Stories about Maine Department of Labor


Labor pool, skilled work force more important than energy prices for job creation, report says

The Associated Press on March 25, 2012, at 10:03 a.m.
PORTLAND | Maine Gov. Paul LePage has said repeatedly that businesses need cheaper energy in order to create jobs. But a report Sunday by Maine Today Media says that while no business wants high energy bills, a deep labor pool and skilled work force are more important than energy …
Maine Gov. Paul LePage acknowledges members in the gallery before delivering his first State of the State address at the State House in Augusta on Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2012.

Fact-checking LePage’s State of the State

By Eric Russell on Jan. 25, 2012, at 12:59 p.m.
AUGUSTA | Gov. Paul LePage delivered a straight-forward State of the State address on Tuesday that hit on many of his priorities — lowering energy costs, reducing welfare benefits and improving education. Republicans in the Legislature praised the governor for his focus on improving Maine’s economic picture. Even Democrats …
Gov. Paul LePage

LePage says youths should be able to work during school vacation

By Mal Leary on Oct. 23, 2011, at 4:47 p.m.
AUGUSTA | Gov. Paul LePage says the state should leave work decisions up to children and their parents when they are not in school and limit state laws restricting child labor to safety issues, but some argue that is already state policy. “I don’t see why kids can’t go …
Gov. Paul LePage

Educated workers needed for health care jobs, LePage says

By Meg Haskell on Oct. 18, 2011, at 6:20 p.m.
As Maine’s economy continues to struggle, state leaders say the health care sector remains strong and is expected to grow. At a conference on Tuesday, officials said training a qualified work force is the key to both meeting the growing demand for health care services in Maine and taking advantage …
Gov. Paul LePage delivers a speech Wednesday in Portland.

LePage’s crackdown on unemployment claims goes beyond fraud

By Steve Mistler, Sun Journal on Oct. 15, 2011, at 5:04 a.m.
AUGUSTA | Earlier this month, Gov. Paul LePage announced that his administration was undertaking a new effort to tackle improper unemployment payments and fraud, a problem that cost state employers about $6.5 million last year. The governor’s initiative came on the heels of President Barack Obama’s mandate that all …

Glitch delays unemployment claim filings in Maine

The Associated Press on Oct. 11, 2011, at 3:31 p.m.
AUGUSTA | The Maine Department of Labor says a software glitch prevented thousands of people from filing unemployment claims on Sunday and Monday. Laura Boyett, director of the Bureau of Unemployment Compensation, said the computer problem affected claims made both online and by automated telephone system. The problem was …
Gov. Paul LePage

LePage says domestic violence efforts don’t conflict with gun law

By Eric Russell on Sept. 07, 2011, at 7:16 p.m.
FAIRFIELD | Gov. Paul LePage asked employers on Wednesday to stand with him as he reaffirmed his administration’s commitment to fighting domestic violence at home and in the workplace. At an event at Hammond Tractor in Fairfield, the governor signed an executive order that directs state agencies to make …
The first three panels of artist Judy Taylor's labor mural that Gov. Paul LePage had removed from the Maine Department of Labor offices in Augusta.

Fight over labor mural removal by LePage not over yet

By Eric Russell on July 16, 2011, at 2:26 p.m.
AUGUSTA | The drawn-out battle over public access to a mural removed this spring from the Department of Labor at the request of Gov. Paul LePage — a decision that drew national attention — is entering a new chapter. Last month, Maine’s attorney general submitted a request for summary …

$338,000 grant approved for 60 Maine grocers who lost jobs

The Associated Press on June 28, 2011, at 5:21 a.m.
GARDINER, Maine — U.S Labor officials say a $338,000 grant has been approved to help 60 workers who have lost their jobs due to the closure of Associated Grocers of Maine. The Gardiner grocery distributor announced in April that it would be shutting down its operations and laying off all of …

Katahdin millworkers to get emergency aid

By Nick Sambides Jr. on June 23, 2011, at 9:58 p.m.
EAST MILLINOCKET, Maine ― About 450 workers laid off in the Main Street paper mill’s closure in April will be the beneficiaries of a $657,841 National Emergency Grant, U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud said Thursday. The U.S. Department of Labor is awarding the grant to the Maine Department of Labor to …

Good facts, not good intentions, lead to good oral health

By Mark Eves on May 18, 2011, at 7:53 p.m.
Health care does not end at the shoulders. It is time that we all acknowledge that dental care is health care. Lack of access to a dentist, or indeed to any oral health care, has adversely affected Mainers’ health, happiness and economic performance for far too long. We know poor …

Judge schedules next step in ongoing labor mural legal case

BDN staff and wire reports on May 05, 2011, at 6:03 a.m.
BANGOR | Federal Judge Woodcock convened a conference call Wednesday with both parties in the continuing legal case regarding the disposition of the History of Maine Labor mural. Gov. Paul LePage caused an uproar in March by ordering the removal of the 11-panel mural depicting scenes from Maine’s labor …

Gardiner-based Associated Grocers closing, laying off more than 100

The Associated Press on April 28, 2011, at 2:57 p.m.
A central Maine company that distributes products to hundreds of small independent grocery stores is going out of business. Associated Grocers of Maine says continuing financial losses have forced it into receivership. In an open letter to customers, a court-appointed receiver said the business will be liquidated. …
Senator Susan Collins asks a question of the staff at the Eastern Maine Development Center in Bangor during a visit on Wednesday.

Collins urges jump-start to job growth in Maine

By Jamison Cocklin on April 27, 2011, at 6:20 p.m.
BANGOR | The economy continues to make a lethargic crawl toward recovery, and as a result 52,800 Mainers were still unemployed in March, according to the state Department of Labor. Although Maine has seen little change in its jobless rate in recent months, 7.6 percent unemployment is unacceptable to …
Philip Congdon

LePage cabinet member resigns amid allegations of racist remarks

By Kevin Miller, BDN staff on April 27, 2011, at 12:21 p.m.
AUGUSTA | Gov. Paul LePage announced a major shake-up of his administration on Wednesday, including the resignation of his top economic adviser amid allegations of improper comments during a tour of Aroostook County earlier this month. Barely four months into his term, LePage is faced with filling two additional …
A woman holds a sign supporting the return of Judy Taylor's  History of Maine Labor mural during a rally at Pierce Park in Bangor on Tuesday.

Mural dispute lands in federal court

By Kevin Miller on April 19, 2011, at 6:03 a.m.
BANGOR | A federal judge heard arguments Tuesday on whether the LePage administration’s removal of a labor-themed mural from a state building was an act of lawful government speech or illegal censorship by an overzealous governor. It’s been more than three weeks since Gov. Paul LePage removed the mural …

Whoopie pies, murals and Maine’s economy

By Michael W. Aube on April 07, 2011, at 5:39 p.m.
The water cooler. Often a hub of office conversation, it is where colleagues gather and talk about things other than cash flow projections or marketing strategy. Typically, in March, water-cooler topics are almost exclusively related to NCAA basketball “bracketology.” This year in Maine, however, we’ve mixed it up a bit. …
Protesters rally at the State House in Augusta, Maine demanding the return of the labor mural that Maine Gov. Paul LePage ordered removed from the Labor Department headquarters, on Monday, April  4, 2011. (AP Photo/Pat Wellenbach)

State House rallies decry labor mural removal

By Kevin Miller on April 04, 2011, at 2:09 p.m.
AUGUSTA | Chanting “Recall Paul” and “Put it back,” a crowd of artists, union members and activists demanded on Monday that Gov. Paul LePage return a mural that has become an unlikely symbol of the friction between the Republican administration and Maine’s labor unions. Monday’s events actually began in …
Three panes from the mural that has been removed from the Maine Department of Labor's offices.

US Labor Department demands refund in Maine mural dispute

The Associated Press on April 04, 2011, at 1:15 p.m.
The U.S. Department of Labor, which funded 63 percent of the $60,000 artwork, is now demanding a refund for its share of the now-famous mural that Gov. Paul LePage removed from the Maine Department of Labor offices.

LePage touts cooperative approach with businesses

The Associated Press on April 02, 2011, at 8:58 a.m.
AUGUSTA | Maine Gov. Paul LePage says the state Department of Environmental Protection is building a culture of cooperation with businesses. In his weekly radio address Saturday, the governor says the DEP is committed to improving turnaround times when reviewing projects and has restructured its Office of Innovation and …