Governor says big federal money likely coming to help those hurt by shutdown of business and society

Michael Bielawski/TNR

FED MONEY TO THE RESCUE?: Gov. Phil Scott is expecting a trillion dollar federal aid package to help Americans deal with financial woes related to bureaucrats shutting down the economy.

MONTPELIER — At a Wednesday meeting with press to review new guidance relating to child care facilities and Pre-K-12 school dismissal, Gov. Phil Scott said massive federal spending could be coming to help those hurt by the government’s shutdown of schools, restaurants and other societal institutions.

The Scott administration’s latest response to the COVID-19 pandemic, announced Tuesday, includes closing child care centers across the state, except where needed to support workers participating in the mitigation of the coronavirus.

Schools will also provide child care for these “essential persons” responding to the crisis.

When asked at the press conference how Vermonters will survive the state’s clampdown on business and society, Scott admitted the impact will be enormous.

“Obviously this is going to affect our entire country and our entire world from an economic standpoint, and it’s not a question of if it’s going to happen — it’s just a question of the magnitude,” he said.

“I’ve been in constant contact with our federal delegation, Congressman Welch, Senator Leahy — and I had a call from Senator Sanders yesterday afternoon all talking about, ‘What is it you need? What do you need to get through this?'”

Scott then alluded to a massive stimulus package.

“We’re going to need federal assistance, flexibility, in all kinds of different ways, and I know they are working diligently on this effort right now,” he said. “It looks like it’s going to be over a trillion-dollar package that will be coming to the states. So, suffice it to say, we don’t know what our needs are, though we are going to need some assistance in order to get through this.”

As part of that massive economic stimulus package, President Trump reportedly is considering sending $2,000 to some Americans. “I think we’re going to do something that gets money to them as quickly as possible,” Trump said.

Scott said even after closing schools and restaurants and prohibiting large public gatherings until April 6, more restrictions could be on the way.

“I want to again remind Vermonters that more measures are inevitable,” he said. “We’re already working on a directive for hospitals that will postpone elective procedures. More details will come on this.”

Vermont Health Commissioner Mark Levine said the administration is watching worldwide trends, and especially the virus’ activity in China, to see what Vermonters can expect in the months ahead.

“We have good experience now just by watching the rest of the world, because, as you know, the U.S. was not the first country to be infected,” he said. “So even though China has received a lot of criticism, they are in a phase where things are much more controlled, and they are seeing decreasing numbers in cases all of the time.”

Levine said South Korea — which saw its first cases of the coronavirus in early January — is an example of a nation that has handled the crisis relatively well. He noted the estimated death rate there may be much lower than in nations with less testing.

“Suffice it to say, the countries like South Korea that have shown the lowest case fatality rates have the most testing capability and have tested huge swaths of their populations, so their denominator of cases is very large,” he said.

“And since the mortality rate, we think, around the world is around 1 percent, they can show numbers that are significantly lower than 1 percent, because they’ve identified mild and possibly even asymptomatic cases with the abundance of testing.”

Levine also addressed the concern that many businesses are going to be hurt during the shutdown. He said he hopes they can adapt to survive.

“Even restaurants and bars can be innovative as they are all learning now, with bring something to your car, take-out priority, interacting with people in ways that they have to deliver food, but still being able to actually do that even though people can’t sit down at a table with one another inside their premises,” he said.

Nursing homes also are expected to have a challenging time as their patients are in the high-risk category. At least one of the state’s coronavirus patients is confirmed to be a nursing home resident.

Levine thinks those facilities are ready.

“They have to have effective viral control systems in place; they have to have good advisement about those programs, and they do,” he said.

Michael Bielawski is a reporter for True North. Send him news tips at and follow him on Twitter @TrueNorthMikeB.

Image courtesy of Michael Bielawski/TNR

31 thoughts on “Governor says big federal money likely coming to help those hurt by shutdown of business and society

  1. The federal money should go directly to the people, not to the state government, which merely keeps most of it to close its budget gap, due decreasing tax collections (room & meals, sales, income, gasoline, etc.).

    Instead the state should be laying off state workers and DECREASING the state budget.

    The state should certainly not raise taxes.

