Triple Peaks, LLC, the company formed by Tim and Diane Mueller, owners of Okemo Mountain Resort in Ludlow, was informed March 27, 2002, by the American Skiing Company of Bethel, ME, that they were not going to proceed with the closing of the sale of the Steamboat Ski and Resort Company in Steamboat Springs, CO.”We are quite surprised and disappointed at this action,” said Tim Mueller. “Contrary to some reports, we have been ready, willing and able to close this transaction for some time. We had accommodated ASC’s request for a temporary postponement, never having an inkling that they were going to breach our agreement. We are presently exploring with our attorneys the best course of action, before formally responding to this outrageous turn of events.””We were looking forward to working with the employees and the community at Steamboat to fulfill its vast potential,” Diane Mueller emphasized. “To have this thrown at us at this time is devastating to us, our employees and the communities involved.”
Month: January 2021
Ehler’s RV Awarded Winnebago’s “Circle of Excellence Award”Winnebago Industries, manufacturer of Winnebago and Itasca motor homes, awarded Ehlers RV of Essex Junction, VT their coveted Circle of Excellence Award for 2004.Ehlers RV received this award for exceeding customer expectations. Winnebago Industries Circle of Excellence status is based on each dealers Customer Satisfaction Index, from initial sales, delivery and continuing service experiences.Peter Beauregard, owner of Ehler’s RV, accepted the award stating, It’s great to be recognized nationally for achieving our goal of setting new standards of customer satisfaction.
SERIOUS FUN: Champlain College students create a video game about dangers of mercury for Vermont Department of Environmental ConservationIn the entertainment industry today, animated movies are developed concurrently with video games based on those movies—The Incredibles and Madagascar are two recent examples. Champlain College students are mimicking that industry trend this summer, but instead of a story about espionage, comedy or romance, the students have a higher goal: educating youngsters about the dangers of mercury.The Champlain students were tapped to create an animated video and a video game about mercury, a substance that can have devastating effects on humans and animals and is especially dangerous for pregnant women and children. This serious game project is believed to be the first of its kind. It is coordinated by the State of Vermonts Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and supported by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Supplemental Environmental Project.We decided to deliver mercury information through an animation and game because it is a way to target an important audience young people who can be severely impacted by mercury poisoning, said DEC Mercury Program Coordinator Karen Knaebel. The video will cover fundamental information on mercury in the environment and the video game will reinforce that learning.A dozen Electronic Game & Interactive Design students and Multimedia & Graphic Design students at Champlain College were selected for the job and they are working as a team of consultants with two faculty members: Eric Sample and Joe Manley. The students are earning six college credits for their hard work, plus a stipend.The team has been tasked with a short timeline to ensure completion by the time the school year begins in the fall. The video and video game will be used by teachers in classrooms starting this fall throughout Vermont. There is a possibility that this unique educational tool could be in demand on a national level, as well.Beyond the technical challenges they deal with, the students were faced with the difficult task of developing story lines and characters that are engaging enough to appeal to a discriminating audience of middle-school children. Part of the development process has included game testing by students from nearby Edmunds Middle School. We had to make it hip for eighth-graders, said Eric Sample of the Champlain faculty, who added, This is excellent training for our students.Our program is attracting clients from the serious game side of the business, said Ann DeMarle, director of Champlains one-year-old Electronic Game & Interactive Development program. Were capturing technology and harnessing it for a good purpose.Additionally, this coming year the Electronic Game students will work on a serious game for a new Vermont nonprofit called NeighborKeepers. The game will teach youngsters about the hidden rules of class. The client is Hal Colston, who is focused on helping single-parent families climb out of poverty.
Health Commissioner Establishes Rate Increases for FY 2009 Vermont Hospital BudgetsMontpelier, VT — Paulette J. Thabault, Commissioner of Banking, Insurance, Securities, andHealth Care Administration (BISHCA), announced that she has established the 2009 budgets forVermont hospitals. The hospitals testified about their budgets at public hearings held over athree-day period before Commissioner Thabault and the Public Oversight Commission (POC).The Vermont hospital fiscal year for 2009 runs from October 1, 2008 through September 30,2009.The State of Vermont strives to ensure that all residents have access to affordable high qualityhealth care. As part of this effort, Vermont’s hospitals must operate within the budgetsestablished by the Commissioner. As mandated by the Vermont Legislature, hospital budgetsmust: (1) be consistent with the Health Resource Allocation Plan adopted by the Governor onAugust 2, 2005; (2) compare to appropriate national, in-state, regional and peer group norms; (3)evidence efficient and economic operation of the hospital; and (4) reflect budget performance inprior years.This year, hospitals requested an average 9.8% rate increase, although individual hospital raterequests ranged from 3.8% to 11.8%. These rates reflected much lower hospital reimbursementestimates than have been seen in recent years. At this time, the Commissioner’s decisions resultin a decrease from the requested 9.8% system average rate increase to 9.5%. The Commissionerestablished the following rates for the FY 2009 hospital budgets, subject to further adjustmentsas Medicaid revenue data becomes available:Hospital Requested Rate Increase Revised Rate IncreaseBrattleboro Memorial Hospital 7.9% 7.5%Central Vermont Medical Center 10.0% 9.6%Copley Hospital 6.0% 6.0%Fletcher Allen Health Care 10.0% 10.0%Gifford Medical Center 8.6% 7.9%Carlos Otis Health Center 5.0% 5.0%Mount Ascutney Hospital 10.9% 10.5%North Country Hospital 7.0% 7.0%Northeastern VT Regional Hospital 10.0% 9.2%Northwestern Medical Center 11.4% 10.7%Porter Medical Center 11.2% 11.0%Rutland Regional Medical Center 10.9% 9.6%Southwestern Vermont Medical Center 11.8% 10.7%Springfield Hospital 3.8% 3.8%The Commissioner balanced numerous factors in reviewing the proposed budgets: departmenttargets for inflation and utilization increases, numerous changes occurring in reimbursement,pressures in the overall economy including fuel oil increases, new program expense increases,hospital physician acquisitions, the challenges associated with recruiting medical professionals toVermont, operating surplus and margins, prior period budget performance, price, quality andpatient satisfaction information, and the unique circumstances of each hospital.
