Louis Sigel Announces Senate District 14 Run

Posted on February 24, 2014. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , |

Gardiner resident Louis Sigel has thrown his hat into the open SD 14 race. A reminder: The seat is currently held by Senator Pat Flood (R-Winthrop), who recently said he does not plan not to run for re-election; former State Senator Earle McCormack (R-West Gardiner) has decided to run for his old seat again. Former Hallowell Mayor David Bustin made his intentions to run for the Democratic slot known recently as well, setting up a primary race.

The candidate took to Facebook last week to make his announcement:

louis sigel

    I am running for the Maine State Senate District 14–Gardiner, West Gardiner, Chelsea, Randolph, Pittston, Farmingdale, Hallowell, Manchester, Winthrop, Readfield and Monmouth.

    I am running to assure future budgets always include full 5% revenue sharing and full 55% state aid to local education–it is definitely not ‘welfare for towns and cities’, but it is clearly spelled out in Maine law and yet it is ignored and cheated on!

    I want Medicaid expansion to provide health insurance for the 70,000 left out and with no options simply because their incomes are too law for the health insurance marketplaces–and that includes 3,000 veterans.

    As far as veterans are concerned, I want veterans’ pensions treated the same as Social Security and thus exempt from the state income tax; and I want the state Bureau of Veteran Services to adopt a commitment to coordinate federal, state, and local services, both public and private to end veteran homelessness in Maine.

    I want to fulfill and extend the Affordable Care Act in Maine with a Maine health insurance mandate, Maine-run health insurance marketplaces for individuals and for small businesses [preferably set up by the proven winners–Deloitte Consulting], adopting a Maryland-style hospital rate-setting board [so all Maine hospitals charge all patients the same for the same procedure]’ and abolishing the Certificate of Need procedure for investment in the healthcare sector.

    I want to extend and expand campaign finance reform in Maine to include referendum and People’s Veto campaigns and require corporations to poll their stockholders each and every time they want to make campaign contributions in Maine political campaigns.

    I want to promote tax reform based on Democratic principles of focusing on fairness, transparency and the ability to pay.

    I will actively oppose any efforts that restrict women’s reproductive rights, suppress or discourage voting, or weaken necessary environmental protections.

    So anyone interested in donating to my seed money to launch my campaign is very much appreciated–I can raise up to $1500 from any individuals who are US citizens with a $100 limit on contributions. My intention, of course is to run as a Clean Elections publicly-financed candidate!

He elaborated further:

    Why am I running? I am running because I have been active on the Democratic Platform Committee and want to see that the platform becomes policy through legislation–especially a compact between the state and the towns and cities.

    I would welcome any support for my candidacy for Maine State Senate District 14:
    Make it Legal with Sigel!

    I am attempting to run as a Clean Elections candidate, so at this point contributions up to $100 from any US citizen are welcome toward the ‘seed money’ total of $1500 maximum

    So any contributions to: Sigel for Senate 2014 are greatly appreciated.

    As I said previously ‘Make it Legal with Sigel’ means following the law by
    1) Full 5% revenue sharing
    2) Full 55% state aid to local education
    3) State assuming its responsibility for teacher pensions and not pushing any part on to local education budgets
    4) Medicaid expansion
    5) Reinvigoration and extension of the Maine Clean Elections system–restoring gubernatorial coverage and providing for additional funding
    and more
    and yes, of course, I fully support a sensible, Maine-based approach to marijuana and recognize that the current prohibition is a failure!

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Maine Senate Debate on LD 1509, FY 14-15 Biannual Budget (June 13 VIDEOS)

Posted on June 24, 2013. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

As expected, today Governor Paul LePage vetoed the budget, aka LD 1509, “An Act Making Unified Appropriations and Allocations for the Expenditures of State Government, General Fund and Other Funds and Changing Certain Provisions of the Law Necessary to the Proper Operations of State Government for the Fiscal Years Ending June 30, 2014 and June 30, 2015”. On Wednesday, the 126th Legislature will reconvene to take it up in both chambers, along with a slew of other matters including ten bills vetoed late Friday and others today.

Here is the full list of Governor LePage’s vetoes of bills passed by the 126th Legislature.

IMG_4584When the Senate met the evening of June 13th to take up the budget, those who worked on the budget praised their fellow Appropriations and Financial Affairs Committee members from across the aisle, their staff and clerks, for working so hard together to create a budget that, per Senator Pat Flood (R-Kennebec), won unanimous approval by the entire AFA Committee on every single line item of the 680 page document, individually and as a whole.

And as the votes were tallied, it showed that same as in the House (102-43, 6 absent) earlier, the Senate had passed the measure (25-10) with a super majority strong enough to sustain a veto from the Governor.

    “Lawmakers did the right thing by passing a budget that allows the state of Maine to keep working,” said Senate President Justin Alfond of Portland. “In divided government, Democrats and Republicans in the Legislature worked together to pass a responsible budget that protects our schools, our property owners, and small businesses.”

Here are videos taken of the Senate LD 1509 floor debate, in order of speakers.

Appropriations Chair Sen. Dawn Hill (D-York) urges support for LD 1509, FY 14-15 Budget

    “As a committee and as a Legislature, we left politics at the door. We rolled up our sleeves and worked together to craft a responsible, bipartisan budget for the people of Maine,” said Senator Dawn Hill of York, the Senate Chair of the committee. “This is what we are expected to do. And I’m proud of our ability to work together despite our differences.”

Sen. Pat Flood (R-Kennebec) Speaks in Support of LD 1509, FY 14-15 Budget

Sen. Emily Cain (D-Penobscot) Speaks in Support of LD 1509, FY 14-15 Budget

    “This is a tough budget, but it is fair, and passing this budget is the right thing to do,”
    said Senator Emily Cain of Orono.

Asst Majority Leader Sen. Troy Jackson (D-Aroostook) Speaks in Support of FY 14-15 Budget, LD 1509

    “This is not a perfect budget. But it is a budget that reflects the spirit of compromise and getting things done for the people of our state,” said Assistant Senate Majority Leader Troy Jackson of Allagash. “This is the best compromise that I have ever been a part of and reflects how this Legislature is supposed to work.”

Sen. Andre Cushing (R-Penobscot) speaks in opposition to LD 1509, FY 14-15 budget

Senate Minority Leader Mike Thibodeau Speaks in Opposition to LD 1509, FY 14-15 budget

Sen. Doug Thomas (R-Somerset) speaks in opposition to LD 1509, FY 14-15 budget

Asst Minority Leader Sen. Roger Katz (R-Kennebec) speaks in support of LD 1509, FY 14-15 budget

Senate Majority Leader Seth Goodall (D-Sagadahoc) Speaks in support of LD 1509, FY 14-15 budget

    “Every two years we take a vote that is perhaps one of the most challenging. It requires us to set aside our philosophical differences and do what is right by looking ahead to our future,” said Senate Majority Leader Seth Goodall of Richmond. “This budget makes public education stronger and finally acknowledges the public service and dedication of our state employees.”

And now we wait.

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