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Entries in Maine Legislature (17)


2017 Maine Legislature to Consider a Variety of Energy Bills

On Friday, January 6, Maine Governor Paul LePage released his biennial general fund budget for 2018-19. The Governor’s proposed biennial budget and briefing document can be found here. The main priority in the Budget is reducing Maine’s top income tax rate from 10.15 percent to 7.15 percent this year, and then implementing a flat tax of 5.75 percent by 2020.  The Budget also purports to make changes to how General Purpose Aid to Education is distributed to public K-12 schools, eliminate State support for General Assistance, eliminates the cap on public charter schools, elevates information services and cybersecurity to a new Cabinet-level Department, tightens eligibility requirements for Medicaid, creates a new statewide public defender system, allows municipalities to assess municipal service fees on large not-for-profit entities, and eliminates 500 state government jobs (300 of which are currently vacant).

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Energy News Roundup: January 25-January 31

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OPEGA Report Analyzes Processes at Maine PUC

The Maine Public Utilities Commission was recently the subject of a report (click link to download PDF) issued by a state government oversight office.  The report recognizes some strengths and recommends improvements to processes at the PUC, particularly for the benefit of utility customers.

The Office of Program Evaluation and Government Accountability, an agency that reports to the Government Oversight Committee of the Legislature, issued its report on the Maine PUC in September.  OPEGA’s report found that the PUC’s Consumer Assistance Division has a strong customer focus and is responsive to customers.  CAD could improve by taking steps to recognize trends in contacts with that office to determine whether a broader action needs to be taken to respond to issues potentially affecting multiple customers. 

The report also found that adjudicatory proceedings at the PUC can be difficult to navigate for individual customers who are intervenors or interested parties and not represented by counsel.  OPEGA recommended that the PUC clarify the many ways that consumers’ input may be used in decision-making, and continue to improve the agency’s online case management system to make the portal more user-friendly.

The Legislature created OPEGA in 2003 to perform independent reviews of agencies and programs of state government.  OPEGA began operating in January 2005.  Other OPEGA reports are available here.


Energy News Roundup: July 20-July 26

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Energy News Roundup: June 22-June 28

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Energy News Roundup: June 15-June 21

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Energy News Roundup: May 18-May 24

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