River Road Holdings, LLC announced today the addition of a new title to its family of regional niche periodicals. Vermont Sports Today (circulation 10,400) is a monthly publication for individuals with a hunger for outdoor sports, recreation, and physical fitness. The magazine’s editorial focus includes alpine, cross-country and telemark skiing, canoeing and kayaking, road and mountain biking, hiking and backpacking, in-line skating, running, snowboarding, snowshoeing, triathlon, and duathlon in the Green Mountain State and Northern New England. Reviews of gear and products for outdoor enthusiasts, a lengthy calendar of sports events throughout the state, monthly athlete profiles, and race results are standard features of the publication.Editorial and advertising offices for Vermont Sports Today will remain in Waterbury Vermont. Former Owner, Publisher, and Editor, Kate Carter will remain at Vermont Sports Today as Managing Editor. Advertising sales for the magazine will continue to be handled by Ellie Tobin. Production and operations for the magazine will be relocated to River Road Holdings’ headquarters in Hanover, New Hampshire.“When I started Vermont Sports Today in 1990, my dream was to produce a first-rate publication for people who enjoy individual aerobic sports and believe in a healthy lifestyle. I am thrilled that the talented staff at River Road Holdings is taking over and confident they will continue the tradition of publishing a quality sports publication we can all be proud of,” says Carter.Chris Blau, President and Publisher at River Road Holdings, LLC added “Vermont Sports Today’s loyal readership and excellent content for sports enthusiasts was a major draw for us in acquiring the publication. Long-term, we see affinities between Vermont Sports Today and our current holdings which will benefit our advertisers and improve readership experiences. We are especially excited to have Kate and Ellie join our team as we continue to grow our business.”In addition to Vermont Sports Today, the River Road Holdings, LLC publishes The Upper Valley Parents’ Paper, The Quechee Times, and The Norwich Times.
Chittenden Corporation(NYSE: CHZ) Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, Paul A. Perrault,announced earnings for the quarter ended March 31, 2004 of $17.5 millionor $0.47 per diluted share, compared to $16.6 million or $0.49 a year ago.Chittenden also announced a 10% increase in its quarterly dividend to $0.22per share. The dividend will be paid on May 14, 2004, to shareholders ofrecord on April 30, 2004.In making the announcement, Perrault said, “By and large, most corebusinesses are doing well. However, the volatility of market interest ratesand the timing of their movements during the quarter adversely impacted themortgage banking business. On the whole, we consider the quarter’s results alittle disappointing, though there is cause for optimism. Commercial loangrowth was particularly good during the quarter and accelerated in the monthof March. In mortgage banking, the interest rate dip in March led tosignificant mortgage application activity late in the quarter, which shouldbode well for better mortgage gains as we move forward into the comingmonths.”Total loans increased $55.5 million from December 31, 2003 and $151.6million from March 31, 2003. The Company’s banks continued their strong growthin commercial lending by increasing their commercial and commercial realestate portfolios at an annualized rate of 16% on a linked-quarter basis.Partially offsetting the growth in commercial loans was the continued declinein the residential real estate loan portfolio, which experienced faster thanexpected prepayments. The increase in the loan portfolio from March 31, 2003was entirely attributable to double-digit growth in the Company’s commercialand commercial real estate loan portfolios.Total deposits increased $20.3 million from March 31, 2003 and decreased$135.5 million from the prior year-end. The decline from December 31, 2003 isprimarily attributable to normal seasonal trends relating to the Company’smunicipal, commercial, and captive insurance customers. Borrowings at March31, 2004 were $312.5 million, a decrease of $241.1 million from the sameperiod a year ago. The decline was due to maturities and the early redemptionof $214 million of FHLB borrowings assumed in the Granite acquisition.The Company’s net interest margin for the first quarter of 2004 was 4.17%,an increase from the fourth quarter of last year and a decrease from the firstquarter of 2003. On a linked quarter basis, the increase in the net interestmargin was due to a better asset mix with a higher proportion of loans inaverage earning assets, and a lower cost of funds driven primarily by reducedcosts of borrowings. The decline in net interest margin from the first quarterof 2003 was primarily attributable to lower earning asset yields and theinclusion of Granite for the full quarter of 2004 as compared to just onemonth in 2003.Net charge-offs as a percentage of average loans were 1 basis point forthe first quarter of 2004, compared to 8 basis points for the fourth quarterof last year and 4 basis points for the first quarter in 2003. Net charge-offsin 2004 totaled $391,000, compared with $2.7 million in the fourth quarter of2003 and $1.5 million for the first quarter of 2003. Nonperforming assetsincreased $6.3 million from December 31, 2003 to $20.7 million at March 31,2004 and as a percentage of total loans increased to 55 basis points comparedto 39 basis points in the fourth quarter of 2003. The increase innonperforming assets primarily resulted from two commercial relationships andthe Company believes that the loans are well secured. The level ofnonperforming assets in 2004 is consistent with the Company’s historicalexperience which has averaged approximately 50 basis points over the last sixyears.The provision for loan losses was $427,000 for the first quarter of 2004compared to $1.0 million for the fourth quarter of last year, and $2.1 millionin the first quarter of 2003. The provision for the first quarter of 2004 wasdriven by significantly lower net charge-offs, continued strong asset quality,and minimal growth in the total loan portfolio. As a percentage of totalloans, the allowance for loan losses was 1.52%, down slightly from 1.54% atDecember 31, 2003.Noninterest income declined $5.0 million from the prior quarter and $1.2million from the same period a year ago. The decline from the fourth quarterof 2003 was attributable to reduced gains on sales of mortgages, lowermortgage servicing income, and a decline in gains on sales of securities.Gains on sales of mortgage loans decreased $2.4 million from the fourthquarter of 2003 due to lower volumes of loan sales caused by higher mortgageinterest rates. Mortgage servicing income declined $1.4 million in the firstquarter of 2004 due to higher forward-looking prepayment speeds which weredriven by the dip in interest rates in early March, continued heavy paydownson adjustable rate mortgages, and the decision by one of the Company’s creditunion customers to service its portfolio in house. Gains on sales ofsecurities, net of losses on prepayments of borrowings, were $608,000 in thefirst quarter of 2004, compared to $2.1 million in the fourth quarter of lastyear and $1.4 million in the first quarter of 2003. Partially offsettingthese declines, on a linked quarter and year-over-year basis, weresignificantly higher insurance commissions and increased investment managementincome. Insurance commissions increased $1.1 million from the prior quarterprimarily due to the timing of policy renewals and increased performance-basedincome. The increase from the same quarter a year ago was due to the inclusionof Granite’s insurance operations for the full quarter in 2004 versus only onemonth in 2003. In addition, on a year-over-year basis, the Companyexperienced higher investment management income, which was attributable tostronger equity markets and better penetration in the non-Vermont banks.Noninterest expenses were $44.6 million for the quarter ending March 31,2004, a decrease of $3.5 million from the prior quarter and an increase of$2.4 million from a year ago. The decline from the fourth quarter of 2003 isprimarily attributable to lower conversion and restructuring expenses,decreased incentives and commissions costs, and lower levels of other expense.The higher conversion and restructuring expenses in the fourth quarter of 2003were due to the accrual of certain costs in relation to the Company’s plan toconsolidate branches, close offsite ATMs and to recognize severance forrelated staff reductions. The increase from a year ago is attributable to theacquisition of Granite Bank, which in 2004 contributed three months ofexpenses compared to one month in 2003.The effective income tax rate for first quarter 2004 was 36.9%, comparedwith 36.1% for the comparable quarter in 2003. The higher effective income taxrate was primarily attributable to increased taxable income in New Hampshire,which has a higher statutory tax rate than other states in which the Companyhas operations.The return on average tangible equity was 20.38% in the first quarter of2004, compared to 23.63% in the prior quarter and 19.95% in the same quarter ayear ago. The return on average equity was 11.97% for the first quarter of2004, compared with 13.66% for the fourth quarter of 2003 and 14.53% for thefirst quarter a year ago. The decrease in ROE from the first quarter of 2003is primarily due to the issuance of additional equity of $116 million in theGranite acquisition, which was included for only one month in the 2003calculation. The return on average assets for the quarter ended March 31, 2004was 1.21%, down from 1.31% for the quarter ended December 31, 2003 and 1.29%for the first quarter of last year. The decline from a year ago was due tohigher levels of average assets caused by the acquisition of Granite Bank andthe reduction from the fourth quarter of 2004 was due to lower net income.Chittenden is a bank holding company headquartered in Burlington, Vermont.Through its subsidiary banks(1), the Company offers a broad range of financialproducts and services to customers throughout Northern New England andMassachusetts, including deposit accounts and services; commercial andconsumer loans; insurance; and investment and trust services to individuals,businesses, and the public sector. Chittenden Corporation’s news releases,including earnings announcements, are available on the Company’s website.
VERMONT FAMILIES NOW ELIGIBLE FOR DISCOUNTS ON AT-HOME WEIGHT LOSS SERVICESBerlin — Easy, at-home weight loss services are now available to Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont members and their families, company officials have announced.The states largest health plan will include a popular Jenny Craig® program in its new BlueExtras non-benefit discount program. BlueExtras offers discounts on services not normally covered by health insurance benefits to members and their families, even if family members are not enrolled in the health plan.Jenny Direct offers personal, one-on-one support through convenient and private weekly phone consultations. Jenny Direct is based on the three factors of healthy eating: balance, variety and moderation. The program delivers healthy, delicious balanced meals selected from more than 75 menu items to the participants door.Throughout the Jenny Direct Program, a consultant provides weight loss advice for weight maintenance. Support is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.The Jenny Direct weight loss services have been added to a growing list of offerings in BlueExtras, including hearing care services and a discount booklet offering savings at many Vermont health-related businesses. BlueExtras is available at no extra cost to plan members, according to Kevin Goddard, Vice President of Marketing and External Affairs at the states largest private health insurer.Were excited to be able to open the door to these programs for thousands of Vermonters by offering discounts for their services, Goddard explained. The BlueExtras program provides real savings as well as incentives to participate in these health improvement services. Were very pleased to include a Jenny Craig® program in our growing selection.Through the weekly calls with our consultants, Vermonters will learn new skills and habits for lasting change, said Lisa Talamini, senior registered dietician and director of program development and nutrition at Jenny Craig. And unlike other fad diets, the variety of our food options provides a mix of balanced meals that are created by dietitians and culinary experts. With more than 75 tasty menu items such as Pasta Fagioli and Island Style Chicken, our clients will never get bored with the same old food.Membership with BCBSVT will enable members and their families to take advantage of a free 30-day Jenny Direct program and 50 percent off the full price of a Gold or Platinum Membership after the trial period.Jenny Craig, Inc. is one of the largest weight management service companies in the world. The company offers a proven, comprehensive program that, through sound nutrition and simple activity, helps clients achieve the balance necessary for optimal weight loss and personal well-being. The company provides services to more than 90,000 people at any given time and thousands of customers are currently enrolled through Jenny Direct. Jenny Craig serves 80 million servings of food world wide each year. Jenny Craig has provided services to more than 4.5 million clients worldwide since 1983.Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont is the state’s oldest and largest private health insurer, providing coverage for about 180,000 Vermonters. It employs over 350 Vermonters at its headquarters in Berlin and branch office in Williston, and offers group and individual health plans to Vermonters. More information about Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont is available on the Internet at www.bcbsvt.com(link is external). Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont is an independent corporation operating under a license with the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, an association of independent Blue Cross and Blue Shield Plans.
