SSTI Digest

The latest reporting and analysis on breakthroughs in technology-based economic development research and issues that matter most to you. To receive the SSTI Weekly Digest via email, sign up here.


Geography: Vermont

Entrepreneurs invited to pitch clean energy ideas

Startup innovators from around the country have the opportunity to exhibit their ideas and win $10,000 during the Catalysts of the Climate Economy national innovation summit in Burlington, Vermont, Sept. 6-8. Innovators in the climate economy are encouraged to enter a contest that will result in five competitors pitching their ideas to a panel of judges, with the winning idea garnering the top prize.

States scramble to negotiate final budgets; DE, LA, ME, MO, NH, VT and WA reviewed for innovation funding

With a July 1 start to the fiscal year in most states, several states that were at an impasse over their budget faced at least partial shutdowns. Last minute negotiations restarted services in both Maine and New Jersey, while Illinois, which has been operating without a budget since 2015, faces threats of a downgrade in their credit rating if a deal cannot be reached. This week we present our findings of innovation funding from seven states, including $2 million in funding for a new public-private economic development organization in Delaware, an increase in funding in Louisiana for the state’s scholarship program for higher ed, and cuts to higher ed funding in Missouri, which also saw a severe drop in its funding to the Missouri Technology Corporation. Efforts in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont and Washington are also detailed below.

New Faces in Gubernatorial Offices

Twelve gubernatorial seats were up for election Tuesday, five of which were held by incumbents seeking reelection. Four of those – Montana Gov. Steve Bullock (D), Oregon Gov. Kate Brown (D), Utah Gov. Gary Herbert (R) and Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D) – were reelected for second terms. In North Carolina, Democratic candidate and State Attorney General Roy Cooper has a lead of less than one percent over incumbent Gov. Pat McCrory. Gov. McCrory has not conceded and the result is pending a canvass of votes, which may not be complete until November 18.

17 Governors Sign Accord to Promote Clean Energy, Economic Prosperity

A bipartisan group of 17 governors signed the Governors’ Accord for a New Energy Future – a joint commitment to support the deployment of renewable, cleaner and more efficient energy technologies and other solutions to make the U.S. economy more productive and resilient as well as spur job creation in member states.

Budget Update: Economic Development Remains Priority Despite Contentious Debates in Many States

Now that many governors have signed spending bills and legislative sessions are drawing to a close, the SSTI Digest will check on the status of proposals related to the innovation economy, and examine the state of technology-based economic development funding in the states. This week, we review spending bills in Alaska, Connecticut, Louisiana, South Carolina and Vermont.

STEM Education, Skilled Workforce Programs Popular Among State Budget Proposals

This week, governor’s in eight states released their budget proposals. Balanced budgets and fiscal austerity were undoubtedly emphasized by the governors, yet funding for STEM education and workforce development initiatives were increasingly popular.

Tech Talkin’ Govs: CA, KY, VT Govs Pitch Energy Goals, Higher Ed Reform To Spur Economic Growth

Now in its 15th year, SSTI's Tech Talkin' Govs series has returned as governors across the country formally convene the 2015 legislative sessions. The series highlights new and expanded TBED proposals from governors' State of the State, Budget and Inaugural addresses. The first edition includes excerpts from speeches delivered in California, Kentucky, and Vermont.

Lawmakers Tackle Workforce, STEM and Higher Ed Policy

Addressing accessibility, affordability and ensuring workforce preparedness topped legislators’ agendas in many states during the 2014 sessions. States and regions are increasingly competing for talent as the trend toward growing and nurturing innovation ecosystems continues.

Vermont Gov Seeks $5M in Lending Support for Startups

Two proposals announced by Gov. Peter Shumlin would provide additional lending tools and incentives to attract and retain technology companies using revenue surpluses for the current fiscal year. The first proposal would establish the Vermont Enterprise Incentive Fund and authorize the governor to offer an incentive package not exceeding $4.5 million to businesses that have a substantial statewide or regional economic or employment impact. The second part adds $500,000 in state general funds to the $1 million in federal funds available to the Vermont Economic Development Authority’s Entrepreneurial Lending program.

Tech Talkin’ Govs: Part II

The second installment of SSTI’s Tech Talkin’ Govs series includes excerpts from speeches delivered in Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Iowa, Kansas, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Vermont and Virginia.

Universities Take Crowdfunding into Their Own Hands

Georgia Tech has launched a crowdfunding resource for university-based students and faculty. Originally announced in the spring, Georgia Tech joins several other universities that are using crowdfunding to finance commercialization and the development of startups based on university research. The field has become common and relevant enough that an online community has started tracking this growth.

TBED People and Orgs

Rebecca Blank, the acting U.S. secretary of Commerce, is expected to be the next chancellor of the University of Wisconsin at Madison. The Board of Regents is scheduled to vote on the recommendation April 5.

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