Comments for: LePage orders $35.5M in temporary state spending cuts, including $12.6M in school aid

Posted Dec. 27, 2012, at 1:04 p.m.
Last modified Dec. 27, 2012, at 5:31 p.m.

AUGUSTA | Gov. Paul LePage on Thursday ordered state agencies to make $35.5 million in temporary cuts to keep the current year’s budget in balance as state revenue collections fall short of earlier projections. While nearly every agency will have to trim expenses as a result of the order, …

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  • Anonymous

    How come he continues to blame those with the least resources for causing the problem? We are yet to hear him say the tax cuts for the wealthiest was a mistake and need to be rescinded.

    • Anonymous

      The spendocrats swapping entitlements for votes is Maine’s problem.This article does not say what the cuts are.Hopefully it is in entitlements.

      • Anonymous

        You TPers didn’t learn a thing from the last election!

        • StillRelaxin

          Sadly the TPers lack of ability to learn is one of the only things that normal people have to look forward to in 2014. Good thing Mainers are tough and resourceful we’re going to need every bit of that to get through the next two years.

          • Anonymous

            exactly right with a democrat house and senate we will just keep digging in that thirty year old hole.

          • Anonymous

            We owe hospitals another 500 million already. He tries to cut Mainecare and the libs scream. Never ends. They scream when he cuts, and they scream when he doesn’t cut.

          • Anonymous

            Actually it is Federal Law that is stopping him from using his chain saw on Mainecare. Those darned laws just keep getting in the way don’t they?

          • Anonymous

            The budget shortfall is due to the Obama economy not living up to expectations. No money no spendy. :)

          • castinem8

            Maine gets MORE money back from the Feds than it sends in. Check out the chart on the right hand side. Maine gets back $1.78 for every $1 it sends in. I’d say Obama really favors Maine. http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2011/11/states-federal-taxes-spending-charts-maps

          • Anonymous

            Oh come on Cheesey. You know that is a bunch of hogwash. The US economy is like a horse at the starting gate. It is already to run, but the idiots (both Dems and Reps)in Washington are more interested in putting on a political soap opera then in doing the people’s business. We have had months and months of positive news from a financial standpoint and the only thing holding back the economy is this “Fiscal Cliff” BS which is a manufactured crisis because our esteemed politicians couldn’t come to an agreement months ago.

          • Anonymous

            The libs scream every time they see his name. It’s getting kinda funny. They are so use to seeing “their” governors not doing anything, they get scared when one really tries to work for all the people of Maine.

          • Anonymous

            I think that it’s funny watching LePage just simply pushing his self destruct button. Time to scuttle this ship! “Stop following me! Mr. Tracker guy…..I’m tellin ya, I won’t be a nice guy anymore”……..Well, Grumpy, I hope you are proud of this one, no one else is. He wasn’t in office for a month and he hit national news for an unpopular and unwarranted act; removing a painting that depicts Maine laborers over a multitude of decades that was shown in an executive department that deals with…….Labor. He seems to enjoy the negative national publicity. Being the so called self proclaimed antagonist,……he’s paying for it now.

          • Anonymous

            I didn’t vote for warm and cuddly. I voted for some one to get Maine out of the mess it has been in for years. As far as the mural goes…put it on E-bay and get some of the 65K back. He got my vote last time and will get it again. But I do know how you feel, I have to live with another four years of the great campaigner that was put back in the White House.

          • Anonymous

            Warm and cuddly? Oh…..I guess your voted for this guy who says nothing positive about the state, enjoys to “agitate” (his own words, not mine), like’s to blame, blame , the teachers, the state workers, the colleges. He realistically doesn’t have anyone to blame for this mess now does he? But his mirror on the wall must be busted, or else he refuses to take a gander at blame.

          • Anonymous

            LePage is a waste of time. He doesn’t know how to govern. He gets in his own way with that big, stupid mouth – making comments that actually hindered getting anything worthwhile done. He should have shut his mouth and started statewide accounting and review. I would have thought an ‘accomplished’ businessman, faced with Maine’s budgetary problems would have done across the board review. No, he had a few pet projects and spent the rest of his time yapping to alienate people. IF that is your idea of a leader, then grumpy grampy you can take some of the blame for the return of the Democrats.

          • Anonymous

            I don’t scream – but he isn’t my Govenor, he is not the people’s governor. Maybe he is the Governor of short sighted fools. Look at his curtailment document and see how foolish LePage is.

          • Anonymous

            It wasn’t the democrats in Maine that didn’t allow him his Mainecare cuts, it was the federal law that did that, remember?, a frivolous and costly law suit that was thrown out not too long ago? He’s cut, cut, cutting……everything but the tax breaks for the wealthier. If he’s going to cut? then why isn’t he cutting that?

          • Anonymous

            All of the wealthy Maine people are now residents of Florida.

          • Anonymous

            That’s how stupid they are. They ignore FACTS.

          • castinem8

            We’ll stop screaming in 2014 when he is no longer Gov.

          • Anonymous

            If he cut methodically and logically it would be one thing. He doesn’t do across the board cuts – look at the curtailment document.

        • Anonymous

          Certainly did there is more takers than makers the election showed that.

          • Anonymous

            can you post anything that is an original thought and not a talking point you heard on the radio??

          • Anonymous

            Parrots can only repeat. They do not have the ability to think.

          • Anonymous

            you beat me to it. Next he’ll be “kicking the can down the road”.

          • Anonymous

            No kidding…makers and takers…that’s all he’s got.

          • Anonymous

            Is that all ya got there timjy? Makers and takers. Makers and takers. Makers and takers. Makers and takers. It’s all that espouses out of your teensey-eensey wittle bwain…got something else?

        • Anonymous

          Did I miss it? A cut to the $9 million subsidy to the Maine Maritime Academy to continue as a sports and spa facility for a student body of which 1/2 of the 900 body are recruited jocks from out of state. Ok.. at least we now know whose calf get fatted and whose ox get gored. On this sinking ship it’s the captain and crew that get the life boats .. the hacks get the life jackets.. and the children get the speed course swimming lessons .. the seniors get to hold their prayers.

          • Preston Nethercutt

            Seriously, cool, what is it with you and MMA? You seem obsessed. I am sincere in my desire to know why you feel the way you do. With all the budgetary problems that are alluded to in the article, why are you so very concerned about an institution that receives such a small amount, in terms of percent of the total budget, and produces professionally qualified graduates? I truly want to understand your position.

          • Anonymous

            The answer my friend is that you (and most here) are under a well marketed public relations illlusion or you have succumbed to the delusion that MMA’s charter hasn’t been warped beyond recognition. It’s obvious that you don’t understand power politics, the recent history of the MMA, and basic financial accounting. The good news is that slowly the MMA is in recovery. The old coach made president was enticed to resigned with a 17% kicker boost his pension, the previous Vice President of Finance (and student affairs) committed suicide last spring, Sen. Rosen (its protector) has left the Senate, the owner of this newspaper has left the MMA’s Board of Trustees, and the new president is restoring a degree of control over the alcoholic and drug proned student body. However, that said.. there is much more work to be done.. and the MMA should be privatized and get the h*** off the public dole.

        • budsview

          sure we did, do not trust any politicians. we have a few good people in washington and next election we will get a few more.

        • Anonymous

          The Governor is incompetent and he should resign.

        • Anonymous

          We will soon find out. The Governor is required to send the specifics of these cuts to the Speaker and Senate President. He’s not going to be able to hush-hush this, and the bottom line is; his administration is accountable, not the new legislature.

      • Anonymous

        The guy is incompetent and he should resign.

      • Anonymous

        did you read the article?? the cuts are relatively clear

        What is the purpose of government and taxation? I am not asking you what YOU( and the right and newt or rush, or beck ,or grover or, or,or) think the purpose of government should be but what it ‘s purpose actually IS. Yes the right has been TRYING to rewrite the purpose of government to their OWN liking for several decades with mixed results.

        Do you know what “entittlements” actually are?? or are you just throwing the word around because the right does . Entitlements are programs you are “entitled” to BECAUSE (this is the really important part) you actually contribute to them directly THRU specific and designated taxation …..LIKE drum roll …..Social security and medicare…

        • Anonymous

          Indeed, There is a difference between entitled and eligible. You are “entitled” to social security after you retire. You are eligible for heat assistance. How quickly people forget, that there are very, very few entitlement programs.

        • Anonymous

          The problem comes of course when people who may be eligible for certain programs also believe they are entitled. Of course they are not. Especially during tough budgetary times.

          • Anonymous

            The problem is when the right uses the two words interchangebly as IF they are the same thing.. They are NOT..And timmy avoided answering my question.. Government and taxation have a very specific purpose ( yes i know the right wants to eliminate both).

      • Anonymous

        We will soon find out; he is required to send specifics to the Speaker and Senate President, who will then inform the Appropriations Committee. No matter what: his administration is accountable , not the new legislature which hasn’t voted on a single bill. This is his mess, he strong armed the last legislature, he ranted and raved, and refused to compromise……even with his own party. This is all him.

      • Anonymous

        Lie pages retirement fund would be a good start.

      • Anonymous

        Go to Maine.gov and you can find the extent of his foolish decision making in the curtailments document. If you can’t, ask your state rep to send it to you – mine did.

    • StillRelaxin

      Think about all the wacky things he’s said and done over the last two years. How many times did he show even a hint of remorse or apologize for anything? Never. You’re judging what he should do based on your own intelligence, logic and value system. Clearly your normal expectations represent a bar that is set much too high for a man like Mr. LePage to rise above.

    • Anonymous

      He is incompetent and he should resign.

      • StillRelaxin

        Many Mainer’s today are probably thinking that you’re being polite in only calling him incompetent. Putting the hammer down on children, folks who are poor, sick or elderly while appeasing top income earners with lavish tax cuts is beyond incompetent, it’s kinda sick. Just look at all the jobs and economic gains we got out of that move! Nothing but more debt.

        Now keep in mind that this is all based upon numbers that have been calculated and shared with us this month by an administration that has a two year history of changing its facts and figures on a monthly basis. So who knows, next month we may be the most profitable state to do business in within the entire country…or not.

        • Anonymous

          Oh please. Everyone in Maine is old sick and poor. Seriously the state is in decline it’s too late to save it. There is nothing left North of Portland…very sad.

          • StillRelaxin

            From Paul LePage’s mind and mouth right into yours. Watch Mainers prove you both wrong.

        • Anonymous

          I enjoy reading your comments ;-)

    • Anonymous

      So cuts are to be made across the board are they? The author of this article must have left out the part about all of the savings that will be realized by cuts in the Governor’s office. I am sure that there must be some fat that could be trimmed in that office.

      • Anonymous

        The Governor is incompetent and he should resign.

      • Tyke

        From the spreadsheet of cuts (see link below) – Governor’s Office: $30,226. Supposed “savings” are booked from money that previously hadn’t been spent even though it was budgeted. In other words, no actual cuts are being made, they just left a position or two open for awhile but will now fill them.

        .

        http://www.maine.gov/tools/whatsnew/attach.php?id=473939&an=1

      • Anonymous

        Yeah, I was thinking dropping some his Federal Court cases
        would help save unneed government costs.

    • Anonymous

      Yes, I agree, Maine is hurting, and Maine public schools are really hurting. Please, if anybody has any power with LePage, tell him Maine can’t afford private charter schools because our public schools, that take care of the needs of all Maine students, regardless of how gifted or how needy they may be, are down to bare bones! However, if he must pursue his “special” school agenda because public schools are not just good enough for him…he should pay for his misplaced initiative by shutting down half of the Department of Education…and this would work because Maine communities have always governed their own schools much better than the Maine Dept. of Education ever did!

  • Anonymous

    This is just proof that the “rich” are under taxed. After all, if my bills don’t get paid because I’ve foolishly spent my income, and did not prepare ahead, isnt it someone elses resposibility to take care of my debt beause they make more money than I do?

  • Lord Whiteman

    Lepage said he was a great business man who would cut state spending and pay off our dept’s.
    Instead he increased state spending and increased state dept.
    So even though we gave the Republicans billions more to work with their 2 year budget is millions of dollars in the red.

    • Anonymous

      The Governor never claimed to be a great business man. I’d like to see that quote. He was a general manager of a Maine discount chain and made an honest living by working. His job, as governor, is to propose budgets and work with the budget the legislature passes. And dept. levels are approved by the voters, except for the Government Facilities dept., which doesn’t require taxpayer approval, thanks to now US Senator Angus King.

      • Lord Whiteman

        His job is to promote Maine and write balanced budgets. Instead Lepage insults our state and our nation while he gives away Maine jobs and tax dollars to his pals up in Canada.

  • Anonymous

    I have a good idea…why don’t we start by cutting spending in the State House? Turn off a few more lights and maybe go with CFLs or LEDs. Turn the heat down to something reasonable like 68 and 62 overnight. Maybe take a walk instead of wasting gas in the car. I often wonder how much they could save by buying cheaper paper for their printers and copiers and maybe being a little more careful before printing so they don’t end up throwing away reams of paper a day. How about using cheaper pens? The way I see it is that government always wants to cut the budget by cutting the help to their citizenry. Maybe we should start at the top. There is so much wasteful spending going on at the highest level. I know I have to watch my energy costs at home to stay within my budget and I have to plan my trips so I don’t waste gas. How come they don’t?

    • Anonymous

      Down to 68??????? Many, many Mainers would be very grateful to be able to keep “THEIR HOMES” at such a cozy and comfy teperature! I say let the “PEOPLES HOUSE'” be a little chilly and see how that feels for a while!

      • Anonymous

        I am in such agreement and yes, that would also be a comfy temp for my house too. I was going with the “recommended” temp for homes. There are many out there who would be thrilled to just be able to turn the thermostat on and get warm. My point is that these cuts need to start at the top. Why should they all be so toasty while the rest of us are wearing t-shirts, shirts, sweaters, and gloves in the office? Why shouldn’t they have to worry if there will be enough money to buy toner for the printer?

    • Anonymous

      /facetiousness on
      Annie, while we’re at it, why don’t we just sell the Statehouse like Pennsylvania did…then lease it back and let the new owners bear the cost of efficiency improvements. Ridiculous, you say? When you don’t have enough operating revenue(in the short term) you do what Pennsylvania did to pay your bills…either that or cut spending on [partially discretionary]social programs(there’s not much more to cut on infrastructure maintenance – the roads have to be plowed, etc.). That tactic is just another stunt for kicking the can down the road – borrowing on the future using the taxing authority of the State as collateral.
      /facetiousness off

      • Anonymous

        Look, we all know that the State House enjoys an operating budget that many Maine businesses would be thrilled to have. My suggestion was simply to start at the top regarding cutting budgets. Why shouldn’t they have to tighten their belts too?

        • Anonymous

          I don’t disagree with what you said. I was just being a wiseguy.

          • Anonymous

            Sorry, I just re-read and saw the “facetiousness”. It just kills me that government on a regional and national level keep taking away from those that need it while they still get to sit warm and comfortable and don’t have to worry about where the money is going to come from to pay for their supplies. I wonder who brown bags it at the State House or are lunches considered a “business expense” and passed on to us?

          • Anonymous

            Not as many as used to at MSHA.

            The state has made cuts since Gov Lepage was elected. It’s much better now than three years ago. He gets fought on every cut, though. Read the papers and comments.

          • budsview

            and the politicians blame each other like they are all working hard and earning their benefits. the royalty in washington and augusta are the problem, every time they claim to be helping they make things worse, for us, their lifestyle never changes

          • Tyke

            Staff pay for their own lunches. Legislators get a fixed daily stipend for meals as they always have.

    • Anonymous

      Good suggestions. If only…..

    • Tyke

      Some areas/offices in the State House already have programmable thermostats that turn down the heat at night and on weekends. I’m not sure if they all do though. The operating budgets have also been but so things like paper usage and pen costs have been reduced.

  • asportsfan

    LePage has complained over and over again that our students are not meeting the standards at schools. He has said that it is unacceptable that our schools are not providing the education needed; and he has even (lied) about out of state schools looking down on our children/students because they are from Maine.

