Berlin, Vt. – Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont (BCBSVT) has announced that complementary and alternative health care (CAM) services are now available to its members and their families through the health plans BlueExtras affinity discount program.The states oldest and largest health insurer has teamed with American WholeHealth Networks, Inc. to add CAM and wellness services such as massage/bodywork, acupuncture, chiropractic services, nutritional counseling, mind/body therapies, spas, fitness centers, and other wellness services.BCBSVT members simply visit a participating practitioner or facility in American WholeHealth Networks extensive network to receive significant discounts on their CAM care. This newest addition to the BlueExtras program also offers members savings on the newsstand rates of popular health and wellness magazines and discounts on vitamins and supplements.The BCBSVT BlueExtras program offers members discounts on services not covered in their health benefits plan, at no additional cost to the member, including weight loss and hearing services. The addition of CAM and wellness services through American WholeHealth Networks is a major enhancement to the programs offerings, according to Kevin Goddard, BCBSVT vice president of marketing and external affairs.The addition of complementary and alternative services is a tremendous addition to the menu of services now available through BlueExtras, Goddard noted. Our members now have access to a broad range of services to meet their health requirements. We know these additions will help our members achieve a healthy lifestyle.Bill Lubin, president and CEO of American WholeHealth Networks, Inc., is enthusiastic about the BCBSVT relationship. American WholeHealth Networks is delighted to support Vermonts largest health insurance plan by providing its members access to affordable health care options. Our team looks forward to ensuring the success of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermonts CAM program.The addition of CAM services to BlueExtras will also provide BCBSVT members access to AWHNs award-winning online member education site, WholeHealthMD.com, that includes a convenient practitioner search tool. BCBSVT members may access the BCBSVT website, www.bcbsvt.com(link is external) for information about the BlueExtras program and the selection of offerings available at a discount.About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of VermontBlue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont is the states oldest and largest private health insurer, providing health benefits coverage for about 180,000 Vermonters. It employs over 350 Vermonters at its headquarters in Berlin and branch office in Williston, and offers group and individual health plans to Vermonters. More information about Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont is available on the Internet at www.bcbsvt.com(link is external). Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont is an independent corporation operating under a license with the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, an association of independent Blue Cross and Blue Shield Plans.American WholeHealth Networks, Inc.American WholeHealth Networks, Inc. is the nations largest complementary health and wellness company, dedicated to serving more than 47 million patients through collaborative relationships with health plans and more than 25,000 providers nationwide. The companys network consists of more than 35 CAM specialties, including Chiropractic, Acupuncture, Massage Therapy, and Nutritional Counseling, as well as Personal Trainers, Yoga and Pilates Instructors, Mind/Body Therapies, Spas, Fitness Centers, and more. AWHN supports consumers via its award-winning, educational site WholeHealthMD.com. Network participants are supported through WholeHealthPro.com, a professional website that helps practitioners better serve their patients and improve their business. For more information about American WholeHealth Networks, visit www.americanwholehealth.com(link is external).(End)
PRESS CONTACTChris Stone, President802.firstname.lastname@example.org(link sends e-mail)Seth Pitkin Appointed Vice President at Stone Environmental, Inc.MONTPELIER, VERMONTThe partners of Stone Environmental, Inc. are pleased to announce that Seth Pitkin, leader of the companys Site Investigation & Remediation Group, has been appointed a Vice President and Officer of the organization.Since joining Stone in 1998, Pitkin has developed the investigation and remediation function into a vital service group that has shown strong financial performance and robust client and project growth.Pitkin developed Stones specialized Rapid Adaptive Site Characterization (RASC) program and is considered an expert in subsurface contamination investigation, site characterization, and vertical profiling. He serves as lead scientist on site characterization investigations, manages groundwater-related projects and investigations using the Triad Approach, and directs Stones