News

June 12, 2020

The Vermont House today fast-tracked a $93 million Coronavirus Emergency Economic Recovery Grants package. The only remaining step is the Governor's signature to get this relief money in the hands of Vermonters and their businesses.

The bill includes $23 million to the Vermont Housing and Conservation Board for grants to nonprofit housing partners and service organizations as well as for shelter facilities necessary to provide self shelter and assistance for persons who are, or at risk of, experiencing homelessness, in order to mitigate COVID-19 effects. 

June 12, 2020

The Vermont Agency of Natural Resources (ANR) is developing a new long-range management plan for the Worcester Range Management Unit and is soliciting public input via an online survey to better understand how Vermonters use and value these lands. The survey will be open until August 3, 2020.

June 10, 2020

The national trauma that is the murder of George Floyd at the knee of a police “training” officer has horrified us. In the weeks preceding this awful event we saw the murders of Ahmaud Arbury and Breonna Taylor. What is more troubling are the many, many incidents of racism that American society and culture has for generations too easily accepted, either without notice or without sufficient outrage to demand and result in change.

May 14, 2020

The Vermont Farm & Forest Viability Program, a program of the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board, is expanding services to help working lands businesses navigate urgent needs related to COVID-19. Funding for these new services is provided through generous support of $50,000 from the Vermont Working Lands Enterprise Initiative (WLEI).

March 25, 2020

Housing developments and conservation projects in Colchester, Guilford, Dorset, Danville, Monkton, Brattleboro, and Brookfield will be supported with VHCB and federal funds, creating 47 homes, conserving 186 acres of farmland and natural areas, and bringing a historic building into service as a community center.

March 18, 2020

December 2019 and January 2020 VHCB Funding Awards

At meetings in December and January, the Board awarded $7.6 million for housing developments and conservation projects around the state. 

March 17, 2020

Corona Virus Update

In the face of the growing Corona Virus pandemic, and with the health and well-being of our staff and community our main concern, the VHCB office will be closed to the public, and staff will be working remotely until further notice.

February 27, 2020

The Vermont Farm & Forest Viability Program, a program of the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board, has grant funds available for on-farm capital improvement projects that have a positive impact on water quality. Eligible farmers can apply for a Water Quality Grant, which provides $5,000 to $40,000 in funding.

Applications are due by *March 27, 2020.* More information, eligibility requirements, and applications are available on the Viability Program Website at: https://vhcb.org/WQG

February 6, 2020

The Vermont Farm & Forest Viability Program, a program of the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board (VHCB), in partnership with The Blueprint, are pleased to announce funding available for organizations to provide one-on-one business planning and technical assistance to farm and food businesses, across the Northern Border region of NY, VT, NH and ME. (***Application deadline extended to April 8, 2020!)

January 8, 2020

The goal of the Point-in-Time (PIT) count is the have an annual “snapshot” of all the individuals and households in Vermont who are literally homeless (persons who are staying in shelters or places such as the streets, cars, and places not meant for human habitation) on one night in the community on a single night during January.

December 6, 2019

At an event at the St. Albans Creamery, VHCB announced $410,944 in Dairy Improvement Grants to 12 Vermont farms. The grants are made possible by funding from Commonwealth Dairy.

November 5, 2019

Following a conference hosted by the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board on October 10, awards were presented to several individuals and organizations during a reception at Barre’s Old Labor Hall,

October 24, 2019

Preservation Trust of Vermont Names Former St. Albans Mayor and Community Leader, Liz Gamache, as Interim President
​​​​​​​Founder and Vermont treasure Paul Bruhn passed away unexpectedly in September  

Burlington, Vt. - Today the Preservation Trust of Vermont (“PTV” or the “Trust”) named Liz Gamache of St. Albans as its Interim President. Liz takes the reins as the organization’s second leader in its storied 39-year history following the passing of PTV’s beloved founding President, Paul Bruhn. Started in 1980, the Trust works to protect, restore, and revitalize the buildings, businesses, and gathering places that make Vermont so special. From barn grants to general stores, from village greens to State and Main, PTV’s work reaches every corner of Vermont.

