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    money in politics – Maine Beacon

    The parent companies of Maine’s two largest investor-owned utilities, ​​Central Maine Power and Versant Power, are reporting hundreds of millions of dollars in profits since they began raising rates last year. Many Mainers’ electric bills spiked at the beginning of this year after the Maine Public Utilities Commission announced there would be an 83% increase…



    On the Beacon podcast this week, Ben and Mike discuss the Portland referendums and charter commission proposal, a newly-open House seat in Bangor, how Maine anti-abortion rights candidates get their funding and how to grade Maine’s legislators. Ask a question or leave a comment for a future show at (207) 619-3182. Subscribe to the podcast…

    A Maine small business group and a national advocacy organization released a report Wednesday sounding the alarm about the influence of billionaires on the American political process, with the ultra rich pumping tens of millions into the 2022 midterm elections primarily in support of Republican candidates.  The report was put together by Americans for Tax…

    Advocates at the forefront of the fight against toxic substances in Maine are pushing back against a recent letter from over 50 industry groups, including the Maine State Chamber of Commerce, requesting that the Mills administration delay implementation of a law requiring companies to provide information on products that contain PFAS beginning in 2023.  The…

    In their latest campaign finance filing the Maine Association of Realtors reports giving the maximum individual donation of $425 each to 16 state lawmakers seeking re-election. All are Republicans and all 16 have been endorsed by the Christian Civic League of Maine, the state’s leading opponent of abortion rights which recently celebrated the overturning of…

    Organizers for a campaign to replace Maine’s unpopular investor-owned utilities with a consumer-owned model say they exceeded their signature collection goal during this month’s primary and are on track to soon have the number of petitions needed to trigger a referendum in November 2023.  Our Power, a grassroots coalition spearheading the consumer-owned utility campaign, announced…

    Recently released campaign finance reports reveal The Dinner Table PAC, a local committee launched during the COVID pandemic to support candidates who oppose Maine’s COVID vaccine mandate for health workers, has raised almost $100k in small donations so far this year. As of June 13, the Richmond-based group had a cash balance of nearly $190,000…

    Though there is wide agreement that the state’s investor-owned utilities, Central Maine Power and Versant, are not meeting the needs of consumers, a committee that oversees how best to deliver affordable, reliable, climate-friendly power to Mainers is split on the best path forward. After a work session March 18, the Energy, Utilities and Technology Committee…

    A measure that would address big box stores that challenge local assessments to get steep reductions to their property tax bills and a proposal that would rescind restrictive needle exchange policies in Maine have passed initial votes in the House and Senate, setting both bills up for final legislative approval.  ‘Dark store’ bill  As Beacon…

    A bill requiring municipal candidates and PACs in Maine’s three largest cities to disclose their campaign finance reports to the public passed the Maine House and Maine Senate this month but is facing concern over its opaque $1 million fiscal note for “software upgrades.”  The proposal, LD 1658, sponsored by Rep. Grayson Lookner (D-Portland), is…

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