Maine’s Statewide Building and Energy Code is at Risk

This week, the future of the Maine Uniform Building and Energy Code (MUBEC) is at stake. MUBEC will be the focus of debate and votes in the House and Senate, as two very different bills move forward. We urge you to contact your State Representative and Senator to ask them to support the statewide uniform…

“We Can Do This!”

-Nancy E. Smith, Executive Director   I attended the Maine Real Estate and Developers Association’s (MEREDA) spring conference last week to see what I could learn about how the Mega Trends of global population growth will impact living, working, and building in Maine. MEREDA focused on commercial real estate, and I attended with an eye…

GSM Testifies in Favor of LD 1569, “An Act To Restore the White-tailed Deer Population and Improve Maine’s Wildlife Economy and Heritage”

Deeryards matter to Maine. A favorite memory of my time as a forester for International Paper occurred one winter day when I was cruising timber in T1R6. I came upon an active deeryard, where nearly 40 deer were quietly “grazing” the area. To see them literally took my breath away! One of my favorite stories comes from my son Jon, and his Opening Day buck, shot while Jon stood on one foot because his other leg was shaking with so much adrenaline! Whether for hunting or visual enjoyment, deer are a part of Maine, and make no mistake, they are an important part of the Maine economy as well.

Legislative Week in Review

From the perspective of sustainable economic development and the need to preserve the unique natural resource of the North Woods and other parts of the Unorganized Territories, GrowSmart Maine believes that abolishing LURC will actually result in a significant long term setback to the northern Maine economy and a real threat to the overall sustainability of the natural resources of the North Woods that are such an important part of Maine’s overall economy and quality of place.

Press Release: GSM Testifies Against Legislative Proposals to Abolish or Weaken the Land Use Regulation Commission (LURC)

From the perspective of sustainable economic development and the need to preserve the unique natural resource of the North Woods and other parts of the Unorganized Territories, GrowSmart Maine believes that abolishing LURC will actually result in a significant long term setback to the northern Maine economy and a real threat to the overall sustainability of the natural resources of the North Woods that are such an important part of Maine’s overall economy and quality of place.

Gilman Place

21 Gilman Street in Waterville may soon hear the footsteps and laughter of young people again. The beautiful old high school, built in 1913 and empty for years, has been converted into 35 affordable, one, two and three bedroom ‘homes’.

I attended the ribbon cutting ceremony at Gilman Place Apartments yesterday, May 11, and was impressed not only by the spacious, sun filled apartments but by the commitment of those who made the project possible.

Press Release: GrowSmart Maine Testifies in Favor of LD 769 “An Act to Review the Functions of the State Planning Office”

While GrowSmart Maine strongly supports the continued existence of the State Planning Office, we do think that many of the current responsibilities of the office go beyond the scope of an entity that exists to develop and coordinate policy and provide an overview on statewide planning efforts.

Testimony in Opposition to LD 1416, “An Act To Provide Options to Municipalities Concerning the Maine Uniform Building and Energy Code”

Because this bill would negate the statewide consistency of the Maine Uniform Building and Energy Code, LD 1416 would remove one of the most significant accomplishments in bringing predictability and uniformity to business regulation in Maine.

Transportation Committee Votes Unanimously Against Billboards!

Today the Joint Standing Committee on Transportation held a Work Session on LD 1405 "An Act To Amend the Laws Restricting Advertising on Public Ways", sponsored by Representative Dennis Keschl, which proposes to significantly expand the current limitations on on-premise signage. The Work Session follows a well attended Public Hearing held by the Transportation Committee…

Testimony on LD 1344, “An Act to Fund Commuter and Passenger Rail Transportation In Maine”

While GrowSmart Maine supports the proposal in LD 1344 which provides revenue from the operation of slot machines at the casino in Oxford County to the State Transit, Aviation and Rail Transportation Fund, we also recognize the importance of the current distribution of funds to the harness racing industry. We urge the committee to reexamine the total funding cascade with the purpose of providing both the development of passenger and commuter rail service to Oxford County and preserving much needed funding for the harness racing industry in the State of Maine. The accomplishment of both objectives will help to preserve Oxford County’s rural character and quality of life.