Gov. Peter Shumlin Snubs Entergy's Post-Irene Donations | News | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

News + Opinion » News

Gov. Peter Shumlin Snubs Entergy's Post-Irene Donations


Gov. Peter Shumlin recently thanked a host of private companies for their generous cash donations to state and local flood relief efforts, but there was one major omission: Entergy Nuclear Vermont Yankee.

The owner of the state's lone nuclear power plant has donated more than $130,000 to Windham County and Brattleboro relief efforts in the wake of Tropical Storm Irene.

Pro-VY blogger Meredith Angwin first noted the oversight on her blog Yes Vermont Yankee.

Shumlin praised numerous "corporate angels" (see list below) during a glad-handing event at National Life in Montpelier last week — including several that donated far less than Entergy. The media, naturally, were invited, but not the gov's nuclear nemesis. We're assuming that ENVY stills resides on Shumlin's "corporate demons" list.

The $130,000 in donations makes Entergy one of the more generous corporate donors to private and public relief efforts, along with Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (which donated $250,000) and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Vermont ($150,000). At the top of the list is Vermont Public Radio, which raised more than $625,000 in a single-day fund-raising drive.

ENVY spokesman Larry Smith said the company donated $50,000 to the Windham County United Way disaster relief fund. The company provided another $50,000 in funds to match dollars raised by the United Way.

"That match occurred on September 23," Smith said. "So that's a total of $100,000 from Entergy."

The company also donated $15,000 to the town of Brattleboro for disaster relief. The money was used to pay for the removal of mobile homes destroyed in the Glenn Trailer Park. The company has also spent $15,000 to repair the damage caused by the flooding to the Boys and Girls Club on Flat Street in downtown Brattleboro, said Smith.

Earlier this year, Entergy donated $15,000 to the Red Cross disaster relief fund in Western Massachusetts after a tornado struck the region, and the company gave $6000 to the United Way of Windham County for disaster relief following the Brooks House Fire in April, said Smith.

Smith didn't have any comment about being overlooked by the governor.

So, how did the governor's office overlook such a sizeable donation? The gifts were written up in Shumlin's local daily, the Brattleboro Reformer. Must be he let his subscription lapse.

Susan Allen, the gov's spokeswoman, took responsibility for overlooking Entergy's largesse.

"I put the list together and was unaware of the Entergy donation," said Allen, who noted that she hopes she didn't overlook other big contributions. "Truthfully, we're grateful to everyone and every business that has contributed to the recovery."

Here's the recognized list of Shumlin's "corporate angels:"

  • Vermont Public Radio: $627,000 from a one-day fundraiser
  • Green Mountain Coffee Roasters: $250,000
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield of Vermont: $150,000
  • National Life: $120,000
  • Subaru of New England: $100,000
  • Northfield Savings Bank: $100,000
  • IGG Software Inc.: $30,000
  • Coca-Cola: $25,000