    So with all that said, he now is cutting over $12 million dollars in education? How does he expect things to get better if he 1) Doesn’t support education and 2) continually cuts funding to our schools?

    I don’t understand him. I really don’t.

    • FELT

      Spending more money on public education doesn’t produce better educated students; were that true the best scores would be in Washington, D.C. and New Jersey.

      The bulk of the state budget is in education and social/health services.

      You have some secret budget line that has $35m in it to cut instead?

      Maybe the State can sell some of it’s holdings….does the USM really need to hang onto the Stone house estate in Freeport?

      Time to tax non-profits since many of them are now competing head to head with profit making companies who pay taxes…now it’s SADDLE BACK, who will be tomorrow?

      • asportsfan

        It isn’t about spending more money on education- it is about him TAKING AWAY from education- meaning schools are going to have to cut teachers and programs which will not help students.

        • Anonymous

          your statement has another meaning : cut teachers and programs that do not help students !……..Right on sportsfan !

        • Anonymous

          Did you watch what happened in Madawaska? The people said to cut the school budget 500,000. Before they went to negotiate the problem they had a list of cuts that they could make to get them through the ordeal. Then they met and came up with another plan. It seems funny that when they were faced with the ultimatum they came up with some cuts. If schools do this a little at a time then our costs will go down.

      • Anonymous

        “Spending more money on public education doesn’t produce better educated student” Actually it does … the trends show that those who spend the least have the lowest test scores ;and those who pay the most have the best test scores.

        • Anonymous

          This is contrary to all studies of public education; and there are plenty of high performing/low cost districts in Maine…unless of course, you have a credible study to cite? Do you?

          Here’s one from HUFFINGTON POST:

          “Despite pumping billions of dollars into public schools for more than 40 years, the most recent data show a public education system that cannot turn money alone into positive results.

          Even after a decade of “No Child Left Behind” initiatives and a recent surge of more than $80 billion in federal stimulus since 2009 intended to lift student performance quickly, there is no significant gain.” http://www.huffingtonpost.com/bob-williams/public-spending-education-_b_1883387.html

          • FELT

            One has to understand that over 60% of a school budget is in personnel. Among the budget reduction tactics for a superintendent to use are early retires that move a person from a budget line to a pension, and replacement with someone costing far less; going to flex time budgeting for subjects not fully subscribed; scaling back the lavish perks—difficult unless you can renegotiate the contract; and cutting back on released time programs like off-campus training; contracting out electives to schools/colleges that specialize in distance learning options; and reducing sports expenses at lower grades.

            The other aspect of school personnel budgets is that an intact faculty gets a continuous stream of pay increases and, for example, a new school will start out ‘cheap’ but as the faculty ages, it gets more and more expensive…. but should also get better and better.

            The trick is to balance experience w/younger, less expensive faculty; and to build flexibility into a faculty with PT teachers.

          • Anonymous

            it is probably closer to 80-90% for staff . What are schools BUT staff…probably 10% for supplies, heat ,utilities etc..

          • Anonymous

            facts are facts Check out the US Dept of ed web site , it shows cost per pupil and test results … the more $ spent per student the better the test scores. The worst test scores are in the south where they pay the least per student .The best scores are in new england were we spend more per pupil.. Those are the facts; you might not like them thnough. “No child left behind” had lots of problems unrelated to costs .

          • Anonymous

            Certainly you can spend a lot more and expect better results. The trick is to get the best “bang for the buck”. Spending more does not always equate to that, especially if more goes into administrative cost or say when the cost of buildings upkeep exceeds the amount spent directly for the students benefit. I remember quite a while ago Forbes did a study on just that.

          • Anonymous

            BTW-check out this site (one of a few I googled) http://www.nationaljournal.com/thenextamerica/education/analysis-how-much-states-spend-on-their-kids-really-does-matter-20121016
            Maine ranked 6th in spending in 2009 but 23rd in ranking for the quality of education.

          • Anonymous

            Honestly Organicgardener you should be paying as much attention to the cuts in Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries…..LePage doesn’t seem to understand that these are cornerstones to our economy.

      • Anonymous

        They should do away with the university system and make them go private. See how many campuses are open when that happens.

        • Anonymous

          apparently you haven’t heard about the “private non profit school “scandals ” —–ripping off taxpayer ,students and their parents

      • Anonymous

        If non-profits lose their tax exemptions, wouldn’t it make sense to cancel the tax deductions contributors qualify for as well? If that were to happen, would serious reduction in non-profits’ income follow? Since many of them fill in the holes left by government cut-backs in social services, how practical would cancelling their tax exemptions be?

    • StillRelaxin

      Kinda like he talks out of both sides of this mouth huh? This is what happens to all politicians who get their operational orders from folks who are so far away and so far out of touch that they have no idea what their local representative may or may not have already publicly stated. And Mr. LePage wonders why Democrats want to keep track of what he’s saying in public. HELLO, is there anyone in there Paulie?

    • Anonymous

      It’s perfectly simple. This is retribution for MEA bucking him and for the pushback against some of his comments about the education system.

      • asportsfan

        Unfortunately, that is true. What is also unfortunate is that a good number of teachers are NOT in the unions- meaning he is punishing many teachers and students because of someone else.

        • budsview

          how many? where are the numbers and sources for your claim?

          • asportsfan

            How many? Well I don’t know exact numbers, but at the school I work at there are about 35 teachers. I know of 21 who are NOT in the union. I bet if you looked at schools around you, there are many teachers who are not union members and are being punished by LePage as if we are.

          • Anonymous

            what school? Is the school in Maine? Is it a public school? i just don’t believe yours or “jacob’s ” reporting .

          • Anonymous

            And why don’t you WANT to believe …pretty foolish? Because it goes against your pretty foolish ideas?

        • Anonymous

          baloney

          • Jacob Newcomb

            Same goes for my school. Just over half are union members. You TPers don’t know as much as you think about our public schools or the teachers who work for them to make the kids lives better.

    • Davida Willette

      he using schools as hostage

    • Anonymous

      Perhaps get back to reading , writing and arithmetic and cut out some extracurricular activities.

      • Anonymous

        Sounds like the K-8, one room school education of a century ago.

      • Anonymous

        how about computers and foreign language and sciences?

    • budsview

      you are saying that money is the only answer to a good education, throw more money and the results will follow. how long are we gonna wait for those results? it has been a long long time with increasing costs and things are not getting better. why is that?

      • Anonymous

        Did you think the cost would stay the same as 2000? Actually, Maine students are getting a good education in spite of our Governor.

        • FELT

          The scores on tests have dropped well below the mean, despite various governors and one of the lowest pupil to teacher ratios in the U.S. These are mediocre results despite spending.

          This observation by George Will in 1993 is still somewhat true:

          “…[T]he 10 states with the lowest per pupil spending included four — North Dakota, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah — among the 10 states with the top SAT scores. Only one of the 10 states with the highest per pupil expenditures — Wisconsin — was among the 10 states with the highest SAT scores. New Jersey has the highest per pupil expenditures, an astonishing $10,561, which teachers’ unions elsewhere try to use as a negotiating benchmark. New Jersey’s rank regarding SAT scores? Thirty-ninth… The fact that the quality of schools… [fails to correlate] with education appropriations will have no effect on the teacher unions’ insistence that money is the crucial variable. The public education lobby’s crumbling last line of defense is the miseducation of the public.”

          What is missing in Maine are two critical variables…the impact of competition from private and now charter schools….and ‘wise’ spending of available monies.

          Maine has a long standing tradition of high school education by private academies, and despite the threat of consolidated districts forcing them out of business they continue to survive on less money than comparable public high schools and produce better educated students…100% of Catherine McAuley High School graduates in 2012 went to college!

          The existence of a large number of private academies provides Augusta’s decision makers with a broad range of comparisions…for example, Greater Bangor Christian’s annual tuition is $4,225 while McAuley’s is $13,250. Both are accredited by NESEC; both offer substantial scholarships. An education at McAuley has long been considered by parents as exceptional, as are their sport’s teams.

          Can Maine’s public schools reduce expenses to match reduced State tuition? Of course they can. The problem is whether they can make wise use of available money given the stranglehold the union contracts have over most of their budgets.

