Village of Johnson Statement on Proposed Closure of NVU

The following statement comes from the Village of Johnson:

As many others will attest, the importance of the Northern Vermont University Johnson campus to the Johnson community cannot be overstated. The economic, cultural, and financial implications of a campus closure on Johnson would be incredibly severe and far-reaching. For the Village of Johnson, the effects would be immediate and potentially devastating to the Village’s three municipal utilities; electric, water, and wastewater.

The Village of Johnson Water & Light Department operates a small municipal electric utility whose customers benefit from affordable rates, strong reliability, and a Johnson-based 5-person line crew that provides a rapid response should an outage occur. A typical residential Johnson Water & Light customer will usually pay approximately 10-30% less than a customer of Vermont’s larger non-municipal power companies. Johnson Village residents and property owners also benefit from professionally managed water and wastewater systems that consistently meet high performance standards and provide affordable vital services for residences and businesses.
NVU-Johnson is a key customer of these three Village utilities, providing a critical level of revenue. In 2019, NVU-Johnson represented:

  • 29% of the Village’s Electric Department revenues
  • 29% of the Village Water Department revenues
  • 34% of the Village’s Wastewater Department revenues

Without the ongoing operations at the NVU-Johnson campus, the Village’s utilities would change substantially. All aspects of operations would likely be affected, including staffing levels and customer rates. The locally-based affordable services that so many Johnson residents rely on would be at risk of dramatic changes that could negatively affect the financial well-being of individual residents, Johnson-based businesses, and the hopes for future economic development.

Please contact Meredith Dolan, Village Manager, with any questions at (802) 635-2611 or

PO Box 603
Johnson, VT 05656
Phone: 802-635-2611
Fax: 802-635-2393