Minimum Wage Increase Contributes to Largest Annual Wage Gain in 10 Years

January 8, 2018 by

James Myall

Wage and employment gains during the first six months of 2017 reveal that Maine’s voter-approved minimum wage increase has not hurt the state’s economy as the referendum’s opponents warned it would. Instead, one year after the first minimum wage increase went into effect, available data suggest that the initiative is working as intended by helping to increase wages with no apparent adverse impact on employment.

According to MECEP … Read the rest

Policy Insights 2018 Conference

January 5, 2018 by

What does a vision for economic justice and shared prosperity look like?

You are invited to join us for a conversation about the opportunities and challenges the new year will provide. MECEP’s Policy Insights 2018 Conference will take place Wednesday, January 31, at the Senator Inn in Augusta.

Policy Insights 2018 will give attendees the tools to understand and influence the most important policy discussions coming up in 2018 — … Read the rest

Legislature’s Opioid Task Force report overlooks key factors in addiction crisis

January 2, 2018 by

James Myall

Another year has come and gone with no sign that the pace of drug related deaths – more than one a day – is slowing.

On Wednesday, January 3, the Legislature’s Task Force to Address the Opioid Crisis in the State will present its final report to the Health and Human Service Committee.

The final report includes many important recommendations, ranging from de-stigmatizing the language around drug … Read the rest

Maine families pay more under final GOP tax bill

December 19, 2017 by

Sarah Austin

House and Senate Republicans expect to vote on their tax bill early this week after an agreement on its provisions was struck Friday. The deal lowers the top individual rate to 37 percent, lower than either House or Senate versions of the bill, and pegs a new flat corporate tax rate of 21 percent.  

The deal, if passed by Congress and signed by President Trump, will ultimately increase … Read the rest

Study embraced by Senator Collins actually affirms that her plan will not prevent people from losing health insurance and paying higher premiums  

December 8, 2017 by

Garrett Martin

Earlier this week, Avalere health consulting released a report indicating that two proposals advocated by Senator Collins would reduce health insurance premiums. Senator Collins seized on this analysis. In a tweet on December 6, she claimed that the Avalere study “confirms my reinsurance bill & Alexander-Murray proposal would reduce health insurance premiums by 18% in 2019.” 

The problem is that Senator Collins seems to be ignoring a very … Read the rest

Health care for tens of thousands of Mainers under threat; proposed “fix” is insufficient

December 6, 2017 by

James Myall

Earlier this year, Mainers were justifiably proud of Senator Susan Collins for standing strong in the face of efforts to take health care away from tens of thousands of Mainers. Unfortunately, the tax bill making its way through Congress will have the same effect if passed. While Senator Collins has attempted to mute these adverse consequences by offering a separate proposal in conjunction with Senator Nelson of … Read the rest

Senate’s pass-through proposal would cost Maine $57 million a year in state revenue

December 1, 2017 by

Sarah Austin

The Senate tax bill’s proposed 23% pass-through deduction would cost Maine $57 million a year in state revenue. It does so by reducing state income taxes primarily for wealthier households – 62% of the tax cuts associated with the pass-through proposal would benefit the top 5% of Maine households, or those making more than $181,000. 

The reason this proposal reduces state revenue is simple. Because much of Maine’s … Read the rest

Senate Health Care Band-Aids Won’t Fix Damage in Tax Bill 

November 29, 2017 by

James Myall

US Senate Republicans have offered only temporary, Band-Aid fixes to try to reassure holdouts on their tax bill like Maine’s Senator Susan Collins. These proposals will not fully heal the wound inflicted on the health care system by repealing the individual mandate, a critical piece of the Affordable Care Act. Despite this, Senate Republicans are pushing ahead with their tax overhaul which is expected to explode the deficit, … Read the rest

Partial state and local tax deduction does nothing for vast majority of Maine families under Republican Tax Plan

November 29, 2017 by

Sarah Austin

The two versions of Republican tax legislation making their way through Congress are similar in that they are huge giveaways to the top 1% and profitable corporations, but differ regarding their treatment of income households use to pay state and local taxes. The Senate version completely repeals the state and local tax deduction, while the House version maintains that only property taxes up to $10,000 can be deducted … Read the rest

New Analysis: Senate Child Tax Credit Proposal Stacks the Deck Against Rural Working Families

November 29, 2017 by

James Myall

New analysis by MECEP shows that the proposal by US Senate Republicans to increase the size of the Child Tax Credit (CTC) will do little for the majority of children in Maine’s most rural and poorest counties while delivering significant benefits to wealthy families who live primarily in more urban and suburban areas. This analysis builds on last week’s analysis from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities … Read the rest

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