Three years ago, Maine voters made a little-known mayor from a small central Maine city the 74th governor of the state.
And nothing’s been the same since.
Paul LePage came into office insulting the president of the United States and hasn’t slowed down to this day.
The Waterville mayor and Marden’s general manager walked onto the political stage as a long shot in the 2010 Republican primary. But he emerged ahead of better-known names such as Les Otten and Peter Mills with his brand of fist-pounding promises to straighten out the state’s books, be “business-friendly,” cut taxes and reduce welfare.
In the 657 days he has been in office, LePage has been on page one nearly as often as the weather forecast. Usually, he’s out there with blunt – some say crude – remarks, threats and demands.
But there’s a lot more to the LePage story than his self-described “big mouth.” There’s also his record on substantive issues, from the pension debt to the income tax, from business regulation to the environment, domestic violence to education.
The Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting presents an in-depth study of the governor: “The Book on Paul LePage: The ‘biggest, baddest person around’ crashes Augusta’s ‘nicey-nice’ club.”
It has been just over a year since former University of Southern Maine president Selma Botman got a new job.
Her position as special assistant to the chancellor on global education was created for her two months after she got a vote of no confidence from more than half the USM faculty. Although that didn’t meet the two-thirds majority to be considered “the will of the faculty,” Botman relinquished the campus presidency at the end of June, 2012.
The sole purpose of the board that regulates pharmacists in Maine is to “protect the public health and welfare,” according to state law. But in thirteen cases over the last decade the board has jeopardized the public’s health by allowing people with a history of substance abuse and theft to hold a license to dispense drugs at pharmacies across the state.
They came from the townships and plantations of Concord, Lexington, Highland, Carrying Place and Pleasant Ridge. They set out for the statehouse in Augusta from the five sparsely populated backcountry communities set between the Kennebec and Carrabassett rivers, from a wooded intervale etched by streams, dappled by lakes and cradled by the hills and mountains of western Maine. Continue Reading →
AUGUSTA – Over the past 50 years, Maine legislatures and governors have added millions of dollars in tax breaks for businesses without ever doing the detailed analysis to find out which are effective and which are wasteful.
Four years ago, when the University of Maine System was cutting programs to save money, officials were criticized for not, instead, making up the shortfall by taking money from System reserves. Continue Reading →
State legislators and top appointed officials won’t be able to take jobs as lobbyists right after they leave the statehouse, under a bill passed unanimously by a key legislative committee on Friday. Continue Reading →
An honors student from the University of Maine stood before lawmakers Wednesday and, in a clear and confident voice, walked them through an ethics reform proposal that would require more extensive disclosure of the financial affairs of public officials and legislators. Continue Reading →
SANTA FE — On February 20, New Mexico’s House Energy and Natural Resources Committee gathered for one of its regular meetings in a drab room here at the capitol, a circular building known as the Roundhouse. Continue Reading →
AUGUSTA -- The state's Republican governor and a leading Democratic legislator have teamed up to try to improve the ethical standards for both elected and appointed state officials.
A bill unveiled this week by Gov. Paul LePage and Sen. Emily Cain of Orono will require greater disclosure of the financial and political interests of legislators and high-ranking executive branch officials.