Why should Vermont grow?

On Vermont’s Mt. Mansfield

On Vermont’s Mt. Mansfield

From Robert Whitcomb’s “Digital Diary,’’ in GoLocal24.com

Vermont is doing what some other states with slow or nonexistent population growth, including Rhode Island, have talked about – bribing people to move there. In the Vermont plan, The Boston Globe reports, those who qualify get up to $10,000 over a two-year period to pay for their “moving and home-office costs, and in return, the state gets additional taxpayers to help fund schools and roads and social services.’’

Joan Goldstein, Vermont’s economic development commissioner, told The Globe: “The population needs to grow in order for the economy to grow.’’ It’s the mantra that everything must always grow.

Vermont, generally a very congenial state and one with an astonishingly low 2.3 percent jobless rate, would seem to already be doing quite well. I think that Ms. Goldstein is repeating the mantra that economic growth per se is the be-all and end-all of public policy. But economic growth per se doesn’t necessarily mean a higher quality of life.

To read The Globe’s story, please hit this link: