Out of work, out of hope – This is what a depressed economy looks like

September 21, 2017 by

James Myall

Tens of thousands of Mainers disheartened by the dim prospects of good paying, middle-class jobs have given up looking for work. Some are discouraged to the point of despair, turning to substance misuse and even suicide. That’s the stark and somber finding of MECEP’s latest report, The State of Working Maine 2017.

Using numerous data sets and incorporating the latest national research, the State of Working MaineRead the rest

Women have the right to vote, but still don’t get equal pay for equal work

August 26, 2017 by
Sarah Austin

Sarah Austin

Today marks the anniversary of the 19th Amendment which granted white women the constitutional right to vote. The Equal Pay Act of 1963, Civil Rights Act of 1964, and Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009 are just some of the laws that have extended protections against

discrimination for women since the passage of the 19th amendment. Yet, there is still more progress to be made … Read the rest

Pine Tree Development Zones fail to create quality jobs in areas of need 

August 23, 2017 by
Sarah Austin

Sarah Austin

As part of a multiyear review of business tax credits, the state’s government accountability office reported today that the Pine Tree Development Zone (PTDZ) program does not live up to its promise of creating good jobs in higher unemployment areas. 

Pine tree development zones, sometimes called enterprise or opportunity zones in other parts of the country, designate geographic areas in need of jobs and economic development and offer … Read the rest

#DefendDACA: Dreamers are good for jobs and the economy 

August 23, 2017 by
Marpheen Chann

Marpheen Chann

New Mainers are part of the solution to Maine’s demographic problems and help us fill labor needs. Beneficiaries of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), or “Dreamers”, are those who came to America as minors, have built and maintained their lives here, and know no other place as home. That is why we need to stop the efforts to dismantle DACA and allow Dreamers to fully participate and … Read the rest

A New Great Depression in Rural Maine

July 31, 2017 by
James Myall

James Myall, Policy Analyst

New data released by the US Bureau of Economic Analysis provide more evidence of Maine’s lackluster economy, and the failure of policies pursued by Governor LePage and his allies. In the first quarter of 2017, Maine’s economy saw no real growth. Zero.  That was the lowest rate in New England, and the seventh-worst performance of any state. These new data are just the latest in a … Read the rest

Despite Latest Revisions, Senate GOP Health Care Proposals Would Still Gut MaineCare

July 14, 2017 by
James Myall

James Myall

On Thursday, US Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell laid out the Republicans’ latest plan to take health care away from thousands of Mainers.

The many Republican proposals to repeal the Affordable Care Act have consistently been dangerous to the economic and physical well-being of Mainers. This latest revision is no different. By maintaining the most damaging part of their proposal, Senate Republicans have shown that their real goal Read the rest

MaineCare is Failing to Tackle Maine’s Opioid Crisis. Voters Have a Chance to Fix That.

July 13, 2017 by
James Myall

James Myall

Across the United States, Medicaid is playing a crucial role in responding to the fight against the opioid crisis—except in Maine—where one person per day is dying from a drug-related overdose, most of which are caused by opioid use. That’s the stark conclusion to be drawn from data presented in a new report from the Urban Institute, which shows Medicaid spending on anti-addiction medications up 155% Read the rest

Forget “Taxachusetts” or Connecticut – Maine should worry about being…Maine

June 29, 2017 by
James Myall

James Myall

A vibrant economy that works for everyone needs strong public services, and above all, good schools. And that requires everyone to pay their fair share towards those services. Recently, opponents of the voter-approved surcharge on high earners for education have sounded shrill warnings that Maine will be labelled a “high tax” state like Massachusetts or Connecticut. But the reality is that the alternative is far worse. Without … Read the rest

Looming state shutdown dangerous for Maine’s economy

June 23, 2017 by
Sarah Austin

Sarah Austin

As the state’s two year budget comes due, Republican lawmakers continue to hold negotiations hostage over demands to repeal the voter approved 3% surcharge on household income over $200,000. The state is just seven days away from a potential state shutdown if a budget isn’t enacted on June 30th. Analysis released by the Maine State Employees Association and MECEP Friday shows the devastating impact a state shutdown could … Read the rest

A Higher Minimum Wage is Good for Tipped Workers

April 4, 2017 by
James Myall

James Myall

Workers who rely on tips don’t benefit from the existence of a lower tipped minimum wage. That’s the conclusion of a variety of sources that compare the earnings of workers in those states without a “tip credit” and those which maintain one. Maine’s tipped minimum wage is due to be gradually phased out by 2027, but a series of pieces of legislation have been introduced to roll back … Read the rest

Next Page »