Mayor&Rsquo;S Office

Burlingtonians are Getting Vaccinated, We’re on Track to Achieve Net Zero, & Outdoor Spaces and Recreation

Last week President Biden delivered his first address before a Joint Session of Congress. His message reminded me once again that we are in a moment where all levels of government are focused on the same urgent goals: while we continue to endure once-in-a-century challenges, our united response in tackling systemic injustice, the climate emergency, public health and an economic recession with vision and through collaboration has ensured that brighter days are ahead.

We have a unique opportunity before us. With our local, state, and federal governments determined to face these multiple, simultaneous crises together, I believe that we will emerge a stronger, healthier, and more just community.
We have made strong progress here in Burlington over the past several months; leading an equitable pandemic response, making new investments in renewable energy, creating innovative business supports, and so much more. We have come together as a community and through adversity we have built an even stronger foundation for the future.

In the weeks and months ahead our lives will expand once again, and I’d like to reflect on three areas where our recent success gives me great hope; 1) Vaccine deployment, 2) Renewable energy achievements, and 3) Reactivation of outdoor spaces.

Burlingtonians are Getting Vaccinated

We remade City government in order to support Burlingtonians through both the public health and economic crises of Covid-19. We all agree that our best path forward depends on our collective effort to get vaccinated and achieve herd immunity. When it comes to vaccine administration, we’re setting the pace. Vermont is now 2nd in the country for doses administered per 100,000 residents, with over 50% of the population started and over 30% fully vaccinated.

The City’s leadership, deployment of City staff, and focus on equitable vaccine accessible has contributed to the success of our region. Our local response has included advocating for walkable vaccination sites in Burlington, providing important support to many clinics focused on BIPOC vaccinations, and partnering with AgeWell to ensure aging community members are well-informed and able get vaccinated at home or find transportation to vaccine sites.


However, as the President said recently, just because the end is in sight, does not mean we are at the end. The virus remains very much here and a risk to unvaccinated adults. All Burlingtonian’s 16 and over are able to schedule a vaccine appointment, and I urge you to do so.  I was grateful to receive my first vaccination last Saturday and would like to thank Donna, at the New North End Hannaford’s Pharmacy – for administering my vaccine, and all of our dedicated health care worker who are supporting our vaccination efforts.  


We’re on Track to Achieve Net Zero  

The update to the 2019 Net Zero Energy Roadmap concludes that the City is on the right path to reach its 2030 Net Zero Energy goal with reduced fossil fuel use and greenhouse gas emissions in both 2019 and 2020. Burlington’s Net Zero Energy roadmap is both one of the most ambitious local climate plans anywhere in our country and a feasible, optimistic vision for bringing the climate emergency to an end.

BED has tripled our 2020 strategic electrification targets under Vermont’s Renewable Energy Standard thanks to our partnerships with organizations such as CarShare Vermont, as well as BED’s enhanced incentives for low- and moderate-income customers -- making technologies such as cold climate heat pumps and electric vehicles more affordable and accessible for Burlingtonians. By continuing the Green Stimulus incentives in 2021, and planning for a revenue bond to support Net Zero Energy programs longer-term, we can help more Burlingtonians switch to electric vehicles, heat pumps, e-bikes, e-lawn mowers, and other clean technologies.  


Net Zero is a community goal and we will only get there by taking action together.  Please go to BED’s web site and consider the ways in which we can help you electrify your home and vehicle.

Looking Forward, Equitable Access to Outdoor Spaces and Recreation
This week we announced plans to reactivate outdoor spaces across the City and create new recreational opportunity for folks of all ages. I know this will be welcome news for many of you who, like me, are looking forward to once again biking around the city, enjoying weekends on the beach with family, and joining friends and neighbors for socially distances activities at City Hall Park.

The City’s plan to invite the community back to the Waterfront includes subsidized and free activities like paddle board and bike rentals, new activities for families and children, public art projects through the BCA, a Mobile Placemaking Kit to activate all neighborhoods with pop-up markets, activities, and seating – and more.

Throughout the challenges of the past year, the City team has tried to support the commitment of the Burlington community to keep each other safe. I hope that every resident that has regularly worn their mask, avoided crowds, and signed up for their vaccine, feels a sense of accomplishment when they look toward to many opportunities ahead.
Let’s continue to be vigilant, continue to look after one another, and work together as the pandemic comes to an end and move forward toward a stonger, greener, more just and equitable future together.

Learn more about our response to Covid-19 this year on the City website: