Christopher Cousins

Christopher Cousins

State House Bureau Chief

 
Maine Education Commissioner Robert Hasson Jr. announces $3 million worth of grants to help Maine school districts with consolidation projects during an April 3, 2017 ceremony in Augusta.

Frustrated by politics, LePage turns to a veteran educator to leave his mark on Maine schools

By Christopher Cousins on April 09, 2017, at 7:18 a.m.
Less than two weeks into the job, Robert Hasson Jr. is tasked with promoting big and bold LePage initiatives that would change the face of public education in Maine.
Maine Speaker of the House Sara Gideon, D-Freeport, speaks during the first session of the 128th Legislature at the State House in Augusta, Dec. 7, 2016.

Democrats counterpunch LePage, roll out alternative budget

By Christopher Cousins on April 06, 2017, at 12:27 p.m.
Legislative Democrats quantified their opposition to Gov. Paul LePage’s state budget priorities Thursday when they unveiled an alternative budget plan they call “The Opportunity Agenda.”

Maine is poised to weaken its minimum wage law. What will Democrats allow?

By Christopher Cousins and Michael Shepherd, BDN Staff on April 05, 2017, at 4:07 p.m.
The key group of Democrats who support re-establishing the tip credit is holding firm.
STATE & CAPITOL

10 ways legislators want to change Maine’s voter-approved minimum wage law

on April 05, 2017, at 8:40 a.m.

LePage administration picks 7 projects for new school efficiency grants

By Christopher Cousins and Michael Shepherd on April 04, 2017, at 12:25 p.m.
The Maine Department of Education announced it’ll fund a round of seven school consolidation projects estimated to save $16.2 million.

House sustains LePage veto of bill aimed at helping vets overcome Real ID hurdle

By Christopher Cousins on April 04, 2017, at 12:08 p.m.
The bill sought to pay the fee for veterans’ passport cards so they could receive treatment at federal military installations in New Hampshire.
STATE & CAPITOL
Sen. Eric Brakey, R-Auburn.

So, who is this young Republican who wants to unseat Angus King?

on April 04, 2017, at 8:54 a.m.
Gov. Paul LePage addresses the chamber during the 2017 State of the State address at the State House. LePage is urging legislators to pass a bill that would bring Maine in compliance with federal Real ID standards.

LePage rejects Real ID quick fix, backs bill to comply with federal standards

By Christopher Cousins on March 30, 2017, at 3:54 p.m.
The governor urged legislators to quickly pass LD 306, which would force Maine to become fully compliant with Real ID.
STATE & CAPITOL

Maine ethics watchdog looking at links between offshore firm, casino campaign

on March 30, 2017, at 8:44 a.m.
Waldo County District Attorney Geoffrey Rushlau delivered opening arguments at Waldo County Superior Court, Jan. 7, 2011.

LePage taps longtime prosecutor to become district court judge

By Christopher Cousins on March 29, 2017, at 12:09 p.m.
Gov. Paul LePage has nominated the district attorney for four coastal counties to serve as a Maine District Court judge.
STATE & CAPITOL
BANGOR, MAINE -- 10/19/2016 -- A person signs a petition that is related to "An Act to Allow Slot Mchines or a Casino in York County" on Oct. 19 in Bangor. Micky Bedell | BDN

Lawmakers who oppose new Maine casino hope to grill backers today

on March 29, 2017, at 8:16 a.m.
Rear Adm. Steve Poulin, 1st Coast Guard District commander (at podium) honors Sgt. Matt Talbot and Specialist Corrie Roberts (immediate left of Poulin) during a ceremony at the State House. Talbot and Roberts were honored for their role in stopping a runaway lobster boat in October 2015 off the coast of North Haven.

Maine Marine Patrol officers honored for stopping runaway lobster boat

By Christopher Cousins on March 28, 2017, at 5:38 p.m.
Two Maine Marine Patrol officers were honored Tuesday for their attempt to rescue a distressed fisherman off North Haven in 2015.
Gov. Paul LePage answers questions from broadcast media following a maple tree tapping ceremony on the Blaine House lawn in mid-March.

LePage seeks to lock tougher welfare rules into law

By Christopher Cousins and Michael Shepherd on March 28, 2017, at 10:55 a.m.
Gov. Paul LePage unveiled a bill that represents his latest effort to incorporate tougher welfare policies into Maine law.
STATE & CAPITOL

An Allagash White-fueled evening with Paul LePage

on March 28, 2017, at 8:56 a.m.
Gov. Paul LePage addresses the chamber during the 2017 State of the State address at the State House in Augusta, Feb. 7, 2017.

Why Maine lawmakers spend so much time on bills that have no chance

By Christopher Cousins on March 26, 2017, at 7:20 a.m.
For the sake of stability, the failure of bad ideas and the formation of consensus, democracy is supposed to be hard.
STATE & CAPITOL

Former Bangor state rep accused of illegal lobbying

on March 24, 2017, at 8:40 a.m.
POLL QUESTION
Governor Paul LePage attends a maple tree tapping ceremony on a cold day in mid-March. LePage now backs the American Health Care Act and is urging Maine's senators to support it.

LePage now backs GOP health plan, urges support from King, Collins

By Christopher Cousins and Michael Shepherd on March 23, 2017, at 2:22 p.m.
Earlier this month, LePage sent a letter to U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan which said of the bill, “early signs do not look encouraging.”
STATE & CAPITOL
KATAHDIN WOODS AND WATERS NATIONAL MONUMENT -- 02/22/17 -- The Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument offers a spectacular view of Mount Katahdin and other natural beauties in this November picture. Photo courtesy of Mark Picard

LePage will take his fight against North Woods monument to DC

on March 23, 2017, at 9:03 a.m.
STATE & CAPITOL
AUGUSTA, MAINE -- 03/13/2017 -- Governor Paul LePage talks to the people gathered on the Blaine House lawn for a maple tree tapping ceremony on a cold day in mid-March. Micky Bedell | BDN

Fight to stifle Maine’s voter-approved school aid surtax intensifies

on March 20, 2017, at 8:39 a.m.
Gov. Paul LePage answers questions from broadcast media following a maple tree tapping ceremony on the Blaine House lawn in mid-March.

Why LePage is spending more time talking to national conservative media

By Christopher Cousins on March 19, 2017, at 7:26 a.m.
“[Gov. Paul LePage is] good about keeping the guessing game going. That’s a good approach no matter what you’re planning next. Keep them guessing.”