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October 22, 2014

State House Activity

Maine Legislative Leaders Select New Executive Director 
On September 30th, the ten members of legislative leadership that form the Legislative Council met and voted unanimously to hire Grant Pennoyer as the Legislature’s newest Executive Director. This is a largely “behind the scenes” job that involves administering the Legislative Branch’s budget, maintaining the State House complex, and managing all non-partisan legislative staff. Grant Pennoyer currently serves as the Director of the Office of Fiscal and Program Review, the Legislature’s non-partisan office devoted to the State budget and State finances.

Elections 2014
Election Day is Tuesday, November 4th. This election year offers voters a full slate of decisions; one U.S. Senate seat; both Congressional seats; the Governor’s race for Maine’s CEO, as well as the 186 Maine Legislature – House of Representatives and Senate.

There are also several bond issues and one referendum question on the ballot this fall. To learn more about the upcoming election, please check out this link: http://www.maine.gov/sos/cec/elec/upcoming.html.

Maine Secretary of State published the Citizen’s Guide to the Referendum Election. This Guide provides a description of the seven questions that will appear on November’s statewide ballot, which relate to the following:

Question 1 – proposes limiting certain bear hunting practices.

Question 2 – proposes $8 million in borrowing to create an animal and plant disease and insect control facility at the University of Maine.

Question 3 – proposes $8 million in borrowing for loans to small businesses to be administered by the Finance Authority of Maine (“FAME”) and regional economic development agencies, as well as $4 million in borrowing for FAME commercial loan insurance in partnership with Maine lending institutions.

Question 4 – proposes $10 million in borrowing to expand genetic and biometric research capabilities at the Jackson Laboratory in Bar Harbor.

Question 5 – proposes $3 million in borrowing for biotechnology workforce training at the Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory.

Question 6 – proposes $10 million in borrowing for water-related projects, including funding for stream crossings and culvert upgrades, wetland restoration, and wastewater and drinking water revolving loan funds.

Question 7 – proposes $7 million in borrowing for capital investments to facilitate the growth of marine-related businesses to be administered by the Department of Economic and Community Development.

Absentee Voting Available
Maine law makes it easy to cast an absentee ballot. You don't have to be out of town or have any other reason to take advantage of this easy way to vote at a time that is most convenient for you.

If you would like to vote by absentee ballot, you can request your own ballot electronically using the Secretary of State’s online absentee ballot request service. The approved online form can be found at the following Web site:
http://www.maine.gov/cgi-bin/online/AbsenteeBallot/index.pl

You can make a written request by completing an absentee ballot application. Additionally, you can obtain a ballot for an immediate family member in this same way. A ballot will be mailed to the voter directly or to an immediate family member making the request. Your municipal clerk can tell you who is considered an immediate family member under the law.

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