Fletcher Allen Health Care Names Interim COO

first_imgFletcher Allen Health Care announced that it has named John K. Evans as interim chief operating officer.Evans, 47, a 1977 graduate of the University of Vermont, brings 25 years of health care administration experience to Fletcher Allen having held a series of executive level positions at hospitals in the Connecticut area over the last 15 years and having spent 10 years in health care administration in the U.S. Army medical department.In his role at Fletcher Allen, Evans will be responsible for overseeing the day-to-day operations of the organization and will report directly to Edwin Colodny, interim chief executive officer. He is scheduled to begin work on January 13.”I am delighted that we have been able to bring John Evans to Fletcher Allen,” said Ed Colodny. “John is an experienced health care administrator with strong ties to Vermont. He has extensive experience coordinating the operations of large hospitals in support of patient care.””I am looking forward to working closely with the physicians, nurses and staff at Fletcher Allen,” Evans said. “My style is to get out on the floors and use hands-on leadership as a way of improving systems and effecting positive change in the organization. I believe it’s the best approach to understanding the issues faced by those who provide the care.”Evans served as the senior vice president of medical center operations at St. Vincent’s Medical Center in Bridgeport, CT, from 1996 to 2001, and as executive vice president/chief operating officer at St. Joseph Medical Center in Stamford from 1993 to 1996. St. Vincent’s is a 410-bed tertiary level acute care teaching hospital of the Ascension Health System and an affiliate of Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. St. Joseph is a 260-bed community teaching hospital that was purchased by St. Vincent’s and Stamford Health System as part of a new strategic alliance. Evans also served as vice president of Ambulatory Services at St. Joseph from 1987-89.In addition to his hospital experience, Evans’ background also includes having served as president and chief executive officer of a start-up, for-profit diversified healthcare services company in Bridgeport named NovaMed Corporation (1989-93). He also helped launch an innovative health care technology initiative named Strategic Solutions in 2002. Strategic Solutions is a division of Siemens Medical Solutions, which is a subsidiary of Siemens, a global company with $90 billion in revenues.He attended the University of Vermont earning a bachelor of arts degree in Political Science in 1977. After graduating from UVM, Evans began his medical career in the U.S. Army medical department where he held various health care executive positions for a period of 10 years. While in the Army, he earned his master’s in health administration from Baylor University in Waco, Texas in 1985.As part of his graduate experience, he completed a year-long residency in health care administration, rotating through all clinical areas of Brooke Army Medical Center. At the end of this residency, Evans was the recipient of the Texas Hospital Association’s “Young Administrator” award.Evans is a fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives and is a founding member of the Healthcare Change Institute, a think tank formed at Harvard University and The Brigham and Women’s Hospital, dedicated to advancing the knowledge and skills of healthcare leaders charged with implementing change.last_img read more

Vermont Celebrates Mentoring Month: Okemo Free Ski Day and Governor’s Proclamation Highlight Mentors’ Commitment

first_imgThis month, the Vermont Mentoring Partnership (VMP)leads the state into Mentoring Month, created to recognize the importance of mentoring nationwide. VMP, an organization connecting youth and adults in mentoring programs throughout Vermont, is taking the opportunity to honor Vermont mentors’ dedication and strong sense of community service. VMP currently supports 136 mentor programs statewide, serving over 2,000 youth.The theme for National Mentoring Month is “Who mentored you? Thank them … and pass it on! Mentor a child.” The philosophy behind “Who mentored you?” is to encourage individuals to recognize the importance of mentoring by inspiring them to think about people in their own lives– family members, teachers, coaches, clergy, neighbors– who provided support, and helped them learn and become who they are today.Okemo Mountain Resort and VMP team up on Thursday, January 16 to pay tribute to Vermont mentors and their youth matches. Okemo is donating ski passes and discounting equipment rentals to reward Vermont’s mentors for their hard work and dedication. “Okemo Mountain Resort boasts excellent skiing conditions as well as a long history of community involvement,” said Damon Tabor, VMP Executive Director. “Ski Day presents an unparalleled opportunity for mentors and their protégés to hit the slopes for a full day of free skiing and riding.”Governor Jim Douglas will read a statement proclaiming January to be Vermont Mentoring Month at his regularly scheduled press conference, while mentors and their youth matches look on. President Bush issued his proclamation on January 2, calling upon “the people of the United States to recognize the importance of being role models for our youth, to look for mentoring opportunities in their communities, and to celebrate this month…”Research shows that youth-adult mentor matches improve student grades, school attendance, career options, family relationships, and prevent drug and alcohol initiation. One of 23 state partnerships created by the National Mentoring Partnership, the VMP provides training, certification, funding, workshops, conferences, and technical assistance to the Vermont mentoring community.A media campaign accompanies VMP’s community outreach and educational activities during this month. For more information about mentoring in Vermont, log on to the Vermont Mentoring Partnership website (www.vtmentoring.org(link is external)) or call 1-800-VT-MENTOR.last_img read more

UPS to Help Birkenstock Shorten Order Time, Increase U.S. Product Offering

first_imgBirkenstock Footprint Sandals Inc., the 100 percent employee-owned company and U.S. importer and distributor of Birkenstock footwear from Germany, will shorten special-order handling time by weeks and increase its product offering in U.S. retail stores through an agreement with UPS Supply Chain Solutions.A new distribution program developed by UPS will manage special orders to the U.S. fulfilled by Birkenstock manufacturing centers in Germany. Special orders that once took months to ship to the U.S. now will take days.“UPS Supply Chain Solutions will help us bring additional new styles, colors and sizes of Birkenstock footwear to American consumers much faster than we have been able to do in the past,” said Birkenstock Chief Operating Officer Gene Kunde.Under the agreement, implemented this month, UPS Supply Chain Solutions will provide a dedicated team utilizing UPS’s full portfolio of services including air, ocean, customs brokerage and small package. The solutions allow shipments to go directly to retail outlets. This alleviates interim handling and repackaging steps typical of the retail distribution process. UPS also will deliver retailer orders for the Spring 2004 season beginning this fall.“While our main goal is to satisfy our customers, there also are significant operational benefits to this new distribution arrangement,” Kunde said. “The UPS program takes pressure off our U.S. warehouses and gives our retailers more options for consumers.”Birkenstock, the first company to introduce the U.S. market to the Euro-comfort shoe category in 1967, realized 20 percent growth in fiscal 2002, exceeding the industry average of six percent. The agreement with UPS Supply Chain Solutions will enable Birkenstock to keep pace with rapid growth while increasing its ability to respond to its retailers and consumer needs.last_img read more

