Jessica L. Fay

Jessica L. Fay

Jessica L. Fay

Democratic candidate for Maine House District 66 from Raymond

Running against Michael D. McClellan. View your ballot →

Is Maine too generous in providing social services to its residents? Which government benefits should be increased or decreased?

We need to make sure that the benefits were providing are assisting those who most need them in a way that works. Cutting programs simply to cut them does not increase efficiency, and could actually hurt the most needy. 1 in 5 Maine children under the age of 5 live in extreme poverty. That is unacceptable. I would focus on making sure that we look at long term solutions like job training and education so that families can break the cycle of poverty.

Do you support expanding or raising the sales tax to lower the state income tax? Why or why not?

When I talk with people around my district, property taxes are of the greatest concern. State revenue sharing has decreased and the legislature has not funded aid to education at the level legally required. We need balance in our tax code, and high property taxes affect seniors, middle class and young families at a disproportionate rate.

Do you support marijuana legalization in Maine, as outlined in Question 1?

No

Please explain your answer. (Not required)

In theory I support legalization of marijuana for adult recreational use, but the language in Question 1 is vague. I would prefer the issue go through the legislative process so we can address issues and mitigate some of those unintended consequences.

Do you support raising taxes on Mainers with incomes above $200,000 to increase state aid to education, as outlined in Question 2?

Yes

Please explain your answer. (Not required)

. The legislature has continually failed to approve funding at the level required by law. This question would put downward pressure on local property taxes which are more regressive and affect working families disproportionately. If the legislature had been able to work together to fund aid to education, this initiative would not have been necessary.

Do you support universal background checks for firearm sales, as outlined in Question 3?

No

Please explain your answer. (Not required)

We need to keep guns out of the hands of violent people, but Question 3, as written, could have a greater impact on sportsmen and law abiding gun owners.

Should Maine raise its minimum wage, as outlined in Question 4?

Yes

Please explain your answer. (Not required.)

Adults working full time deserve to be able to earn a decent living.

Do you support the initiative to use ranked-choice voting to elect state and federal officials in Maine, as outlined in Question 5?

Yes

Please explain your answer. (Not required)

Part of the reason I am running is because I am frustrated by the lack of bipartisanship. I believe that ranked choice voting could help us get back to a place where elected officials must work together.

Should Maine prioritize law enforcement efforts to intercept drug traffickers over expanding access to substance abuse treatment, such those that incorporates medications like methadone and Suboxone?

Fighting the opiate epidemic requires a balanced approach. We need adequate resources for treatment, law enforcement and prevention.

Should Maines constitutional officers -- the secretary of state, the attorney general, auditor and the treasurer -- continue to be elected by the Legislature or by statewide popular vote?

With all the dark money coming into the state trying to affect the outcomes of candidate elections and ballot questions, I would be concerned about the role special interests might play in the election of Constitutional Officers if we moved to election by popular vote.

Is the size of Maines Legislature appropriate? Should the pay for legislative service be increased?

The size of the Legislature is appropriate. Reducing the number of Representatives and Senators would also reduce constituents access to those legislators, particularly in the larger more rural districts. As the role of our citizen legislature becomes more complicated and time consuming, it would certainly be worth having a conversation about increasing legislative pay, as well as the pay of the governor. There are so many good people who are precluded from running for office because they simply cannot afford it.

Would you support sanctioning another elected official if he or she made public comments or statements that were considered racist, offensive or prejudicial?

I would consider sanctioning another elected official, if appropriate.

Would you support a so-called right to work law in Maine?

no

Would you support legislation or a ballot question to allow more casinos in Maine?

If enough signatures were collected, then the issue should be placed on the ballot. Without knowing specifics, I couldnt support or oppose the issue.

What is the biggest barrier to economic development in Maine and what can the Legislature do to address it?

The biggest barrier to economic development is the lack of long term thinking on the part of government. If we identify what our needs might be in the future and plan for those needs, we will be less likely to be caught short. Investing in the future, in R&D, infrastructure and education will put us on more solid footing. As a small business woman, I understand that it's very difficult to thrive without long term planning.

Census data show Maines population is aging and decreasing, with some economists suggesting that immigration is the best way to reverse those trends. What should the state do to address this demographic trend?

Improve economic opportunity for young people and welcome those who want to contribute to our communities and to our economy.

What is the most pressing issue in Maine these questions have not addressed?

Maine is one of the most beautiful and potentially bountiful places. Many folks live here by choice because we have so much to offer in terms of quality of life. Recognizing that our environment and natural resources are part of that quality of life will be an important piece of securing Maines economic future.