          • Anonymous

            UH why are you using the SAT test FROM 1993 (!!!) as the basis for comparison??? “Common” is that you playing that ploy again?? Don’t the majority in those (top 10 states) states tend to take the ACT test not the SAT test?

            As you know MAINE is the ONLY state that uses the SAT test to test ALL students ,not just the college bound ones as is typical .So you are comparing apples and oranges and coming up with fruit salad..

            Why are you not using the USDOE “report card’ which compares states—- states to states on the same NATIONAL test, same sub ject matter same grade level … I will tell you why ….because it shows MAINE exceeds the national average and is in the top 10 in the country. #1 in science in fact !!!

            Getting your info from ( or work for ) the heritage center, are we ? Their goal is to privatize ALL public education and to PROFIT from taxpayer $$’s –free market and all that jazz..

            “Maine has a long standing tradition of high school education by private academies,’ UH publicly FUNDED “private acadamies…like Thornton academies that has acted as the HS for saco /biddeford ..I’ve changed my mind IS that is you Commisioner BOWEN?

            Note McAuley cost /tuition per pupil is higher then ANY MAINE PUBLIC school, including Portland .and funded BY the CATHOLIC church NOT taxpayers( yet) . How did Bangor christian do on the SAT or national test scores?? BOTH are PRIVATE choices and should remain private pay.

      • FELT

        That’s what the unions say all the time.

    • Mary Stubbs

      You don’t understand education and the enormous waste. Explain to me how spending more is going to improve education and tudent achievement? Where would you spend the money? Teacher salaries? New desks?

  • I have a great idea, why not cut welfare. I find it sick when someone ny age goes to a store and uses food stamps, and then turns around and using a wad of cash for booze and cigerettes

    • asportsfan

      and then pulls out their iphone to make a call to someone…

      • Anonymous

        With the perfect nails and jeans that cost $150.

        • Davida Willette

          i dont have perfect nails and jeans

      • Anonymous

        you have to remember part of your taxes on cell phones and phones pay for them to get free phones.

        • Tyke

          That lie has been repeatedly debunked.

          .

          This specific program, SafeLink, started under President George Bush, with grants from an independent company created under President Bill Clinton, which was a legacy of an act passed under President Franklin Roosevelt, which was influenced by an agreement reached between telecommunications companies and the administration of President Woodrow Wilson.

          http://www.factcheck.org/2009/10/the-obama-phone/

          • Anonymous

            and who pays for this program?

          • Anonymous

            “average people,” defined as those who don’t envy or resent elderly and disabled folk.

          • Tyke

            As the links shows, it is 100% paid for by private sources. Not one cent of tax money goes to the program.

          • FELT

            Frederick Pollak, the head of TracFone Wireless who runs this program contributed $56,300 to Democratic campaigns during the last election, including $35,800 to OBAMA2012. …follow the money find the truth.

          • Tyke

            So you are implying that private citizens are not permitted to donate to a charitable cause (one that receives NO government funding) if they are also donating to a politician?
            .
            In what universe?

        • Anonymous

          Oh the horror – how will we ever survive if we pay a few more pennies to put Grammy’s mind at ease? Gosh, I hope you never have to deal with any *real* problems in your life.

          • Anonymous

            pennies, look at the phone bill and see how much those pennies add up. hardly pennies

          • Anonymous

            cell phones with minimal minutes for emergencies for the elderly and disabled cost very little. The fed & state taxes, fuel surcharges, etc, etc, on all of our utility bills feed lots of causes – most go into general funds, I suppose. The cost for this speck of an item (the cell phones) would not amt. to more than pennies. People can add more minutes if they can afford it, but the basic concept is a good one, and the cost is an insignificant amt of $.

          • Anonymous

            I do not have a problem, though pennies from phones, low cost electricity and other things, with the other taxes do add up. I am not saying I have a problem with the program. Though programs like food stamps, being able to buy, water, soda and other things. (though in some cases water can be a necessity.

          • Anonymous

            OMG, brucefl, I think this is the first time I ever gave you an ^ on a statement – glad to hear that you DO have some compassion – have a great New Year!

          • Anonymous

            Actually I have a lot more compassion. As with a lot of people balance is never easy. Though Independent I think taxes could be increased on the wealthiest portion of the population. But, in the same instance you need to stop people going to the Methadone clinics in a group in one car and each one collecting travel pay, or so I hear.

    • Anonymous

      Oh Becky, Becky…don’t buy into the class warfare perpetrated by the super wealthy. You are a talking example of why educational funding must NOT be decimated.

    • Anonymous

      Education would help people get off assistance yet its the first thing Paulie can think of to cut..Why not.. he got his education.. the heck with everyone else..

      • Anonymous

        Good point. Most everything he says or does is counterproductive.

    • Davida Willette

      i dont drink BOOZE

      • asportsfan

        and your point is?

        If you are on food stamps and using them correctly, then you are not doing what Becky was talking about. She is talking about the ones who use food stamps but then turn around and have iphones and get weekly manicures, etc. People who can spend their money on themselves and trivial things, but can’t seem to find the money to buy groceries.

        • FELT

          TATTOOS, HDTV’s and cell phone service are essentials!

      • Anonymous

        thats good. booze ages people in dog years.

      • Anonymous

        She is throwing out stereotypes…..not a very helpful thing to do.

    • Tyke

      The revenue shortfall is in the state general fund. The Food stamp program (now called SNAP) is 100% federally funded.
      .
      A discussion of whether you think federal funding to SNAP should be cut may be interesting and appropriate at some point, but it has nothing to do with the current issue at hand.

  • winnhawinnhachickindinnah

    This guys is a real joke!!! This guy has no clue as to what he is doing. Let tax the poor to feed the rich. We need a Robin Hood to save us here.

  • BobbyB

    Putting students first again. What a blow hard! How about eliminating the state department of education and all the unfunded mandates that keep getting passed on to the local municipalities.

    • Anonymous

      Talk to your local legislator. Great idea!

  • StillRelaxin

    So if communities want to keep funding their schools their property taxes will have to take a pretty big jump. Is this not simply an indirect tax increase to the majority of Maine citizens? It would make some sense if Mr. LePage was also offering to cut the taxes we little folk pay into the state, but that’s not likely going to happen anytime soon. Mr. LePage needs us to provide revenue in order to support the tax cuts he’s already handed to the State’s upper income folks. Nuts!

    • Anonymous

      What about the 70,000 lower income, but working, taxpayers that will not be paying state income taxes as of next week? People who rail against the “tax breaks” for the rich never seem to mention the “tax breaks” for the working people who are trying to make it without government help.

      • StillRelaxin

        Those cuts were so small that I’m willing to bet, 1. Most of those folks won’t even notice them. 2. If given the choice most of those 70,000 folks would probably give back that meaningless amount if they knew it would be spent on others in need. The funny thing is that those 70,000 folks probably already do give back much more than LePage’s tax cut to them via their own chosen charities. All the while those at the top who received thousands in tax cuts hoard their wealth and complain that they have to pay any taxes at all. It’s a nutty world we’ve created.

        • Anonymous

          Still… my math doesn’t match your betting. If I make $25,000, and the top tax rate is 7.95%, I will save $1,987 in Maine income taxes. Now, maybe that’s not much for you, but I’ll bet the person making $25,000 will surely notice the nice pop in the paycheck. At $25,000, doubt many people are worrying about “the next guy.” As far as those at the top, they are busy moving to warmer climes where there in no income tax.

          • Anonymous

            Isn’t it nice for them that they can afford to do that….they have not had to pay their fair share of taxes so they can have homes all over the place. They don’t have much to complain about.

          • Tyke

            The top rate currently only kicks in on income over $19,950 after all deductions and exemptions are subtracted out. The average Maine tax payer will save about $19 with the rate changes.

          • Anonymous

            I’d like to see your math..

            Are you saying anyone making $25,000 or less will pay no income taxes? I’d say that would be a lot more then 70,000 Mainers.. Think it thru Bob, you’re being sold a bill of goods and you are going to be MIGHTY disappointed IF you make $25,000 and think you will pay NO taxes under LePage’s plan.

      • Anonymous

        Save up that tax break for the working people who are trying to make it without government help and you’ll be able to afford a Big Mac after 2 or 3 months.

      • Anonymous

        ….because 50% of the “cuts’ go to the top 10%.

  • Anonymous

    Let’s be honest here – it is no surprise that state sales taxes and income taxes are below anticipated levels. Maine always had a huge underground economy & active bartering system – it’s growing exponentially during these difficult economic times. From pizza joints, to general laborers, auto mechanics, landscapers, snow removal, to farm labor…tangible items are swapped for labor all the time, and cash remains King. So, when a contractor offers you a $20/hr cash deal vs. $35/hr. if receipts are required…which offer do most people take? How many small stores do you frequent that will lop off the state sales tax if you pay cash? I don’t fault the small business owners…when everybody else is doing the same thing, it’s the only way they can stay competitive and in business. I don’t know the answer, but I see this trend worsening as there are fewer and fewer “above the table” jobs here. I am NO fan of this Governor, but I don’t see this problem as a partisan one, and I don’t see much of a solution ahead. Any takers?

    • FELT

      Ironically, this is the economy favored by immigrants and refugees from Africa since it is similar to the one they fled.

      Then you have the Internet economy that enables us to avoid paying sales tax, and harms in-state businesses. Buy it out of state, and have it installed by a local contractor seems to be more and more common.

      Both the barter/underground economy and gaming the sales tax system are survival strategies that more and more of use are reluctantly having to use.

      I don’t envy the Governor having to reduce spending so much and it is so easy for the Democrats in the Legislature to ‘put it on the credit card’ and keep on spending with borrowed money…. the road to Greece is all too easily greased by liberal democrats living on O.P.M. or a trust fund.

      • Anonymous

        uh it’s the economy “favored” by redneck joe the jack of all traders , plowing in winter, landscaping in summer .selling wood in winter chopping it in the summer . as for sales taxes defered to consumer NEVER happens ..Sales taxes collected from consumer BUT.NOT turned into the state YUP…happens all the time, I hear.

  • Anonymous

    The state is spending $2 million more a week in MaineCare vs. last year. That’s $104 million a year for those of you without a calculator. That is where the problem is. That is money going directly to support those Mainers with the “least resources.”

    • Anonymous

      How much is being wolfed up by providers overcharging for their services? There have been several stories in the past few months about providers bilking the MaineCare system for big bucks. Nutting wasn’t the first and he certainly won’t be the last. The health care industry needs to be regulated – $5 for an aspirin during a hospital stay is outrageous. During my stay at EMMC, they even refilled a prescription that I had not been using for several years and still have not used. But they’ll just send the bill to the insurance company which will pay it and pass the cost on to other consumers in future rate hikes. This is a vicious cycle that wiping out the American Dream. More regulation of the health care / insurance complex is sorely needed. Our legislators need to step up to the plate and say enough is enough already.

      • Anonymous

        People before Profits!
        Single Payer Healthcare Now!

      • FELT

        I had an outpatient surgical procedure that took all of 15 min, but before it, I spent well over an hour filling out 22 forms that reflected the regulations and ‘safeguards’ forced on the hospital and my cardiologist by the Government.

        A health care provider only bills out what it can get reimbursed for; and they lose money on Mainecare and Medicare….if you want cheap medical care, you can hop a plane in Montreal for Cuba…go look up MEDICAL TOURISM.

  • Anonymous

    LePage’s support of charter and private schools keeps ringing in my head. Again, it appears he has a vendetta against public schools. Does he think that eliminating public schools now will increase his intelligence?

    • Anonymous

      Didn’t the last budget INCREASE spending for k-12 education? Check the budget. Your argument is a non-starter.

      • Anonymous

        Agreed, Bob.

      • Tyke

        No. LePage claimed that it would, but the amount of educational funding his budgets actually have been funding for the municipalities and the overall education funding have both gone DOWN since LePage took office, … and now he plans to reduce them even more:

        .

        General Purpose Aid for Local Schools:
        2009 – 934,433,865
        2010: – 891,388,690
        2011 – 844,212,084

        Overall education funding:
        2009 – $1,201,023,631
        2010 – $1,170,918,193
        2011 – $1,131,638,021
        .
        http://www.maine.gov/legis/ofpr/compendium/11compend/Table_GF-2.pdf

        • FELT

          What about a budget balanced against ever declining revenue don’t you understand?

          • Tyke

            What about correcting a clear misstatement that LePage increased school funding when he DECREASED it do you not understand?
            .
            I did not state or even imply that the funding should be any different, merely pointed out that it is 100% untrue when a prior comment claimed LePage had increased funding. He did not. In fact he has decreased it for each budget submitted.

          • Anonymous

            declining revenue?? DO you mean giving the revenue away In $400 million in tax cuts?

    • Anonymous

      It is sickening. He should think of those teachers in Newtown CT….a public school! and their heroism . They were so dedicated to their students. We should be giving accolades to those public school teachers…..they need to be supported and appreciated.

    • FELT

      Charter schools are ‘public schools’, since they are publicly funded and chartered and operating according to a contract with a public funding agency.
      They have been strongly endorsed by Obama and Arnie Duncan…….but I don’t think these facts will stop that ringing in your head.

      • Anonymous

        Charter schools are privately owned and operated, publicly funded, and for-profit.
        It’s just latest Rightwing charge in the privatization of government functions in the never ending push to create the Corporate State.
        The fact that Obama and Duncan support Charter Schools is no surprise since there are corporate tools in both political parties.
        I think we should keep private schools private,
        And keep public schools public. This whole mixing together is like oil and water.

      • Anonymous

        the ONLY thing “PUBLIC” about them is the funding source Ever here of “K- 12 INC” a FOR PROFIT promoter of charter schools?? A MAJOR contributor to the RGA… funnelled down to Lepage campaign

    • Anonymous

      Making Heritage Center ( free markets R US) education “consultant” as commisioner of Ed should explain it .Lepage is a fool being duped.

  • Anonymous

    Immediate call:

    Energy Maine should do an energy audit of all state buildings, vehicles and infrastructure. Budget office should review all “consumables” in government budget. All Freshman legislators should take a one half reduction in wages (ala…David Burns proposal) as they are in “training”. This would include benefits, travel and perks. Recall all state credit cards for travel and off invoice purchases. All legislators and elected/appointed officials should pay10% higher insurance premiums and copay/deductibles. The number of legislative session days should be reduced by 10% with days in session being two hours longer (with time clock oversight). Executive and Legislative Branch work and pay should be based on measurable outcomes. All state officials should pay to register their own vehicles. No “Blue plates”. State agencies should pay state sales tax for goods and services that are outside of budget. Non-profits should pay a “lobbying fee” in lieu of tax base contributions. Prison and jail inmates should pay for services on a sliding scale basis. Increase fees on all gaming…lotteries, casinos, “pull tickets” and sports pools. And on, and on, and on………

    This is a starting point…but I’ll bet none of the issues are considered.

    Any takers?

    • Anonymous

      Sounds good to me.

    • Anonymous

      Now see, that’s what I’m talking about!

    • Anonymous

      Let me know when you put your name on the ballot i will vote for you if you follow through on all your promises. Actually well put but as you stated no one will listen.

    • Tyke

      Kind of like this effort that has been ongoing for 7 years?

      http://www.maine.gov/bgs/energy/index.htm

      • Anonymous

        Yep, except notably absent 2011 and 2012…..

        When did this administration begin?

        • FELT

          “This year, overall estimated gasoline use decreased by approximately 1 percent compared with FY09 ”

          TYKE….how much did the pen sharing program save? Can they get surplus supplies from schools? I think you have a knack for this sort of budget nit picking…are you an accountant.?

    • Anonymous

      The Governor is incompetent and he should resign!

      • Washington County

        I am not impressed with our Governor, but he never created this problem. You seem to forget we had a Dem legislators and two liberal governors 16 years before Governor Lepage.

        • Anonymous

          What makes you think the Repubs could do better? I haven’t seen any improvement in this state in the last 2 years except for the rich. Us working folks are obviously worse off!

        • Anonymous

          what “problem”?

    • Anonymous

      How about if we cut back on the food and booze budget for the Blaine House too? If fact, it wouldn’t hurt to cut back on the number of governor’s assistants too.