ROUNDTABLE RELEASES THIRD QUARTER, 2005 RESULTS

first_imgROUNDTABLE RELEASES THIRD QUARTER, 2005CEO ECONOMIC OUTLOOK SURVEY RESULTSSouth Burlington, VT – Results from the Roundtable’s Third Quarter, 2005 CEO Economic Outlook Survey, show that business executives are expecting increases in both sales and capital expenditures over the coming six months, while employment levels will remain virtually unchanged from the previous reporting period.Chris Dutton, President and CEO of Green Mountain Power, is a member of the Vermont Business Roundtable. When asked to comment on his CEO Economic Outlook Survey responses, Dutton said, “The economy is strong in our service area. As we look ahead we expect increased sales. Additionally, the company expects to increase capital spending to make sure that our electric service is reliable, as that is what our customers value the most.”Conducted in the month of July, the Roundtable’s CEO Economic Outlook Survey enjoyed a response rate of 62%. The key findings, which reflect the membership’s outlook for the next six months, include the following details:* 74% of responding CEOs expect an increase in consumer sales, 24% see no change, and 2% anticipate a decrease. [Second Quarter Results: Increase 75%, No Change 23%, Decrease 2%]* 57% expect capital spending to increase in the next six months, 38% see no change, and 5% anticipate a decrease. [Second Quarter Results: Increase 49%, No Change 43%, Decrease 8%]* 49% expect employment to increase, 44% see no change, and 7% anticipate a decrease. [Second Quarter Results: Increase 49%, No Change 42%, Decrease 9%]According to Roundtable President Lisa Ventriss, “The pattern for 2005 projected sales expectations mirrors the experience of 2004. If the pattern continues, we should see the fourth quarter 2005 demonstrate an upswing. A similar optimism exists regarding capital expenditures. Compared to this time last year, respondents are slightly more optimistic. In terms of employment levels, compared to this time last year, our members seem to be more conservative in their staffing projections.”-#-Created in 1987 as a nonprofit, public interest organization, the Vermont Business Roundtable iscomposed of 120 CEOs of Vermont’s top private and nonprofit employers dedicated to making Vermont the best place in America to do business, be educated, and live life. Member businesses employ over 47,000 employees in virtually every county across Vermont.last_img read more

Democrats, Republicans split over Douglas’ stimulus plan

first_imgGovernor announces Vermont economic stimulus packageGovernor Jim Douglas announced a $214 million dollar economic stimulus package in hopes of making Vermont the first state to bounce back from the national recession. His 15-point plan, which would cost the state $3 million in spending but generate more than $70 million alone in its first year, has caused a rift between Republican and Democratic leaders who are scrambling to review it before the session comes to a close in two weeks.The package, which the administration says could generate more than $214 million for the state in the next five years, addresses issues of construction, housing, transportation, student loans, and even proposes two tax free holidays.One suggestion involves state bonding for $80 million over the next five years to pay for road and bridge repairs, which would create construction jobs and accelerate infrastructure repairs. Even though Douglas previously rejected an increase in the state’s bonding, he says that his administration reduced the state’s bonding debt, and that a harsh winter, increase in gas prices, higher construction costs, and the current state of the economy mean Wall Street investment firms will understand if the state needs more money.He also proposed reducing the $30 million annual transfer from the Transportation Fund to the General Fund by $4.5 million every year beginning in 2010. The cut would last until the transfer was reduced to $15 million that would go towards state police funding.In an attempt to address the current housing shortage, Douglas’ package proposes leveraging state retirement funds to provide $17.4 million to help first time home buyers and low income Vermonters hold onto their houses. He also wants to pass a portion of his New Neighborhoods housing proposal which would streamline permitting, generating 400 additional housing projects and $22 million in construction jobs.The plan also calls for student and small business loans, and tax credits for manufacturing businesses in areas with higher unemployment. There is also talk of a two day sales-tax free tax holiday and a week of no sales tax on Energy Star- related home appliances.Reactions were split along party lines, with support coming from Republicans and disapproval from a majority of Democrats, who believe that his housing plans are over politicized and over promised and that the entire package is hastily constructed. There is concern over whether the stimulus plan can go through legislature before the session ends in two weeks.Full text of Douglas’ speech can be found at www.vermontbiz.com.last_img read more

ARC Mechanical Contractors acquires Montshire Mechanical

first_imgARC Mechanical Contractors,ARC Mechanical Contractors of Bradford, Vermont, announced today the acquisition of Montshire Mechanical Services Inc in Lebanon, NH. For 20 years Montshire Mechanical has provided refrigeration and air-conditioning service to the Upper Valley. After years of dedicated hard work, owners Skip Spaulding and Joe Lukash are ready to slow down and enjoy the fruits of their labor. They are confident that ARC will continue their commitment to quality refrigeration and air conditioning service.ARC Mechanical Contractors, located in Lebanon, New Hampshire and Bradford, Vermont, has provided quality heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration (HVAC-R) service and sales to the Upper Valley for over 60 years. Not only can ARC service the equipment previously handled by Montshire Mechanical, ARC can service and install plumbing, mechanical piping, heating, ventilation, air conditioning, refrigeration, ductwork, and control systems.ARC offers design/build services for new construction or renovation, as well as 24/7 emergency service. With 70 employees, including service technicians, installers, gas fitters, electricians, plumbers, project foremen and supervisors, ARC has the manpower and expertise for large projects and the flexibility for small ones. ARC also has 3 LEED Accredited Professionals on staff.ARC s goal is to keep our customer s HVAC-R equipment in peak condition, maximizing efficiency, while making the most of the customer s budget. ARC s service manager, Jody Perkins, has over 17 years HVAC-R experience and holds three NATE certifications. ARC s technicians are extensively-trained to provide the highest level of service and maintenance. In fact, more than 50% of ARC s service technicians are certified by the North American Technician Excellence, Inc. – a non-profit, independent certification program for technicians in HVAC-R. About ARC Mechanical ContractorsIn business since 1947, ARC Mechanical Contractors provides plumbing, mechanical piping, heating, ventilation, air-conditioning, refrigeration, ductwork, and controls for commercial, residential, institutional, industrial and municipal buildings/facilities. We also install geothermal, solar thermal and hybrid heating and cooling systems. Many examples of our work may be found throughout Vermont and New Hampshire, including Dartmouth College s Alumni Gym and Whittemore Hall, Brattleboro Memorial Hospital, Woodstock Inn, Cottage Hospital, and the Edgar May Health & Recreation Center. Source: ARC. 1.28.2010last_img read more

Vermont selected for federal health care project patterned on Vermont Blueprint for Health

first_imgThe other states were selected to participate in a demonstration project were Maine, Rhode Island, New York, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Michigan, and Minnesota.Source: Governor’s office. Vermont congressional delegation. 11.16.2010 Governor Jim Douglas today said the Obama Administration has selected Vermont as one of eight states to participate in a demonstration project that is modeled after, and will strengthen, the groundbreaking Vermont Blueprint for Health.As part of the demonstration project, the federal government will provide Medicare funding to better coordinate care, lower costs and improve health outcomes for patients, the Governor said. This is a first for the federal Medicare program. The total funding is about $21.8 million over three years. It is expected to impact 117,000 Vermonters by 2013. ‘This demonstration project, the Multi-payer Advanced Primary Care Practice, strengthens reforms already in place here as part of our Vermont Blueprint for Health and provides another example of how states can contain health care costs and improve quality,’ Governor Douglas said.Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) said, ‘Vermont’s selection ensures that our state will continue to lead in finding the best ways to reduce costs and keep patients healthier by doing a better job of coordinating care.  These projects will help chart the way in bending the cost curve downward.  We told Vermont’s story often during the health bill debate, including Vermont Blueprint for Health’s leadership in implementing a medical home model.  This practical, real-world experience will help revolutionize health care to treat the whole patient, not just parts of the patient as through today’s fragmented systems.’Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT), a member of the Senate health committee, said, ‘Vermont will continue to lead the way in true health reform. For the first time, Medicare, Medicaid and private insurers will work together to improve health outcomes for Vermonters. Health care providers will be rewarded for improving health, not for simply providing more care.’Representative Peter Welch (D-VT),  a member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, said, ‘Vermont has long led the way in putting quality of care ahead of quantity of services ‘ and putting health outcomes ahead of the fee-for-service model. Vermont’s selection as part of the new demonstration project is both a recognition of our state’s leadership and a chance for further health innovation and improvement.’The Vermont Blueprint for Health is an advanced model of primary care and prevention that includes health teams that provide coordinated services through multiple primary care practices in a community, as well as fees based on performance and outcomes. It is widely regarded as among the most innovative health care reforms in the nation. Currently, Vermont’s Blueprint for Health is funded by state general fund tax revenue, the state’s Medicaid program and Vermont’s major commercial insurers. Under the demonstration project, Medicare funding will be used to advance Vermont’s existing Blueprint program, a project that supports integrated and proactive primary care for patients that save money and improve quality. ‘Our ultimate objective is high quality care that is affordable for everyone,’ Douglas said. ‘This expanded multi-payer partnership is another important step in the right direction.’In September 2009, Governor Douglas and HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced the framework for the effort at a White House press conference.last_img read more

Go Red for Women Luncheon Wednesday in Burlington

first_imgThe Sheraton Burlington Hotel and Conference Center will be a sea of red on Wednesday, Feb. 16, as nearly 500 women ‘ and some men ‘ will gather for the fifth annual Go Red for Women Luncheon.‘This is going to be a powerful and life-affirming day,’ said Melinda Moulton, CEO of Main Street Landing and volunteer co-chair of the luncheon.‘We are honored that so many people have worked to put this together, and that so many women are telling us they can’t wait to attend,’ said Mary Powell, CEO of Green Mountain Power and volunteer co-chair of the event. ‘We asked this question at last year’s luncheon, and are still seeking the answer,’ Moulton said. There are two Heart-to-Heart Workshops scheduled from 11 to 11:30 a.m. One is limited to 25 people, with Michelle Hooper from the AHA teaching CPR. Peter Spector, M.D., electrophysiologist with the University of Vermont Medical Group at Fletcher Allen, will present the other workshop, titled ‘Marching without the Beat of a Drummer: The Heart’s Electricity and Atrial Fibrillation.’ At 9:45 a.m., Moulton will moderate a panel discussion entitled ‘Is Work/Life Balance Possible?’ Registration for the Go Red for Women Luncheon begins at 8 a.m. At 9 a.m., Shyla Nelson of The Good Earth Singers will lead the attendees in a session of chanting. The Go Red for Women Luncheon is set for Wednesday, Feb. 16, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Sheraton Hotel and Conference Center in Burlington. Tickets are $50 each. For information or to purchase tickets, call 802.288.8307, email Joy.Blandford@heart.org(link sends e-mail) or visit heart.org/vermontgoredluncheon. Lauren Maloney of FOX44 and Tara Madison of Star 92.9 are the emcees of the luncheon. Macy’s and Merck are the national sponsors of Go Red for Women. Presenting sponsor of the Go Red for Women Luncheon is Fletcher Allen Health Care. A Picture and A Promise sponsor is NorthCountry Federal Credit Union. Main Street Landing is a local sponsor. Media sponsors are FOX44, Star 92.9 and the Burlington Free Press.About Go Red For WomenGo Red For Women is part of the American Heart Association’s solution to help save women’s lives. With one out of three women still dying from heart disease, we are committed to fighting this No. 1 killer, which is largely preventable. GoRedForWomen.org, a premiere source of information and education, connects millions of women of all ages and gives them tangible resources to turn personal choices into lifesaving actions. We encourage women and the men who love them to embrace the cause. For more information, please visit GoRedForWomen.org or call 1-888-MY-HEART (1-888-694-3278). The movement is nationally sponsored by Macy’s and Merck & Co., Inc.# At noon, the luncheon program begins, hosted by Lauren Maloney of FOX44 and Tara Madison of Star 92.9. Melinda Estes, M.D., president and CEO of Fletcher Allen Health Care, is the keynote speaker. Shelburne resident Michelle Johnston, who suffered sudden cardiac death on Oct. 27, 2009, at the age of 38, will share her story. Jenni Johnson and the Junketeers will wrap up the day with music guaranteed to get everyone up and dancing.last_img read more

Casella Waste announces third quarter results: revenues up, income lags

first_img RUTLAND, VT–(Marketwire – March 01, 2011) – Casella Waste Systems, Inc. Casella Waste Systems Inc,Casella Waste Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: CWST), a regional solid waste, recycling and resource management services company, today reported financial results for its third quarter fiscal year 2011. For the quarter ended January 31, 2011, revenues were $111.6 million, up $1.7 million or 1.6 percent over the same quarter last year, driven mainly by solid waste volume growth and higher commodity prices. Operating income was $6.3 million for the quarter, down $1.1 million from the same quarter last year. The company’s net loss applicable to common shareholders was ($6.4) million, or ($0.24) per common share for the quarter, compared to ($4.4) million, or ($0.17) per share for the same quarter last year. Adjusted EBITDA* for the quarter was $22.4 million, down $1.6 million from same quarter last year. “While our third quarter results were below last year’s performance and our plan, the underperformance was mainly driven by adverse weather and non-recurring events,” said John W. Casella, chairman and CEO of Casella Waste Systems. “The bad winter weather during the quarter impacted operational performance, with lower than projected productivity throughout the solid waste business and lower waste volumes. Our landfill volumes were lower year-over-year by 4.4 percent, with the negative variance attributable to reaching annual permit limits at several key sites in early December and lower volumes in January due to the bad weather.””As expected in the quarter, the lower energy prices at Maine Energy, the final closure of the Pine Tree landfill in Q3 fiscal year 2010, and the sale of the Cape Cod assets in Q1 fiscal year 2011 led to a negative $0.6 million year-over-year Adjusted EBITDA variance,” Casella said. “Excluding these explainable negative impacts and divestiture transaction costs in the quarter that were not allocated to discontinued operations, Adjusted EBITDA was down $0.8 million year-over-year.””Since last quarter our team has done an excellent job completing important long-term strategic goals aimed at improving our balance sheet today and better positioning us for the future,” Casella said. “These strategic accomplishments include:”We successfully divested our non-integrated recycling facilities for $134.1 million, with net proceeds of approximately $120.0 million used to permanently pay-off our Term Loan B.”We refinanced our $195.0 million 9.75% Senior Subordinated Notes due 2013 with new $200.0 million 7.75% Senior Subordinated Notes due 2019, yielding significant interest savings.”We acquired a municipal solid waste landfill in McKean County, PA out of bankruptcy proceedings for $0.5 million in cash and the assumption of certain contractual obligations.”Nine Months Financial ResultsFor the nine months ended January 31, 2011, revenues were $356.5 million, up $11.6 million or 3.4 percent over the same period last year. Operating income was $31.2 million for the nine month period, up $6.1 million from the same period last year, including a $3.5 million gain on sale of assets. The company’s net loss applicable to common shareholders was ($10.4) million, or ($0.40) per common share for the nine month period, compared to ($8.7) million, or ($0.34) per share for the same period last year. Adjusted EBITDA was $84.5 million for the nine month period, up $2.4 million from same period last year. While the actual completion of the divestiture of the non-integrated recycling assets occurred during the fourth quarter on March 1, 2011, the third quarter and nine month year to date results reflect discontinued operations treatment for these assets in accordance with GAAP.Fiscal 2011 OutlookThe following ranges reflect updated guidance for fiscal year 2011, including discontinued operations treatment for the divestiture of the non- integrated recycling facilities in the fourth quarter. Revenues between $460.0 million and $468.0 million;Adjusted EBITDA* between $102.0 million and $106.0 million; andCapital expenditures between $51.0 million and $55.0 million.In recognition of the value created through the successful divestiture of the non-integrated recycling assets and the steps taken to recapitalize our balance sheet at lower interest rates, the board approved a $3.5 million discretionary bonus to management, which is reflected in the above guidance. Management will not receive a cash incentive bonus in addition to this discretionary bonus for this fiscal year. Since bonuses were not accrued for during the 9 months year-to-date period, the discretionary bonus will be fully expensed in the fourth quarter. We plan to announce fiscal year 2012 guidance on our year end conference call in June.*Non-GAAP Financial MeasuresIn addition to disclosing financial results prepared in accordance with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP), the company also discloses earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, adjusted for accretion, depletion of landfill operating lease obligations, severance and reorganization charges, a goodwill impairment charge, an environmental remediation charge as well as development project charges (Adjusted EBITDA) which is a non-GAAP measure. The company also discloses Free Cash Flow, which is defined as net cash provided by operating activities, less capital expenditures, less payments on landfill operating leases, less assets acquired through financing leases, plus proceeds from sales of property and equipment, which is a non-GAAP measure. Adjusted EBITDA is reconciled to Net Income (Loss), while Free Cash Flow is reconciled to Net Cash Provided by Operating Activities.We present Adjusted EBITDA and Free Cash Flow because we consider them important supplemental measures of our performance and believe they are frequently used by securities analysts, investors and other interested parties in the evaluation of our results. Management uses these non-GAAP measures to further understand our “core operating performance.” We believe our “core operating performance” represents our on-going performance in the ordinary course of operations. We believe that providing Adjusted EBITDA and Free Cash Flow to investors, in addition to corresponding income statement and cash flow statement measures, provides investors the benefit of viewing our performance using the same financial metrics that the management team uses in making many key decisions and understanding how the core business and its results of operations may look in the future. We further believe that providing this information allows our investors greater transparency and a better understanding of our core financial performance. In addition, the instruments governing our indebtedness use EBITDA (with additional adjustments) to measure our compliance with covenants such as interest coverage, leverage and debt incurrence.Non-GAAP financial measures are not in accordance with, or an alternative for, generally accepted accounting principles in the U.S. Adjusted EBITDA and Free Cash Flow should not be considered in isolation from or as a substitute for financial information presented in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles in the U.S., and may be different from Adjusted EBITDA or Free Cash Flow presented by other companies.About Casella Waste Systems, Inc.Casella Waste Systems, Inc., headquartered in Rutland, Vermont, provides solid waste management services consisting of collection, transfer, disposal, and recycling services in the northeastern United States. For further information, contact Ned Coletta, vice president of finance and investor relations at (802) 772-2239, or Ed Johnson, chief financial officer at (802) 772-2241, or visit the company’s website at http://www.casella.com(link is external).Conference call to discuss third quarterCasella will host a conference call to discuss these results on Wednesday, March 2, 2011 at 10:00 a.m. ET. Individuals interested in participating in the call should dial (877) 548-9590 or (720) 545-0037 at least 10 minutes before start time. The call will also be webcast; to listen, participants should visit Casella Waste Systems’ website at http://ir.casella.com(link is external) and follow the appropriate link to the webcast. A replay of the call will be available on the website, or by calling (800) 642-1687 or (706) 645-9291 (passcode 44979174) until 11:59 p.m. ET on Thursday, March 10, 2011.Safe Harbor StatementCertain matters discussed in this press release are ” forward-looking statements” intended to qualify for the safe harbors from liability established by the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements can generally be identified as such by the context of the statements, including words such as “believe,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “plan,” “may,” “will,” “would,” “intend,” “estimate,” “guidance” and other similar expressions, whether in the negative or affirmative. These forward-looking statements are based on current expectations, estimates, forecasts and projections about the industry and markets in which we operate and management’s beliefs and assumptions. We cannot guarantee that we actually will achieve the plans, intentions, expectations or guidance disclosed in the forward-looking statements made. Such forward-looking statements, and all phases of our operations, involve a number of risks and uncertainties, any one or more of which could cause actual results to differ materially from those described in our forward-looking statements. Such risks and uncertainties include or relate to, among other things: current economic conditions that have adversely affected and may continue to adversely affect our revenues and our operating margin; we may be unable to reduce costs or increase revenues sufficiently to achieve estimated Adjusted EBITDA and other targets; landfill operations and permit status may be affected by factors outside our control; we may be required to incur capital expenditures in excess of our estimates; fluctuations in the commodity pricing of our recyclables may make it more difficult for us to predict our results of operations or meet our estimates; and we may incur environmental charges or asset impairments in the future. There are a number of other important risks and uncertainties that could cause our actual results to differ materially from those indicated by such forward-looking statements. These additional risks and uncertainties include, without limitation, those detailed in Item 1A, “Risk Factors” in our Form 10-K for the year ended April 30, 2010.We undertake no obligation to update publicly any forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.  CASELLA WASTE SYSTEMS, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF OPERATIONS (Unaudited) (In thousands, except amounts per share) Three Months Ended Nine Months Ended ———————- ———————- January 31, January 31, January 31, January 31, 2011 2010 2011 2010 ———- ———- ———- ———-Revenues $ 111,627 $ 109,884 $ 356,515 $ 344,947Operating expenses: Cost of operations 76,933 73,724 237,584 226,986 General and administration 14,832 14,900 46,446 43,554 Depreciation and amortization 13,573 13,850 44,776 49,327 Gain on sale of assets – – (3,502) – ———- ———- ———- ———- 105,338 102,474 325,304 319,867 ———- ———- ———- ———-Operating income 6,289 7,410 31,211 25,080Other expense/(income), net: Interest expense, net 12,174 12,520 36,603 33,657 (Gain) loss from equity method investment (102) (73) 2,536 1,305 Loss on debt modification 115 – 115 511 Other income (78) (195) (490) (487) ———- ———- ———- ———- 12,109 12,252 38,764 34,986 ———- ———- ———- ———-Loss from continuing operations before income taxes and discontinued operations (5,820) (4,842) (7,553) (9,906)Provision for income taxes 1,079 572 2,139 941 ———- ———- ———- ———-Loss from continuing operations before discontinued operations (6,899) (5,414) (9,692) (10,847)Discontinued Operations: Income from discontinued operations, net of income taxes (1) 1,902 799 1,255 1,814 (Loss) income on disposal of discontinued operations, net of income taxes (1) (1,368) 239 (1,984) 328 ———- ———- ———- ———-Net loss applicable to common stockholders $ (6,365) $ (4,376) $ (10,421) $ (8,705) ========== ========== ========== ==========Common stock and common stock equivalent shares outstanding, assuming full dilution 26,115 25,748 26,026 25,705 ========== ========== ========== ==========Net loss per common share $ (0.24) $ (0.17) $ (0.40) $ (0.34) ========== ========== ========== ==========Adjusted EBITDA (2) $ 22,408 $ 24,040 $ 84,487 $ 82,089 ========== ========== ========== ========== CASELLA WASTE SYSTEMS, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS (Unaudited) (In thousands) January 31, April 30, ASSETS 2011 2010 ———– ———CURRENT ASSETS: Cash and cash equivalents $ 5,531 $ 2,035 Restricted cash 76 76 Accounts receivable – trade, net of allowance for doubtful accounts 47,603 51,370 Other current assets 29,998 28,583 ———– ———Total current assets 83,208 82,064Property, plant and equipment, net of accumulated depreciation 455,265 457,670Goodwill 100,430 100,430Intangible assets, net 2,221 2,404Restricted assets 317 228Investments in unconsolidated entities 39,228 40,965Other non-current assets 64,490 71,053 ———– ———Total assets $ 745,159 $ 754,814 =========== ========= LIABILITIES AND STOCKHOLDERS’ EQUITYCURRENT LIABILITIES: Current maturities of long-term debt and capital leases $ 2,411 $ 1,929 Current maturities of financing lease obligations 311 1,045 Accounts payable 34,859 35,056 Other accrued liabilities 49,263 52,050 ———– ———Total current liabilities 86,844 90,080Long-term debt and capital leases, less current maturities 562,998 556,130Financing lease obligations, less current maturities 2,236 7,902Other long-term liabilities 49,665 50,406Stockholders’ equity 43,416 50,296 ———– ———Total liabilities and stockholders’ equity $ 745,159 $ 754,814 =========== ========= CASELLA WASTE SYSTEMS, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF CASH FLOWS (Unaudited) (In thousands) Nine Months Ended ———————- January 31, January 31, 2011 2010 ———- ———- Cash Flows from Operating Activities: Net loss $ (10,421) $ (8,705) (Income) from discontinued operations, net (1,255) (1,814) Loss (income) on disposal of discontinued operations, net 1,984 (328) Adjustments to reconcile net loss to net cash provided by operating activities – Gain on sale of assets (3,502) – Gain on sale of equipment (399) (1,099) Depreciation and amortization 44,776 49,327 Depletion of landfill operating lease obligations 6,013 4,936 Interest accretion on landfill and environmental remediation liabilities 2,487 2,668 Amortization of premium on senior notes (584) (540) Amortization of discount on term loan and second lien notes 1,650 1,141 Loss from equity method investments 2,536 1,305 Loss on debt modification 115 511 Stock-based compensation 2,052 1,598 Excess tax benefit on the vesting of stock options (122) – Deferred income taxes 1,827 2,016 Changes in assets and liabilities, net of effects of acquisitions and divestitures (1,903) (7,314) ———- ———- 54,946 54,549 ———- ———- Net Cash Provided by Operating Activities 45,254 43,702 ———- ———- Cash Flows from Investing Activities: Additions to property, plant and equipment – growth (1,175) (2,914) – maintenance (40,268) (35,532) Payments on landfill operating lease contracts (4,977) (7,803) Proceeds from divestiture 7,533 – Proceeds from sale of equipment 631 2,782 Investment in unconsolidated entities – (20) ———- ———- Net Cash Used In Investing Activities (38,256) (43,487) ———- ———- Cash Flows from Financing Activities: Proceeds from long-term borrowings 134,100 450,644 Principal payments on long-term debt (132,957) (440,033) Payment of financing costs (340) (14,072) Proceeds from exercise of stock options 412 260 Excess tax benefit on the vesting of restricted stock 122 – ———- ———- Net Cash Provided By (Used In) Financing Activities 1,337 (3,201) ———- ———- Cash (Used In) Provided By Discontinued Operations (4,839) 3,319 ———- ———- Net increase in cash and cash equivalents 3,496 333 Cash and cash equivalents, beginning of period 2,035 1,838 ———- ———- Cash and cash equivalents, end of period $ 5,531 $ 2,171 ========== ========== Supplemental Disclosures: Cash interest $ 32,381 $ 25,746 Cash income taxes, net of refunds $ 142 $ 345 CASELLA WASTE SYSTEMS, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES NOTES TO CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS (Unaudited) (In thousands)Note 1: Discontinued OperationsOn January 23, 2011 we entered into a purchase and sale agreement andrelated agreements to sell select non-integrated FCR recycling assets andselect intellectual property assets to a new company formed by PegasusCapital Advisors, L.P. and Intersection, LLC (the “Purchaser”) for $134,100in gross proceeds (the “FCR Divestiture”). This resulted in a loss ondisposal of discontinued operations (net of tax) of $1,404 and $2,020 inthe three and nine months ended January 31, 2011, respectively. Income fromdiscontinued operations (net of tax) for the three and nine months endedJanuary 31, 2011 and 2010 amounted to $2,115, $1,017, $2,098 and $2,152,respectively.We completed the divestiture of the assets of our FCR Trilogy Glassoperation in the third quarter of fiscal year 2011 for $1,840 in cash.This resulted in a gain on disposal of discontinued operations amounting to$36 (net of tax) in the three and nine months ended January 31, 2011. Lossfrom discontinued operations (net of tax) for the three and nine monthsended January 31, 2011 and 2010 amounted to $213, $205, $844 and $551,respectively.In fiscal year 2010, we completed divestitures and closed operationsresulting in a gain on disposal of discontinued operations (net of tax)amounting to $239 and $328 in the three and nine months ended January 31,2010, respectively.The operating results of these operations for the three and nine monthsended January 31, 2011 and 2010 have been reclassified from continuing todiscontinued operations in our consolidated financial statements. Revenuesand income before income tax benefit attributable to discontinuedoperations for the three and nine months ended January 31, 2011 and 2010are as follows: Three Months Ended Nine Months Ended January 31, January 31, ——————- ——————- 2011 2010 2011 2010 ——— ——— ——– ———Revenues $ 20,159 $ 16,446 $ 56,122 $ 48,217Income (loss) before income taxes $ 491 $ 1,397 $ (771) $ 3,215 ——— ——— ——– ———Note 2: Non – GAAP Financial MeasuresIn addition to disclosing financial results prepared in accordance withGenerally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP), we also disclose earningsbefore interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, adjusted foraccretion, depletion of landfill operating lease obligations, severance andreorganization charges, goodwill impairment charges, environmentalremediation charges as well as development project charges (AdjustedEBITDA) which is a non-GAAP measure. We also disclose Free Cash Flow,which is defined as net cash provided by operating activities, less capitalexpenditures, less payments on landfill operating leases, less assetsacquired through financing leases, plus proceeds from sales of property andequipment, which is a non-GAAP measure. Adjusted EBITDA is reconciled toNet loss, while Free Cash Flow is reconciled to Net Cash Provided byOperating Activities.We present Adjusted EBITDA and Free Cash Flow because we consider themimportant supplemental measures of our performance and believe they arefrequently used by securities analysts, investors and other interestedparties in the evaluation of our results. Management uses these non-GAAPmeasures to further understand our “core operating performance.” We believeour “core operating performance” represents our on-going performance in theordinary course of operations. We believe that providing Adjusted EBITDAand Free Cash Flow to investors, in addition to corresponding incomestatement and cash flow statement measures, provides investors the benefitof viewing our performance using the same financial metrics that themanagement team uses in making many key decisions and understanding how thecore business and its results of operations may look in the future. Wefurther believe that providing this information allows our investorsgreater transparency and a better understanding of our core financialperformance. In addition, the instruments governing our indebtedness useEBITDA (with additional adjustments) to measure our compliance withcovenants such as interest coverage, leverage and debt incurrence.Non-GAAP financial measures are not in accordance with, or an alternativefor, GAAP in the U.S. Adjusted EBITDA and Free Cash Flow should not beconsidered in isolation from or as a substitute for financial informationpresented in accordance with GAAP in the U.S., and may be different fromAdjusted EBITDA or Free Cash Flow presented by other companies.Following is a reconciliation of Adjusted EBITDA to Net Loss: Three Months Ended Nine Months Ended ——————– ——————– January January January January 31, 2011 31, 2010 31, 2011 31, 2010 ——— ——— ——— ———Net Loss Applicable to Common Stockholders $ (6,365) $ (4,376) $ (10,421) $ (8,705) Income from discontinued operations, net (1,902) (799) (1,255) (1,814) Loss (income) on disposal of discontinued operations, net 1,368 (239) 1,984 (328) Provision for income taxes 1,079 572 2,139 941 Interest expense, net 12,174 12,520 36,603 33,657 Depreciation and amortization 13,573 13,850 44,776 49,327 Other (income) expense, net (65) (268) 2,161 1,329 Severance and reorganization charges – 78 – 78 Depletion of landfill operating lease obligations 1,714 1,771 6,013 4,936 Interest accretion on landfill and environmental remediation liabilities 832 931 2,487 2,668 ——— ——— ——— ———Adjusted EBITDA (2) $ 22,408 $ 24,040 $ 84,487 $ 82,089 ========= ========= ========= =========Following is a reconciliation of Free Cash Flow to Net Cash Provided byOperating Activities: Three Months Ended Nine Months Ended ——————– ——————– January January January January 31, 2011 31, 2010 31, 2011 31, 2010 ——— ——— ——— ———Net Cash Provided by Operating Activities $ 8,804 $ 7,232 $ 45,254 $ 43,702Capital expenditures (10,669) (6,284) (41,443) (38,446)Payments on landfill operating lease contracts (2,727) (3,265) (4,977) (7,803)Proceeds from divestiture and sale of property and equipment 143 285 8,164 2,782Assets acquired through financing leases – (404) – (404) ——— ——— ——— ———Free Cash Flow (2) $ (4,449) $ (2,436) $ 6,998 $ (169) ========= ========= ========= ========= CASELLA WASTE SYSTEMS, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES SUPPLEMENTAL DATA TABLES (Unaudited) (In thousands)Amounts of our total revenues attributable to services provided for thethree and nine months ended January 31, 2011 and 2010 are as follows: Three Months Ended January 31, —————————————— % of % of Total Total 2011 Revenue 2010 Revenue ——— ——— ——— ———Collection $ 48,068 43.0% $ 49,127 44.7%Disposal 23,610 21.2% 23,992 21.8%Power/LFGTE 7,170 6.4% 7,314 6.7%Processing and recycling 13,962 12.5% 12,602 11.5% ——— ——— ——— ———Solid waste operations 92,810 83.1% 93,035 84.7%Major accounts 9,906 8.9% 9,414 8.5%Recycling 8,911 8.0% 7,435 6.8% ——— ——— ——— ———Total revenues $ 111,627 100.0% $ 109,884 100.0% ========= ========= ========= ========= Nine Months Ended January 31, —————————————— % of % of Total Total 2011 Revenue 2010 Revenue ——— ——— ——— ———Collection $ 152,628 42.8% $ 155,587 45.1%Disposal 84,240 23.6% 82,367 23.9%Power/LFGTE 19,156 5.4% 20,842 6.0%Processing and recycling 43,424 12.2% 36,379 10.5% ——— ——— ——— ———Solid waste operations 299,448 84.0% 295,175 85.5%Major accounts 30,447 8.5% 28,901 8.4%Recycling 26,620 7.5% 20,871 6.1% ——— ——— ——— ———Total revenues $ 356,515 100.0% $ 344,947 100.0% ========= ========= ========= =========Components of revenue growth for the three months ended January 31, 2011compared to the three months ended January 31, 2010: % of % of % of Related Solid Waste Total Amount Business Operations Company ——— ——— ——— ———Solid Waste Operations:Collection $ 238 0.5% 0.3% 0.2%Disposal 171 0.7% 0.2% 0.2%Power/LFGTE (314) -4.3% -0.4% -0.3%Processing and recycling 59 0.5% 0.1% 0.0% ——— ——— ———Solid Waste Yield 154 0.2% 0.1%Volume 2,131 2.3% 1.9%Commodity price & volume 147 0.2% 0.1%Fuel surcharges 75 0.1% 0.1%Acquisitions & divestitures (1,476) -1.6% -1.3%Closed landfill (1,255) -1.4% -1.1% ——— ——— ———Total Solid Waste (224) -0.2% -0.2% ========= ========= =========Major Accounts 492 0.4% ========= =========Recycling Operations: % of Recycling Operations ———Commodity price 2,075 27.9% 1.9%Commodity volume (599) -8.0% -0.5% ——— ——— ———Total Recycling 1,476 19.9% 1.4% ========= ========= ========= ——— ———Total Company $ 1,743 1.6% ========= =========Solid Waste Internalization Rates by Region: Three Months Ended Nine Months Ended January 31, January 31, ——————– ——————– 2011 2010 2011 2010 ——— ——— ——— ———Eastern region 58.0% 61.0% 54.4% 52.5%Central region 81.5% 78.7% 81.8% 77.5%Western region 58.4% 65.1% 64.4% 68.4%Solid waste internalization 65.6% 66.8% 65.2% 65.0% CASELLA WASTE SYSTEMS, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES SUPPLEMENTAL DATA TABLES (Unaudited) (In thousands)GreenFiber Financial Statistics – as reported (1): Three Months Ended Nine Months Ended January 31, January 31, —————— —————— 2011 2010 2011 2010 ——– ——– ——– ——–Revenues $ 28,470 $ 32,528 $ 66,488 $ 82,545Net income (loss) 205 146 (5,071) (2,610)Cash flow from operations 434 (749) (2,604) 5,241Net working capital changes (2,324) (3,719) (5,016) (1,092)Adjusted EBITDA $ 2,758 $ 2,970 $ 2,412 $ 6,333As a percentage of revenue:Net income (loss) 0.7% 0.4% -7.6% -3.2%Adjusted EBITDA 9.7% 9.1% 3.6% 7.7%(1) We hold a 50% interest in US Green Fiber, LLC (“GreenFiber”), a joint venture that manufactures, markets and sells cellulose insulation made from recycled fiber.Components of Growth and Maintenance Capital Expenditures (1): Three Months Ended Nine Months Ended January 31, January 31, —————— ——————- 2011 2010 2011 2010 ——– ——– ——– ———Growth Capital Expenditures: Landfill Development $ 182 $ – $ 409 $ 1,026 Other 4 280 766 1,888 ——– ——– ——– ———Total Growth Capital Expenditures 186 280 1,175 2,914 ——– ——– ——– ———Maintenance Capital Expenditures: Vehicles, Machinery / Equipment and Containers 4,390 904 14,677 8,794 Landfill Construction & Equipment 5,040 4,147 22,870 23,469 Facilities 704 737 1,852 2,586 Other 349 216 869 683 ——– ——– ——– ———Total Maintenance Capital Expenditures 10,483 6,004 40,268 35,532 ——– ——– ——– ———Total Capital Expenditures $ 10,669 $ 6,284 $ 41,443 $ 38,446 ======== ======== ======== =========(1) Our capital expenditures are broadly defined as pertaining to eithergrowth or maintenance activities. Growth capital expenditures are definedas costs related to development of new airspace, permit expansions, newrecycling contracts along with incremental costs of equipment andinfrastructure added to further such activities. Growth capitalexpenditures include the cost of equipment added directly as a result ofnew business as well as expenditures associated with increasinginfrastructure to increase throughput at transfer stations and recyclingfacilities. Maintenance capital expenditures are defined as landfill cellconstruction costs not related to expansion airspace, costs for normalpermit renewals and replacement costs for equipment due to age orobsolescence. CASELLA WASTE SYSTEMS, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF OPERATIONS (Unaudited) (In thousands, except amounts per share) Three Months Ended ———————————————————- October July 31, April 30, January October July 31, 31, 2010 2010 2010 31, 2010 31, 2009 2009 ——– ——– ——– ——– ——– ——–Revenues $122,895 $121,992 $112,695 $109,884 $118,035 $117,028Operating expenses: Cost of operations 79,313 81,338 76,413 73,724 76,151 77,111 General and administration 15,697 15,916 14,001 14,900 13,769 14,885 Depreciation and amortization 15,620 15,584 14,291 13,850 17,148 18,329 Gain on sale of assets – (3,502) – – – – Environmental remediation charge – – 335 – – – 110,630 109,336 105,040 102,474 107,068 110,326 ——– ——– ——– ——– ——– ——–Operating income 12,265 12,656 7,655 7,410 10,968 6,702Other expense/(income), net: Interest expense, net 12,146 12,282 12,364 12,520 12,636 8,502 Loss (gain) from equity method investment 506 2,132 1,385 (73) 159 1,219 Loss on debt modification – – – – – 511 Other income (318) (94) (359) (195) (247) (45) ——– ——– ——– ——– ——– ——– 12,334 14,320 13,390 12,252 12,548 10,187 ——– ——– ——– ——– ——– ——–Loss from continuing operations before income taxes and discontinued operations (69) (1,664) (5,735) (4,842) (1,580) (3,485)Provision for income taxes 281 779 563 572 284 84 ——– ——– ——– ——– ——– ——–Loss from continuing operations before discontinued operations (350) (2,443) (6,298) (5,414) (1,864) (3,569)Discontinued Operations: (Loss) income from discontinued operations, net of income taxes (240) (407) 293 799 265 750 (Loss) income on disposal of discontinued operations, net of income taxes (564) (51) 852 239 48 41 ——– ——– ——– ——– ——– ——–Net loss applicable to common stockholders $ (1,154) $ (2,902) $ (5,153) $ (4,376) $ (1,551) $ (2,778) ======== ======== ======== ======== ======== ========Common stock and common stock equivalent shares outstanding, assuming full dilution 26,058 25,905 25,810 25,748 25,733 25,688 ======== ======== ======== ======== ======== ========Net loss per common share $ (0.04) $ (0.11) $ (0.20) $ (0.17) $ (0.06) $ (0.11) ======== ======== ======== ======== ======== ========Adjusted EBITDA $ 30,804 $ 31,276 $ 25,158 $ 24,040 $ 30,539 $ 27,510 ======== ======== ======== ======== ======== ======== Following is a reconciliation of Adjusted EBITDA to Net Loss: Three Months Ended ———————————————————- October July 31, April 30, January October July 31, 31, 2010 2010 2010 31, 2010 31, 2009 2009 ——– ——– ——– ——– ——– ——–Net Loss Applicable to Common Stock Holders $ (1,154) $ (2,902) $ (5,153) $ (4,376) $ (1,551) $ (2,778) Income from discontinued operations, net 240 407 (293) (799) (265) (750) Loss (income) on disposal of discontinued operations, net 564 51 (852) (239) (48) (41) Provision for income taxes 281 779 563 572 284 84 Interest expense, net 12,146 12,282 12,364 12,520 12,636 8,502 Depreciation and amortization 15,620 15,584 14,291 13,850 17,148 18,329 Other expense (income), net 188 2,038 1,026 (268) (88) 1,685 Environmental remediation charge – – 335 – – – Severance and reorganization charges – – 107 78 – – Depletion of landfill operating lease obligations 2,107 2,192 1,931 1,771 1,645 1,520 Interest accretion on landfill and environmental remediation liabilities 812 844 839 931 778 959 ——– ——– ——– ——– ——– ——–Adjusted EBITDA (2) $ 30,804 $ 31,276 $ 25,158 $ 24,040 $ 30,539 $ 27,510 ======== ======== ======== ======== ======== ========last_img read more

NOFA winter conference to focus on resiliency, collaboration

first_imgThe challenges of 2011, from barn fires to epic floods, revealed much about the strengths and vulnerabilities of Vermont’s farms. It also presented a lot of questions ‘ namely, what’s the best way to create a stronger, more resilient food system? How can farms plan for the increasingly severe weather that we are likely to see? How do home gardens and homesteads fit in? What is the role of consumers and communities as farmers take risks and try new ideas?These are some of the questions that will be tackled at the 30th annual Winter Conference put on by the Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont (NOFA-VT) this February. As the largest agricultural gathering in Vermont, the Winter Conference has long been a key opportunity for farmers, gardeners, homesteaders, and localvores to increase their skills and knowledge.Since moving to the University of Vermont in 2010, the Winter Conference has grown to include more than 65 workshops over two days, plus keynotes, social gatherings, an exhibitors’ fair, and a robust Children’s Conference.The 30th annual NOFA-VT Winter Conference will be held February 10-12, 2012 at the University of Vermont in Burlington, VT. This year’s keynotes will be local vegetable and fruit extension expert Vern Grubinger, and organic gardening mentor and author Wendy Johnson from Green Gulch Farm in Muir Beach, CA.For more information, including sponsorship details, please visit www.nofavt.org(link is external). About NOFA Vermont: NOFA Vermont is member-based organization working to grow local farms, healthy food, and strong communities in Vermont. Our members are farmers, gardeners, educators and food lovers of all sorts ‘ anyone who wants to help us create a future full of local food and local farms. Our programs include farmer and gardener technical assistance, farm to school support, organic certification, advocacy, an online apprentice and farm worker directory, an annual Winter Conference, and programs that work to ensure access to fresh, local food to all Vermonters, regardless of income.last_img read more