September 26, 2019

Grants Available for Infrastructure Improvements that Enhance Water Quality
The Vermont Farm & Forest Viability Program, a program of the VT Housing & Conservation Board, has grant funds available for on-farm capital improvement projects that have a positive impact on water quality. Eligible farmers can apply for a Water Quality Grant, which provides $5,000 to $40,000 in funding. Matching funds are required and may include federal or state grants as well as cash, loans, or labor. Application deadlines are November 8, 2019 and March 20, 2020. More information, eligibility requirements, and applications are available on the Viability Program Website.

August 23, 2019

VHCB to receive $624,000 in funding to advance the agricultural economy by launching the Northeast Agricultural Business Assistance Network throughout the four-states in the NBRC region.

June 25, 2019

The Viability Program awarded a total of $507,000 to fourteen farms in Addison, Orleans, and Rutland counties, leveraging an additional $4.9 million for capital improvement projects and matched by the farmers’ funds, bank loans, and grant funding from the USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service and the Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets.

June 10, 2019

At a meeting on May 10, the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board awarded $6,656,970 in VHCB funding, Housing Revenue Bond funds, and federal funds from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service for the construction or rehabilitation of 72 affordable homes and to conserve 5,650 acres of natural areas and public recreational lands and 617 acres of farmland.

March 26, 2019

At a meeting on March 15, the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board awarded $731,500 in VHCB funding, $127,500 in federal funds, and $1,130,000 in Housing Revenue Bond funds for the development of 24 new homes in St. Albans, pre-development work on a neighborhood revitalization project in Windsor, and a pilot program to support the development of accessory apartments in Burlington. Additionally, 250 acres of farmland will be conserved in Orange and Chittenden Counties, and 287 acres of forestland in Dummerston with public access for hunting and walking will be conserved.

March 21, 2019

​​​​​​​The Vermont Farm & Forest Viability Program, a program of the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board, awarded a total of $268,684 to nine Vermont farms in March through its most recent round of Water Quality and Dairy Improvement Grants.

March 14, 2019

"Without that [Viability] program, our farm would not be in place." - Ashlyn Bristle, Rebop Farm
A profile of Rebop Farm in the Brattleboro Reformer highlights the work of VHCB's Viability Program.

March 4, 2019

At a meeting on January 22, the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board committed $5,129,478 for the construction of 126 new apartments in St. Albans and Burlington and the rehabilitation of 22 condominiums and older homes in Montpelier and in Windham and Windsor counties. The Board awarded $740,000 in state funds for these efforts, along with $3.5 million in Housing Revenue Bond funds and $1.58 million in federal funds for affordable housing from the National Housing Trust Fund and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s HOME Program.

January 8, 2019

At a meeting in Brandon on December 13, the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board awarded funding to acquire and conserve 483 acres of natural areas in Bridgewater and Shelburne, to conserve 532 acres of farmland on four farms located in Orange, Franklin, and Rutland Counties, and to develop a planning tool to help towns increase affordable housing in developed areas.

October 23, 2018

The Vermont Farm & Forest Viability Program, a program of the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board, awarded a total of $370,136 to 11 Vermont farms through its most recent round of Water Quality and Dairy Improvement Grants.

October 1, 2018

On Thursday, September 20, the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board awarded $5,838,948 in state and federal funds to create and preserve 146 affordable homes and to conserve 577 acres of forestland with provisions for public access and water quality protection.

VHCB Executive Director Gus Seelig said, “We are excited to support investment in nine towns that will result in new affordable housing options, increased recreational opportunities, improved water quality and support for agriculture. The projects funded this month are made possible by the Housing Revenue Bond and other public resources that leverage private investment in order to improve Vermont’s communities, our economy, and our quality of life.”

September 26, 2018

A recent economic analysis by The Trust for Public Land shows Vermont's investments in land conservation pay off in natural goods and services, such as improved water quality, flood resiliency, and food production, at a rate of $9 for every $1 invested.

