Posted by Valerie Stuart
GREETER: Many thanks to Cindy for warmly welcoming everyone!
MEMBERS ABSENT: Booie & Bob, Caleb, Drew, Erin, Jen, Jerry, Jim M, Kevin, Lisa, Lissa, Mark, Nick, Ross, Sandy L, Sandy S.
Kudos and many thanks to our greeter, Cindy.
  • 1890 -- President Benjamin Harrison signed the first U.S. law requiring inspection of meat products.
  • 1945 – Hong Kong was liberated from the Japanese.
  • 1954 – Hurricane Carol kills 68 on the US East Coast.
  • 1967 – US Senate confirm Thurgood Marshall as first black Chief Justice.
  • 1979 – US President Jimmy Carter attacked by a rabbit on a canoe trip in Plains, GA.
You have enemies? Good. That means you stood up for something in your life.
Winston Churchill
  • Outgoing Rotary District Governor (DG) Bill Stevens.
  • Former president of the Lyons Club in Whittingham, Debbie Cox. She works for Primerica and is a prospective (or was it new?) member. 
  • Annie Guyon (sp?), who heads the Windham County Humane Society also is a prospective new member.
  • District Governor Jon Springer and his lovely wife Mary.
  • We celebrated two birthdays by serenading Allie, whose birthday is September 4, and Tristan, whose birthday is September 5.
Valerie was the scribe today. She swapped dates with Will who be the scribe for her next week when Valerie is attending the “Catalysts for a Climate Change Economy” conference (September 6-8) in Burlington, Vermont, which was her brainchild. 
Tristan will be the scribe on September 13. Josh follows him on September 20 with Jim to follow on September 27.
You lose, LOSERS!
This person became a certified scuba diver in high school. After numerous guesses, someone got it right; Jacn was the mystery scuba diver.
Please bring any cotton or silk scraps you have to Vermont Artisans Design and give them to Greg Worden who will store them for Tristam. Tristam is collecting this material for a quilting project he is working on in conjunction with the Lakota Indians who live on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.
Someone, I think it was Josh(?), announced that there will be a fundraiser for our Club to raise money for a selected charity. “Feeding Frenzy” will take place at Elliott Street Fish and Chips on September 12. Our club will get 50% of the money spent on food at this eatery between 5:00 – 8:00 PM that evening. Help us raise money for a good cause by bringing your appetite, friends and family.
On October 1, the Club will host its second annual “Disk Golf Tourney.” Volunteers are needed to help set up and run this event. Contact person: Josh?
On September 11, the Club will host another “Trivia Night.” We currently need charity sponsors for the Trivia Nights coming up in October and November. If you have any ideas regarding prospective charity partners, or would like to help find some, please contact Sadie. Charity partners help spread the word about the event and fill three tables with event participants. They also reap half of the event’s of profit.
Deb announced that there will be a blood drive on September 6. If you haven’t signed up yet, 16 donor spots that need to be filled. If you sign up, remember to drink a lot of water before and after donating blood.
Sadie saw lots of family last week during her week away. She and John also celebrated their 2-1 anniversary. She bragged that Evie, who has sprouted into a tree. She will enter grade 6 this year and will be the big kid on her elementary school’s campus.
Cindy bragged for the the Car Show at BMH, which was a big success. Josh won the trophy.
Allie bragged that she is bringing her daughter to Skidmore.
Turner thanked Ross for taking over for Dan at the Car show. Lisa was out in San Diego at the Awards Ceremony for Real Estate Agencies, which she won! Congratulations Lisa!
Dan announced that his daughter Natalie was beginning 9th grade. He also noted that his other daughters are all in college and are a senior, junior and a sophomore.
KJ noted that there will be fundraiser on October for Rescue. See him for more information if you are interested being a member of a Rotary team.
Speaking of a different kind of rescue, KJ just became a certified member of the Brattleboro Fire Department’s Dive Team. Hats off to him and many thanks for signing up to be a critical component of our public safety team!
Notably, there will be a benefit Pancake Breakfast for the Brattleboro Fire Dept’s Dive team on ?????? (Mea culpa, I didn’t hear the date. The breakfast will be held at the West Brattleboro Fire Station. The funds raised will help the all volunteer dive team purchase the gear necessary for this public safety service.
Marcy won the Chili Contest at a recent Springfield High School boys sports team fundraiser.
Annie announced that there will be a “Walk for Animals” to benefit the Windham County Humane Society on September 23. Everyone is encouraged to participate by walking or sponsoring walkers.
Deb bragged that Sadie did a “magnificent” job acting in her recent show. She also thanked Allie for taking care of her cat, fish and garden while she was away.
Last, but not least, she gave Dan credit for charing her family when they recently visited them in Canada.
Our new District Governor (DG), was introduced by our outgoing District Governor.
Our new DG Jon Springer and his lovely wife Mary have been longtime Rotary members.
Jon’s favorite thing about his involvement with Rotary to date has been the people.  Jon is an attorney and is from the Rotary Club of Windsor. He unexpectedly ascended to DG when the next in line for the post moved to Seattle.  Unfortunately, shortly after he became DG, the Windsor Club Treasurer embezzled $13K from that Club. Thankfully, many other clubs like ours gave generously to help bail them out.He noted that to date he and his wife, Mary, have visited 44 Rotary Clubs.
ROTARY MAKING A DIFFERENCE will be the theme under his governorship.
There are 1.2 million Rotarians worldwide. The club’s membership is very diverse. Several months ago he asked all the President Elects of the Clubs in Vermont what their clubs’ fundraising goals were. He also asked them to send him the number of volunteer hours their clubs had contributed to their communities. Michelle sent him a list of the service projects our club has undertaken as well as how many volunteer hours our members have donated.
Our new DG estimated that we had raised over $27K over the course of the preceding year. Our volunteer hours added up to over 6,000 hours.
DG Springer asked all 60 clubs in Vermont for this information. Approximately 42 clubs responded. The total amount raised by all the clubs that responded was somewhere between $1.8 and $2 million. The total number of service projects completed was 183. The grand total of volunteer hours added up to 50,000 hours.
DG Springer noted that polio has begun to occur again in countries including our own, as well as in Afghanistan, Pakistan and the former Congo, among others.
His goal as DG is to run an END POLIO NOW campaign. To make a splash, he plans to get an ad placed in every newspaper in Vermont about the importance of eradicating polio to raise awareness about the recurrence of polio. 
312,000 Americans were afflicted by polio in the 1920s. By 1960, polio had been wiped out in the US. Shortly, thereafter, north and South America eradicated polio as well. Rotary took the program worldwide in 1985. Since that date, Rotary has been the lead organization on the drive to stamp out the disease.For every dollar the Gates Foundation invests in the fight against polio, Rotary invests one.
Our plan is to eradicate this scourge on humanity. It will be the second disease to be ended worldwide since the termination of the small pox epidemic.
For more information and specifics on this initiative and others that our DG plans to spearhead, please see the presentation that Jon sent to all our club’s members per my request. You should find that email in your in box.
DG Springer concluded by noting that the annual Rotary District Celebration will take place June 1-3 of 2018. It will be held at the Hilton Hotel in Burlington. It will include a dinner cruise on the Ethan Allan. Some of the other activities will include a Burlington train , the kick off of the Burlington Jazz Festival, lots of other activities, and many interesting speakers. They have booked the entire hotel for the District Celebration. The cost will be $750, and covers most meals and activities. 
Our guest speaker last week was one of our club members and founders, State Representative Valerie Stuart. Valerie discussed her work as the Representative of Brattleboro’s District 1 (West Brattleboro) and focused on the last session’s highlights.
Valerie said she has been a legislator for almost eight years. She began by serving on the House Education Committee for two terms. For the past three years, she has been a member of the House Commerce and Economic Development Committee. She said one of the issues she is most passionate about as a Commerce Committee member is  marketing Vermont and strengthening its position as a desirable place to work, recreate and live in order to grow our population, create jobs and strengthen the state’s economy. She noted that this year the Commerce Committee’s work in this area over the past three years paid off. During another fiscally tight year, the General Assembly voted to appropriate $200,000 to continue the work the Commerce Committee worked hard to secure X years ago to create a marketing plan that would position Vermont as an innovative, pristine green state that is wonderful to work in and live. The $200,000 appropriated by the General Assembly this year will enable the State to implement the marketing plan developed by the two XXX firms that a $250,000 allocation two ??? years ago underwrote. 
Valerie noted that one reason the Vermont Chamber of Commerce endorsed the 2017 legislative session as “a success” was She said that the Democratically led legislature has worked diligently over the past three years to pass a sustainable budget that doesn’t rely on any one-time revenue and doesn’t impose any new mandates on business. both in and out of state and did so without raising any new taxes.
workforce development. She has been working on legislation designed to more effectively utilize Career and Technical Education Centers (CTEs) to prepare Vermonters for current and future job openings in Vermont and nationally.
During the last three sessions, Valerie said the legislature has worked hard to put Vermont on sounder fiscal footing. She noted that as a Commerce Committee member one of her key goals has been to ensure Vermont is marketed effectively both in- and out-of-state. Another one of her objectives is to ensure Vermonters are aware of and educationally prepared to fill the roughly 4,000 job openings in Vermont. Valerie also noted that she has worked to leverage the wealth of in-state expertise to continue to create jobs and grow companies in the renewable energy sector.
Valerie noted that she and Representative Mollie Burke have attended the Climate Economy Summit convened by the Council on Rural Development over the past few years. She added that at that summit several years ago, she came up with the idea for hosting a conference her in Vermont that would position our state nationally as a leader in renewable energy jobs that combat global climate change. That idea led to the 
that will help secure a brighter future for Vermont and all who call this great state home.
This will allow the state to begin economic development marketing for the first time. 
The Governor’s proposal to support the build-out of housing for low and middle income families was also a priority for the Vermont Chamber. The Vermont Futures Project has indicated that as we recruit more people to work here, we will need 5,000 new housing starts annually and this initiative will go a long way toward meeting that goal. While that has yet to be finalized, we are encouraged by the widespread support for the concept. 
While many tax proposals were considered and rejected, the lodging industry saw the most pressure as varying occupancy tax proposals were brought up four times. Ultimately the Legislature agreed with the Vermont Chamber and decided against levying a tax on these businesses, many of them small, family-owned properties that struggle in a very competitive and evolving marketplace. 
We instituted Act 250 permitting flexibility to allow for more growth to occur in designated areas. 
  • We removed the moratorium on tax increment financing to allow an additional six TIFs to be  created in the state.