Maine Senate President

Michael B. Thibodeau

127 Maine Legislature

Maine Veterans Join Senate President in Recognizing New Stolen Valor Law

BELFAST – Veterans from the Belfast, Maine Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) joined Senate President Michael Thibodeau (R-Waldo) today in celebrating the enactment of “Stolen Valor” legislation. The bill, LD 1642, “”An Act Regarding Stolen Valor, ” strengthens the current law against Mainers who make false claims about having served in the United States armed forces. Veterans from the Belfast VFW asked Senate President Thibodeau to sponsor the bill prior to the beginning of the 127th Legislature. Under the new law, anyone who makes such claims will be subject to the state law governing theft by deception. It also specifies that any fine imposed on such a person must be deposited into the Maine Military Family Relief Fund. “When these American heroes asked me to sponsor this legislation, I told them it would be a true honor,” Thibodeau said. “After all they did to serve our nation, they have earned the right to call themselves veterans. For anyone else to falsely claim they are a veteran in order to benefit from it personally is beyond despicable. The intent of this bill is to make that very clear to anyone who is considering impersonating a veteran.” The bill passed unanimously in both the Maine House and Senate before being signed by Governor Paul LePage. Among those who joined Senate President Thibodeau at today’s news conference were veterans from World War II and the Korean and Vietnam Wars. # #...

Senate President Updated on Searsport Magnet School

  SEARSPORT – Senate President Michael Thibodeau (R-Waldo) attended the second board meeting of the Maine Ocean School, (Maine School of Marine Science, Technology, Transportation and Engineering School) in Searsport on Monday July 25, 2016. While the board is in the early stages of developing the school, they are on track to have the educational plan ready by February 2107, with some programs available in the fall of that year.  Senator Thibodeau congratulated the board on making the school a reality and reflected on the importance of the school-not only to the future of Searsport and Stockton Springs, but also to Waldo County and the entire State of Maine.  Town Manager James Gillway, who also serves in the Maine House of Representatives, sponsored the initial piece of legislation to bring the school to fruition. He thanked Senator Thibodeau for the critical role he played in shepherding the bill through the Legislature.  Without his help, Gillway said, the school would not exist. Also at the meeting, Charlene Knox Farris presented the board with a report about the extensive history of Searsport and why it makes sense for the school to be located here.  Searsport has a long history of supporting seafarers and the marine industry since the early 1700s. The institution will be a public magnet school designed to provide certain high-achieving high school students with a challenging educational experience. The school will be located in the Town of Searsport and will serve students from throughout Maine. Students from other states and countries may attend on a space-available basis.   Board members include Eric Jergerson, Carla Scocchi, Gayle Zydlewski, Tom Marx,...

Maine Senate Passes Welfare Reform

AUGUSTA – The Maine Senate tonight passed legislation to ban the use of welfare benefits for the purchase of lottery, alcohol and tobacco products. The legislation passed unanimously. The agreement between Republicans and Democrats includes penalties of a three-month disqualification of benefits for a first time offender of the ban, a 12-month disqualification for a second offense, and a 24-month disqualification for a third offense. Republicans have proposed such bans in recent years but have met resistance from Democrats. Senator Eric Brakey (R-Androscoggin) led the effort to find common ground on legislation that includes significant penalties for those who abuse taxpayers’ welfare dollars. “Republicans on the Health and Human Services Committee made clear early on that real penalties needed to be in place for a ban to be effective,” said Brakey who chairs the Health and Human Services Committee. “I am glad we were able to get Democrats to agree with us that penalties must be firm. This compromise is a result of a lot of hard work, and taxpayers as well as those who truly need and correctly use Maine’s safety net will be the ones who benefit.” Maine Senate President Michael Thibodeau (R-Waldo), who has made welfare reform a top priority during his time in the Legislature, called it a major step forward. “Reforming Maine’s broken welfare system has long been a priority for Senate Republicans, so I am glad we were finally able to get some buy-in from the Democrats on this issue. Welfare abuse is not a victimless crime. It takes resources away from the programs that are designed to help those who need them...

Contact

Senator Mike Thibodeau
3 State House Station
Augusta, Maine 04333

(207) 287-1500
mike@mainesenatepresident.com

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