The Vermont Economic Development Authority (VEDA) has approved $15.7 million in loan and bond financings for commercial, agricultural and energy projects totaling $37.5 million throughout Vermont.
“Manufacturing businesses employing hundreds of Vermonters will continue to grow with the help of VEDA financing,” said Jo Bradley, VEDA Chief Executive Officer. “In addition, a number of agricultural and renewable energy generation projects were approved, as was an SBA 504 project.”
Projects approved for VEDA financing in the agriculture and food sectors include:
Grafton Village Cheese Company, Inc., Brattleboro – VEDA gave final approval to the reissuance of $5.75 million in tax-exempt manufacturing revenue bonds that funded Grafton Village Cheese Company’s (GVC’s) construction and equipping of its Brattleboro cheese production facility in 2007 and 2008. That project allowed GVC to expand production by opening a second plant while continuing to operate its original cheese production facility in Grafton. Founded in 1892 to convert surplus milk from local dairy farmers into cheese, GVC still maintains its headquarters at the original Grafton facility. GVC produces a well-known line of aged and cave-aged specialty cheeses, and the additional production capacity in Brattleboro has allowed the company to produce and age significantly more cheese. Since the original VEDA-approved bonds were induced in 2007, GVC has increased employment by sixteen positions to 50 jobs. People’s United Bank financed the project through the purchase of the original bonds and will buy the reissued bonds, extending the term and reducing the annual debt service.
Agricultural loans totaling over $3.7 million were approved through the Authority’s agricultural loan program, the Vermont Agricultural Credit Corporation (VACC), which provides credit to Vermont farmers, agricultural facilities, forestry and forest product-based businesses.
Through the Authority’s Local Development Corporation Loan Program, which provides financing to nonprofit local and regional development corporations to build facilities for lease to identified eligible tenants or develop industrial parks, VEDA approved:
Financing of $877,504 to Springfield Regional Development Corporation as part of a $975,000 project to construct a 6,000 square foot building at the Windsor Artisan’s Park for lease to Blake Hill Farm Products, Inc. Blake Hill Farm Products has experienced significant growth since its 2009 beginnings in the owners’ home kitchen, and the new location will provide the company with easy access to I-91 and and high visibility to the large number of visitors to the Park. In addition to a larger production facility for its various jams, preserves, marmalades and chutneys, Blake Hill will also have a small retail store at its new facility. Visitors will be able to purchase hard-to-find specialty preserve making equipment and fresh batch and exclusive Blake Hill varieties not available in other stores, in addition to its well-known customer favorites. Within three years of the expansion project, Blake Hill expects to increase employment from five positions to twelve.
The Vermont Economic Development Authority (VEDA) is Vermont’s nonprofit economic development finance lender. VEDA was created by the General Assembly in 1974 with a mission “to contribute to the creation and retention of quality jobs in Vermont by providing loans and other financial support to eligible and qualified Vermont industrial, commercial and agricultural enterprises.”
Over the years, VEDA has grown and adapted its financing programs to keep pace with an ever-changing economy. VEDA offers a wide range of low-cost lending options for Vermont businesses and farms of all sizes, and the Authority’s lending solutions are customized to each borrower’s individual needs. Whether in the form of direct loans, tax-exempt bond issuance or loan guarantee support, VEDA’s innovative financing programs help ensure that Vermont businesses and farms have the capital they need to grow and succeed. VEDA most often lends in conjunction with banks and other financing partners, helping to stimulate economic development activity in Vermont.
Since 1974, VEDA has provided over $2.16 billion in financing assistance to thousands of eligible Vermont entrepreneurs, manufacturers, small businesses, family farms, and agricultural enterprises, helping them to realize their business growth goals, create jobs, and enhance the vitality of Vermont’s economy. For more information about VEDA, visitwww.veda.org or call 802-828-JOBS.