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MEMORANDUM

TO: Candidates for Governor

FROM: David R. Clough, State Director – Maine

RE: Small Business Issues – Candidate Survey


The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), the state’s leading small business advocacy
organization – with thousands of members in Maine – would like to obtain your views on some key
issues affecting small business owners in the state. This survey is also being sent to the other candidates
in your race and the responses may be used to determine support for a particular candidate.

In no event will we support a candidate who does not submit responses to this survey.

Please Return by E-Mail to David.Clough@nfib.org or Fax toll-free (800) 664-8701


Thank You.
...........................................................................................................................................................


Candidate’s name (print) ___Eliot Cutler________________________________ District_State_


Campaign Address______ PO Box 17766________City____Portland____________Zip 04112


Phone # (_207_)____358-7000_____________ Fax # (_______)______________________________


Email ___info@cutlerformaine.com____Website __ http://www.cutlerformaine.com/______


Are you now or have you ever been a small business owner? _X__ Yes _____ No


If yes, type of business _ As an active entrepreneur, businessman and investor, I have
helped start and manage eight successful businesses, helped turnaround failing
enterprises, served on the boards of directors of private and public companies and
advised and managed private and public philanthropic organizations. As a
strategist and lawyer for governments, business corporations and citizens groups,
I helped clients resolve legal and public policy problems during a career in three
law firms and two countries.


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Years in operation _1974-2014 ___


Are you an NFIB member? ___ Yes ___X___ No If yes, how long? ( ______ years )



Current Employment _____ I am actively engaged in four businesses. MaineAsia advises
Maine companies on export opportunities in China and Asia. ArchSolar is
combining the composite spanning technology developed at the University of Maine
(“bridge in a backpack”) with high efficiency PV solar panels to develop greenhouses
and other structures that will bring cost-effective year-round agriculture to New
England. Chamisa Energy is developing an 810 MW compressed air energy
storage project that will help make wind generated technology more cost-effective
without subsidies. And I am an active member of the Board of Thornburg
Investment Trust, a family of mutual funds with assets of $70 billion. In addition,
I am President of the Lerner Foundation, which supports organizations and
projects in Maine that seek to improve and strengthen civic life and families with
annual grants of more than $600,000.
______________________________________________________________________


Groups / organizations to which you belong ______Sportsman Alliance of Maine, Crabtree Neck
Land Trust, Frenchman Bay Conservancy, Friends of Casco Bay, Maine Audubon,
Maine Coast Heritage Trust, Maine Farmland Trust, Maine Island Trail Association,
and The Nature Conservancy
____________________________________________________________________________________________


Previous political / elected office experience _____ Associate Director of the White House Office
of Management and Budget (1977-1980), Legislative Assistant and aide to Senator
Edmund Muskie (1967-1973).
___________________________________________________



Please list some of the organizations that have endorsed your candidacy:


1.__________________________________________]__ 2. _________________________________


3. __________________________________ 4. _____________________________________



Please print the top financial contributors to your campaign (if privately funded candidate):


1.Eliot and Melanie Cutler________________ 2. 430 individuals and businesses who
have contributed the maximum
permitted amount to the
campaign. For a full list of all

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contributions to the Cutler for Maine campaign, please go to this link:
http://mainecampaignfinance.com/PublicSite/homepage.aspx

[Cutler for Maine does not accept money from special interest PACs.]


3.___________________________________ 4._____________________________________



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NFIB/ME Small Business Issues Candidate Survey – 2014


The phrasing of the questions below is not meant to indicate the position of NFIB members on these issues.

I am returning your questionnaire with answers to all of your questions. Because I
believe that many of your questions speak to important issues that deserve much
more than just a "yes" or "no" answer, I have chosen to respond in a way that
respects that fact – and respects your membership. I would welcome the
opportunity to participate in any NFIB/ME-sponsored debates or forums during the
course of the campaign.

1. Would you support extending the temporary half-cent increase in the sales tax (from 5% to 5.5%)
beyond its expiration June 30, 2015 (LD 1509, Part M)?

____YES ____NO

Standing between Maine and sustained economic growth, more jobs and shared
prosperity is an outmoded, inefficient, highly regressive and unfair tax structure.

I am a fiscal conservative. You get that way after three years of supervising billions
of dollars of government spending.

Maine’s tax system, which has been described as “some combination of imbalanced,
burdensome, unfair, uncompetitive, complex, archaic, and volatile,” badly needs a
reboot. Maine people suffer because the tax system we have is neither smart nor
fair. Taxes should raise the least amount of money we need in Maine for public
services and investment, in ways that are fair and equitable. Our tax policies should
promote opportunity without seeking to engineer particular results or to advance or
advantage narrow economic agendas. One of our top priorities in a plan for Maine
should be to reform Maine’s tax structure – all of it – in ways that will help us
leverage our competitive advantages, create and protect opportunity, and grow our
economy.

We need to lower our income tax rates, unify our estate tax with the federal system
and broaden the base of our sales tax. But nowhere are the deficiencies in our tax
structure more evident than in property taxes.

The property tax is Maine’s most regressive tax and most highly stressed revenue
source. It is the only tax that local officials can use to raise revenues that pay for
local services like education, police and fire protection, and the maintenance, repair
and plowing of roads and streets. When the state cuts back on revenue sharing or
fails to meet its education funding commitments, or when a tough winter blows out
the public works budget, Maine towns and cities get squeezed and property
taxpayers take the hit.



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Property taxes increasingly place a disproportionate burden on particularly
vulnerable groups of Mainers. Today, some 28 percent of Maine households pay
more than 6 percent of their income in property taxes; 11 percent of Maine
households pay more than 10 percent of their income; and 3 percent of them pay
more than 20 percent of their income. Seniors on fixed incomes, students in
underfunded schools, farmers who are pushed off their land and fishermen who are
driven from the shore are all among the casualties of Maine’s growing dependence
on property taxes.

Tax reform should start where relief is most urgently needed.

I have proposed massive, structural reform of our property tax system that
would release Maine residents from the choking grip of outmoded and unfair
property taxes; unburden Maine cities and towns; free funds for investment in
education and tourism promotion; and fuel new growth and job creation in the
Maine economy. No other candidate for governor in this election or in any past
election one—has proposed tax reform and explained

The principle features of my Property Tax Relief plan include:

• 20% - 40% lower property taxes for the typical Maine resident homeowner
• Improved tax fairness for low and middle income Mainers.
• Exported tax burdens target benefits to Maine residents.
• Economic stimulus from more discretionary dollars in Mainers’ pockets and
better marketing.
• Increased state funding for education.
• Funding for towns and cities is increased and more certain.
• Municipalities rewarded for more collaboration. Meaningful tax reform is hard
work and not without political risk.

By tackling Maine’s most onerous and regressive tax first, the Cutler Administration
will demonstrate the value of political independence; will show that tax reform can
be accomplished and will stimulate economic activity in Maine; and will set the
stage for further reforms that can make Maine’s entire tax system smart, efficient
and fair to all Maine people.

WHAT IT DOES

More than a third of Maine homeowners with incomes under $40,000 pay more
than 10 percent of their income in property taxes. This is an unfair burden. This
plan takes a serious approach to property tax relief and fairness while providing
more support for the municipal and educational services delivered by Maine’s local
governments.



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1. Property Tax Relief

The centerpiece of the Property Tax Relief plan is an increase in the homestead
exemption that would lower property taxes by 20 to 40 percent for the average
Maine homeowner. The homestead exemption would increase from $10,000 to
$50,000, up to 50% of the assessed value of a Maine resident’s primary residence.
No matter the homestead value, the minimum exemption would never be less than
$12,000.

Just about every Maine resident would get significant property tax relief under this
reform, with more substantial reductions in the case of homesteads valued closer to
or less than the median value. Compared with traditional revenue sharing, which
provides 10 times as much tax relief (in dollar terms) to a $1 million home as it
does to a $100,000 home, this plan would target relief to those who need it the
most.

For example, for a home worth $171,600, the median value in Maine, property
taxes would be imposed on only $121,600 of that value. Depending upon the
location of the home, the owner’s annual tax savings under the Property Tax Relief
Plan would range from about $400 in lower tax rate communities to over $700 in
higher tax rate communities (See Table 1).