real-time measurement technologies including a modified Waterloo Profiling technology that he has been instrumental in developing.Pitkin holds an M.Sc. in Hydrogeology from the University of Waterloo, Ontario. As a member of John Cherrys research team at Waterloo, he helped develop the Waterloo Profiler, a uniquely powerful data acquisition system for the investigation of groundwater contamination. Pitkin and his team at Stone have modified the original profiler to create a proprietary tool that provides high-quality data in real time, including groundwater samples for analysis, a continuous vertical record of the hydrostratigraphy at each location, hydraulic head measurements, and physicochemical data on groundwater quality.Seth will be an important asset to Stones management team as we move the company forward, said company president Chris Stone. His work as leader of our site investigations team has been outstanding and we look forward to his input on broader organizational issues.Stone Environmental, Inc. is an environmental science consulting firm located in Montpelier, Vermont. The company has 21 scientists providing client services in four areas: site investigation and remediation services, water resources and wastewater, agrochemical fate and exposure, and applied information management (GIS, computer modeling, data management). The site investigation groups services include groundwater profiling with the modified Waterloo groundwater profiler, analytical services in NELAP-accredited onsite laboratories, 3-D data visualization, and use of the US EPAs Triad Approach to site investigations. Visit www.stone-env.com/profiling(link is external) for more information.Lesley AllenCommunications Specialist / MarketingDirect / 802.229.1878E-Mail / email@example.com(link sends e-mail)Stone Environmental, Inc.535 Stone Cutters Way, Montpelier, Vermont 05602Tel / 802.229.4541 Fax / 802.229.5417Web Site / www.stone-env.com(link is external)
BENNINGTON, VT BMA Architects & Planners is pleased to announce that Kirk Moore AIA, Principal Architect, has earned the United States Green Building Councils (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Accredited Professional certification.Kirk will lead BMA in the design of sustainable, cost effective buildings for both new and adaptive reuse projects as more and more clients look to the firm for long-term solutions to reduce their buildings global impact and overall building costs.BMA is committed to taking a socially and environmentally sound approach in its work. The firm is a corporate member of the United States Green Building Council (USGBC) and has instituted a policy that all design staff in the company must have their LEED AP certification within twelve months of being employed.BMA offers a full scope of architectural and planning services for both commercial and residential projects. The design team has more than 50 years of combined experience with services from site selection, feasibility studies and master planning, sustainable design, construction documents, construction administration and building evaluation and remediation.With offices in Rutland and Bennington, VT, the Firm is a member of the United States Green Building Council (USGBC), the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), the Bennington Area Chamber of Commerce, the Rutland Region Chamber of Commerce, The Better Bennington Corporation, and the Manchester & the Mountains Area Chamber of Commerce.
PCM Image-Tek, a leading New England electronic assembly services provider, today announced the completion of a strategic energy conservation initiative that will reduce the company’s energy consumption by more than 75,000 kWh per year for the next 15 years.The three-month project involved replacing the lighting system on the company’s 35,000 square foot manufacturing floor with a highly efficient lighting system that significantly improves manufacturing floor lighting while reducing energy consumption by more than half. The project, which was managed by Efficiency Vermont, will save the company more than $11,000 per year and has a payback period of two and half years.‘This project demonstrates that energy conservation can be good for a business’ bottom line and the work environment for its employees, in addition to the environment,’ said Michael Hathaway, president, PCM Image-Tek. ‘The measures we took to improve the efficiency of our lighting are part of an ongoing strategy to increase our competitiveness in ways that also produce a positive environmental benefit.’”I am pleased to have worked with PCM Image-Tek on their lighting retrofit project,” says Efficiency Vermont Key Account Manager Chuck Clerici. “This project significantly reduced the energy use and costs associated with running the business. Through careful planning and the use of the right resources PCM will also be able to claim a tax deduction of $0.60 per square foot of the retrofitted areas. This project is a good example of how environmental stewardship can benefit the Vermont electrical