December 08, 2019
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Wednesday, October 30, 2019: Rosen for Senate District 8, business opportunities in an aging state, protect the promise to public employees

Rosen for Senate District 8

Senator Kimberley Rosen has decided to run for reelection to her seat in the State Senate, and I could not be happier about it.

Though I have worked very closely with Sen. Rosen in the senate since 2016, we first met 15 years ago when I was first elected to the state senate, and she won a seat in the Maine House of Representatives at the same time. We served together for the next four years.

Sen. Rosen was born, raised, educated, married, started a business and raised a family all right here in Maine. Her familiarity with her native state and particularly her friends, family and neighbors in her senate district has helped make her a great champion for them.

She has been a strong voice among Senate Republicans for the policies of fiscal responsibility and sustainability, that have brought Maine record low unemployment, record high wage growth, huge surpluses for state government and steep declines in poverty, crime and homelessness.

Our neighbors in Senate District 8 could do nothing better for themselves and their communities than to send Kim Rosen back to the State Senate next November.

District 8 includes Bucksport, Castine, Dedham, Great Pond, Northwest Hancock Unorganized Territory, T32 MD Township, part of the East Hancock Unorganized Territory, Orland, Penobscot, Verona Island, Bradley, Brewer, Burlington, Clifton, East Central Penobscot Unorganized Territory, Eddington, Holden, Lincoln, Lowell and Orrington.

Sen. Dana Dow
Senate Republican Leader

Waldoboro

Business opportunities in an aging state

Is the wave of retiring boomers Maine’s greatest entrepreneurial opportunity? I’m from the Maine Small Business Development Centers (SBDC), a partner of the U.S. Small Business Administration. We help businesses across Maine to start and grow at no cost. One of our business advisors wrote an article on our website on the benefits of buying an existing business from a retiring owner. It talks about how this could potentially be Maine’s greatest opportunity.

Buying an existing business from a retiring entrepreneur reduces the risk to the business owner and keeps a business alive that may have otherwise shut down.

Maine is the oldest state in the nation, and here at the SBDC, we are seeing a lot of business owners buying or selling a business — and we think it’s important as Maine’s population ages.

This article has some insightful for entrepreneurs who may be considering this route to business ownership and may even help draw in some people from out-of-state.

Jennifer Boutin
Brunswick

Protect the promise to public employees

During the recent legislative session, Maine lawmakers passed a bill, with bipartisan support, that will guarantee that retired public school teachers and state employees receive their full benefits. Gov. Janet Mills has not yet signed the bill into law.

Public school teachers and state employees contribute to a state-operated retirement system. They do not participate in Social Security, such as those in the private sector.

Maine decided not to be part of the system, promising an equivalent system. That meant both a monthly payment at retirement and an annual cost-of-living — or inflation — adjustment.

Maine law caps both the rate of the adjustment and the benefit amount to which it applies. Employer and workers’ contributions that reflect the future cost of benefits — including inflation adjustments — provide the funds the system invests to help pay for current and future benefits.

Unlike Social Security, Maine does not protect the annual cost of living adjustment by law. In 2011, for the first time, the Legislature suspended it for three years. This action affected all retirees, but especially the financial security of the oldest retirees, many of whom are single women. Preventing further erosion of their retirement benefits is critical.

I and the other 13,000 plus members of the Maine Association of Retirees respectfully ask Gov. Mills to keep the promise given to public service employees and the annual cost-of-living bill waiting on her desk.

Burt Payson
Regional director, Maine Association of Retirees
Orrington

 



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