as a key to our state’s economic future. The longstanding partnership between the Treasurer’s Office and VCLF is a testament to our shared vision of thriving working landscape.”
“I want to thank VCLF’s team for their continued collaboration as we seek to grow Vermont’s local economy,” Treasurer Pearce concluded.