In some communities, tax relief would approach $1,000.

The percentage reduction for higher valued homes would be less than it is for lower
valued homes. For example, the estimated property tax on a $400,000 home in
South Portland would drop from $6513 to $6090, a savings of 6 percent. The
estimated property tax on a $750,000 South Portland home would drop by 1
percent, from $12,358 to $12,180.

Here are examples of how the Property Tax Relief plan would affect property taxes
in various Maine communities:

• Estimated property taxes on a $125,000 home in Lewiston would drop $875
from $3065 to $2190, or by 29 percent.
• Estimated property taxes on a $90,000 home in Caribou would drop $675
from $1640 to $965, or by 41 percent.
• Estimated property taxes on a $160,000 home in Brewer would drop $740
from $3138 to $2398, or by 24 percent.
• Estimated property taxes on a $220,000 home in South Portland would drop
$549 from $3507 to $2958, or by 16 percent.
• Estimated property taxes on a $55,000 home in Millinocket would drop $499
from $1348 to $849, or by 37 percent.
• Estimated property taxes on a $150,000 home in Sanford would drop $744
from $2968 to $2224, or by 25 percent.
• Estimated property taxes on a $135,000 home in Belfast would drop $682
from $2621 to $1939, or by 26 percent.

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The expanded homestead exemption would be simple to administer, as it already is
being done on a smaller scale.

2. Revenue Rebates for Towns and Cities
Coupled with the increased homestead exemption in the Property Tax Relief plan
would be new Revenue Rebates for Towns and Cities that would increase state
financial assistance to $185 million from $85 million in FY2015 (including revenue
sharing and current homestead reimbursements).

Funds distributed through traditional revenue sharing are widely diffused and poorly
targeted. For example, a considerable portion of the tax relief associated with
traditional revenue sharing benefits non-resident property owners and resident
owners of very expensive homes.

The new Revenue Rebates plan would better target benefits to Maine residents,
particularly those who own more modest homes.

In place of Maine’s traditional revenue sharing, Revenue Rebates would reimburse
towns and cities for most of the lost revenue from the enlarged homestead
exemption. Communities with low property values per capita, or with the highest
property tax rates on their residents, would be 95 percent reimbursed for the lost
revenues (estimated cost: $115 million). Communities with very high property
values per capita and very low existing tax rates would be reimbursed for 50
percent of lost revenues (estimated cost: $59 million). Most communities’ rebates
would fall somewhere between 50 and 95 percent.

The plan would result in small increases in the property tax rate in most
communities. The increase averages about .56 mil, or $0.56 per $1000 of property
value.

• The impact of the slight mil rate increase would be more than offset for the
typical Maine homeowner by the Property Tax Relief and is fully accounted
for in the property tax estimates for individual Maine residents that are set
out by municipality in the calculator at
www.cutlerformaine/PropertyTaxRelief and for median home values in the
Table 2.
• Notwithstanding the small increase in mil rates, most Maine resident
homeowners would see property tax cuts of between 20 and 40 percent on
their primary residences.
• Non-residents would see modest property tax increases, as would some
commercial taxpayers.
• The amount of revenues that would need to be restored through tax
increases is highly concentrated in those communities with a larger tax base
from which to make up the difference. Even in those communities,
however, resident taxpayers would be much better off than they would be
without the new program.


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3. Collaboration Rewards.

Maine taxpayers know that their local governments can provide services more
efficiently by collaborating with each other, but they don’t want the state telling
them where and how to do it.

A voluntary Collaboration Rewards plan would make available bonus Revenue
Rebates for towns and cities that establish an approved regional service delivery
plan and timetable. Collaboration Rewards would make available to those
municipalities additional Revenue Rebates of up to 5 percent of their lost revenues
from the Property Tax Relief plan (estimated cost: $11 million). These
supplemental reimbursements would be distributed among municipalities that
demonstrate progress in achieving the objectives of their regional service delivery
plan.

4. Small Business and Farm Fairness Adjustment.
Small businesses and farms are the backbone of the Maine economy, and many are
struggling with rising property taxes.