June 28, 2018

On Thursday, June 21, the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board awarded $6,594,615 for housing developments that will help to build or rehabilitate 59 affordable homes and conserve 1,050 acres of farmland and 146 acres of recreational and forest land.

May 17, 2018

VHCB Executive Director Gus Seelig said, “VHCB is pleased to invest in these efforts that will have a positive impact in communities around the state by expanding economic opportunity, protecting work force, senior and family housing, increasing Vermont’s flood resiliency, and helping farmers to expand, diversify, reduce debt and retire.”

April 25, 2018

Luke Rackers received a Governor's Service Award for his outstanding service at Central Vermont Council on Aging. This is Luke's second year as a VHCB AmeriCorps member serving at Central Vermont Council on Aging.

March 28, 2018

At a meeting on March 15, the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board awarded $2,955,197 to create new homes in a downtown Bennington development, to conserve 440 acres of farmland in Rutland and Orleans Counties, and to protect public access to water in Calais, Burlington and Bolton.

March 23, 2018

“I cannot tell you how helpful your visit was. I feel so much better equipped to manage this now.  With profound gratitude – thank you!”

March 12, 2018

A summary of Dairy Improvement and Water Quality Grant decisions from March 2018.

February 21, 2018

In January, the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board committed $9,359,800 for the construction and rehabilitation of 133 homes and for the conservation of 152 acres of land. The Board awarded $6,795,000 in Housing Revenue Bond funds, $1.45 million in federal HOME Program funding, $478,000 in federal farmland protection funds, and $636,500 in state funding to nine applicants.

VHCB Executive Director Gus Seelig said, “These funding awards will help address the very low vacancy rates in the housing market, providing new homes in downtown locations around the state. Two farmland conservation awards will keep farmland in aictive agricultural use and allow the farmers to expand their operations, while providing water quality protections in the easements.”

December 21, 2017

The Vermont Farm & Forest Viability Program, a program of the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board, awarded $264,169 in water quality grants to farmers, in Addison, Franklin, Orange, Orleans, and Rutland counties. The grants will be used for 10 capital improvement projects totaling $2.4 million that will reduce runoff and improve manure management on the farms. The Viability Program grants are matched by the farmers’ funds, bank loans, and grant funding from the Natural Resources Conservation Service and the Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets.

Anson Tebbetts, Secretary of the Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets, said, “These grants are helping farmers make necessary improvements to their farms to comply with Vermont’s Required Agricultural Practice and to improve water quality. Without the assistance from the Viability Program, NRCS, and the Ag Agency, it would be difficult for farmers to prioritize these important projects.”

November 17, 2017

The Vermont Farm & Forest Viability Program, a program of the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board, announced today the availability of grant funds for on-farm capital improvement projects.

August 30, 2017

On Wednesday, June 28th, Vermont Housing & Conservation Board AmeriCorps members and VHCB staff joined Richmond area non-profits to complete community service projects. The volunteers took part in six different projects, serving with Audubon Vermont, the Vermont Youth Conservation Corps, Cathedral Square Corporation, Richmond Mountain Trails, the Friends of the Winooski, and the Habitat For Humanity ReStore. 

August 30, 2017

The Vermont Farm & Forest Viability Program, a program of the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board, awarded a total of $407,834 in Dairy Improvement Grants to 11 dairy farmers, in Addison, Chittenden, Franklin, Essex, Grand Isle, and Orleans counties, for on-farm infrastructure projects. These funds are matched by over $1.2 million of additional investments in order to complete their projects. 

June 28, 2017

The Vermont Housing & Conservation Board will use $35 million in new funding for the creation of rental housing and home ownership opportunities for 550-650 low- and moderate-income Vermonters over the next two to three years. The bold, new initiative represents the largest state investment in housing in more than a decade.  It was first proposed by Governor Phil Scott in his January budget address, gained strong support in the legislature, and was signed into law today.