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Vermont will bribe you to move there

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Vermont will bribe you to move there

Vermont will bribe you to move there
June 05
15:28 2018

Vermont has just launched a new program to encourage people to move there. Having spent the past couple hundred years making the state’s bucolic environment, the colorama of the Fall foliage and a ready supply of maple syrup the state’s key selling points – with apparently less than successful results – the Green Mountain folks have decided to put cash on the barrelhead. Yes, they will bribe … I mean … pay you to move to their New England winter wonderland.

Just last month, Vermont Governor Phil Scott signed a bill that will pay people $10,000 if they move their official residence to his state. The one peculiar requirement is that you work remotely (at home) for a full-time employer from another state. It is called The Remote Worker Grant Program.

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What is more inexplicable than the Governor signing this legislation into law is the fact that a majority of the 150-member Vermont House of Representatives and the 30-member Senate had to approve the idea. What were they thinking?

It was motivated by the fact that Vermont is the oldest state in America. No, no, not in terms of statehood, but because they have the oldest population – and getting older every day. While the medium age in America has increased by 5 years in recent times, the medium age of Vermonters has gone up by 10 years. The state currently has a population of 623,657 … uh … 623,642 … uh … 623,598 … uh … Those old Green Mountaineers are apparently dropping like maple leaves on a windy Fall day.

Governor Scott said the state needs the workers to offset the loss of the tax base from those departing idyllic Vermont for the Great Beyond in the sky above. He said, “We must think outside the box to help more Vermonters enter the labor force and attract more working families and young professionals to Vermont.”

The program will provide for 100 grants in the first three years. After that, another 20 grants will be provided each year. That means Vermont will entice 240 people to relocate over the course of the next ten years at a cost of $2.4 million.

Since hundreds of people die in Vermont each year, The Remote Worker Grant Program seems doom to failure in stemming the downward population spiral. And if Vermont is such a wonderful place to live, why is the second highest cause of death (behind diabetes) suicide. These people are not just approaching the gates of eternity, they are expediting the process.

Perhaps recognizing the statistical shortfall in the new program, the folks in Montpelier are developing a program to kidnap tourists. Okay, not really kidnap, but to brainwash them into staying on following their guided tours of covered bridges and old wooden barns. The famous von Trapp family, of Sound of Music fame, may have been the last visitors to hang around.

The only sense that can be made of all this is that it is Vermont, after all. In the politest terms, the people of Vermont tend to be a bit peculiar. Remember, these are the people who sent avowed socialist Bernie Sanders and similarly inclined Patrick Leahy to the United States Senate and fostered the only politically motivated ice cream company in America, Ben & Jerry’s.

Some ten years ago, I wrote that Brattleborro, Vermont’s Selectboard (village council) gained national exposure for voting to place a referendum on the ballot that would have President Bush and Vice President Cheney arrested for violating the Constitution the minute they stepped inside the town’s city limits. The irony that select men and women of Brattlesboro proposed pursuing an unconstitutional means to assuage their grievance was lost on them.

I wrote at the time:

“But, ya gotta love a country where … the people of Brattleboro can parlay nothing but cold Winters, nice scenery and succulent sap into 15 minutes of fame on the national stage.”

It is no wonder that Vermont has to pay people to live there. The difference between the superficial image of an idyllic pastoral environment and the stark reality of living in Vermont seems more a real-life Stepford or an episode from Twilight Zone.

About Author

Larry Horist

Larry Horist

Larry Horist is a conservative activist with an extensive background in economics, public policy and politics. Clients of his consulting firm have included such conservative icons as Steve Forbes and Milton Friedman, as well as the White House. He has testified as an expert witness before legislative bodies, including the U. S. Congress, and lectured at major colleges and universities. An award-winning debater, his insightful and sometimes controversial commentaries appear frequently on the editorial pages of newspapers across the nation. He can be reached at lph@thomasandjoyce.com.

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  1. wboehmer
    wboehmer June 06, 11:18

    Cash handouts as incentives.
    What could be more fitting for Bernie Sanders’ state?

    Reply to this comment
  2. ERIC
    ERIC June 07, 01:06


    Reply to this comment
  3. vincenzo
    vincenzo June 28, 16:20

    This is the “canary in the mine shaft”as far as the effects of Socialism go. History will show that the “redistribution of wealth” as practiced in a Socialist society has a very short shelf life. Producers will pack up and leave to seek more fertile grounds. The only ones left will be the non-producers and parasites. This formula will fail every single time. I wouldn’t move to Vermont for $100,000. This state is politically poisoned!

    Reply to this comment

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