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Rep. Amy Volk In the News

As Unemployment Drops Again, House Republicans Tout Reforms

April 18, 2014

AUGUSTA - House Republicans on Friday praised news from the Maine Department of Labor that Maine's unemployment rate has dropped below six percent for the first time since September 2008, to 5.9 percent in March.

"Over the past few years, Gov. Paul LePage and Republican lawmakers have implemented economic reforms that broke up the decades-old, big government status quo in Maine," said House Republican Leader Ken Fredette of Newport. "We have a long way to go, but the repeated drop in Mai...

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Gov. LePage Signs Rep. Amy Volk's Human Trafficking Bill

April 11, 2014

AUGUSTA - Governor Paul LePage signed Scarborough Rep. Amy Volk's bill to help human trafficking victims into law late Thursday morning. The new law makes sex trafficking an affirmative defense to the charge of prostitution, preventing victims of trafficking from being branded with a criminal conviction.

The measure also fines perpetrators of sex trafficking $500-$1,000 in addition to existing penalties and allows victims to draw from the Victims' Compensation Fund.

"This is a gre...

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Rep. Amy Volk's Bill to Fight Human Trafficking Enacted Unanimously by House

April 2, 2014

AUGUSTA - The Maine House of Representatives on Wednesday morning enacted Scarborough Rep. Amy Volk's bill to assist human trafficking victims with a unanimous, 141-0 vote. The measure, LD 1730, establishes duress as an affirmative defense to the crime of sex trafficking, levies fines on persons convicted of sex trafficking, and allows victims to seek compensation from the Victims' Compensation Fund.

"I'd like to thank everyone who came out in support of this important initiative to help...

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Maine Entrepreneur on Dem Bill: 'This Will Kill the Maine Call Center Industry'

March 27, 2014

AUGUSTA - Maine House Republicans spoke out strongly against LD 1710, a Democrat-sponsored bill that would crush a major sector of Maine's economy and an increasingly-prolific provider of good jobs. The measure passed its initial vote in the House, 78-63, with bipartisan opposition.

The bill would impose massive fines and grant claw-back provisions on call centers that move any operations out of the state. These investment-prohibitive measures would likely prevent any new call center jobs...

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LCRED Republicans Support LePage's Open for Business Zone Proposal

March 24, 2014

AUGUSTA - The Maine Legislature's Labor, Commerce, Research, and Economic Development (LCRED) Committee on Monday afternoon held a public hearing on LD 1835, Governor Paul Lepage's proposal to create "Open for Business Zones" that offer tax incentives, reduced energy costs, right-to-work, and training programs to attract large employers to Maine.

"This is a bold and innovative proposal to bring lots of well-paying jobs to Maine, and I think Mainers would agree that it's time to give ambit...

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Statutory Parenting: Liberals Deny Job Opportunities for Teens

March 19, 2014

AUGUSTA - A bill introduced by the Department of Labor with the support of the Maine School Management Association to expand work opportunities for high school students was rejected with a party line vote of 85-58 in the Maine House on Wednesday morning. Not a single party testified in opposition to the bill during its public hearing before the labor committee.

The bill, LD 1698, would simply allow teens to work in movie theaters and bowling alleys while streamlining work permitting rule...

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Human Trafficking Bill Receives Strong Support at Public Hearing

February 20, 2014

AUGUSTA - A high-profile bill introduced by Rep. Amy Volk (R-Scarborough) received its public hearing before the Maine Legislature's Judiciary Committee Thursday afternoon.

The bill faced initial resistance from Democrats on political grounds, but with Volk's hard work and persuasion, LD 1730 made it to today's public hearing.

"I'm just glad that the bill finally saw the light of day, and today was the first time it really struck me that a remedy for women trapped by trafficking mig...

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Dems' Call Center Bill Sends Clear Message: 'Don't Come to Maine'

February 7, 2014

AUGUSTA - Maine House Republicans on Friday panned an anti-jobs bill that targets call centers in the state and had its public hearing before the legislature's Labor, Commerce, Research, and Economic Development (LCRED) Committee Thursday.

The bill, introduced by Senate Majority Leader Troy Jackson (D-Allagash) would inflict a virtual "death sentence" on businesses who move some operations out of state, revoking all state tax incentives and grants retroactively. Both the Maine Chamber of...

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Committee Democrats Vote Against Proven Job-Creating Tax Incentives

January 31, 2014

AUGUSTA - The Maine Legislature's Labor, Commerce, Research, and Economic Development (LCRED) Committee on Thursday afternoon voted against a vital job creation bill on party lines. Democrats on the committee voted against, and all five Republicans voted for, a bill that would extend the availability of Tier 2 Pine Tree Development Zone business tax credits through 2018.

