This week at the WRC: 12/09 - 12/13
- December 9, 9:00 am: Brownfields Steering Committee, WRC Conference Room
- December 9, 4:30 pm: Transportation Committee, WRC Conference Room
- December 9, 6:00 pm: Project Review Committee, WRC Conference Room
- December 11, 6:30 pm: Energy Committee, WRC Conference Room
- December 12, 4:00 pm: Community Development Committee, WRC Conference Room
Windham Regional Plan Update: We've Got Questions
AND WE WANT TO HEAR YOUR ANSWERS! next opportunity is December 12 in Brattleboro.
The two-year update process for the 2014 Windham Regional Plan is currently underway and the WRC will be holding four public forums throughout the Region to lead public discussions on five key topic questions. Visit the Regional Plan Update Website or read more for additional details.
From the Director, November 2013 - Regional and Municipal Energy Siting Planning
Hearings are underway at the statehouse about the electric energy generation siting process. Much of the discussion has revolved around the findings of the Energy Generation Siting Policy Commission, and a central topic has been the role of planning at the state, regional and local level.
WRC’s New Hire to Help with Village and Downtown Resiliency Planning
Kim Smith, a recent graduate of Conway School with a M.A. in Landscape Design, was recently hired to help us with village and downtown resiliency planning supported by the Economic Development Administration (EDA) Disaster Recovery Grant. Kim’s prime focus at Windham Regional Commission is working with staff on village revitalization plans. Prior to graduate school Kim worked as a biologist in California on a bald eagle reintroduction project. Other areas of interest include gardening, sustainability and permaculture.
First Brownfields Revolving Loan Fund Project Completed
Windham Regional Commission (WRC) is pleased to announce completion of its first Windham Region Brownfields Reuse Initiative-Cleanup Revolving Loan Fund (WRBRI-RLF) project: The Bellows Falls Historic Riverfront Park and Trail System.
Forest Stewardship Project Looks at the Big Picture
For many decades Vermont forest landowners have held different views of their property. In our region of Vermont, about 44% are working the land, about 46% view their land as a woodland retreat, less than 10% are completely uninvolved with their land, and a minor 1% use their land as supplemental income.
WRC Presents Testimony on VY Closure Before House Committees
Below is a link to testimony presented on October 28, 2013 by Windham Regional Commission before the House Commerce and Economic Development Committee and the House Natural Resources and Energy Committee about the impacts of the closure of Vermont Yankee. Link to testimony.
Presentation on Community Wastewater Solutions Available
Information about the process of developing a community plan to address wastewater and water issues was presented at the October, 2013 Full Commission meeting by Lynette Whitney, engineer with the VT Department of Environmental Conservation. The lack of community water and wastewater in our villages without it can put human health at risk, make it difficult to retain existing businesses and homes, and serve as a barrier to growth. Please contact the Windham Regional Commission if you’d like us to help facilitate a conversation about these issues in your community. More information, and a copy of the presentation, is available on WRC's Community Development page.
Municipal Requirements and Opportunities for Vermont Energy Code and Above-Code Programs Training
Goal: To provide information on the recent legislative changes related to the Energy Code (Act 89), and municipal requirements and opportunities to promote energy efficient construction in their communities. A guide is attached to this email with more information on the Vermont Energy Code.
Information Related to the Closure of Vermont Yankee
Information as of August 30, 2013, including:
- WRC Statement on Announcement by Entergy Nuclear Vermont Yankee That the Plant Will Close in 2014
- VY Employees by Town
- Resiliency Action Plan for the Town of Vernon in Preparation for the Eventual Closure of the Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Station
Creative Planning and Public Participation In Londonderry
Londonderry residents and a team from Marlboro College’s Center for Creative Solutions (CCS), in partnership with Windham Regional Commission explored how to best use soon to be town owned properties severely damaged by flooding from Tropical Storm Irene. Participants in the six-day planning workshop held in early August generated three different options for how the buyout properties could provide opportunities for flood mitigation and at the same time be a multipurpose green space for the community. Conventionally, these purposes could be seen as mutually exclusive. However, there was nothing conventional about this community planning process.
Irene Damage Mapping Project Completed
WRC has completed a project to map various aspects of Tropical Storm Irene damages in the Windham Region.
Covering the entire region, WRC created: 1) an inventory and map of homes and businesses that were destroyed or damaged to the point that they were no longer usable, and 2) an inventory and map of bridges and major culverts that were destroyed and/or damaged to the point of being closed for a week or more.
WRC Releases Update for Guide on Weatherizing Town Buildings
The WRC recently completed an update to the guidance document Weatherizing Town Buildings: What Local Officials and Energy Committees Need to Know. This 2013 update provides energy use results for seven of the nine weatherization retrofits completed, providing regional examples of both energy and cost savings realized through completion of these weatherization projects. The WRC was able to compile this document through state Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) funding, in addition to the many successful weatherizations completed with this grant.