The next leg of Lt. Gov. Brian Dubie's Jobs Tour will took him to Middlebury and Bristol last Monday. He launched the Jobs Tour in January and has so far has travelled to Rutland, Windham, Bennington, Chittenden, Franklin, Caledonia and Lamoille counties, asking local area employers how the state can best help them retain existing jobs and grow new jobs.
Since taking office in 2003, Dubie has travelled all over the country and the world to promote Vermont businesses. He says that keeping existing jobs in Vermont and attracting new jobs requires Vermont to compete not just with 49 other states, but the world as well.
Forbes Magazine recently ranked Vermont as the 47th best state in the nation to do business. The ranking is down eleven spots from the previous year.
Dubie attributes it in part to the state legislature's failure to reduce state spending and "right-size" state government. "Actions have consequences," he said, "and raising taxes in a recession, as the legislature did last year, is not leadership. It sends the message that Vermont is closed for business. When our small businesses grow, we create the revenue that funds all the great things that we value in our state."
After visiting several Addison County businesses, Dubie says he is bullish on Vermont.
"There is no bigger cheerleader for Vermont than me," Dubie said. "But we simply must do better than 47th. Making Vermont the best state in New England to earn a living and run a small business must be priority number one."