Christopher Bray, state representative from New Haven announced this week that he is running for Vermont lieutenant governor.
In his announcement, Bray, a liberal Democrat, described his "Renew Vermont" program, an economic development program designed to create jobs and revitalize our farms, forests, and food industries, which Bray called "Vermont's original green jobs and an essential part of our heritage."
Bray noted that many other aspects of Vermont's broader culture and economy depend on and benefit from these industries. These beneficiaries include programs in health, nutrition, and renewable energy, as well as tourism, recreation, and traditions such as hunting and fishing. In addition, forests provide many environmental benefits, ranging from clean air to clean water.
Taken together, Bray said that these industries also support most other aspects of the Vermont economy because most do business with local banks, builders, manufacturers, and other local service providers.
Bray is seeking the lieutenant governor's office because he sees it as a way to work full-time, year round on these issues, which he sees as essential to Vermont's past and future. "There is almost no aspect of life in Vermont," said Bray, "that isn't connected to the world of our farms and forests. They have been the foundation of the state's traditions, culture, and economy for over two centuries."
"Growing just 10 percent more of our own food here in Vermont," said Bray, "would add approximately $500 million to the Vermont economy, and that is just one of the opportunities we have here."
Bray and his family live in New Haven.