By Governor Jim Douglas
Every Vermont family is facing the realities of soaring fuel costs—but Vermont is fighting back. That is why I launched a comprehensive and collaborative program—the Vermont Fuel and Food Partnership—to help Vermonters address increasing home heating, gasoline and food costs by marshalling every available resource in our state.
Solving these problems requires an effort that goes beyond government alone and we're fortunate to have a strong network of community-based organizations and programs to help Vermonters when times get tough. Coupled with the programs and service available from local, state and federal governments and our other private and non-profit partners, we can address this challenge and succeed.
The Fuel and Food Partnership will bring together all of the creativity, compassion, information and resources in our state to ensure that we make the most of every dollar and that no Vermonter is left in the cold. It will provide Vermonters, through a single entry, access to every available option and empower them with the knowledge they need to lower their energy bills and reduce our reliance on fossil fuels.
To harness all available resources I established a cabinet-level task force co-chaired by Lt. Governor Brian Dubie. I have asked them to focus every effort and every resource Vermont can bring to bear to help manage the effects of higher energy costs on Vermont families.
These are difficult times for working families, but Vermont has faced these kinds of challenges before, and is a national example of how deep community roots and a strong commitment to seeking new solutions can resolve even the most difficult challenges. I know that the strength and determination of Vermonters will lead us past these difficult times and leave us with a state that is stronger and more energy independent than ever before.