grid and the company’s bottom line.”Over the 15-year life of the project, the facility upgrade will reduce the carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions attributable to the company by 1.75 million pounds, nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions by 3,400 pounds, and sulfur dioxide (SO2) emissions by 6,800 pounds. By reducing the company’s greenhouse gas and other emissions, the project will negate the need to burn more than 850,000 pounds of coal.Other environmental initiatives undertaken by PCM Image-Tek include the adoption of lean manufacturing principles in the company’s printed circuit board, cable and harness, printer applicator production lines. Lean manufacturing is a manufacturing process philosophy that reduces waste, reduces production lead times, and lowers operational costs. In 2006, PCM Image-Tek converted to lead-free production of printed circuit boards the company produces for other manufacturers. In addition to eliminating use of a hazardous substance, the company’s lead-free processes help PCM Image-Tek customers comply with European Union environmental requirements.In the lighting project, PCM Image-Tek replaced 116 400 watt Halide lighting fixtures with T5 High Bay four-lamp fixtures that produce more light for half the electricity. The project also involved replacing 101 T12 lamps and ballasts with T8 lamps and ballasts that also significantly reduce electricity consumption.About PCM Image-TekPCM Image-Tek is a leading regional contract manufacturer and service provider. Precision Contract Manufacturing is the electronics contract manufacturing division of PCM Image-Tek. Through its focus on quality products, on-time delivery, and flexible manufacturing services, PCM helps original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) in the Northeastern US and Eastern Canada compete in the global economy. PCM products and services include printed circuit board assembly and test, custom cable assembly, electromechanical design and build, and supply chain management. In addition to electronics assembly services, PCM Image-Tek also produces a line of advanced print and apply equipment, and custom industrial labels and labeling solutions for companies throughout North America. The company’s 35,000 square foot state-of-the-art facility is located in Springfield, VT. PCM Image-Tek has 100 employees. www.pcmanufacturing.com(link is external)Source: PCM. SPRINGFIELD, VT ‘ August 11, 2010 ‘
Midway Oil Corp & Affiliates,Frank Trombetta of Midway Oil has opened Poultney and Fair Haven’s first Irving Oil gas stations, expanding the regional brand to the community. They are located at 267 Main Street in Poultney and 38 Main Street in Fair Haven.‘Midway Oil is a locally owned, family operated Vermont business that has served the community since 1925,’ said Trombetta. ‘Irving Oil’s reputation of being a family-owned company with a deep community commitment fell in line with our values and motivated us to join the brand. Their growth in Vermont has been particularly impressive. We are excited to expand the Irving brand here and are looking forward to continuing to serve the members of our community.’Midway Oil is owned by the Trombetta and Merone families. The company supplies fuel for 53 gas stations and owns 20 locations in Vermont and upstate New York.Irving Oil, based in St John, New Brunswick, is a leading energy refiner and marketer currently growing across the Northeast. It credits its typically lower prices to having a nearby refinery located in St John, about 100 miles up the coast from Bar Harbor, Maine. The Poultney and Fair Haven stores are two of several new sites to recently open in the state. The Poultney Snack Shop is located adjacent to Green Mountain College and offers complete convenience store service with a variety of products at competitive prices including, Irving clean gasoline, Green Mountain Coffee, beer, wine, and tobacco products. The Fair Haven Smart Shop offers similar competitive prices and features a Dunkin’ Donuts satellite in the store. Both stores participate in Irving’s gas savings program with Shaw’s Supermarkets.‘We’re very pleased to expand the Irving name in Vermont,’ said Harry Hadiaris, general manager of Irving Oil Marketing. ‘Irving is always looking to partner with businesses that share our values for excellent customer service and a great fueling experience; we know that’s exactly what Midway Oil will provide.’About Irving OilWith over 800 fueling locations in New England and Atlantic Canada, Irving Oil, a Fort Reliance company, is a leader in the Northeast in refining and fuel marketing. Since its founding in 1924 to today, Irving’s reputation is based on providing the very best in customer service and products. As a regional family-owned company, Irving serves its community by focusing on corporate social responsibility, and was the first ever oil company to win a USEPA Clean Air Excellence Award for its clean gasoline. To learn more about Irving Oil visit www.IrvingOil.com(link is external).
