Short constitutions equal more trust
Vermont has the shortest constitution of any state, at 1,433 words. A recent article finds that trust in the government correlates to constitution length, with higher levels of trust associated with shorter constitutions. The study also finds that there is a relationship between social capital and constitution endurance, the amount of time between the adoption of new constitutions.
Vermont’s demographic trends improve
Vermont is a standout among other Northeastern states for population growth, but still lags behind the national average, a study finds. The trend in prime working-age population is also improving, with Vermont also outperforming other Northeastern states for the first time in recent years. Still, Vermont’s growth is far below the national average and the study predicts this will create challenges in coming years attracting the investments needed to generate new jobs and rising incomes in the state.
The Story of Rutland’s Downtown Wal-Mart
More than a decade ago, Wal-Mart agreed to locate its first store in a downtown, eschewing the suburban location that can devastate main street businesses. Since then other chains have followed suit. The story of Wal-Mart’s Rutland location includes a trip to Bentonville. AK by a group of visionary Vermonters. The impacts are felt today. Hear that story here. (Told by podcast editor Leah Kelleher).
Vermont is among the top three states with the highest percentage of female state legislators. A recent book surveyed legislators from these top states (Vermont, Arizona, and Washington) and found that female legislators introduce and pass more of their priority legislation than male legislators, with women in the legislature prioritizing legislation related to women and children and men prioritizing business-related legislation. Female legislators considered the representation of women in the legislature important (57%) – but only 33% of male colleagues agreed.
Vermonters depend on household wells
In the years between 1970 and 2010, the proportion of Vermonters served by domestic wells increased from 21.5% to 33%, making it one of only seven states to see an increase in this time period. Vermont, like many other rural states, saw its peak in 1990, when 36% of the population used domestic wells, and has since seen a 3% decrease.