Maine probably needs better oversight of its social services and less exemptions from the work requirement for TANF. Maine needs to bring its public health system up to standard.
No I don't support expanding the sales tax in order to cut income taxes at this time. I support increasing state revenues by creating more small businesses and jobs in Maine. In addition, I think the income tax is a more reliable source of revenue than sales taxes.
I see no reason for marijuana to be illegal or for police to spend their valuable time arresting marijuana users. Alcohol is legal, yet it poses a much greater risk of addiction, which harms individuals, families and communities. The experiment to outlaw alcohol in the USA failed: the experiment to outlaw cannabis should also fail.
Until the state meets its obligation to fund schools at the 55% approved by voters in 2004, some measure is needed to keep our public schools from failing.
I am willing to support the endorsement of the Maine Police Chiefs.
Many of our small businesses are already paying above minimum wages because they value their employees and want them to stay. When companies don't pay a living wage, it is often the taxpayers who end up subsidizing their employees with food stamps or other benefits.
Ranked-choice voting will insure that a winning candidate has a majority of votes
No, Maine needs a balanced approach to our drug and alcohol abuse epidemic.Law enforcement can step up efforts to stop drug traffickers, but that approach alone will not be effective in reducing the opiate crisis. I believe addiction requires intensive medical intervention and addicts in Maine have very limited access to such treatment. This is especially true for pregnant women and mothers.
Continue to be elected by the Legislature
I think the size of the House is appropriate, but Senate Districts can be extremely large geographic areas and may require two senators per district. If we want a more representative sample of Mainers in the legislature, the pay should be increased to the average salary in Maine.
I don't know what the biggest barrier to economic development is, but I can name a few that are very important. One, the workforce in Maine is under-trained and under-educated, in part because post-high school education is too expensive for many families. The legislature can address the problem by giving more funding to higher education institutions. Currently, Maine invests only 4% of its budget in higher education. Two, the state is fairly lavish with corporate tax exemptions, but doesn't do enough to support small businesses. The legislature could cut back on subsidies to large corporations and increase them for small business. Three, looking backward to past industries rather than anticipating future needs is holding Maine back from growing a robust economy. Legislation needs to embrace new technologies. An example is the solar bill which was vetoed by the governor and failed to override his veto. Renewable sources of energy are the wave of the future and represent a huge growth area for the economy.
The state should welcome legal immigrants and work to increase small businesses, the backbone of Maine's economy. More young people will stay in Maine or move to Maine if they can make a decent living here.
Climate change and its effect on the future of Maine's marine, agricultural and tourism industries.