Now there is a Las Vegas company behind the deal, and it’s trying to play the good guy by saying it wants to rewrite some of those troublesome provisions. Maybe so, and maybe another deal would help Maine more. And maybe not. In the meantime, we say vote no — if the company is serious, it can come back with a proposal that doesn’t need to undergo a complete rewrite before it can work for Maine.
Yes on Question 3
A $3.4-million bond to improve the quality of the state’s drinking water, and to improve wastewater treatment, is a bargain — particularly when it would bring Maine $17 million in federal funds to help us out.
Alfond for Maine Senate, District 8
Combining business sense with progressive politics and statewide personal connections, Justin Alfond may be just the person to bring change to Augusta. Supporting business incubation, improving education, expanding job training, and making tax incentives fairer are all ways Alfond wants to help make our state work better for all of us. His efforts organizing young urbanites and his understanding of rural realities will make it easier for him to bridge the gap that sometimes yawns between the Portland delegation and lawmakers from elsewhere around the state.
Brannigan for Maine Senate, District 9
Joseph Brannigan has for decades been concerned for, and dedicated to helping, Mainers in need, both professionally and in his service in Augusta. We will continue to need his experience as the economy worsens. It will be a crucial factor in the budget fight to come, if services for Maine’s poorest, weakest, sickest, oldest, and neediest are to have any prayer for funding in the face of what is almost certain to be a Baldacci-led slashfest.
Cohen for Maine House, District 113
While Joan Cohen’s emphasis on improving bipartisanship may be better intended for Washington DC than the Republicrat-ruled Augusta, she appears actually to want legislative efforts to work for Mainers. This would be a welcome change from the we-passed-it-now-let-the-havoc-begin type of initiatives the Legislature has been churning out lately, most recently the school-consolidation law, and also notably the Dirigo Health plan — both of which started with good ideas, but rapidly degenerated into broken systems. Cohen’s experience outside the halls of government can help get lawmakers looking beyond the next budget cycle, which would thrill us all.
Stuckey for Maine House, District 114
When we endorsed him in the primary, we hailed Peter Stuckey’s experience working with the neediest Portlanders, and the human voice he’d bring to Augusta. None of that has changed. Stuckey is an unflappable community advocate who will work to ensure that wages catch up — and keep up — with inflation, that everyone has access to high-quality affordable healthcare, and that we develop alternative transportation until it’s no longer considered alternative.
Hiltz for Maine House, District 115
We’ve already got a bunch of business-savvy folks in Augusta, and it doesn’t always seem as if they’re doing a lot of good. Perhaps we need someone new, young, and exciting — someone different — to shake things up. That’s where Michael Hiltz comes in. The former Marine is an atypical Green Independent candidate who’s knowledgeable and down-to-earth. His ideas about making Bath Iron Works and the Brunswick Naval Air Station into green-tech hubs are particularly encouraging, as is his promise to provide a “loud, progressive spark” at the State House.
Harlow for Maine House, District 116
Former Portland mayor Charlie Harlow, seeking his third term in Augusta, has a long record of paying attention to Portland’s neediest, and, as a retired teacher (and member of the Legislature’s Education Committee), has a good eye to what is possible — and necessary — in the state’s education policy. His attention to elder issues will help ensure they are not lost in the coming budget crunch, and his support for fairer taxation may offer some solutions.
Anne Haskell for Maine House, District 117
Anne Haskell is a responsive, constituent-focused legislator who deserves another term in Augusta. Her focus on family health, women’s issues, and criminal justice, combined with her fiscal expertise, honed at the Maine International Trade Center and the Finance Authority of Maine, make her both a compassionate and a pragmatic powerhouse representative.
Hinck for Maine House, District 118
Representing easily the most progressive district in the state, Jon Hinck is a Democrat with strong energy and environmental credentials. He has realistic expectations for how to raise new revenue and admirable goals for making Maine’s tax structure fairer. As evidenced by our favorite bill of his in the last session (the journalists’ shield law, which not only was admitted as an emergency bill in the second session, but passed both houses unanimously), Hinck not only has good ideas, but can get results — on behalf of Portlanders and all Mainers. We need more of that in Augusta.
Adams for Maine House, District 119
No legislator in Maine spends more time working on behalf of his constituents than Herb Adams. His home-district efforts benefit all Portlanders, and his energy and leadership often galvanize support from the rest of the city’s delegation. He pays startlingly close attention to details of legislation in order to determine the likely actual results of a bill. Even though he would be a “lame duck” in his final term before the limit kicks in, we know he will remain steadfast in his efforts to make sure the Legislature does what is right, not just what is easy.
Russell for Maine House, District 120
In the course of her campaign, Diane Russell has added constituent services to the menu at the Munjoy Hill convenience store where she works part-time; whether that continues after November 4 or not, her dedication to bringing the Legislature to the people will remain. Russell’s heartfelt understanding of the realities of Maine’s economic woes, and her sincere — and practical — dreams of reviving rail transport and putting building tradesworkers to work on a massive home-weatherization project all demonstrate her commitment to serving the people of Maine with dignity, honor, and compassion.
Suslovic for Portland City Council, at-large
Portland needs energy, vision, and experience as we face a winter that will be filled with crises; the increasingly strapped city budget and the prospect of residents unable to heat their homes are merely the two that come fastest to mind. Ed Suslovic has demonstrated that he is as concerned with people as he is with process, with constituents as much as commercial interests. He is a policy wonk with vision, who is looked to not only by city residents and leaders but also by officials around the region for clear thought, unbiased advice, and strong action.
Mermin for Portland City Council, District 5
It’s easy to see that Naomi Mermin is a go-getter who’s good at getting things done. She would come to the city council chambers with policy-making experience from her time with the Boston Conservation Commission, the Environmental Protection Agency’s Urban Environmental Initiative, and the US Green Building Council’s Maine chapter. Her concrete ideas (renovating school facilities, updating vehicle fleets), combined with a good dose of idealism, would make her a welcome voice on the council.