A new Small Business and Farm Fairness Adjustment would shield smaller
businesses and farms against the small rate increases that could result from the
expanded homestead exemption.

If property taxes exceed 6 percent of the net income of a small business or farm,
the Fairness Adjustment would reimburse $1.00 per $1000 of valuation up to $2
million of property value, paralleling the eligibility rules for the existing individual
property tax fairness credit. Here are three illustrations of how the Fairness
Adjustment would work:

• Family Farm in Fort Fairfield. The enlarged homestead exemption would
increase the tax rate in Fort Fairfield from $23.00 to $23.86 per $1000 (see
Appendix). If the owner of a $450,000 family farm doesn't participate in the
existing farmland program nor claim the new homestead exemption, the
farm would face a tax increase of $387. As long as the total property taxes
of the business would be more than 6 percent of its net income, the owner
would be eligible for a Fairness Adjustment of $450, fully making up for the
tax increase.

• Auto Repair Shop in Skowhegan. The enlarged homestead exemption
would increase the tax rate in Skowhegan from $16.40 to $17.07 per
$1000. The owner of a $650,000 auto repair shop would see her property
taxes go up by $436. As long as the total property taxes of the business
would be more than 6 percent of the net income of the business, the owner
would be eligible for a Fairness Adjustment of $650, more than offsetting the
tax increase.


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• Apartment Building in Bangor. The enlarged homestead exemption would
increase the tax rate in Bangor from $20.80 to $21.77 per $1000. The
owner of a six-unit $325,000 apartment building would see an increase in
property taxes of $315. As long as the total property taxes of the business
would be more than 6 percent of its net income, the owner would be eligible
for a Fairness Adjustment of $325, fully mitigating the tax increase.

5. Education Challenge Fund.
A new $75 million Education Challenge Fund will increase the state’s share of
education funding, bringing it closer to the 55 percent contribution required by law
but never met, providing additional assistance to local schools, and further reducing
the burdens imposed on local property taxpayers. (Additional details on this Fund
and education funding in general will be described in an education reform initiative
to be presented later this spring.)

6. Marketing Maine Trust Fund.
Growing Maine jobs and incomes will require an expansion of Maine's export
markets, where the tourist experience is Maine's biggest and most economically
significant export. Maine is a mythic state, but our brand is largely undeveloped
and our marketing has been chronically underfunded.

In order to develop an umbrella brand for Maine that will last for decades, either 33
percent of the incremental revenues from a permanent 8 percent tax on meals and
lodging or $10 million annually from a 6 percent sales tax (see below) would be
reserved for a Marketing Maine Trust Fund, effectively doubling Maine’s annual
expenditures for promoting and marketing the state.

PAYING FOR THE PLAN

These structural reforms in Maine’s tax system should be revenue neutral, and the
Cutler Administration will present two options to the Legislature for achieving
revenue neutrality. The Cutler Administration will work closely with the Legislature
to determine which plan, or other possible alternatives, would work best for Maine.

Option 1

Multiple components together would raise an estimated $180 million to pay for the
reforms. Though more complicated, this option is designed to maximize the
export of Maine’s property and sales tax burdens; it would draw more revenues
from the millions of non-residents who spend time in the state.

• Adopt a seasonal sales tax rate of 7 percent from May 1 through October 30,
excluding auto sales and building materials, and a rate of 5 percent during
the rest of the year. (Estimated additional revenue: $90 million)
• Make permanent the current 8 percent sales tax on meals and lodging, with
one-third of revenues reserved for the Marketing Maine Trust
Fund. (Estimated additional revenue: $30 million)

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• Extend the sales tax base to include amusement and recreational services,
such as golf, skiing, bowling, theatre tickets and amusement
parks. (Estimated additional revenue: $20 million)
• Collect sales tax for online purchases by joining with other states in the
streamlined sales tax compact. (Estimated additional revenue: $20 million)
• Increase real estate transfer tax from 0.44 to 1.00 %. The tax would be
offset by a 50% tax credit on the first $200,000 of the sales price of homes
used as primary residences. (Estimated additional revenue: $20 million)

Option 2
This option would adopt a straightforward one percent increase in the sales tax rate
– on the existing base plus online purchases – from 5 to 6 percent. It would affect
residents and non-residents the same year round. (Estimated additional
revenue: $180 million)

* Both Option 1 and Option 2 include $15 million in savings from the current
individual property tax fairness credit.