  • Davida Willette

    what lepage wants is mainecare if he cant cut one way i will do it this way

  • Anonymous

    Cuts to high school courses should include those advanced courses that are used for college credits. It’s not necessary for the public to fund anyone’s college education. As for cutting MaineCare coverage with the intent of cutting the amount of money owed to hospitals, that is reckless. The people not getting coverage will just show up at the ER door and get treatment they will never be able to afford. The cost will be shifted onto the rest of us.

  • Tyke

    The governor is required by law to spread curtailments over all depts at approximately their % of the entire budget. Since General Purpose aid to education accounts for 29.20% of the budget their fair proportional cut of $35.5 million would be $10.4 million.
    .

    The announced cut is $2.2 million more than their fair share of the cuts. Sounds like LePage wants to punish the education community for some imagined slight.
    .
    LePage pettiness continues, this time at the expense of all Maine public school students.

    .
    http://www.maine.gov/legis/ofpr/general_fund/pie_charts/1213piechart.htm

    • Anonymous

      He needs to resign.

      • Anonymous

        He wont, and he will be re-elected in 2 more yrs…..

        • Tyke

          Joke of the day?

        • Anonymous

          Yeah, if there’s a strong liberal independent candidate that splits the democrats vote again, he might win.
          Maine needs run-off voting.
          Lepage wouldn’t have stood a chance if there was a second round of voting against Cutler.

    • Anonymous

      They are using “republican” arithmetic ..it doesn’t add up..

  • Anonymous

    This is all a self-fullfilling prophecy- The Gov keeps insulting Maine and Mainers and we now see the results after two years- business stays away from this toxic political atmosophere and Maine consumers retreat. He cannot control mouthing off his negative and nasty perspective and people all over the country have taken notice! Maine will be open for business againonce he departs in 2014.

    • budsview

      business stays away because of thirty or so years of dems controlling the state

  • Anonymous

    We need a tax cut for the job creators to spur our economy and make Maine a business friendly state where all Koch brothers ideas are embraced as pure genius. We need to change all laws that cost honest business people any of their hard earned money that should be taxed at a much lower rate so they can create jobs on paper in the Cayman Islands. We need to increase the tax on all windmills to the point where we can afford to give huge subsidies to any oil companies trying to avoid doing business in Maine. We need to take all the money we collect from Bath Iron works and give it to L.L. Bean to help with construction of their new factory in the People’s Republic of China so they can avoid minimum wage here in Maine. All people in the southern half of the state should send a bill to the residents of Ft. Kent for paying to plow the road going to Fryeburg if we are ever going to see a nuclear power plant built in Searsport again. Come on people! Let’s just think about this for a minute.

    • budsview

      we need to get the government out of our lives. the size and cost is more than we can afford in so many ways including taxes

    • Anonymous

      you can be as sarcastic as you like, we do need a tax cut for the job creators. the CEOs must have their multi-million dollar bonuses and golden parachutes

      • FELT

        How about including the RED SOX, high school and college coaches, and other sports celebrities and their owners in your ‘plan’?

      • Anonymous

        OK I’ll bite Just what jobs are those jobs creator creatingwith those tax cuts??? You bought their line….hook line and sinker

  • Most of you are clueless to what will fall on your finances in January! You will be paying $1700.00 to $2400.00 in addition to the income taxes you already pay …stolen directly from you paycheck!! How is that going to feel?
    You can thank obama and the democrat senate for that one!
    Enjoy paying your new taxes you chumps!

    • Anonymous

      and are you somehow exempt? BTW, how hateful are you that you need to be calling others chumps? Seems to me that unless you are something special you are in the same boat as the rest of us. I know, I know! You are exempt because your real name is Paul LePage! That would explain the hatefulness in your posts and the name calling!

      • Again…just wait until you see how little your paycheck is next month(if you even work)..I guess “idiots” would be a better term!

        • Anonymous

          Again,get out from under that tanning bed..you’re half baked man

          • Anonymous

            He does have a point, taxes will be going up and welfare benefits are going to be hit too… This will affect everyone…

        • Anonymous

          perhaps “maturity” and “acceptance” are better terms. The tax cuts were expected to sunset – FICA cannot sustain a permanent 2% reduction from employers and employees indefinitely. Is there something about the word TEMPORARY that you don’t comprehend?

          • They are gonna “sunset” right on your paycheck! Lets talk again in February 2013!….

          • Anonymous

            I don’t care – I’ve never objected to paying my fair share. We don’t pay taxes in a vacuum – we receive services for that money, i.e. highways, schools, state roads, police & fire protection, National Defense, libraries, airports, criminal justice, public transportation systems, etc., etc. TAX is not a swear word – it is a necessity for a functional society. You get what you pay for – do you expect to get everything for free? What’s your cry? “Representation WITHOUT Taxation?” not possible. Do you prefer Anarchy?

          • I “prefer” the Constitution!

          • Anonymous

            So do I. The 16th amendment to the Constitution was ratified on 02/13/1913, almost 100 years ago.

            Amendment XVI. “The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration.”

      • Anonymous

        Quit being so sensitive….Just a figure of speech…

    • Anonymous

      We know,we know..You’re taxed enough already..Whats it like to be a member of that hate group..

      • Washington County

        It’ almost worth it to see the liberals pay more taxes. I can’t wait to see all the YOUNG supporter paying IRS fine because they can’t pay for their premiums. Just think how many young college grads move home with mommy and Dad because the jobs they get (if they find a Job) will be for pennies compared to high end jobs. One thing about it no one can spin the results of this economy….

        • Anonymous

          sure they do…everyday…it’s called wall street.

    • Anonymous

      Dont forget milk is going to double in price. CBS reported that.

      • Anonymous

        WIC wil take care of that

        • Anonymous

          True, I use very little milk….. Wont effect me.

      • Anonymous

        Lots of people are lactose intolerant..Itll be…OK.

        • Anonymous

          I will…. I hardly drink it….

        • Anonymous

          But he won…LOL

    • Anonymous

      Most people in Maine are getting welfare checks,ie, income taxes could go up a million dollars, it means nothing. If anything, they might get a raise.

      • Anonymous

        Really?Not near the coast.Lots of professionals and trustafarians ,I wonder if its more revalent in the Skowhegan area?

    • Anonymous

      Oh, when will you ever get it? Letting a “temporary tax decrease” sunset, like it was supposed to do two years ago, is NOT a tax increase. ughhhh..so stubborn…”stolen from your paycheck”…spin, spin, spin…

    • Anonymous

      The increases in both taxation and the cost of consumer products and services next year to pay for the “free” healthcare should be alarming people.

  • Anonymous

    dear lepage
    Last week NH police stopped 4000 vehicles in 4 days time. over 1000 tickets
    1000 times a $200 ticket equals $200,000 in fines

    $200,000 STATE REVENUE IN 4 DAYS TIME
    [thats $200,000 in cuts that wont have to be made,if maine woke up and smelled the coffee where to get money]

    • Anonymous

      Good point! Where DOES the money go? Ive been told”the General Fund”,but what is that?

    • Anonymous

      that’s a good reason to stay out of NH – they want to live free and let folk from everywhere else pay for them. (if you really checked those stats, you’d find the majority of tix go to out of state plates…Vermont is even worse.) spend your money in Maine (except when you drive all them hippie pot smokers to CO – have a great trip!)

  • Anonymous

    Seriously, stop the spending. Cut everything. There is only one way out of this mess, and it is serious austerity. Take a hit for a couple of years to get out of the red and then grow quickly.

  • Anonymous

    OH MY GOD!
    What about the teac…..um children.
    WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO THE TEAC…UMMMMM CHILDREN.

  • Anonymous

    You have to cut spending…..Just the way it is..

    • Anonymous

      The Governor is incompetent and he should resign.

      • Anonymous

        Just wait and see… Time will tell…

        • Anonymous

          If you think the fool will even win a bid for re-election you are dreaming the gop is going to drop him like a bad habit.

          • Anonymous

            Time will tell…. The only ones that dont like him are the ones recieving the goodies from the State.. Are you one????