    The state should cut back on useless energy programs, that have the end result of:

    Increasing living costs of Vermonters

    Here is and example of cost shifting to the suckers:

    “GMP estimated the 263,515 MWh of net-metered generation (includes small hydro, small wind, solar, etc.) in its customer area will lead to $33 million in cost shifting, from solar system owners to non-owner ratepayers, in 2020, equivalent to 5% of its total annual cost of serving customers.”

    The larger systems, under Special Offer, etc., likely would have $30 million in cost shifting, including due to subsidies and high feed-in tariffs, about 11 c/kWh (recent systems), up to 30 c/kWh (older systems), paid to the millionaire owners in 2020.

    The NE wholesale prices have averaged about 5 c/kWh starting in 2009, i.e., 11 years.


      Here is another example of cost shifting to the suckers:

      Forcing Utilities to Buy More In-State Generated Electricity

      Recently, career-bureaucrats and career-legislators proposed to force utilities to buy 20% of their retail sales from new in-state generation by 2030, which would primarily be expensive, sporadic, wind and solar.

      The 20% mandate would be an increase from the existing 10% mandate.
      RE proponents are pressing legislators for 20%, using various scare-mongering tactics.
      See table 8 for high electricity c/kWh
      Would that not cost many billions of dollars for rate payers and for the overall Vermont economy?
      Many legislators, up for re-election, are objecting. See URLs.

  2. It is amazing almost all PRIVATE companies are laying off employees, but the STATE employees do NOT GET LAID OFF.

    What kind of solidarity is that?
    What kind of justice is that?

    And the RE folks continue their demands

    Energy Action Network, an umbrella organization supported by RE entities, claims there would be $800 million in energy cost savings/y, if its recommendations were implemented by 2025. SEE URL

    It appears, the EAN report is a sugar-coated, multi-billion-dollar wish list of EAN members with a total cost of well over $11.070 billion during 2020 – 2025, about $2.214 billion/y, as shown below.

    Required CO2 Reduction by 2025 for Paris Agreement: The EAN report claims Vermont must make a CO2 reduction of 2.281 million metric ton by 2025 to meet the Paris Agreement

    Table 1 shows, 90,000 EVs/plug-in hybrids; 90,000 air source heat pumps, ASHPs; 25,000 advanced wood heating systems, AWH; 90,000 house retrofits; and 90,000 ASHPs for domestic hot water, DHW, would be required by 2025 to achieve Paris. See page 4 of URL

    It took about 20 years (2000 – 2020) to achieve the existing conditions by spending about $210 million/y, including Efficiency Vermont. The level of annual spending to achieve Paris would be at least 10 times greater.

    EAN members want all these additional, heavily subsidized measures, because it is good for their RE businesses.

    But these EAN wish-list measures would be major burdens on the Vermont people, businesses, ratepayers, taxpayers, etc., in addition to Vermont being in the middle of a major recession, with decreasing tax collections by state government (room & meals, sales, income, gasoline, etc.), due to the coronavirus.

    Playing multi-billion-dollar energy games, to produce expensive, in-state electricity, would make the Vermont economy even less competitive, plus would divert major investments from long-overdue, state-wide rebuilding/upgrading of crumbling infrastructures. See table 6



      – I do not see even the tiniest glimmer of overall cost savings for ratepayers and taxpayers.
      – All I see is more than $11.070 billion of costs during 2020 – 2025, about $2.214 billion/y
      – All I see is much less CO2 reduction than stated in the EAN report
      – All I see is more wind, solar, hydro, etc., increasing the average price/kWh of the Vermont electricity mix; all of which need subsidies to build and Standard Offer/Net-metering subsidies to operate.
      – Amortizing the cost of the short-life assets, at 5% over 15 years, would require annual payments of $1.05 billion, or $877 million over 20 years, would more than offset the EAN estimated $800 million/y of energy cost savings.

      The implementation of this wish list would be another major headwind for the near-zero, real-growth, Vermont economy, and would have ZERO impact on the climate.

  3. Could meet for 4-8 weeks and do all of the peoples business…we would see a drastic drop in the showboating charlatans who dominate the donor class and the aforemention luxuries we pay for. And demand they drive the gas saving rigs they demand we drive…or better yet public transportation or ride their bikes.

