State Government

Most new state appointees live in Burlington-Montpelier I-89 corridor

By Guy Page

A map of recent appointees to Scott administration boards and commissions shows more than half live along the I-89 corridor in Washington and Chittenden counties. 

Map of hometown of April-May 2021 appointees to state government boards and commissions, based on June 8 announcement of appointments.

On June 8, the Scott administration announced the names and hometowns of  120 people appointed to boards and commissions in April and May. All those interested in serving on a board or commission should visit the Governor’s website to apply.

The map shows that both Chittenden and Washington counties have more than 30 April-May appointees each, almost all within a short distance of I-89. By contrast, Addison County has only two, Orange County three, Essex County two, and Grand Isle County none. The southern tier of Windham and Bennington counties has a combined total of eight.

The lopsided numbers don’t sit well with former Mendon (Rutland County) lawmaker Job Tate:

“The term systemic gets overused in today’s political discourse but, in this case, systemic geographic bias in our state govt is quantifiable, chronic and overwhelmingly slanted towards Washington and Chittenden Counties,” he told Vermont Daily today. “I don’t see how a resident of Southern or Northern Vermont could look at this recent list of appointees and not feel completely marginalized.”

“Appointees to the State’s boards and commissions is the perfect, and perhaps the only, way to include voices and opinions from across the state and, yet, the bubble persists. 
Are the farthest corners of our state filled with Neanderthals incapable of adding their unique, informed perspectives to the course of our state government? Of course not,” Tate continued.

“The truth is, these appointments are achieved through the political you-scratch-my-back-i’ll-scratch-yours system that has become so calcified in Montpelier.  One need only see that the majority of these appointments came from the Governor’s hometown to understand how narrow a view of Vermont Montpelier currently has.” 

As state government develops more virtual, work-from-home capability, proximity to state offices in Burlington and Chittenden counties might become less of a consideration for candidates.

“Appointees to the State’s boards and commissions is the perfect, and perhaps the only, way to include voices and opinions from across the state and, yet, the bubble persists. Are the farthest corners of our state filled with Neanderthals incapable of adding their unique, informed perspectives to the course of our state government? Of course not.”

Former Rep. Job Tate

Most appointees bring life experience to their appointed duties, which are usually (but not exclusively) advisory. The following is a list of the more than 180 boards and commissions. Click on the link to view their current membership: 

Categories: State Government

3 replies »

  1. Hey Scott, Bennington and Windham counties are part of VT too! 4 in each county?? Give me a break!

  2. Yeah, sadly, it seems that Governor Scott has all but fully delegated his authority to his staff and has been pretty hands off in a number of important areas. I can understand that he must be overwhelmed by all he has had to contend with between the legislature and COVID, but this is another example of where things seem to have gone. Sad for me as Phil is a really conscientious, great guy and friend and I can only believe that this is not where he would have wanted things to end up with his administration, but the workload is insurmountable for one governor to truly be involved in all the decisions being made. This is the tip of the iceberg, unfortunately and seems to be where every administration ends up.

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