"Today's vote was a big surprise because the bill was introduced by Democrats with bipartisan support," said Rep. Amy ...

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Labor, Commerce Committee Members Praise Unemployment Rate Drop

November 22, 2013

AUGUSTA - Lawmakers on the Legislature's Labor, Commerce, Research, and Economic Development (LCRED) Committee on Friday said they were not surprised by the Department of Labor's news that Maine's unemployment rate is at a post-recession low of 6.7 percentsix points below the national average.

The committee handles all legislation relating to the Department of Labor and various state boards and agencies, such as those overseeing labor relations, workers' compensation, unemployment insuranc...

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Human Trafficking Bill Receives Unanimous Support of Legislative Leaders

November 21, 2013

AUGUSTA - Rep. Amy Volk (R-Scarborough)'s proposal to allow courts to vacate the prostitution convictions of human trafficking victims received a unanimous, 10-0 approval Thursday afternoon from the Maine Legislative Council, the panel Republican and Democratic House and Senate leadership.

Rep. Volk's bill had become a major news story after Democrats denied it on October 30 in a party line, 6-4 vote.

"I'm very happy with the outcome of today's vote and I look forward to making th...

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Democrats Kill Rep. Amy Volk's Bill to Help Human Trafficking Victims

October 30, 2013

AUGUSTA - The Democrat-controlled Legislative Council - the panel of all 10 members of members of Maine state legislative leadership - on Wednesday killed Rep. Amy Volk (R-Scarborough)'s bill to help the victims of human trafficking by allowing courts to vacate their prostitution convictions.

The vote fell along party lines, with the four Republican members voting to let the measure into the upcoming legislative session and the six Democratic members voting in opposition to it. No reason...

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Rep. Amy Volk Introduces Bill to Help Victims of Human Trafficking

October 21, 2013

AUGUSTA - State Representative Amy Volk (R-Scarborough) has introduced a bill that would make Maine the fifteenth state to allow courts to vacate the prostitution convictions of human trafficking victims, joining Connecticut and Vermont in this growing movement to prevent women from being penalized for falling victim to the underground human trafficking trade.

"These are young women, many of them new to this country, who are being forced into prostitution rings against their will and then b...

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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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Maine Apportionment Commission Unanimously Approves House, County Maps

May 31, 2013

AUGUSTA - The Maine Apportionment Commission met Friday morning at 9:00 in Legislative Council Chambers and voted unanimously to approve new boundaries for the electoral districts that make up the Maine House of Representatives and each of Maine's county governments. The commission voted unanimously to approve a new map of Maine Senate districts last Friday, May 24. The bipartisan commission is formed every 10 years to negotiate new districts in order to conform with shifts to the state's popu...

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Democrats Say 'No' to Right-to-Work

April 24, 2013

AUGUSTA - Along party lines, majority Democrats in the House today voted against LD 831, a private sector Right-to-Work bill, and LD 786, which would have eliminated the union monopoly over bargaining rights for public sector workers. Both bills, sponsored by Rep. Lawrence Lockman (R-Amherst), have been the source of much public debate in recent weeks as they made their way through the committee process. Democrats said "no" to LD 831 by a vote of 92-53, and LD 786 by a vote of 89-56.

LD...

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Spiteful Dem Rollback of Workers' Comp Reforms Threatens Premium Death Spiral

April 10, 2013

AUGUSTA - Senator Troy Jackson (D-Aroostook) today presented LD 443, a concept draft bill that would roll back important, bipartisan reforms made to the workers' compensation insurance system in 1992 and 2012. House Republican Leader Ken Fredette (R-Newport) issued the following statement in response:

"We went from having two dozen workers' comp insurers in Maine in the late 1980s to three in 1992, with two of them filing papers to leave and the third threatening to do the same just befor...

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LCRED Republicans Express Concern over Small Biz Advocate Appointment

January 24, 2013

AUGUSTA - By all accounts, Jay Martin was a competent, knowledgeable, and responsive Small Business Advocate for the Office of the Secretary of State. The Legislature created the position in 2011 as a result of the findings of a bipartisan regulatory reform commission.

In addition to over 16 years of experience in the restaurant industry, Martin was instrumental in expanding the Bangor-based publication Coffee News into a national franchise and assisting United Cerebral Palsy of Maine i...

