For Immediate Release
AUGUSTA - State Rep. James Gillway, a first-term legislator from Searsport, compiled one of the best voting records in the 125th Legislature, voting on 97.6 percent of all roll call votes held in the Maine House during the 117 days it was in session.
Over the course of the legislative term, members dealt with 2,049 bills. Seven hundred of them became law, ranging from large bills, such as the state budget, to minor technical changes. Many bills are voted unanimously to either pass or fail out of committee, and the House usually follows the committee lead with a unanimous vote on the floor that is not recorded. The House held 369 roll call votes, which form the basis for a voting record.
Rep. Gillway said he is proud of the accomplishments of the 125th Legislature, which include reform of the public pension system, regulatory relief and welfare reform. The Legislature also passed the largest tax cut in Maine history. Under the new tax code, some 70,000 low- and moderate-income Mainers will pay zero state income taxes and, starting in 2013, some 460,000 families will see an average tax reduction of $337. As a member of the Transportation Committee, Rep. Gillway was instrumental in another major tax change - the elimination of the automatic indexing of gasoline taxes.
"We tackled a number of important issues that had been neglected for years and made some difficult decisions," he said. "Pension reform will make sure the system remains solvent while also saving Maine taxpayers more than $3 billion in the next 15 years. Welfare reform is designed to protect Maine's most vulnerable residents while discouraging able-bodied people from making welfare a way of life."
Rep. Gillway added that regulatory reform - a major initiative that drew widely bipartisan support - removed obsolete or needlessly overbearing regulations that impeded economic growth. "Overall," he said, "we made the state much more business-friendly to help generate jobs and promote a stronger economy, which will benefit everyone."
The Legislature also overhauled Maine's health insurance law to promote competition and bring the system more in line with the American mainstream.
Rep. Gillway's district includes Frankfort, Orland, Prospect, Searsport, Stockton Springs and Verona Island. ###
Maine House Republicans
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