Criterion announces that Rick Carey has joined the company as a senior consultant. Carey will concentrate on management coaching, advising on policy and procedure and management training seminars for the public sector.Carey holds SPHR certification and brings to Criterion three decades of experience in Human Resources administration within Vermonts Agency of Transportation. He most recently served as the agencys Human Resources Chief. In that position he was responsible for a staff that served the HR needs of 1,300 employees and provided expertise in many areas of management and career coaching.I am thrilled to add Rick to our team, says Dianne Kenney, founder of Criterion. Those who have worked with him know that Rick has exceptional skills in leading, motivating and managing individuals, as well as the ability to drive business results with innovative processes and cost-effective solutions.Criterion is Vermonts only consulting firm dedicated primarily to serving public sector entities. They specialize in business coaching, human resources strategy and management education. For more information call 802-280-3061 or visit www.criterion.biz(link is external).###
HUNTINGTON, Vt. Green Living Now, LLC (www.greenlivingnow.com(link is external)) announced today that their web-based natural and organic household products business was voted one of the top ten finalists for the Coop America People’s Choice Award for Green Business of the Year. The award recognizes business leaders committed to social and environmental responsibility. Thousands of companies were nominated, but only the ten highest vote getters made it to the finals. All of the companies had to be Coop America members, having passed their strict screening process.What makes Green Living Now unique is that they only sell the products that Amy Todisco, founder and owner, researches and uses herself. “There are too many products marketing themselves as ‘natural’ and ‘organic’ that really aren’t much better than their conventional counterparts,” she says. Green Living Now does the research so consumers don’t have to. They also provide a free monthly newsletter and many informative articles on green living. Amy’s work as a ‘green living expert’ was featured on WPTZ News Channel 5 TV, which aired across the country on other Hearst Argyle affiliates.Green Living Now is an active member of the Richmond Area Business Association (RABA). Amy works on RABA’s Website, Visitor Outreach, and Buy Local subcommittees. She’s also in charge of the new online local business directory for the town of Huntington, and is a member of the newly formed town website committee. Amy is also involved in drafting an economic development plan for Huntington.
Cathedral Square Corporation, celebrating 30 years of service to Vermonters, is pleased to announce the appointment of Charles Smith, Marvin Klikunas, M.D. and Paul Van de Graaf to its Board of Directors. Cathedral Square welcomes the expertise each of the new directors brings to its Board.Charles P. Smith is currently President and CEO of The Snelling Center for Government. Previously, he served in the Douglas Administration as Secretary to the Agency of Human Services and Secretary of Administration.Dr. Klikunas is an Assistant Professor at UVM College of Medicine and specializes in geriatrics.Paul Van de Graaf, Esq., is a federal prosecutor for the U.S. Department of Justice, having served in this capacity for 20 years in Philadelphia and Vermont.Cathedral Square Corporation (CSC) is an award-winning non-profit developer and manager of affordable housing and services for older Vermonters and individuals with disabilities. With over 22 properties and independent living apartments for more than 900 people, CSC is a leader in the affordable housing field.CSC is proud to be an American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging (AAHSA) Quality First participant and an equal opportunity employer and housing provider.
