Transportation: We must strengthen the partnership between the General Fund and the Highway Fund to ensure our roads and bridges are safe. Transportation is vital to Maine’s economy. Simply relying on gas taxes to fund our infrastructure hasn’t worked. Over the next ten years, Maine is expected to have a $3 billion transportation budget hole. We can fill that budget hole, and keep our roads safe with a common sense funding plan that protects our roads and bridges without raising taxes.
Education: Education reforms should empower local districts to decide what’s best for their students and communities. Teachers, students and classrooms should come first, and student achievement must be our highest priority. Maine spends 25% more per student than the national average, yet our results are mediocre. Education costs increase, along with administrative employees and our property taxes, yet enrollment continues to fall. Today’s students are tomorrow’s leaders. Maine needs more options, less bureaucracy, and a commitment to prepare our students for success.
Common Sense Spending: Excessive government spending has resulted in nearly $12 billion in debt for which Maine families are on the hook. Mainers work hard to raise their families. They cannot afford to pay even more to government in taxes. Augusta’s tax-and-spend culture must end. I support a full audit of every government program, especially the Department of Health and Human Services, which consumes about 30% of the state’s general fund spending. Let’s figure out what works in government, and what doesn’t, so we can reduce spending, cut taxes and bring new jobs to Maine.
Health Care Costs: Maine’s health care premiums are too high—among the highest nationally. Federal mandates might raise them higher. One of the most effective ways to reduce Maine families’ health care costs is to increase options. We should have the right to buy health insurance plans available in other states, just like we can with our homeowners, vehicle and life insurance. With more coverage choices, Mainers can find an affordable plan that meets their family’s needs. We must also cut the red tape that drives up insurance costs in Maine. I support a review of all state mandates on providers to identify and eliminate mandates that make health care unaffordable for too many Maine families.