Wednesday, March 5, 2008

The Augustan: Tuesday, March 5, 2008

The budget shortfall will make it more difficult for the Legislature to tackle tax reform this year.

Committee on State and Local Government
voted to institute an 18-month moratorium on a development project in Saco Bay, while the question of which town--Saco or Old Orchard Beach--controls Saco Bay is sorted out.

Insurance and Financial Services Committee
heard testimony regarding LD 2189, a bill that would regulate foreclosure purchase companies by requiring them to be licensed by the state.

Department of Education
convinced the Education Committee that a bill that would revise the state's high school graduation requirements should be scrapped.

Marine Resources Committee
heard testimony regarding LD 1957, a bill that would reintroduce large numbers of alewife fish to the St. Croix river.

It's about time we've had a bill like LD 2219, a bill that would require lawmakers and executive branch officials to disclose information on real estate interests, investment interests, and positions held.

PPH: The consolidation of Cumberland, Falmouth, and North Yarmouth schools
is a good example for other school districts to follow.

Susan Hall: Director of Maine's Animal Welfare Program
didn't deserve the criticism she received for the AWP's reaction to Somerville puppy-mill case.

Maine Human Rights Commission
voted 4-0 in a case involving the sexual harassment of a female employee at the hardware chain, W.E. Aubuchon Co. Inc. and the commission found reasonable grounds for six other complaints.

House of Representatives
recognized the Maine Troop Greeters of Bangor on the occasion of greeting their 3,000th flight home of members of the U.S. Armed Forces.

Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention
blamed the flu for the recent deaths of a preschool child and two young adults.

BDN: LD 2221, a bill that would codify recommendations of the Tribal-State Work Group official,
is one way the state has improved its relations with the state's Indian tribes.

Jody Spear: The Legislature
should approve LD 2048, a bill that would prohibit some chemicals from being used in the production of toys and other chidren's products.

KJ: Legislature
should not close courts for six weeks in an attempt to save money.

Hannah Pingree (D-North Haven): Internationally respected toxicologist
will have a role in the state's policies to keep toxic chemicals out of Mainers' homes, despite dismissal from a federal board examining toxins.

Paul Chartrand:
Legislature should oppose LD 1987, a bill that would allow the direct shipment of wine to Maine homes, because it would create unfair disadvantages for Maine wineries and alchol distributors.

Superintendent of Maine's Bureau of Insurance
warned Mainers to ask for proof of insurance when hiring someone to shovel off their roofs.

Governor Baldacci
swore in four judges.

State Park officials
said reservations at public campgrounds are at an all-time high.

Utilities and Energy Committee
approved LD 2180, a bill that would ensure the value of a prepaid phone card could not be reduced after sale and would require the card's packaging to say say if rates are different for in-state and out-of-state calls.

SJ: State
should not close courts in an attempt to save money.

- John C.L. Morgan

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