In the Maine Media

December 28, 2010 by

The holidays are a notoriously slow news period, but this year a few items may interest MECEP readers.

In a 12/22/2010 editorial (“Maine Workers: Held Back by Lack of Opportunities”) the (Biddeford) Journal Tribune writes that “if job opportunities [in Maine] ever match the work ethic, wage earners could lead us to prosperity” and laments the scarcity of higher wage jobs in Maine.  The newspaper adds that “to build a solid future for Maine’s economy, a better-educated workforce is essential” and cites the latest MECEP Choices (“When Hard Work Isn’t Enough; Fostering Opportunities for Maine’s Working Families”) noting that it “outlines steps Maine can take to improve educational opportunities for those in the workforce.”

Year’s end is also a time to assess outgoing Governor John Baldacci’s eight year tenure.  In a lengthy 12/25/2010 AP retrospective (“Baldacci looks back on ‘fortunate’ time”) MECEP Executive Director Christopher St. John tells reporter Glenn Adams that the Governor “deserves ‘at least a solid B and maybe a B-plus’ for the way he managed the state during difficult times.” 

In a 12/26/2010 story (“State’s Burden Changed Little under Baldacci” ) in Maine Today newspapers (Maine Sunday Telegram, Kennebec Journal and Morning Sentinel), St. John tells reporter Susan Cover that “we have to acknowledge that people have been finding fault with Maine’s tax system for a very long time.  It’s a lot easier to make Maine’s system worse than it is to make it better.”  St. John also credits Governor Baldacci for reforms to state, school and municipal spending.  “Gains have been modest, but it has slowed the growth of government spending,” St. John said.  “Property taxes did not grow after 2005 at the same pace they had been growing.”

This MECEP slide show provides an overview of tax and budget trends during Governor Baldacci’s tenure.

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