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Augusta, Maine 04333-0002


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Rep. Kathleen Chase In the News

Dems Agree to Pull Spending Amendment from Gov's Rainy Day Fund Bill

March 19, 2014

AUGUSTA - The Maine Legislature's Appropriations and Financial Affairs (AFA) Committee agreed early Wednesday morning to approve LD 1807, the Governor's bill to restore $21 million to the state's rainy day fund, with a clean vote.

Late last week, Democrats in a party line committee vote added an $18 million spending amendment to the Governor's bill. Republicans quickly warned that the added measure would not find bipartisan support.

"Working together last night, we were able to conv...

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GOP Leaders: Medicaid Expansion Alternative Already In Place

March 3, 2014

AUGUSTA - Maine House Republican Leaders on Monday called attention to the built-in, default alternative to ObamaCare's welfare expansion. The health insurance exchange established by the federal government provides coverage that costs next to nothing to most of those who would be eligible for Medicaid if the state expanded.

"Virtually everything the Democrats say Medicaid expansion will do for the state will be done anyway by the exchange if we don't expand," said House Republican Leade...

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GOP Appropriators Say State Employees Compete with Medicaid, Revenue Sharing for Funding

February 10, 2014

AUGUSTA - The Maine Legislature's Appropriations and Financial Affairs Committee on Monday held a public hearing on LD 1639, a bill to give over $15 million over the next four years in merit and longevity pay to state employees, as required by their collective bargaining agreement.

"While the state should always meet its contractual obligations, it becomes increasingly difficult to do so when Medicaid consumes an ever-growing portion of our state budget," said Rep. Kathy Chase (R-Wells), ...

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DISGRACE: In Surprise Vote, Dems Raid Rainy Day, Tax Relief Funds

February 4, 2014

AUGUSTA - In an unprecedented move by majority lawmakers Monday night, the Democratic members of the Appropriations and Financial Affairs Committee voted "Ought to Pass" on a $40 million budget proposal without a single Republican present.

Democrats had met with their Republican colleagues on the budget committee earlier in the evening, agreeing to take the matter up during Tuesday afternoon's work session. All Republican appropriators left the State House with that agreement. Democrats...

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Public Hearing on Dem Tax Hike Proposal Reveals Economic Costs

January 22, 2014

AUGUSTA - The Maine Legislature's Appropriations and Financial Affairs Committee on Wednesday held a public hearing on LR 2721, a Democratic proposal to eliminate business tax incentives and raid the state's rainy day fund in order to fill a $40 million hole in the state budget. Without this measure, the budget gap would automatically be filled with a cut to state revenue sharing funds to municipalities.

Bill Cohen of Verso Paper, which operates mills in Bucksport and Jay, asked lawmak...

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Appropriations Committee Handles Budget-Busting Pension Bills

January 21, 2014

AUGUSTA - The Maine Legislature's Appropriations and Financial Affairs Committee on Tuesday held work sessions on a slew of bills relating to the state pension.

One bill taken up but eventually tabled by the committee for consideration at another meeting aims to repeal a key provision of the pension reform measure enacted in 2011 by the then-majority Republican legislature and Governor Paul LePage. Other measures heard but killed Tuesday included bills to bolster cost-of-living increases...

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Republican Appropriators Support Spending Reductions

January 16, 2014

AUGUSTA - The Maine Legislature's Appropriations and Financial Affairs Committee on Thursday afternoon is hearing public testimony on spending reduction recommendations put forward by the Office of Policy and Management (OPM).

The recommendations were required as a part of the state's biennial budget passed last summer. The Legislature tasked OPM with finding $33,750,000 worth of spending reductions as a part of balancing the budget for fiscal years 2014 and 2015. The executive branch w...

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Military Recruiter Bills Spark Fiery Debate in Maine House

June 4, 2013

AUGUSTA - The House on Tuesday took up two bills concerning military recruiters in public schools. The first, LD 1502, requires that public high schools allow recruiters to administer the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) test to students who elect to take it. Under the bill, recruiters, not school staff, would take the time to administer the test, which would remain voluntary for the students.

That bill was rejected mostly along party lines, 74-68. Majority Democrats ...