The Green Mountain Club today expressed strong support for the Green Mountain National Forest temporary closure. This closure applies to the Appalachian Trail through Vermont and the Long Trail system from the Massachusetts border to Mt. Ellen in Warren. The Green Mountain Club manages the Long Trail as well as most of the Appalachian Trail in Vermont in partnership with the U.S. Forest Service, the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources, the Appalachian Trail Conservancy and private land owners. ‘There is so much work to do in Vermont communities up and down the Green Mountains and now is not the time for hiking in those areas,’ said Will Wiquist, executive director of the Green Mountain Club. ‘Hiking on the National Forest in these areas could be dangerous and could also get in the way of important recovery efforts.’ With the Labor Day weekend taking place, the club also noted that the towns of Duxbury and Huntington have closed the roads leading to the primary trails on Camels Hump. Camels Hump Road in Duxbury is entirely closed and is extremely dangerous and impassible. Access to the mountain from the Huntington side is closed due to a land slide. Hikers are advised to avoid hiking Camels Hump until further notice. ‘Closed means closed,’ he said. ‘Both overnight and day hikers should not enter the national forest at all. There are hikes available on northern Vermont summits like Mt. Hunger, Mt. Mansfield, and Laraway Mtn.’ In general, the Long Trail itself appears to have survived tropical storm Irene with relatively minimal damage. The club has been maintaining a detailed list of trail conditions and road reports related to hiking trails. While far from comprehensive, this is an excellent resource for hikers. Even so, Wiquist advises, ‘hike and drive with caution even in places seemingly unaffected by Irene, as the entire trail network has not yet been fully assessed. And of course heed all federal, state and local road closures.’ The Appalachian Trail, which stretches from Georgia to Maine, overlaps the Long Trail from Massachusetts to Killington, Vt. then diverges from the Long Trail and heads east toward New Hampshire. The ‘AT’ lost at least two bridges in Vermont. The AT is closed in Vermont ‘ from Massachusetts to Norwich, Vt. Green Mountain Club’s seasonal caretakers and Long Trail Patrol have spent most of this week working to help Waterbury village residents recover from the flood. The club plans to send its Appalachian Trail Conservancy- and Green Mountain National Forest-sponsored Volunteer Long Trail Patrol to a local community in southern Vermont with help from the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation. For the holiday weekend, caretakers have returned to the northern Long Trail.
The Vermont Agency of Transportation (VTrans) opened Route 9 Friday to full public travel, restoring a critical east-west travel corridor that is vital to safety, mobility and state commerce. The agency today also reopened a bridge along Route 30 at the Dummerston and Newfane town line. The opening reestablishes public access along Route 30 as far northwest as Jamaica, where the road remains closed due to storm damage that is still under repair. Tropical Storm Irene caused considerable damage along Route 9, knocking out a bridge in Woodford and washing away several roadway segments between Marlboro and West Brattleboro. Route 9 through the heart of Wilmington also received considerable damage. As a result, the entire 35-mile stretch of Route 9 between Woodford and West Brattleboro was closed. “Travel between Bennington and Brattleboro since the storm has been challenging as the detours were exceptionally long,” said Gil Newbury, incident commander for VTrans recovery efforts across southeast Vermont. “Reopening Route 9 allows not only residents but businesses to return to something that is close to normal.”Motorists using Route 9 should expect delays in and around Wilmington as well as throughout the seven-mile stretch between Marlboro and West Brattleboro where crews are still conducting repairs and much of the once paved roadway is now gravel. The speed limit, normally 50 mph through much of this stretch, has been reduced to 35 mph for safety reasons. VTrans is advising commercial traffic that is