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Rep. Paul Davis (R-Sangerville)
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For Immediate Release

Date: 01/29/14

Piscataquis County Survey: Welfare Reform, State Spending Top Priorities

Rep. Paul Davis of Sangerville releases results of constituent survey

AUGUSTA - State Representative Paul Davis (R-Sangerville) has released the results of his annual constituent survey, which he mails to every household in his district. Rep. Davis represents Atkinson, Dover-Foxcroft, Medford, Milo, Sangerville, Lake View Plantation, and Orneville Township in Piscataquis County, northwest of Bangor.

"This survey gives me an opportunity to listen to the people I represent and hear their priorities and concerns," said Rep. Davis. "Whether I speak with them at the grocery store or read their survey responses, I always try to listen to the people who will be affected by the policies being considered in Augusta."

Survey respondents were asked to rank what they think are the three most critical issues concerning Maine citizens. They were given nine choices and selected welfare reform as their first priority, followed by business attraction in second place and reducing state spending in third.

Area residents showed a strong preference for fiscal conservatism in other questions. When asked whether the state's decades-old budget problems are caused by too much spending or not enough revenue, 82.6 percent said state spending is the problem while only 17.4 percent blamed revenue. Maine currently has the sixth-highest state and local tax burden in the nation.

They also opposed the measure to attach a Medicaid expansion bill to Governor Paul LePage's Medicaid debt payment bill by a margin of 67.5 to 32.5 percent.

Respondents opposed the referendum to limit bear hunting by a margin of 57.6 to 42.5 percent, and 86.6 percent supported allowing forest rangers to carry firearms. Ninety-four percent support allowing military recruiters to wear their uniforms in public high schools, a measure opposed by Democrats last year.

An overwhelming 80.4 percent of survey respondents supported "Right to Work" legislation, which would prevent unions from forcing workers to join if they don't want to. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, private-sector job growth increased 6.4 percent in Right to Work states over the past decade and only 0.4 percent in forced-unionism states like Maine. Similarly, wages grew four times faster in Right to Work states over the past decade. Rep. Davis has supported Right to Work legislation in Maine, though it was stopped by Democrats.

Respondents also overwhelmingly favored the recent lifting of the statewide prohibition on fireworks and the direct farmer-to-consumer sale of agricultural products.

"I will continue to speak out on behalf of fiscally-minded Maine citizens, hunters and outdoorsmen, and everyone concerned about the economic future of northern Maine," said Rep. Davis. "I encourage anyone with questions, concerns, or ideas to contact me."

Rep. Paul Davis is a retired Maine State Trooper and veteran of the Army National Guard. In addition to serving in the Maine Legislature, he sits on the board of directors of the Sportsman's Alliance of Maine (SAM). He can be reached at repdavis@midmaine.com or (207) 876-4047.

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Contact:
David Sorensen
Maine House Republicans
Tel: (207) 205-7793