          • Anonymous

            Yes I got a break on my taxes, but my property went up as well.

          • Anonymous

            I bet you dont like a flat tax do you?

          • Anonymous

            How about a compromise, a flat tax with a maximum wage, say
            $250,000? Any income/profit over that amount gets taxed at Eisenhower rates of 91%. It would force corporations and the wealthy to either invest in their companies, make a charitable donations, or increase their tax bill, either way would be a win-win in stimulating the economy, helping charities, and shoring up deficits.

          • Anonymous

            Tax someone who makes 250K at 91% is foolish, be real…I hope you are joking..

          • Anonymous

            There would be a huge supply of money for the government. If they redistributed it back to the populace inflation would soar! I’m willing to bet that the only reason we haven’t seen much inflation during this era of quantitative easing is because of the income disparities amongst the populace! Our economy can’t stand inflation because most Americans would not be able to consume anything!

          • Anonymous

            I think its a fair compromise.
            It’d be a flat rate up till $499,999.

            Trickle down economics is a joke,
            Taxing john doe that makes $20,000 a year and taxing millionaires the same rate is a even bigger joke.

          • Anonymous

            But you have to give people the CHANCE to become millionaires. I am almost sure that if everyone in America was simply given 250000 at the end of the year by the government regardless of what you did for a living, we would not all be rich, we would all be equally poor.

          • Anonymous

            Are you under the impression that there weren’t any millionaires when President Eisenhower was in office?

          • Anonymous

            I don’t know. I will assume that there were, but it must have been difficult to achieve if you were not a millionaire already.

          • Anonymous

            Alright, I’m a generous bargainer, flat tax up to $500,000 maximum wage, anything over taxed at 91%. If an american can’t live comfortably with a half million yearly income they might as well move to the Cayman Islands, and good riddance.

          • Anonymous

            So how high would I need to go before you’d accept a maximum wage? I have compromised with your flat tax to a point, where will you meet?
            Or are you too much of a free market fundamentalist to accept any blemishes on your goal to a Milton Friedman Utopia?
            I think I am beginning to see why President Obama and Senate leader Harry Reid are having such a hard time reaching a deal to overt the fiscal cliff. The TeaThuglicans won’t accept any compromise and will defend the 1% even if it means going over the cliff and putting the country back into a recession.

          • Anonymous

            When you come up with taxing someone 91% you lost all credibility on your post…………Just plain stupid, sorry.

          • Anonymous

            So you admit that you do not believe in a maximum wage no matter how high? It seems that my assumption was correct.

          • Anonymous

            Not 91% that’s just plain ridiculous…..$1.00-$750K at 15%…..$ 750K at 20%….. No deductions etc…. Im at 19% myself…

          • Anonymous

            flat taxes are regressive – they hit the lowest wage workers the hardest. everyone knows that. that is why we’ve had a progressive tax system in place for a hundred years. It’s the best way to prevent political uprisings and coups.

          • Anonymous

            EVERYONE needs to pay the same amount……No tax loop holes or deductions…. Why penalize someone that makes good financial decisions…..

          • Anonymous

            Yes, it would be nice if the super wealthy payed AS MUCH % OF TAX on their INCOME as the lower and middle classes do! They should not be rewarded for unabated GREED.

          • Anonymous

            $250K-$500K is not super wealthy,,….Work in the Mid Atlantic, were houses are expensive, cost of living is higher, it comes out in the wash..

          • Anonymous

            of course that’s not super wealthy – I’m talking about Romney paying 11 and 14% effective tax rates, and Bill Gates paying less than 1% Yet, people making $50,000+ are paying a higher % of their income than these greedy mega-millionaire & billionaires. Folks earning up to $250,000 (an arbitrary number, locale depending) actually NEED this money – it’s not discretionary. It hurts that household.
            That’s not the case when income is over that level. Tough times call for concessions – the debt was “run way up” in the past decade, mostly a result of the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy (they didn’t amount to that much for people earning $100,000.) Therefore, the Bill Gates types benefited the most by these temporary cuts (and not by creating jobs in America.) Stands to reason that the billionaires are the ones who should pay back most of that debt (due to their failure to utilize their tax breaks as intended, thus deepening the recession.) Billionaires are not going to “feel” the pain of returning to the tax rates of a decade ago. Their exponentially rising profits will flatten briefly…that’s all.

            Why should we change the way we’ve taxed for a hundred years now – throughout recessions and The Great Depression…and at much higher effective rates? Why is it suddenly such a big deal in 2012, when tax rates have never been lower for the wealthiest people throughout Our Nation’s History?

  • Anonymous

    Wait,I thought that having a State Lottery was going to make us,as a state, wicked rich…Did that ever happen?

  • Anonymous

    Yup Reagan Economics at work failing once again.. Lets cut taxes for the rich and then cut programs for the poor to pay for them.. Hey when that’s not enough lets cut education heck we should just cut schools out all together.. Well except for the private ones.. Maybe he should of gave monies to the private schools earlier when he actually tried to.. Where would we be now if we haven’t of stopped him? We all ready don’t have enough money for education.. While were at it why don’t we cut all revenue to the state so we can shut down the whole Maine judicial system and all entitlement programs and education to the public sector, excluding Private schools they should get all our cash.. Then we can choke the whole Maine government and drown it in the bath tub..Oh wait that’s what the tea partiers want to do isn’t it.. Some of the comments i read on here are so ludicrous.. Some of you actually believe the nonsense that you are saying.. I predicted this when the buffoon got elected and now here it is.. These pea partiers are gonna try to bankrupt their states, the idiots in Washington cant make a deal and we are probably gonna go off this cliff.. Again like i predicted they are gonna try to bankrupt us and Obama is gonna take the heat.. Boner there is just trying to do it so he can get the cuts they want from the military and other places they are trying to abolish.. I hope that Obama can save it, God help us..

    • Anonymous

      The Governor is incompetent and he should resign.

      • fourCatssoon

        Wait, did you forget the LePage was given the award of being the “Worst” Governor ever elected in Maine history. He can be so proud of this award and take the plaque with him back to Canada:)

  • Washington County

    You have your liberal president re-elected, now we will see if our country rebounds. He owns this economy oneway or the other. The Buck stops with Obama. It’s not going to fall on the House or Senate. Obama will either be a Hero or a failure. Your guess is as good as mine.

    • fourCatssoon

      President Obama will make you proud. Watch how he will make the cuts that Bobble head Bush gave his friends back when he was in office and spend all the surplus that Clinton left office fir Bush.

    • Anonymous

      The buck stops with your no show guy Boehner.
      Now back to the topic which is LePage and his runiation of Maine.

  • James Klowning

    Photo Lions/Tigers…he moves like a cat. LePage is very cat like svelte and cunning?

    • Otis B. Driftwood

      LaPudge is an overstuffed buffoon.

  • Tucker Crockett

    When all else fails, take the funding away from those who have no voice- the ones who need help from DHHS and our children. Brilliant.

  • Anonymous

    The working people who pay for all this stupid spending should find a way to unite and cut the pay of anyone in the public sector to less then the govenors. Taxes should not be allowed to raise at any level. Its time to cut cut cut.

  • Anonymous

    Cutting education just shifts it to the property tax payers. Thanks a lot Gov.

    • FELT

      Property tax payers need to get off their butts and get involved in School Budget hearings….They have the power to vote down property tax increases…but you knew that.

      • Anonymous

        True, but we don’t want to cut our education; we just want the State to help us out. They should cut the prohibition budget first; that money is wasted forever. Education is an investment.

  • Anonymous

    And, where is the cuts in Augusta?

    • fourCatssoon

      How about removing LePages Daughter from the roles plus his other relative he hired with no experience for the job he was given. The man did have a hammer:)

      • Tyke

        I believe you are referring to LePage’s brother in-law who was gifted a highly paid job with very specific minimum education and experience requirements that he did not even meet.

  • Mountain high

    We have seen what mental health issues have caused in the last few weeks. Frightening, truly frightening. Education is the cornerstone of our communities. Stop blaming teachers and schools, start blaming the politicians who have never taught and are passing laws and initiatives that must be taught in schools. If teachers were in charge of the school budgets, results would happen, instead of putting people in charge who know nothing about teaching.