Passport To Wealth | Ultimate Tools For SuccessPassport To Wealth has provided an awesome vehicle for people to make money from the comfort of their homes. The success rate depends on the team that you get involved with. That is where David Lake, Marketing Director for Advanced Marketing comes into play. Advanced Marketing has put together a series of webinars so that members can download and watch them in the convenience of their own homes. These videos cover every “hard to find” techniques that most home business owners can’t get their hand on.Tami Lake, CEO of Advanced Marketing offers her expertise in web site design, lead generation, flash presentation, and has spent her college days learning search engine optimization at a much higher level then most internet companies are willing to show or explain. Advanced Marketing takes pride in showing team members how to get listed in the organic search engines. Members who follow our techniques are 100% sure of spreading their sites like wildfire over hundreds of search engines. Of course Google, Yahoo, and MSN are the search engines we push our members to target.Search engine optimization is just one source of driving traffic to your site. Web 2.0 is also another fantastic avenue when building a large team. You just have to be willing to spend some time learning it. Passport To Wealth team members apply several different techniques of driving traffic to their sites. Regardless of what business you are promoting, those who actually do what they are taught, are the ones making the big money. It is as simple as spending time learning 4 or 5 techniques and applying them. Once applied, it becomes fun because the money just keeps coming in without putting in much more effort. If a person learns and applies these techniques, you can have everything in place within a month or two. From that point on, these techniques take care of themselves. It is much easier than most people think.David and Tami Lake, a father, daughter team, have spent thousands of hours researching new technology for generating free traffic methods. David says People are really missing thousands of dollars doing things the “old way.”Contact us for a $850.00 free consultation. This isn’t just about our current business “Passport To Wealth,” this information works for any home businessonline or offline.Passport To WealthDavid Lake-Marketing Director – Tami Lake-CEOhttp://www.9608.goinetusa.com(link is external)Business Phone: 360-757-8550
Employers Receive Awards for Wellness at WorkBurlington A record 48 Vermont work sites received awards this month for their work site wellness programs. The awards, given annually by the Vermont Governors Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, honor employers that support staff access to physical fitness activities and promote good health on and off the job. The council and Governor Jim Douglas presented the awards at a Work Site Wellness Conference at the Hilton Hotel in Burlington on October 7.Employers applications were grouped by number of employees and then rated on 28 factors, including incentives to motivate behavior change, senior level support, demonstrable return on investment and whether programs are offered to employees families. Reviewers compared total scores to determine award levels. Gold, silver, bronze and recognition awards identify the relative ranking of work sites within size categories. Gold Standard awards distinguish work sites that received Gold awards in 2007 and again received an outstanding overall rating. Some categories had so many competitors that multiple awards were given, while other categories had too few to give all award levels.The awards were given as follows.1-25 EmployeesGOLD STANDARD, GOLD, SILVER: none givenBRONZE:” Rutland Housing AuthorityRECOGNITION:” Otter Creek Conservation District26-75 EmployeesGOLD STANDARD:” Milton CATGOLD:” Vermont League of Cities and Towns (VLCT)SILVER:” Stantec, North Springfield” Stantec, South BurlingtonBRONZE:” Vermont Housing Finance AgencyRECOGNITION:” Burlington Schools Food Service” Town of Milton, Vermont76-150 EmployeesGOLD STANDARD: none givenGOLD:” Ben & JerrySILVER:” Rhino FoodsBRONZE:” Peoples Trust Company of St. AlbansRECOGNITION:” Cathedral Square Corporation” Huber + Suhner North America” Northfield Savings Bank” Rock-Tenn Company: Missisquoi Mill” Town of Colchester” Town of Hartford151-500 EmployeesGOLD STANDARD:” Community Care Network / Rutland Mental Health Services” Engelberth Construction, Inc.” The Vermont Country StoreGOLD:” Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont” Franklin