We have a responsibility to provide for the vulnerable among us. Making cuts for the sake of cutting leaves many in dire situations. When our children go hungry or our elderly have to choose between food and fuel, we are failing them.
I would need to study the fiscal and demographic impact of each before making a decision.
I am concerned that this bill does not address safety issues for our children or protection of citizens against impaired drivers.
I have campaigned on the issue of adequate funding for education as I believe our children deserve no less and we, as a community, need a well educated workforce in our future. This is one mechanism that can help us achieve these goals.
The most compelling argument I have heard is that far fewer women are shot by their partners in states where background checks are required. Closing a loophole is just plain common sense. I grew up in a family of hunters and gun owners and I know my father would support this measure.
I have campaigned on the need for good paying jobs for our area. Raising the minimum wage is one of the ways we can begin to address this issue.
Prioritizing law enforcement over treatment does not reduce the demand for drugs by person who suffer from addiction. Both approaches have their role. Reducing treatment options will only result in increased demand for law enforcement interventions.
I support the current system.
While the current legislature may appear to be large, past efforts to decrease the number of legislators typically has greater impact on rural areas so I support the current structure. While we are a citizen legislature, the current pay makes it difficult for many to serve. However, I would have a hard time justifying an increase in legislative pay until our minimum wage is increased as proposed in the current referendum.
If only there was that one thing that would result in robust economic development! Rather, there are many factors. We need people at every level of government to highlight our strengths at every opportunity. Currently we are viewed in a negative light and this needs to be reversed in order to attract new development as well as growth. Energy costs are often cited as a barrier, yet we failed to pass a solar energy bill this last session. These are but two examples.
Maine's immigrants are hard working and provide essential services in both the private and public sector. Yet they have been portrayed negatively by some and this is unfortunate. I see a two pronged approach to resolving our workforce shortage: increasing opportunities for our immigrant population and ensuring that our young people have the skills for the workforce of the future so they will be able to earn a living and raise their families in Maine.
Cost shifting to cities and towns has resulted in higher property taxes.