Governor's weekly radio address - Addressing energy and education will create jobs

Emphasis mine

Governor's weekly radio address

Addressing energy and education will create jobs

By Gov. Paul LePage | Jan 28, 2012

The following is text from the governor's Jan. 28, 2012, radio address.

"My vision for Maine is one that brings a more prosperous tomorrow to my fellow citizens. And by looking back at our past we can learn how to better shape our future.

Hi. This is Governor Paul LePage.

The fiscal well-being of our state is critically important to our road to recovery. Currently, members of the Appropriations Committee are working to solve a massive financial shortfall within the Department of Health and Human Services.

The $220 million deficit is not a simple problem to solve, but I have provided a common sense approach that will redesign our welfare program to a state of sustainability.

As highlighted in my State of the State Address my administration did not create this problem nor did we invent it. Many of our legislators did not create this problem, nor did they invent it. But regardless of who is responsible, we must fix it.

Our plan is reasonable and responsible in that it allows the system to protect our most vulnerable.

Unfortunately, we no longer can be all things to all people. As the welfare program has grown our revenue has not, and the simple truth is we are spending money we don’t have. By eliminating services to 19- and 20-year-olds and those who do not have disabilities or children we strengthen the safety net for our most needy.

By reducing eligibility to the federal standard for optional services we maintain an affordable safety net that will serve more than 280,000 Maine people.

But we must not delay in taking action. And I am cautiously optimistic Appropriations Committee members are working toward a solution by Feb. 1.

As Democrats reflected on the State of the State speech bonding was brought up.

While it’s true we have a real need for transportation improvements and bonding would create short-term construction jobs, we must first get our fiscal house in order. Bridges and roads are essential to a healthy economy, but we can’t talk about borrowing more money until we have a plan to pay our current bills.

As I outlined Tuesday, energy and education will be the catalysts to job creation.

Mainers earn some of the lowest wages in the country and hard working families deserve more money in their pockets. We have great potential to increase the per capita income, but to do that our high energy costs must be addressed.

Next month, you will hear about an energy proposal that will lower electricity rates for Maine residents and businesses. Not only does our high electricity cost have an effect on the economy and our job creators, but it also hurts Maine families.

In addition to our plan, you’ll hear more about the administration’s support to encourage expanded investments in alternative sources of energy and efficiency. I also support all forms of renewable energy including hydropower. We must remove the 100 megawatt restriction on this renewable green energy.

We have the ability to accept a balanced approach that will benefit our environment and economy – and we must – as we look to our future.

Our youngest generation is our future and a strong education system will lead them on the path toward success.

Education Commissioner Steve Bowen and I believe the best way to shape a student is to offer real choices – choices that inspire our students and encourage them to succeed.

For too long, we have quarantined our students in a system that doesn’t work for everybody. That’s not to say public education is not a valuable resource, because it is – for some. By expanding learning options for students and making use of every educational resource we can better prepare our children for the 21st century.

It’s important our teachers have the tools they need to succeed as well. Therefore, it’s crucial they understand the expectations of effective educators. We must empower our teachers with ongoing support and meaningful feedback.

Research proves that the school-based factor with the biggest impact on student learning is the effectiveness of a teacher. Commissioner Bowen is working on a set of standards of effective practice for our teacher and principal evaluation systems, and soon we will release all the details.

In closing, I will tell you this, if we choose to set politics aside for the greater good we will be able to work on sensible solutions for all Mainers.

As your governor it is a privilege to lead our great state. It is a privilege to share a vision with you and I thank you for listening.

Ann and I hope you have a most enjoyable weekend. Take care."

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Comment by Allen Barrette on January 29, 2012 at 3:43pm

I agree We need someone somewhere to confront these mountain killers. Unlike big wind companies dreaming of great success in deceit, and using tax payer funds to build these commercial wind farms there are some folks that do care about the state of the state that our Gov. Baldacci left, oh he's not gone. There has to be accountability now it's Gov. Lepage's turn to step up to the real plate not the one that is made of gold offered by corporate greed.  

Comment by freemont tibbetts on January 29, 2012 at 11:09am

   Tell you what Governor I do believe you know. 

[ The True Facts ] of what Industrial Wind Power is doing to this Great State of Maine for the like"s of $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$. It"s wrong wrong wrong !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!. 

I sure hope you got the balls to address this in your next radio address.

 Freemont Tibbetts 37, Bruce Tibbetts dr. Dixfield Maine.       

Comment by alice mckay barnett on January 29, 2012 at 9:07am

During my tenure as Chair of the Legislature’s Committee of Energy, Senate Co-Chair Barry Hobbins and I led our committee to nearly 100% unanimous and bipartisan votes on some of Maine’s most complicated and important energy and infrastructure policies.  In fact, only 4 of 110 pieces of Legislation did not receive the unanimous consent of the committee, none of which represented partisan divisions.

Comment by Allen Barrette on January 29, 2012 at 6:35am

It is wrong to try to manage states in such dismay singly. This is a federal problem and should be  dealt with accordingly. Until the White house and all entities tied to it become one and agree that the American people come first you can kiss the recovery process of our once great nation goodbye, the states will not be able to recover. Washington can make,move,and manipulate all the money they want but it is not theirs to gamble with. That is all the stimulus package was, a gamble not a thought out process. Leave the gambling to Vegas night spots. We need a national movement and one great example of all good things to come is building our National Monorail system. This system will create 10s of thousands of jobs in every state if it is done on a national level. It will generate endless amounts of electricity as you ride. If we get on board now we can start saving the planet and the air we breath. Monorails, and Bullet trains, do not pollute automobiles,trains,boats,and aircraft do. lets take one step at a time and build this. If I can do this Washington can also do this but it has to start with the administration on the federal level first. ------- Got Vision



Maine as Third World Country:

CMP Transmission Rate Skyrockets 19.6% Due to Wind Power


Click here to read how the Maine ratepayer has been sold down the river by the Angus King cabal.

Maine Center For Public Interest Reporting – Three Part Series: A CRITICAL LOOK AT MAINE’S WIND ACT


(excerpts) From Part 1 – On Maine’s Wind Law “Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine if the law’s goals were met." . – Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting, August 2010 Part 2 – On Wind and Oil Yet using wind energy doesn’t lower dependence on imported foreign oil. That’s because the majority of imported oil in Maine is used for heating and transportation. And switching our dependence from foreign oil to Maine-produced electricity isn’t likely to happen very soon, says Bartlett. “Right now, people can’t switch to electric cars and heating – if they did, we’d be in trouble.” So was one of the fundamental premises of the task force false, or at least misleading?" Part 3 – On Wind-Required New Transmission Lines Finally, the building of enormous, high-voltage transmission lines that the regional electricity system operator says are required to move substantial amounts of wind power to markets south of Maine was never even discussed by the task force – an omission that Mills said will come to haunt the state.“If you try to put 2,500 or 3,000 megawatts in northern or eastern Maine – oh, my god, try to build the transmission!” said Mills. “It’s not just the towers, it’s the lines – that’s when I begin to think that the goal is a little farfetched.”

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Hannah Pingree on the Maine expedited wind law

Hannah Pingree - Director of Maine's Office of Innovation and the Future

"Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine."

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