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Republicans Name Members of Apportionment Commission

December 11, 2012

AUGUSTA - House and Senate Republican leaders today named their appointees to the Apportionment Commission, which will convene throughout the winter and spring to redraw the state's House and Senate districts. The Maine Constitution requires redistricting every 10 years in order to ensure that state legislative districts comport with population changes. The commission is made up of 15 members, three of whom are named by House Republicans, two by Senate Republicans, one is the Maine Republic...

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Rep. Volk Op-Ed: Estate tax change will help preserve farms and small businesses

October 11, 2012

To the Portland Press Herald

By Rep. Amy Volk

Thanks to action by the Maine Legislature, state income taxes are going down next year.

Middle-income families can expect a cut of about 15 percent, while families in the top 10 percent will see an average reduction of 8.4 percent. According to Maine Revenue Services, some 460,000 households will see an average cut of $337 in 2013. Moreover, for approximately 70,000 low- and even moderate-income Mainers, income tax liability will be e...

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State Rep. Amy Volk posts excellent voting record

July 22, 2012

AUGUSTA - State Rep. Amy Volk, a first-term legislator from Scarborough, posted an outstanding voting record during the 125th Legislature, voting on 95.7 percent of the 369 roll call votes held in the House.

Rep. Volk said that lawmakers faced many tough votes in the 125th, but in the end the state will be financially stronger and better able to support schools and the safety net for the most vulnerable Maine residents.

"We began this session facing a huge deficit and runaway costs i...

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Rep. Volk survey: Scarborough residents value education over the economy and environment

May 9, 2012

AUGUSTA - Scarborough residents strongly favor performance evaluations for school teachers and principals, increased funding for the highway budget and the issuing of bonds to expand the supply of natural gas in Maine.

They also rate education as a more important issue than economic or environmental concerns and believe the Legislature should focus on cutting taxes and regulations (57.3 percent) over preserving public benefits (42.7 percent).

Those are some of the results of a constit...

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Rep. Volk's bill to evaluate state's economic development programs becomes law

April 13, 2012

AUGUSTA - Governor LePage has signed into law a bill sponsored by Rep. Amy Volk that seeks a comprehensive evaluation of state investments in economic development.

"We have a lot of economic development programs in the state, but we're not doing a great job at measuring their effectiveness," said Rep. Volk (R-Scarborough). "One of the principles of good business is that you have to measure results to get maximum performance. With this law, we begin a new era of making sure the state is get...

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Rep. Volk Op-Ed: Maine entrepreneurs leading state to brighter future

March 26, 2012

To the Portland Press Herald

By Rep. Amy Volk

I recently had the pleasure of attending the State Chamber's Leadership Summit at Sunday River. We spent hours discussing Maine business issues, and one of the "takeaways" was that we don't talk nearly enough about Maine's success stories.

We've all heard about Maine's low "business friendliness" ranking in Forbes magazine. In fact, it makes front page news. In some categories, however, we are already at or near the top of the charts....

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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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Rep. Volk Proposes 50 Percent Tax Credit for Mainers Aged 60 and Up

March 28, 2011

AUGUSTA - State Rep. Amy Volk has proposed legislation to provide a 50 percent income tax credit to Maine residents age 60 and older starting with the 2011 tax year. Nonresident taxpayers and part-year resident taxpayers over age 60 also would receive a 50 percent credit on income taxes due in Maine.

Rep. Volk's bill, LD 805, is titled An Act to Decrease the Tax Burden on Maine's Seniors. It has been referred to the Legislature's Taxation Committee, which has scheduled a public hearing on ...

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Between a Rock and a Hard Place

February 15, 2011

By Rep. Amy Volk

We've all been there. Sometimes, there are no good choices. No matter what decision you make, someone will be unhappy.

As a new legislator, that is exactly where I have found myself. State budgets are always difficult. We all knew going into this legislative session that tough choices awaited us. Difficult cuts were made in the last Legislature, but federal stimulus money cushioned the blow. With stimulus cash all but gone, state governments nationwide are in the same bi...

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Rep. Amy Volk Appointed to Labor, Commerce Committee

January 19, 2011

AUGUSTA - State Rep. Amy Volk has been named to the new Joint Standing Committee on Labor, Commerce, Research and Economic Development, which was created by the merger of the Labor Committee with another panel that focused on business and development issues.

"I'm very pleased to be on a committee that deals with economic development," said Rep. Volk (R-Scarborough), a first-term legislator. "My campaign pledge was to create a better business climate in Maine, and serving on this committee ...

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