by Dana Connors
Here we are, at the beginning of June already! The legislature’s statutory adjournment (Wed., June 16) is right around the corner, and it is anyone’s guess if they will adjourn on time. There are hundreds of bills in the pipeline. The volume of nearly 1,000 bills, as well as their complexity, does not bode well for a June 16 adjournment. Yet, stranger things have happened!
Our advocacy team and many legislators have noted how they missed the conversations that traditionally occur in the halls of the Statehouse. These interactions build relationships and foster understanding – both of which usually make for good public policy outcomes. COVID protocols at the Statehouse complicated the legislative process during the past six months, removing the daily conversations, the in-person testimony, and sufficient public notice, all of which are critical to the process.
In the next two weeks, legislators will hold floor debates and cast votes on an estimated thousand bills, determining the fate of Maine’s economic recovery in the process. In addition, the state’s supplemental budget, the use of the American Rescue Plan funds, and plans for an upcoming bond package are still unresolved.
As you can tell, it is crunch time! There will likely be more defense than offense in the weeks ahead. As we work to secure favorable public policy outcomes, I invite you to add your voice to ours by communicating with your elected representatives and providing them with a clear picture of how their votes will impact your business, your employees, and your community. It is an honor for us to work on behalf of our members to mitigate increases to the cost of doing business here.