County Home Health Agency, Inc.SILVER:” Green Mountain Power” Trapp Family LodgeBRONZE:” Husky Injection Molding Systems” Mack Molding CompanyRECOGNITION:” America’s Gardening Resource, Inc.” Brattleboro Retreat” Champlain College” General Dynamics Armament and Technical Products” Greater Burlington YMCA” Northeast Kingdom Human Services, Inc.” Northwestern Counseling & Support Services, Inc.” Simon Pearce, US” Tivoly Inc” Vermont Composites, Inc.501-999 EmployeesGOLD STANDARD:” Northwestern Medical CenterGOLD:” Goodrich Corp, Fuel & Utility SystemsSILVER:” Green Mountain Coffee RoastersBRONZE: none givenRECOGNITION:” Dept. of Exercise Science & Dept. of Intramurals, Lyndon State College” National Life Group1000+ EmployeesGOLD STANDARD:” Vermont Automobile Dealers AssociationGOLD:” Hannaford Bros. Co.SILVER:” Fletcher Allen Health Care” Rutland Regional Health Services (Rutland Regional Medical Center)BRONZE:” IBM BurlingtonSPECIAL RECOGNITION:” State of Vermont, Dept of Human Resources, Division of Workforce Development and WellnessThe Vermont Governors Council on Physical Fitness and Sports is a physical activity promotion and advocacy group comprised of volunteers appointed by the Governor and representing a broad spectrum of Vermonters. The objectives of the council, defined in the legislation passed in 1986, include: Developing and coordinating services and programs of physical fitness for the people of Vermont; sponsoring physical fitness and sports workshops, clinics and conferences; and giving recognition to outstanding developments and achievements in physical fitness and sports.###
Governor Jim Douglas today announced that Vermont will receive more than $20 million in economic recovery funding from the US Environmental Protection Agency to create jobs through water infrastructure and air quality projects. These stimulus funds will put local contractors and engineers to work as we plan and build out the projects, the Governor said. There is a tremendous need for these economic recovery funds. We ve identified $380 million in drinking and clean water projects in Vermont.More than $1.7 million will go to clean diesel projects, said Ira Leighton, acting regional administrator of EPA in New England. Reducing emissions from diesel engines is one of the most important air quality challenges facing the country today, Leighton said. New England has some of the highest asthma rates in the nation.Another $19.5 million is pledged to improve aging water infrastructure and protect human health and the environment for Vermonters. This grant of Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds to the state of Vermont represents one of the first stimulus grants for water infrastructure made in the country, Leighton said. This much-needed injection of funding will go a long way toward improving Vermont s water quality across the state, said the Governor. The quality of our drinking water, and the water that flows down our rivers into lakes, depends upon the drinking water plants and the wastewater treatment facilities that will directly benefit from this additional funding. About the grantsThe funds provided by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, will go to the state’s Drinking Water State Revolving Fund program. The Drinking Water State Revolving Fund program provides low-interest loans for drinking water systems to finance infrastructure improvements. The program also emphasizes providing funds to small or disadvantaged communities and to programs that encourage pollution prevention as a tool for ensuring safe drinking water. An unprecedented $2 billion dollars will be awarded to fund drinking water infrastructure projects across the country under the Recovery Act in the form of low-interest loans, principal forgiveness and grants. At least 20 percent of the funds provided under the Recovery Act are to be used for green infrastructure, water and energy efficiency improvements and other environmentally innovative projects.Under ARRA s State clean diesel funding program, $88.2 million is divided equally through a noncompetitive allocation process, meaning that all 50 states and the District of Columbia will receive $1.73 million.States, local governments, non-profits and tribal agencies can also compete for a portion of $206 million under ARRA s National clean diesel funding program.President Obama signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 on February 17, 2009 and has directed that the Recovery Act be implemented with unprecedented transparency and accountability.
