To the editor: Economic development efforts heard in Montpelier

I want to bring you up to date on some of the activities that I have been involved in during this current legislative session at the State House in Montpelier.

In the House Commerce and Economic Development Committee, on which I sit, we took testimony on the Film and Creative Media Workforce Development Initiative from the Vermont Arts Council, Vermont Production Collective and several film makers and writers from Vermont.

All agreed that Vermont could benefit greatly from tapping into a database that would offer a network of film industry information that would identify local Vermont talent, film equipment availability, locations for filming, jobs, internships and apprenticeships when planning a film production in Vermont.

As demonstrated this past summer with the filming of the movie Beetlejuice 2 in East Corinth, attracting film makers from away and within is a growth industry that would have a positive impact on our Vermont economy.

Better Places, a community matching grant program that empowers Vermonters to create inclusive and vibrant public places for projects throughout the state, spoke to my committee about fund-raising opportunities available to upgrade local buildings. I have spoken with Chester Town Manager Julie Hance to pursue funding from this program in support of local efforts to make the Whiting Library and Yosemite Fire House more usable facilities by the community.

The impact of legislative action on local property taxes is always a major concern as we review, propose and act on bills that will have an impact on educational policy and opportunity in our state. We are working to re-configure legislation from the previous session that may inadvertently cause property taxes to increase at an unintended rate. I support a strong public education system that is funded in a fair and reasonable manner. Our state budget must be adopted with a clear focus on the financial impact on our residents and taxpayers, including the costs of educating our students.

And you may contact me by email at or by phone at 802-875-4663.


Heather Chase
State Representative
Windsor-Windham District

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