This Week in Augusta – 03.20.2017 editionThe flow of newly printed legislation slowed this past week but the volume of committee work continues to grow. Some significant issues, including a sick leave mandate applied to all employers and a radical universal family care proposal, are not yet printed. A big hearing is scheduled Monday (3/20) on legislation concerning the 35 income surtax and on Wednesday (3/22) regarding two sick leave bills and a workforce development concept draft (see articles below). Meantime, policy committees are beginning their report backs to the Appropriations Committee about the proposed biennial 2018-2019 State Budget (LD 390).
This Week in Augusta – 03.13.2017 editionFour weeks of hearings on the proposed 2018-2019 State Budget concluded March 10. Appropriations Committee members will now spend the next few months considering all of the spending proposals and policy changes contained in LD 390. Meantime, the number of printed legislation passed the 1000 mark but another 500 or so bills have yet to be printed. The volume of public hearings and work sessions is rising rapidly, and committee schedules will remain busy for another 11 weeks.
This Week in Augusta – 02.27.2017 editionLegislators return this week from school vacation break. After nearly two months of light activity, the pile of printed legislation is beginning to grow more quickly and the calendar of committee meetings is filling up with hearings and work sessions. Hearings that began February 6 on the 2018-2019 biennial State Budget are scheduled to continue through March 10.
Workers' Compensation BattlesNFIB is working to protect business owners from renewed attempts by labor unions and their trial lawyer friends to advance legislation that would raise the cost of benefits and inject more disputes over the settlement of injury claims. Maine ranked 4th highest in the nation for the 2009-2012 increase in benefit costs per $100 of covered wages.
State Fiscal Policy ReformNFIB is working to educate lawmakers on the need for spending reform at the state and municipal levels, so that any tax reform enacted does not make excessive spending a bigger problem, and educating lawmakers on the importance of more private sector jobs and business investment as a critical component of fiscal policy.