L.D. 1333 would repeal many of Maine's basic health care consumer protections, allow out-of-state insurers to market policies in Maine without a way to enforce those policies and make sure claims are paid, undermine access to quality affordable health care for older Mainers, rural residents, people with pre-existing conditions and small businesses through significant rate hikes based on where you live or your age. Read this report by the independent Maine Economic Policy Center to find out more.
Rate increases. LD 1333 promises a lot, but it can't deliver on its promises, and in the process a lot of people, especially in rural Maine, will lose the insurance they have because they simply won't be able to afford the price increases. Read more »
While many Mainers were enjoying a romantic and chocolate-laden Valentine's Day, hundreds of their neighbors spent the day at the State House, where the Regulatory Fairness & Reform Committee met from 9 am until nearly 7 pm taking testimony on LD 1 and the Governor's Phase 1 regulatory reform plan, including a 48-page amendment that was handed to the Committee during the public hearing. The testimony was overwhelmingly in opposition to the Governor's plan, echoing what we heard at 7 regional hearings over the past 3 weeks - watch the videos here.
On Monday, the Committee heard from the Governor's legal counsel, Dan Billings, who made it clear that while several of the most controversial rollbacks in in Phase 1 were left out of the amendment (for example, the Kids-Safe Products Act, banning Bis-A from sippy cups, clean air protections, eliminating LURC and zoning 3 million acres for development), Governor LePage has NOT backed away from these rollbacks and will be supporting legislation to implement them as we go forward. Read more »
In a situation that may reach Jarody-like levels of political entertainment, it turns out that Charles Jacques, the Republican candidate in House District 79, is a convicted burglar who likens himself to Nelson Mandela. The Kennebec Journal reports on his run against veteran Democratic legislator Sharon Treat.
Jacques, of West Gardiner, also spoke to reports that he spent two years in prison after being convicted on two counts of burglary and one count of criminal mischief, in 1986.
While he acknowledged serving jail time, Jacques said he was wrongfully convicted and never committed the crimes.
"When I meet people, I do not identify myself as a felon because I am not one," he said. "Much like Nelson Mandela or Martin Luther King Jr., I have spent time in jail fighting injustice."
Jacques said he was framed for committing the burglaries -- breaking into the Portland apartments of two women and tampering with a telephone cord in one -- because he was trying to investigate the murder of his sister.
"People may think I want to get on the Legislature to take on the Department of Corrections, and that is simply not true," Jacques said.
"That's the past," Jacques said, of his arrest and conviction. "This election is the future."