(ends) A Bennington, Vermont, defense contractor is part of a billion-dollar US Military contract to build more armored vehicles for use in Afghanistan. The Plasan North America plant is expected to hire 200 workers to fulfill the contract, while the deal could also generate another 100 new jobs with subcontractors in the region.The U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) announced Tuesday it has selected Oshkosh Corporation to supply MRAP All Terrain Vehicles (M-ATV) for its fighting forces. Oshkosh has received an initial delivery order from the U.S. Army Tank-automotive and Armaments Command (TACOM) Life Cycle Management Command (LCMC) for 2,244 M-ATVs valued at $1.05 billion, following months of government testing on multiple production-ready vehicles. Oshkosh Defense teamed with Plasan North America, with a plant in Bennington for the M-ATV armor system to provide an advanced armor solution. Plasan also developed the armor system used on more than 5,000 legacy MRAPs and thousands of Oshkosh Armored Cab MTVRs already in theater.Governor Douglas said in a written statement: “I would like to extend congratulations to Plasan North America for being part of the winning contract team with Oshkosh Corporation for a $1 billion order of armored vehicles for the U.S. military. “In 2006, I was pleased to personally welcome Plasan to Vermont after our economic development team helped recruit them to the Bennington area. Without the Vermont Economic Progress Council’s decision to approve Plasan for tax credits totaling more than $1 million, the company may have located elsewhere. The granting of $1.16 million loan and a further guarantee of $500,000 line of credit by the Vermont Economic Development Authority, or VEDA, also helped secure Plasan’s commitment to Vermont. “Recruiting this kind of good-paying, high technology manufacturing company is a key component of my economic development strategy, and this contract will be a tremendous benefit to Plasan and the Bennington area. This really demonstrates the effectiveness of our job creation incentive programs. While we obviously don’t have the resources other larger states do, we can compete for companies like Plasan if we have the tools.”Robert G. Bohn, Oshkosh Corporation chairman and chief executive officer said: “We are proud that Oshkosh was chosen to provide its M-ATV offering to the U.S. Armed Forces. Our M-ATV design combines the crew protection warfighters have come to expect in MRAP vehicles with the extreme mobility and durability needed to negotiate Afghanistan’s mountainous off-road terrain.”“Due to the urgent need of our Armed Forces for a survivable and highly mobile vehicle, our Corporation’s number one priority is meeting the Department’s accelerated delivery schedule of the Oshkosh M-ATV. Oshkosh Corporation will put whatever resources are necessary to meet or exceed the government’s delivery schedule. While we believe we can meet or exceed the government’s current delivery requirements, we intend to enter into discussions with other manufacturers to determine if they can assist in the production of the Oshkosh M-ATV.”Bohn went on to say, “As we begin supplying our advanced, high-performance vehicles, our full-service aftermarket support network will be available with replacement parts, technical support, and repair or refurbishment services. If demands for technology or component upgrades should arise, our team is ready to deliver.”Andy Hove, Oshkosh Corporation executive vice president and president, Defense said, “Much has already been done to ensure we can meet the government’s delivery schedule. In recognition of the urgent need, we began daily production of Oshkosh M-ATVs on our flexible manufacturing line a few weeks ago. We and our suppliers have already made significant investments in materials and are well positioned to accelerate our manufacturing capabilities.”The Oshkosh Defense investments, planning and engineering activities, and production of M-ATVs in advance of this award will allow for accelerated delivery of the Oshkosh M-ATV, with initial vehicles available to TACOM LCMC in July.In order to achieve the off-road mobility that soldiers and Marines need in Afghanistan, Oshkosh integrated its TAK-4 independent suspension system onto the vehicle.As further testament to the government’s confidence in this suspension system, the company recently received a supply order to equip more than 1,500 legacy MRAPs (Mine Resistant Ambush Protected) with the TAK-4 system and continues to work with the Army to evaluate using the system on additional legacy MRAP models. The TAK-4 suspension system is used on more than 10,000 Medium Tactical Vehicle Replacements (MTVR) supplied to the Marines and Seabees, as well as on the Marines’ Logistics Vehicle System Replacement (LVSR) and the Army’s next-generation Palletized Load System (PLS).Oshkosh performed more than 7,500 miles of independent off-road testing to identify possible enhancements to the vehicle so it would meet or surpass the performance requirements in the rugged terrain in Afghanistan.Oshkosh Corporation is a leading designer, manufacturer and marketer of a broad range of specialty access equipment, commercial, fire & emergency and military vehicles and vehicle bodies.(Source: Oshkosh Corporation; issued June 30, 2009)