Closing Yankee would be disastrous
Vermont Yankee has remained an economic powerhouse, pumping out benefits to this region while Windham County’s overall business economy has been heading downhill for years. Businesses like C&S Wholesalers and the Steak Out Restaurant have left town or been forced to close, and I can’t remember when a new business last opened on Main Street. Closing Vermont Yankee purely on political grounds would be a catastrophe to the economic health to Windham County and the surrounding area.
A 2008 Northern Economic Consulting Inc. study, "The impact of the VY station on Windham County and Vermont" determined that there would be more than 1,500 additional high-paying jobs in Vermont if VY continues to operate between 2012 and 2031. Vermont Yankee is one of the largest employers in southern Vermont, and we can’t afford to lose these 1,500 jobs.
Vermont Yankee attracts young professionals to the area, me included. I moved to the area specifically for a job at Vermont Yankee. Like me, many of my co-workers have spouses who have brought their own skills to area businesses, have children in local schools, and participate in community activities and service organizations. And we all pay Vermont income taxes.
For me, Vermont Yankee means a steady job that supports me and my family, within a company that takes pride in the development of its employees.
Vermont Yankee benefits our community by providing access to reliable and cost effective electricity available 24/7, maintaining a workforce of more than 600 local residents, attracting more people to the area, and paying more than $6 million in annual state and local taxes.
The loss of these jobs, taxes, community donations, and low-cost electricity will be a further setback for Windham County and I am concerned that at some point, our communities will be unable to recover.