    • 🙂 Yeah, I think it will be proven out in the next week So far the only statistic they seem to be using are deaths in Italy I can’t imagine how bad health care is there for the elderly I have many friends in Vermont that have had to use our own health care this past year 3-6 month waits are NORMAL, my best friend who passed away last week couldn’t get into the hospital earlier this month,, because there were no free beds, that’s without any new rush of patients.

      I think our President is onto it, he had a great press meeting today. Watched some of it, then saw a clip on CNN, they seriously cut and paste to give a totally opposite impression of what was discussed For them to blatantly and intentionally misinform the public, in dealing with a pandemic, should be criminal There day will come, perhaps sending them the bill when it’s all over

  4. It is refreshing to see that people are sick of being pushed around by their government. Most of the politicians in Montpelier couldn’t find their butt with their own two hands. Working people get things done and run the country, politicians stifle productivity and incentive with grand ideas and unintended consequences. Self important talking heads equal to the gang you see on TV news channels. The same type of people who have done little more than talk and are paid large sums of money to tell us what they wish but not the truth.

  5. Everything you read from bureaucrats and politicians is simple ” work from home”???? Some of us have real jobs, truck drivers, retail workers, roofers, mail carriers, teachers, and 100,000 more; and we pay dearly for those who can “work from home.” Acknowledge that some productive people can “work from home” for a short time, before their job fails to get truly done.

  6. Question, has anybody seen the infection status updates? They seem to have taken them down once the entire country has been shut down. Kinda like an election, where we know minute by minute what county voted for who and immediately after no more information.

    What is going in in the other countries?

    George Carlin below has a prophetic skit.

    How much worse is this Flu season than all the others? According to the CDC, this is peak season and generally peaks before April. Coincidence?

    Where are the numbers?

    • Duuude! We got some real constructive hysteria going and you wanna confuse us wid facts??

  7. I have suggested this before to deaf ears but maybe the government can consider again having the legislature meet and vote solely in electronic format (PERMANENTLY).

    We would no longer need to maintain the huge government infrastructure in Montpelier, we would lessen the access of special interest lobbyists to large groups of reps and senators in one place (imagine the lobbyist having to figure out how to bribe, I mean lobby, politicians spread out across state vs having them all readily served up in Montpeculiar). THE PEOPLE aka constituents would have much greater access to the REPRESENTATIVEs in their represented communities.

    Side benefit stops large gatherings (mostly ineffective btw) and promotes reasonable social distancing. Lower carbon footprint no travel to Montpelier, no second home or condo required by reps and senators (how do they afford those), less staff, on and on. If we can teach kids remotely why can’t we govern remotely and meet remotely online.

    • They would love this, nobody can see what they are doing. Lobbyists would have less transparency too, just meet up with people individually.

      • The people who elected them could very easily see what they are doing if they had to keep office hours in their district and no way lobbyist are spreading out to every county. Make all contacts reportable easier to get rid of the bad apples.

        I suspect press would hate it because they’d have to leave Montpelier too. The elected need to be out with us their bosses

    • Mike, how would they get together for shrimp cocktail and adult beverages? How would they glad hand and slap each other on the back for screwing the little people? Elites need constant reinforcement from their peers. How would they plot their next ideological move and mingle with lobbyists for the next election contribution? How dare you suggest anything that makes sense!

    • Democracy dies in darkness – just look at our state and what it has become with a Prava-like collective media basically regurgitating communist talking points and vtdigger – burying the truth.

      Clown car of Golden Dome-dwellers are bad enough as it is – we need to have them meet for 4-6 weeks which would open the door for more business owners.

      Stop feeding hungry monsters who demand to be fed and exist primarily as an independently wealth patrician class of dictators.

  8. Interesting to note that Leahy, Sanders and Welsh all beat on trump for the tiniest misstep, yet when the rubber hits the road and there is genuine need, these critics go to him hat in hand seelikg help from this “incompetent” leader.

    • Yes and someone should tell Nanny Pelosi that people can’t survive on tax credits, they can’t buy food or pay bills but that’s what she wanted the government to do. How would she know, her net worth is $120 million and she makes $212,000.00 per year not to mention all the perks. I think she will scrape by okay. What an old witch!

  9. Little but bad will come from this VAST over-reaction to under 100 recouperating at home, and zero deaths.
    Thousands of business, and 100,000 families thrown into the fire, uncertain of anything they used to take for granted – such as an occasional sickness.
    This is a gov’t created disaster of political correctness run crazy.