groSolar Signs Exclusive North American Distribution AgreementWith Leading PV Inverter Manufacturer Motech IndustriesSan Diego, CA- groSolar, North America’s premier provider of solar energy solutions, has announced an agreement with Motech Industries, Inc. of Taiwan. The agreement provides groSolar with the exclusive right to distribute Motech’s industry-leading PV inverters to their expansive network of premium solar dealers across North America.Suitable for residential or light commercial applications, Motech’s line of PVMate inverters are the most efficient inverters in their class. “Motech has successfully developed a series of PV inverters that perform at high efficiency, enable greater flexibility for system designers and allow easier installation and service for system installers,” said Jeff Wolfe, co-founder and CEO of groSolar. “As the sixth largest solar cell manufacturer in the world, Motech has the capabilities and resources to deliver quality products which will enable us to provide reliable inverter technology and meet the growing customer demands.””In developing our relationship with Motech I have been consistently impressed by their commitment to quality, reliability and industry leading inverter performance” said John Berdner Vice President of Technology for groSolar.By partnering with groSolar, Motech gains access to a well-established, geographically diverse distribution network that is the broadest of any North American solar provider.”This agreement with groSolar is a continuation of Motech’s marketing efforts to sell its PV inverter products to international markets by leveraging established sales channels”, said Dr. Simon Tsuo, CEO of Motech Industries, Inc., which was established in Taiwan 27 years ago. “We look forward to a long and rewarding relationship with groSolar.”Offering world-class performance, Motech’s inverters are expected to quickly become a favorite of installers. Lightweight, simple to install and featuring a very low-profile, the inverters lower installation costs by requiring only one person for installation groSolar is developing accessories for the inverter, including true plug-and-play inexpensive monitoring.The groSolar/Motech agreement was announced at the Hard Rock Hotel San Diego as part of the largest solar power conference and expo in the United States – Solar Power International 08.About groSolar(r)groSolar is North America’s premier solar power company focused on designing, distributing and installing high quality solar electric and solar hot water systems. groSolar provides residential installation in the eastern US, and commercial installation in California as well as the eastern US, serving other areas through an extensive dealer network. With a system of warehouses across the continent, groSolar has the broadest distribution capabilities of any solar provider. groSolar integrates components from leading solar manufacturers including Evergreen Solar into efficient solar energy systems for its customers that generate clean, reliable energy for decades. groSolar.comAbout Motech(r)Established in 1981, Motech Industries Inc. (Taiwan OTC Stock Code: 6244) is the sixth largest solar cell manufacturer in the world in 2007 according to Photon International Magazine. In addition to solar cells, Motech Solar division also manufactures polycrystalline silicon ingots and wafers. With annual sales of over US$500 millions in 2007 and expected solar cell manufacturing capacity of 580 MW in 2008, Motech provides high-quality solar cells to module manufacturers worldwide. Since 2006, Motech Instruments division has started the manufacturing and shipment of grid-tied photovoltaic inverters for the solar industry. Motech Power division is involved in the design and installation of solar photovoltaic systems in Taiwan. www.motech.com.tw(link is external)
Casella Waste Systems Inc,John Casella, chairman and chief executive of Casella Waste Systems, started his Rutland-based business in 1975, working with his brother and one garbage truck. In 1977, Casella Waste opened Vermont’s first recycling center.Fast forward to 2009: The company has grown into a national leader in recycling, reduction of landfill greenhouse gas emissions, and the generation of renewable energy. At its five gas-to-energy landfills, Casella Waste captures the methane that is produced by waste and converts it into electricity that can be distributed over the grid. The 25 megawatts of power produced by methane capture is enough to power 25,000 homes and results in substantial emissions reductions.These achievements and others have prompted Vermont Law School to choose John Casella as its recipient for the first annual Green Business Innovators Award, which will be presented at the law school on February 27 at 4 p.m. in Oakes Classroom 012. Following the award presentation, Casella will address VLS students, faculty and guests. The public is invited to attend.In January, the Environmental Protection Agency’s Landfill Methane Outreach Program honored Casella Waste Systems with its 2008 Industry Partner of the Year award for its work in reducing methane emissions. John Casella is a charter member of the EPA Climate Leaders program.”We believe that waste is no longer just a throw-away, but is instead a raw material for manufacturing new products and a resource for producing clean energy.” – John Casella