Gov. LePage

A legislative committee has overwhelmingly endorsed a proposal to nearly double the annual salary of Maine's next governor.

The State and Local Government Committee voted 11-1 in favor of increasing the salary, which is now the lowest of any state in the nation. The Portland Press Herald reports the salary of the next governor would be increased from $70,000 to $150,000 if the legislation is approved by the Legislature.

Maine Public

Gov. Paul LePage’s proposal to significantly increase the salary of future Maine governors was before a legislative committee Wednesday. Advocates of the increase say a boost is long overdue.

pbs.org

Republican Gov. Paul LePage’s decision to stay at the Trump International Hotel in D.C. last year may have helped advance a Maryland court case challenging the president’s ability to hold onto his financial stake in his business empire.

Maine Public

Governor Paul LePage and Attorney General Janet Mills are at it again.

The two political rivals are at odds over LePage’s effort to restore eight attorney positions within the Department of Health and Human services. Mills, however, says her office should be involved.

The Department wants to restore funding for eight positions that would otherwise be eliminated July 1. Those staffers would be attorneys who do contract reviews and provide internal legal advice.

Maine Republican Gov. Paul LePage is opposing a bill that critics claim could lead to a massive cruise ship pier in Bar Harbor.

Tuesday LePage vetoed a bill to allow local voters to decide whether to create a port authority in Bar Harbor. The House and Senate strongly supported the bill.

LePage called the idea "unnecessary municipal bureaucracy" that deflects accountability from the town. He said such autonomy can create "serious safety concerns."

Maine Public

Governor Paul LePage wants to use part of a projected increase in state revenues to pay for more tax cuts. He’s included that proposal into a bill that would conform Maine tax laws to changes in the federal tax code enacted in December.

Jack Kennealy / Maine Land Trust Network

Governor LePage used a portion of his 90-minute State of the State address Tuesday to attack one of his favorite targets: land trusts.

The LePage administration is proposing legislation that would add an annual fee on electric and hybrid cars in order to pay for highway maintenance.

The Portland Press Herald reports the measure would tack on a $250 fee for electric vehicles and a $150 fee for hybrids.

Meghan Russo, manager of legislative services for MDOT, says the fee is being imposed because owners of hybrids and electric vehicles don't pay a gas tax.

Governor LePage is behind a bill to gut most of the state's fast-track permitting process for commercial wind power projects.

The Portland Press Herald reports the governor's bill is part of his recent efforts against Maine's wind power industry.

LePage recently announced a moratorium on new wind permits in Maine and created a commission that would study the economic impact of wind turbines on western Maine mountains, coastal areas and along migratory bird pathways.

Maine Public

A regional environmental group is suing Gov. Paul LePage over a moratorium on wind power development he imposed last week.

The Conservation Law Foundation (CLF) is asking a Cumberland County superior court to strike down the moratorium on Constitutional grounds.

"He's totally usurped the legislative process here," says Sean Mahoney, CLF's director for the state. Mahoney says that by suspending the state's existing framework for wind development, LePage is violating the principle of separation of powers.

Gov. Paul LePage said he opposes rules that will allow pharmacists to dispense the overdose revival drug Narcan, because these rules would also allow 18-year-olds to buy and administer the drug, while they are still unable to purchase cigarettes or alcohol.

LePage told Maine Public call-in show host Jennifer Rooks that he'll oppose the new Narcan rules unless “everything else is 18.”

Rooks asked, “But if cigarettes and alcohol stay 21, you're not going to support it?”

Maine Public

Gov. Paul LePage told Maine Calling that he has no plans to endorse any of the candidates vying to replace him when his term expires next year.

LePage was asked by the Maine Public call-in program host Jennifer Rooks if he will back Republican candidate Shawn Moody. Lauren LePage, the governor's daughter, is working for Moody's campaign, as are former members of LePage's campaigns, including his top political advisor.

Maine Public

Gov. Paul LePage asserted that the deliberations of his new wind energy commission will not be exempt from Maine's public meeting law, even though the executive order he signed Jan. 24 states that it is.

During the Maine Public call-in program Maine Calling, LePage characterized reports that the special commission’s meetings will be shielded from the press and public are "fake news."

AUGUSTA, Maine - Republican Gov. Paul LePage has yet to thoroughly review a Trump administration plan to vastly expand offshore areas of the outer continental shelf to potential oil and gas exploration.  The new five-year National Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program would open most offshore areas of Atlantic, Pacific, and Arctic to drilling from 2019 to 2024, including the Gulf of Maine.

AUGUSTA, Maine - At a closed caucus, Maine House Republicans have resolved to vote against any proposal to bring the Legislature back for a special session to consider sanctions against Gov. Paul LePage for his obscene voicemail. 

“The media has brought up a lot of conversations about whether or not this Legislature should come back into a special session to deal with the issue of Paul LePage," said House Minority Leader Ken Fredette, of Newport. "And all I am simply saying is we are not going to be doing that.”

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