KEITH WHITCOMB JR.

Staff Writer

BENNINGTON -- The town will be producing a video and brochure packet using money from a federal grant in order to entice businesses already looking at Vermont to set up shop around town.

The grant is for $12,500 and the town will add another $1,000 from its marketing budget, said Michael Harrington, town economic and community development director. The "rural business economic development grant" was awarded by the United States Department of Agriculture.

Harrington said a subcommittee working under the Bennington Economic Development Partners applied for the grant because the group’s plans to promote the area had reached the point where money had to be spent to move forward.

Video, brochure planned

The money will be used to hire a videographer and a graphic designer to produce a video and brochure. Harrington said he envisions those items being included in a marketing packet which will contain information about the town a business might want to know, such as zoning regulations, marketing studies, a list of major events, tax rates, and available spaces. He said the Better Bennington Corporation has created something like that which could be used as a template.

The packet would be circulated at business expos, the Internet, and other means, but the plan he favors is looking at businesses that are successful in nearby areas and enticing them into opening up a second location. He said, for instance, the group might identify the five most successful restaurants in Burlington or Albany, N.Y., and send the packet to them.

The subcommittee includes people who are familiar with videography and brochure making, but they would not be averse to local talent who want to break into the industry offering their services.

He said the plan is to have the video and brochure completed within the year.

Contact Keith Whitcomb Jr. at kwhitcomb@benningtonbanner.com or follow him on Twitter @KWhitcombjr.