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Village of Woodstock Vermont

Economic Development Commission

Established in December 2015, the Economic Development Commission (EDC) is an organization that champions the planning and implementation of sustainable economic development for the town of Woodstock, Vermont. Funded by the 1% Local Option Tax on rooms, meals, and alcohol, the EDC builds on Woodstock’s own strengths, leveraging its distinct environment, character, and culture to benefit its residents, business owners, and visitors. Over the next decade, this focus is meant to propel Woodstock’s evolution as a thriving destination for businesses and families.

Woodstock Vermont
The EDC was created with the following goals:
  1. To encourage and help existing and new businesses prosper, create more job opportunities, to become more environmentally conscious,
  2. To make this a livable and welcoming community for a diverse, multi-generational population,
  3. To promote a welcoming, sustainable Woodstock area,
  4. To improve and make the best use of land, buildings and other physical infrastructure, and
  5. To develop tools to promote a sustainable economy.

EDC INITIATIVES

Past:

The EDC has supported existing businesses negotiating new initiatives and helped get new programming off the ground. Its funds have paid for the generation of a new town website and a comprehensive public relations campaign for the town, as well as for planning studies intended to ensure the long-term health of our community: a study of area housing is intended to reveal holes and opportunities in the market and a cohesive revitalization plan that will help the town grow smartly.

$50,000 of each year’s budget is earmarked for Community Grants, directed by our town residents and business owners themselves. These extraordinarily diverse grants have helped Wireless Woodstock provide free internet access to all in the downtown area, supported promotion of the middle-school STEM program, funded part of a trail building project for the local mountain bike club, and provided money for local events such as Maple Madness, a music series, and an annual lobster dinner fundraiser, as well as, flower baskets, welcome signs, and a coworking/business development facility. For a list of previous grant applications, please click here. For more information on how to apply, please click here:

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Current:

2018 goals include mobilizing town residents and business owners to make their voices heard as planning firm DuBoise & King generates a strategic revitalization plan for the village. In our efforts to continue to solicit Community Grants we have held grantwriting workshops open to the community; our Recreation Assets subcommittee has begun work on new multi-use trails. 2018 Community Grants to date have been awarded to businesses Who Is Sylvia? and Primrose Garden and the Woodstock Chamber of Commerce for event management.  Behind the scene work by commissioners has included attention to filling storefronts, improved parking, development of the East End, affordable housing, meeting potential new business owners, and working with the Chamber in support of their current ‘revisioning’.

Future:

To ensure Woodstock’s continued appeal for families and young Vermonters, future initiatives will examine the needs of this demographic. The EDC will take part in the upcoming community visioning process which will convene community leaders and all interested citizens to take stock of our progress since the last visioning session in 2005 and renew our commitment to making Woodstock a more welcoming, cohesive and resilient community.

Shop Woodstock
Jim Westphalen

EDC FUNDING

The EDC is responsible for managing the Community and Economic Development Fund. Since 2015, the 1% Local Option Tax on rooms, meals, and alcohol has contributed approximately $700,000 to the fund (as of 5/16/2018). In its first year, the EDC received $208,000. In its second year, that amount increased to $250,000, representing a 20.2% increase and indicating a healthy, strong tourism economy. After funding of grants and other expenditures and earmarking $100,000 to a revolving loan fund, the EDC has an unencumbered balance of approximately $300,000. All EDC funding decisions are subject to final approval by Woodstock’s Select Board before money can be spent.

2018 EDC STRUCTURE

Nine volunteer commissioners have governed the EDC since its inception in 2015. In 2018, the EDC hired a paid, part-time EDC Coordinator who reports directly to the EDC commission. Additionally, four key subcommittees comprised of EDC commissioners and Woodstock residents, including Promotion/Website, Economic Resources, Civic Beautification and Recreation Assets focus on the strategic goals of the EDC.

2018 Board Members:

Tom Weschler, Chair through August 2018
Barry Milstone
Charlie Kimbell
Joe DiNatale
Jason Merrill
Mica Seely
Michael Malik
Julia Cooke
Courtney Lowe

Coordinator:

Sally Miller
Please direct any questions/comments to Sally at [email protected]