Maine's Environmental Priorities Coalition
A program of the Maine Conservation Alliance, the united voice for Maine's environment
2016 PRIORITY BILLS
Priorities will be updated as the legislative session progresses.
Reject LD 1398: Keep RGGI working to lower energy costs for businesses The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) is extremely effective at reducing climate pollution while lowering energy costs and improving Maine's economy by using its fund to support energy efficiency in homes and businesses. LD 1398 would have Maine abandon its successful approach to RGGI and slash funding for fuel-saving energy efficiency programs for businesses by 80%, or $20 million over the next three years, resulting in $120 million higher energy bills for Maine businesses. Cutting energy efficiency support for businesses means less capital investment in Maine, fewer jobs, and a less competitive economy.
Land for Maine's Future Bond: Protect Maine's natural resources by investing in our forests, farms, and fish The Land for Maine's Future (LMF) program has a history of broad support and an outstanding record of success in protecting Maine's natural legacy. LMF partners with landowners, municipalities, and state agencies in conservation projects that support local economies. This LMF Bond will help protect working farms, working forests, and working waterfronts that are the backbone of Maine's economy and might otherwise be lost, as well as provide essential infrastructure to help preserve Maine's unique character, support ecotourism, and keep Maine an attractive place for new and growing businesses.
Stream Crossing Bond: Reconnect fish and wildlife habitat, create jobs, protect roads, and improve public safety Repairing stream crossings in Maine is an investment in our communities, our economy, and our way of life. Many Maine culverts are old, ineffective, and put roads, public safety, and wildlife at risk. This Bond will help communities be better prepared for extreme storms and flood events, strengthen Maine's long-term economic base and competitive advantage, create and preserve jobs in the areas of construction, tourism, fisheries, and environmental engineering, and reduce future costs by avoiding emergency replacements during large storms or water main breaks during spring thaw.
Reject LD 1543: Defend municipal rights to limit the use of pesticides Maine communities should be able to decide for themselves whether to limit the use of harmful pesticides in order to protect the public's health. Pesticides are inherently dangerous, yet there has been a dramatic increase in their use and Maine has no meaningful pesticide spray buffer zones to protect communities from pesticide drift. Currently, several municipalities have passed local ordinances to protect their citizens. These vary widely in content in order to fit the unique needs of individual communities. LD 1543 attacks "home rule," and prevents towns from taking steps to reduce citizen exposure to harmful pesticides, and requires the creation of costly new boards to oversee local ordinances. It's a one-size-fits-all approach that would not respect unique municipal circumstances and would retroactively invalidate existing ordinances unless municipalities comply with the bill.