through traffic to use the Massachusetts Turnpike or MA Route 2 to the south as travel on Route 9 will be slow and rough in places.Route 9 is the latest major east-west roadway to reopen since the storm closed more than 450 miles of Vermont State Highway on August 28. In less than two weeks, state work crews in conjunction with dozens of private contractors and hundreds of National Guard troops also have restored services to Route 103 between Rockingham and Rutland, as well as Route 11 between Chester and Manchester. The remaining major east-west corridor that remains closed is Route 4 between Rutland and Woodstock. VTrans, baring some unforeseen setback, anticipates opening this vital stretch of roadway next weekend. “Reestablishing east-west mobility is vital to both our safety and to our economy,” said VTrans Secretary Brian Searles. “From day one, reopening these roads was one of our top priorities. But as good as today’s news is, everyone needs to remember that many of our reopened roads are still under construction. If you do not need to be on them, please don’t be. And if you do use them, drive with caution and leave additional time to reach your destination.”The effort to reopen Route 9 involved crews of more than 75 workers from not only VTrans but the Vermont National Guard and several private contractors, including Deloury Construction, C. J. Weaver Excavating, Zaluzny Excavating, Berard’s Excavating, Eilers Brothers Trucking and Construction, Brown Logging and Chipping, Cold River Construction, and Kubricky Construction Corp.
There were 1,020 new regular benefit claims for Unemployment Insurance last week, as claims remain at a high level post Tropical Storm Irene. However, new claims decreased of 230 from the week before. Last summer’s historically low claims came to an abrupt end with the storm. The numbers then dropped signifcantly in the following weeks after the storm, but in the last several weeks there has been mostly an increase in the number of new claims. Despite a recent drop in new claims, the latest numbers are nearly double the initial claims observed in July and August.Altogether 7,627 new and continuing claims were filed, a decrease of 842 from a week ago and 2,840 fewer than a year ago. The Department also processed 1,516 First Tier claims for benefits under Emergency Unemployment Compensation, 2008 (EUC08), 69 fewer than a week ago. In addition, there were 651 Second Tier claims for benefits processed under the EUC08 program, which is 24 fewer than the week before. The Unemployment Weekly Report can be found at: http://www.vtlmi.info/(link is external). Previously released Unemployment Weekly Reports and other UI reports can be found at: http://www.vtlmi.info/lmipub.htm#uc(link is external) Vermont’s unemployment rate fell two-tenths in October to 5.6 percent. SEE STORY HERE.
National and regional economists will explore the 2012 economic environment in the coming year with a focus on what shape the national and state economic recovery will take this year and beyond. The 21st annual Vermont Economic Conference will be held on Friday, January 13, 2012 at the Sheraton Burlington Hotel and Conference Center and is hosted by The Vermont Economy Newsletter and sponsored by TD Bank, KPMG, and Entergy Vermont. The times and topics for the speakers follow: 9:10 a.m. Governor Peter Shumlin. Governor Shumlin will outline his budget and policy priorities for the coming legislative session.9:30 Chris Lafakis, Macroeconomist at Moody’s Analytics, will speak on The Economic Outlook for the U.S. and Vermont. Mr. Lafakis has been quoted by media outlets including the NBC Nightly News and National Public Radio and often speaks at economic conferences and events. 10:45 Dick Heaps, publisher of The Vermont Economy Newsletter, now in its 22nd year of publication, will speak on Is This the Recovery? Vermont’s Economy in 2012. 11:30 Art Woolf, editor of The Vermont Economy Newsletter, will present The Vermont Economy: Myths and Realities 1:00 p.m. William Watson, professor of economics at McGill University in Montreal, will speak on Fixing America the Canadian Way. Watson has taught at McGill since 1977 and writes a regular column for the National Post and the Ottawa Citizen newspapers. www.vteconomy.com(link is external)