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Appropriations Committee Passes Supplemental Budget

February 13, 2013

AUGUSTA - The Appropriations and Financial Affairs Committee today voted unanimously to approve a supplemental budget to cover a $35.5 million revenue shortfall and an $87 million Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) budget overrun for the remainder of fiscal year 2013.

The budget presented to the Appropriations Committee by Governor LePage would have significantly trimmed Maine's welfare spending. Republican appropriators negotiated with Democrats to maintain many of the struc...

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DAFS Commissioner Briefs Budget Committee on Curtailment Order and Shortfall

January 4, 2013

AUGUSTA - Commissioner Sawin Millett of the Department of Financial and Administrative Services (DAFS) briefed the Legislature's Appropriations Committee today and took questions on the recent curtailment order that cuts state spending by $35.5 million through the remainder of fiscal year 2013.

Rep. Kathy Chase (R-Wells), Republican Lead on the Appropriations Committee, was hopeful that the Committee will achieve a positive solution. "We need to work together to solve the budget shortfal...

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House Republicans Name Committee Members

December 20, 2012

AUGUSTA - House Republicans today named their members to the Legislature's 17 joint standing committees. All except the Government Oversight Committee will have four Republican House members. The 12-member Government Oversight Committee consists of three members from each caucus.

"I am extremely confident in this team of legislators," said House Republican Leader Ken Fredette (R-Newport). "The incumbents are coming off of a term where they gained a lot of experience building consensus ...

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House passes budget bill on 75-61 vote

May 21, 2012

AUGUSTA - The Maine House tonight passed a supplemental budget to fill a $78.5 million gap in the state's 2013 fiscal year. The bipartisan vote was 75-61. The Senate passed the measure earlier today, 19-16.

The bill, LD 1746, which had been under consideration for weeks by the Appropriations and Financial Affairs Committee, deals primarily with a shortfall at the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).

Many of the provisions are structural in nature, meaning the savings will ...

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Rep. Wallace sworn in as Legislature's newest member

November 30, 2011

House Republican Office

November 21, 2011

For more information:

Jay Finegan, 287-1445

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Ray Wallace sworn in as Legislature's newest member

AUGUSTA - State Rep. Ray Wallace was sworn into office today by Governor Paul LePage after winning a special election to fill a vacant seat in House District 24.

Rep. Wallace (R-Dexter) said he was motivated to run for office by the reform agenda championed by the Republican majorities in the House and Senate...

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Health insurance reform clears initial hurdle in Maine House

May 5, 2011

AUGUSTA - Landmark legislation to revamp Maine's health insurance market cleared a critical hurdle today in the House of Representatives by a vote of 76-72. The measure, designed to generate more competition and bring rates closer to national norms, now moves to the Senate. Final enactment votes in both bodies could come as early as next week.

"The people of our state are the winners today," said House Speaker Robert Nutting. "For years, reasonable proposals to fix a dysfunctional health insur...

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Understanding the basics of the state budget

March 3, 2011

By Rep. Kathy Chase

As the Legislature takes up Governor LePage's $6.1 billion budget proposal, the State House has been packed by union members, teachers and other public sector employees concerned about changes to the pension system. Consequently, we are seeing much more media attention than usual being paid to the budget, and I've been asked by many constituents about the details of how the process works.

To clear up any mysteries and rumors about the budget, let me explain some of the b...

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Area Legislators Announce Reconstruction of Route 109 in Wells

January 6, 2011

AUGUSTA - York County legislators announced today that nearly 4.5 miles of Route 109 in Wells have been slated to undergo reconstruction.

"This project has been seven years in the making," said State Sen. Ron Collins (R-York), the new Senate chair of the Transportation Committee. "The York County delegation has worked diligently to ensure that this road made the list of scheduled projects."

The project is due to begin this spring and has been split into two phases because of its com...

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Republican response to the governor's weekly address

January 1, 2011

Greetings and Happy New Year! This is Kathy Chase, state representative from Wells.

This coming week marks the start of a new era for the citizens of Maine. On Wednesday, Paul LePage will be sworn in as governor at the Augusta Civic Center. The next day, the Legislature will convene at the State House to witness the swearing-in of three new constitutional officers - the Attorney General, the Treasurer and the Secretary of State. And there will be a new look to the Legislature itself. For t...

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