May 21, 2018
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Senate upholds LePage vetoes of hearing aid, fireworks bills

Troy R. Bennett | BDN
Troy R. Bennett | BDN
Gov. Paul LePage
By Christopher Cousins, BDN Staff

AUGUSTA, Maine — The Senate followed Gov. Paul LePage’s lead Wednesday when it voted to sustain two vetoes he issued earlier this week.

One of the bills would have restricted the use of fireworks and the other would have required private insurance companies to cover hearing aids for people up to age 26, as opposed to the current threshold of 18 years old.

The fireworks bill, LD 168, would have made the use of consumer-grade fireworks illegal before noon or whenever the governor issues a proclamation against outdoor fires. Violation of the new law would have constituted a disorderly conduct charge.

LePage opposed the bill because he said it was an attempt to unravel the law that made fireworks in Maine legal in 2011. The Senate voted 20-15 to uphold LePage’s veto, which is four votes short of the two-thirds threshold required to overturn a veto.

The Senate also upheld LePage’s veto of LD 523, the hearing aid bill. LePage said he vetoed it because requiring insurance companies to provide more coverage increases costs for everyone who holds a policy. The Senate’s attempt to override the veto was 23-12, just one vote short of a two-thirds majority.


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