The Plight of the Rich and Tax Flight, Again

January 31, 2013 by

The gist of “Where Have Maine’s Rich Gone?”, a new Maine Heritage Policy Center release, is that Maine doesn’t have very many rich people because they have fled the state to avoid Maine’s income tax. It suggests that taxes account for the difference between Maine and New Hampshire in the number and wealth of millionaires, while ignoring the fact that over three-quarters of New Hampshire residents live in Greater BostonRead the rest

Maine Families Living on the Edge

January 30, 2013 by

“Nearly half of Maine residents are living on the edge of financial disaster with almost no savings to fall back on in the event of a job loss, health crisis or other income-depleting emergency,” according to a new survey released today by Penquis, the community action agency serving northern and eastern Maine on behalf of the national, non-partisan Corporation for Enterprise Development (CFED).  According to CFED’s 2013 Assets Read the rest

Booze, Bonds and Budget Balancing

January 18, 2013 by

“A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.”
―Self-Reliance, Ralph Waldo Emerson, 19th American essayist

All leaders need followers. Despite Emerson’s call to be nonconformist, political leaders cannot say one thing and do another, at least not if they want people to follow them. They need to demonstrate reasoned thought and action.

Governor LePage has always articulated his principles, clearly and forcefully over and over. Until now. … Read the rest

An Avoidable Budget Crisis

January 17, 2013 by

Despite what Governor LePage had to say about protecting the needy when he released his budget last week, the reality is far different. Low- and middle-income Mainers will see their economic security further eroded by property tax increases and deep cuts to basic services if lawmakers go along with his plan.

This budget proposal is the culmination of a four-year, two-step process that began in 2011.

Step 1: Enact income … Read the rest

Maine Working Families Cannot Make Ends Meet

January 16, 2013 by

Maine ranks 21st in the number of low-income working families

A new study shows that 29% of Maine families cannot meet basic needs, even though they are working, often more than one job.

The number of low-income working families – sometimes called the working poor – totaled 37,000 in Maine in 2011 according to the Working Poor Families Project (WPFP) in a new report.

The report says:

There is a

Read the rest

Community is important to our economy too

January 14, 2013 by

Our political leaders often are singularly focused on business growth as our economic savior.

And there is no doubt, businesses are vital as employers, purchasers, and investors.

But a recent study by the National Conference on Citizenship shows that our communities –and most important, citizens’ participation in community life –lowers unemployment.

The study shows when we vote, volunteer, and work with each other on community issues we are more apt … Read the rest