As the pace of COVID changes affecting local towns steadies, I am tempering the pace of these updates as I get information I believe relevant to your community work and leadership. Here are some things that have come across my radar in the last 48 hours:
First, if you have an animal control officer in town, they may be interested in the work of the Vermont Disaster Animal Response Team (VDART), which helps VTers plan for their animals care in the event of a disaster or prolonged illness. VDART has a website with planning and assistance resources.
Second, I am including here a link to a short video regarding how to prepare to receive and utilize emergency funds from the federal government. The video was created by Christina Moore who worked through FEMA funding during Tropical Storm Irene. She's an expert and provides some important advice on how your town should, and shouldn't, get ready to utilize federal funds headed our way. (See my final point, below.)
Third, here is an announcement from the VT Department of Labor. They are holding two Town Halls this week. The first is today from 2pm-3pm and highlights Resources for the Self-Employed. The second is on Thursday from 2pm-3pm and is for employers who need to layoff/furlough employees. Previous DOL Town Halls can be viewed at this link.
Fourth, if you want to dig further into what's going on with VT's unemployment insurance system, here is an FAQ booklet put out by the VT Department of Labor yesterday. It's very accessible if you want to share with folks who come to you with questions.
Fifth, here is an announcement with details on this week's COVID-19 conference call for VT emergency responders on April 8th at 2pm.
Sixth, here is a copy of last night's State Emergency Operations Center Executive Summary of initiatives underway across the state related to the COVID-19 crisis.
Finally, today Governor Scott submitted a request for a federal disaster declaration in VT. This is important because, if granted, it would qualify state and local governments for 75% federal reimbursement for funds expended in addressing the emergency, including funds your town has previously expended.
Have a good day,