    • Anonymous

      we sure have look at the state election.

    • FELT

      The majority of Charter schools are started by frustrated teachers…some yield results, but many fail.

      • Anonymous

        And some charter schools are started by vulture capitalists that see the funding stream of public education as an easy gravy train of profits to go into their pockets.

        • FELT

          REALLY! Vulture capitalists vs. fat pig union heads who ride around in jets and get a new Cadillac from the union every year. At least the capitalist gives you value for your money–or did you forget every charter has a contract with a local school board? oh wait, they must be corrupt too?

          After watching the union goons in operation in Michigan and Wisconsin; I prefer the capitalists since I have the option to buy or ignore their products.

          • Anonymous

            Get a new Cadillac every year? I think you got public unions confused with Avon sales reps, where the yearly top sales rep gets a new pink Cadillac. Are u a door to door Avon sales lady?
            I jest, your probably with a rightwing think tank hack that gets paid per post.
            And where are these public union owned jets? I see plenty of private CEO jets.
            “And at least capitalists gives you value for your money”
            So now public schools offer no value to society?
            Shows how partisan your views are.

  • Anonymous

    I thought he said in his campaign, and currently that our educational system is lacking, yet he’s cutting funding??? I don’t get it….. how is cutting funding to schools going to correct either issue??? why not look into curtailing the $35k per inmate the state spends, when most other states average only $20-27k per inmate per year… we could save 10 million a year!! that means removing some of the services these scum don’t need.. like TV’s, cable, microwaves, radios, CD players, and the electricity to run them.. and why not have the DOC at the “farm” (BCF) actually use the 300+ acres of land and “FARM IT”!! make themselves and the other DOC facilities self sustaining. but sadly I know it will come out of the backs of the staff that work there. I wish they would come to a realization that they don’t need 5 deputy wardens at MSP warren.. you should only need on $60-80k/year windbag to cover for the warden in her stead.. not 5!!!

  • Otis B. Driftwood

    Governor LaPudge is a disaster, first thing he did when he took office was create a shortfall of revenue, he’s not put in place any policy that is business friendly. Now we have a revenue shortage, the real shortage that we have is brains in the Blaine house.

    • FELT

      I’d love to watch your cigar explode or is it one of those that causes lung cancer?

  • Mary Stubbs

    It’s refreshing to see a leader who is willing to make tough decisions rather than one who continues to destroy the state’s economy for political gain.

    • Anonymous

      You are right, now if we could just find that politician!

      • Anonymous

        No politician.I would rather have a straight talker like Lepage.Sugar coat it all you want the progressives from the past left us in this mess.We can no longer swap entitlements for votes.My only wish was the bulk of the cuts should have come in state funded welfare.

        • Guest

          Interesting how many think this guy and his mouth are the answer. He hasn’t done anything in reality.

          • Anonymous

            progressives certainly have their own reality.

          • Guest

            You admire his mouth? Tell us what he has done for the people of Maine who aren’t wealthy. Positive things not the things he wants to take away from the real needy of this state.

    • Otis B. Driftwood

      Destroying the state’s economy for political gain is (was) the goal of the tea baggie party, of which LaPudge aspires to be the grand windbag. However, the tea baggies didn’t fair too well in the last election leaving LaPudge with a legislature which LaPudge will blame for all his short comings as governor. After all, blaming Baldacci is no longer valid.

      • Anonymous

        Blaming bush is right? Baldacci financed the state on the backs of welfare by not paying the hospitals.We are now paying for progressive can kicking down an unpaved road.

      • Mary Stubbs

        Allow me to interpret what you really mean. Destroying the welfare state which Maine has become during the past forty years during liberal control WAS the goal of the legislature and continues to be the governor’s goal. However, when there are more takers than makers, we all know who is going to win politically. We saw it happen on both the state and national levels. The losers are the people who want live as free individuals and want others to be responsible for taking care of themselves.

  • Anonymous

    he’s just pig on a few levels. stop picking on him.

  • Anonymous

    I understand he had issues with his Teachers growing up but don’t take your childhood issues out on Maine Teachers.

    • Otis B. Driftwood

      It’s typical of the Republican tea baggies to pick on groups which they view as weak, the poor, women, teachers, mentally Ill, these politicians as a group are weak and spineless.

      • Anonymous

        Progressives are funny they talk about republicans taking everything away from the weak,poor or children.Time to stop the emotional nonsense political rhetoric.The real needy should be helped not progressives pockets filled.

        • Guest

          Define the REAL needy.

          • Anonymous

            Sustaining life with food,clothing and warmth and some health.Beyond that go to work.

          • Guest

            That doesn’t define what you are referring to as the “real needy”. You simply said what you think they need.
            This simply is not the Maine of the ’50s you desire to go back to.

        • Otis B. Driftwood

          The Nordquist Republicon tea baggie definition of the “Real Needy”, Those earning more than $250,00.00 annually should enjoy lower tax rates than those earning $25,000.00.

  • Anonymous

    Wow after reading the nasty personal attacks and the solemn belief we all are entitled to our neighbors success.I can see Maine will never be a player in economic growth.No company in it’s right mind would invest just to get regulated out of business by union and government.Sad but Maine really is a nanny state this blog proves it.The only answer from most on here is tax someone else to pay for my bad decisions.Heaven forbid they have been on unemployment for what 2-3 years yet how many retrained themselves to fit job openings.They whine and scream at the governor because they sit at home wiping out government budgets.Yet they refuse to work.Mainers can no longer wait for a new victim to open a mill to attack .time to retrain and get working.

    • Lord Whiteman

      Lepages budget cuts will have to be picked up by the local property tax payers and renters.
      If Lepage was really serious about reducing state spending he wouldn’t have hired his unqualified relatives to do dub work at 50,000 a year plus benefits.

  • Lord Whiteman

    The chickens have come home to roost for all the Lepage lovers.
    Gov. “Kiss my butt” Lepage and his bosses down in Portland increased the state spending by $500 million dollars and now they are funding it by raising local taxes on Maine’s working families.

    • Anonymous

      they are too foolish to figure it out…

  • A war on jobs and education and tax breaks for the wealthy.

  • Anonymous

    He should freeze legislature’s raises, stop paying lifetime insurance and salaries. Limit the time we pay salaries after out of office. ( I say altogether, but that will never happen). They whine about welfare, to me this is welfare. If you are going to argue it is their retirement make them serve for so long before they are entitled. I can not work four years and get a retirement plan for the rest of my life, so I do not believe this is a legitimate argument.

  • Anonymous

    The Governor needs to order the Dept of Ed to come up with a per pupil figure. Then schools should be restricted to getting only that amount of money for each student attending times the number of students they have from that town, city, hamlet, etc.

    Example let’s say the amount is $10,000 per student and Town X has 17 students attending the SA District. They would pay $170,000. Not whatever the District decided to assess them at.

  • Guest

    Education is vital for the future and for a better quality of life. It gives many a chance to break the cycle of poverty as well.

    As usual he takes another swipe at the most vulnerable.

  • Joan Theriault

    Taking money away from Community Colleges that offer tech training makes the work less skilled.

  • alf999

    How about charging teacher’s and other school employee’s and their family member’s for the use of the school garage car/bus wash that they currently use for free?

  • Anonymous
  • Anonymous
  • Anonymous

    Sign of the Times. Just how telling is the difference in party representation when we consider the career of Olympia Snowe and her representation of her party and the people of Maine…only to look through the windows of the Blaine House and see the buffon that represents his party and the State. And I can only hope that what the children remember is how their education and programs were sent to the gutters, as per usual, so the Movers and Shakers can retain their benefits in the justification that they make our economy productive. I know three kids that understand what a falacy that is. And if those three convince three more each???

  • Anonymous

    My state Rep just shared the Curtailment doc from LePage’s office. Sooooo we KNEW he would go after social services and education. He doesn’t like people, and even less he hates educated people. But LePages cuts to Agriculture and Forestry, Warden Service etc., PROVE how out of touch this guy is. Given the future, agriculture and forestry may very well may very well return as the key to much of Maine’s future economy. Absolutely short sighted and stupid. He didn’t touch a lot of other agencies that also need review.

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