AUGUSTA — Sen. Justin Chenette, D-Saco, said that he would appeal the Legislative Council’s decision Thursday not to allow in two bills designed to strengthen state ethics laws and restore the public trust in its elected officials.
“As long as elected officials are allowed to use the political system as their own personal piggy bank, Mainers will continue to be suspicious of our motives. As long as lawmakers and lobbyists are seen as one and the same, a dark cloud of misgiving will hang over the Legislature, with the public wondering whose benefit is truly being served,” said Sen. Chenette.
AUGUSTA — Sen. Justin Chenette, D-Saco, has introduced a constitutional amendment to protect any voter-approved referendum results from repeal or alterations for at least one year following their passage.
Chenette’s bill submission comes on the heels of a contentious legislative session that saw nearly every referendum approved by voters in the 2016 election altered or repealed.
“It’s appalling to me that a small group of politicians can overturn the will of the voters,” said Sen. Chenette. “We must protect the legitimacy of fair and free election results, otherwise what’s the point of voting?”
As the ranking member of the Taxation Committee, Chenette was a leading voice to fully implement Question 2’s progressive tax policy in order to fully fund public education. He also supported legislative efforts to implement the increase in the minimum wage, ranked choice voting, and marijuana initiatives approved at the ballot box.
“The Legislature should allow enough time for voter-approved referendums to become law and collect data to determine their effectiveness before rushing to change them or eliminate them entirely,” Chenette said.
All bill submissions for the second regular session of the Legislature will go before Legislative Council for approval on October 26. The council consists of House and Senate leadership from both parties.
DEMOCRATIC RADIO ADDRESS: Sen. Chenette says Legislature must close PAC loopholes to ensure public trust
AUGUSTA — In an effort to bring the workings of the State House to constituents as the Legislature preps for 2018’s legislative session, Sen. Justin Chenette, D-Saco, will be holding “Fall Town Halls” in communities throughout his district in early November.
"Being available and accountable to my constituents is something I take very seriously," said Sen. Chenette. "Maine people deserve to have direct and frequent access to their elected officials."
Sen. Chenette’s first town hall will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 1 at the University College, 4 Scamman Street #18, Saco. Residents can come and speak with Sen. Chenette about state issues, questions, or anything on their mind.
RSVPs are not necessary, and all are welcome. Individuals that cannot attend the Town Halls can call Sen. Chenette's office at 207-287-1515, email him directly at email@example.com, or message him at facebook.com/justinchenette.
SACO TOWN HALL
WHEN: 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 1
WHERE: University College, 4 Scamman Street #18, Saco (next to Shaws)
OLD ORCHARD BEACH TOWN HALL
WHEN: 10:30 to noon Saturday, Nov. 4
WHERE: Libby Memorial Library on 27 Staples Street in Old Orchard Beach
HOLLIS/BUXTON TOWN HALL
WHEN: 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 9th
WHERE: Salmon Falls Library on 18 Hollis Road in Hollis
LIMINGTON TOWN HALL
WHEN: 6 to 8 p.m. Friday Nov. 17th
WHERE: Old Town Hall on 297 Sokokis Avenue in Limington
A Democratic senator is attempting to block Gov. Paul LePage and future governors from removing county sheriffs from office, but the proposal needs bipartisan support from legislative leaders to advance.
Sen. Justin Chenette, D-Saco, proposes amending the Maine Constitution to eliminate the governor’s ability to remove county sheriffs in a bill he is hoping will be considered by the Legislature when it reconvenes in January. However, the proposal could be blocked Oct. 26, when the 10-person Legislative Council, which is comprised of five Republican and five Democratic legislative leaders, votes whether to move it forward.