    This vast over=reaction will go down, will headline, in the Progressive Hall of Shame

    • Where do these $trillions of dollars come from, and how the heck can they be delivered in time to keep business and jobs from disappearing – impossible – even for Trump!

      • Why is it one kid gets corona virus who’s two and it makes national news? Notice they don’t even talk about how the child is doing? Fox News makes this a major head line…why? Just one person and the leave out important information.

        What they don’t say is sometime more important than what they say.

        And then you’ll note on the little video, they talk about air pollution effecting in SARS and how after this is over we have to get rid of all the “dirty” cars. Can they wait one day before trying to implement their NWO?

        Really good propaganda only deals with truth. With the truth they distort the picture and convince those of their cause. It’s why our founding fathers and the bible itself outlines a system of justice that gets to the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

        It’s why in every court case if you listen only to the prosecution, you’d claim they are guilty, it’s only when they bring in the defense, that things fall apart.

        Interesting times for sure. TGBTG

      • We “borrow” them from the Fed, of course, the Fed who creates the “money” from thin air to loan at interest by selling bonds. Repayment of that “money” “given” to us then becomes our responsibility–ours and that of future generations.

        It’s a scam begun in 1913 with the creation of the feral Federal Reserve central banking system. [Details in “The Creature From Jekyll Island”, by G.Edward Griffin; available at Amazon for ~$25. But be careful, it’s bad for the blood pressure.] The debt never goes away, continues accruing interest all while continuing to devalue what’s left of the dollar, which currently has the purchasing power of about 2 or 3¢ in 1913 money when you could buy a decent candy bar or ride a trolley car for a nickel. Try buying anything today with 3¢!!

        The holders of the bonds in essence own America. Ask yourself who owns the bonds. Hint: China is only one of the major bond holders.

      • We paid $64 Billion dollars from January to today for illegal immigration. 70% of illegals here now are on welfare. They get free healthcare. The government should take care of Americans first. The situation has been created for whatever reason and people need help now.

    • Or it may be their coup de gras to our little Republic.

      Think about that, we implode our own country out of manufactured fear. Perhaps that is why China doesn’t want us in their country with any press. We’d find out that they are having at worst a tough flu season.

      Meanwhile, we tear down our own country, bankrupt the world because of fear fueled by propaganda.

      Perhaps the real reason other countries with no medical, no sanitation, no systems set in place aren’t experiencing huge deaths and flu, is because they don’t know better and are only experiencing a normal flu season.

      The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.
      Sun Tzu

      What is the doubling rate of infection? Even if you go by a monthly doubling rate, starting in November we should be exploding by now. How come we aren’t? It takes 2 hours for an office building to spread a virus around the entire building by just one person putting a virus on the front door. Flu spreads a new Virus across the entire world every year.

      This year is no different.

  10. Childcare for health workers who can’t be home sounds wise right now. I’m not in favor of a check. But if Gov Scott wants to give us all a equal percentage tax credit of some sort that would reduce the financial burden. Cut everybody’s tax burden to the state right in half. They’ve been overtaxing us all for a long time. Income tax and sales tax would be a good place to start.

    • If the VT gov was of concern as Yrump’s government. the state should give every household $1000. They’ll just waste it on other anti-American projects or fnd the anti-abortion clinics.

  11. Vermont’s Governor holding his hand out for Federal money from the President,
    maybe now he’ll have one good word for the Commander in Chief now.

    Maybe flip flop Phil will ease the burden on Vermonters with a little help on the tax
    burden he and his liberal cronies have placed on it’s citizens ……… Nah !!

    Phil Scott, a follower, not a leader ……. pathetic.

  12. And during time of teleconferencing possibly hike around their neighborhood and visit the elderly instead of commandeering the already reeling public. And since statehouse won’t need their expense allotment – match the funds and donate it to the service workers whose largest income is direct payment from customers.

  13. How about the Governor start by laying off 20 percent of the State workers – matching the number the public sector has lost.

    Perhaps some of our elected representatives could take time out from their hiking to suggest this.

    • BUT, if we do lay off 20% of state workers……… do we then know who it is that we don’t need?

      Gov’t can’t take that risk. NH has half as many bureaucrats AND NH has twice as many citizens.
      Our costs to support gov’t workers is then 4 times as large as NH.

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