2. Would you support extending the temporary one-cent increase in the meals & lodging tax (from 7% to
8%) beyond its expiration June 30, 2015 (LD 1509, Part M)?

____YES ____NO

See Q1.

3. Would you support expanding the sales tax to various services, increasing the sales tax rate, increasing
the meals & lodging tax rate, increasing various other taxes (e.g., cigarettes, tobacco, beer/wine
excise tax) and eliminating most income tax credits/deductions as a way to finance lower income and
property taxes and provide more money for municipal revenue sharing (LD 1496)?

____YES ____NO

See Q1.


4. Would you support raising the gas tax or instituting a new revenue system for financing the Highway
Fund?

____YES ____NO

The Highway Fund should be used largely for routine maintenance and ongoing
improvements, and the revenues that flow to the Fund and that pay for that
maintenance needs to be stable and predictable. As our vehicles become more and
more fuel-efficient, Maine drivers are contributing less and less per mile to the
maintenance and modernization of our roads and bridges; moreover, low-income
Mainers -- who cannot afford more fuel efficient vehicles and who often must drive
longer distances -- are paying a greater portion of the gas tax revenues that flow to
the highway fund.


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Ten states have recently adopted funding plans to bridge their transportation
funding gaps, and the Cutler Administration will work with the Legislature to
evaluate potential revenue streams tied to our transportation goals and take
advantage of historically low interest rates on general obligation bonds, low costs of
construction and Maine's dramatically reduced debt levels to borrow strategically for
construction and reconstruction projects.


5. Would you support a mandatory paid sick leave law for employers of 25 or more workers (LD 1665
proposed in 2010)?

____YES ____NO

The economy loses money and public health suffers when employees come to work
sick. Maine should study the experiences in states that have established programs
providing wage replacement for missed sick days from a pooled fund to which all
employees contribute like any other insurance mechanism.

6. Would you support increasing the $7.50 state minimum wage to $9.00 an hour or higher (LD 611)?

____YES ____NO

I favor raising the minimum wage through an increase in the federal minimum
wage so that all states will compete on a level playing field. A higher minimum
wage should be a part of a comprehensive economic development strategy to
improve opportunities for all Mainers.


7. Would you support indexing the state minimum wage so that it increases automatically in future years
(LD 611)?

____YES ____NO

Had it come to my desk, I would have signed LD 611, the bill that raised the minimum wage
from $7.50 an hour to $9 an hour by 2016 and then indexed it to the consumer price index.
The minimum wage right now is not a living wage and it’s too far below a living wage. But
raising the minimum wage ought to be part of a comprehensive strategy to improve the
opportunities for all Maine workers. Among our most important objectives ought to be
increasing the demand for skilled labor in Maine’s highest-paying industries (including, for
example, construction, forest products, and precision manufacturing) and to increase
the number of skilled workers who are available for those jobs.

8. Would you support replacing Maine’s health insurance system with a single-payor system similar to
that used in Canada (LD 1345)?

____YES ____NO

I believe that all Maine people are entitled to essential health care and a medical
home - first because it is the right, fair, and morally responsible thing to do, and
second because it is the financially and economically smart thing to do. The health
care system in too many ways ends up serving narrow institutional interests instead

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of primarily serving the broader public interest. That needs to change if we want to
create opportunity and see Maine's economy grow. Rather than fighting health care
reform at every turn, Maine state government should be actively making it work
best for Maine.

With universal access to essential health care services, Maine can muscle down our
health care costs — while staying in the top tier of America’s healthiest places and
making Maine more competitive as a place to live and to work. We need to make
sure that the incentives in our health care system work in the right directions – to
reward healthy behaviors and prevention, rather than encouraging more and more
costly procedures. My plan will provide essential health care services for all Maine
citizens at a cost that we can afford and that can be sustained.

Truly universal access to preventive care is the key. We will decide with the
legislature whether the structure ought to be single or multi-payer, whether we
should have one or more Accountable Care Organizations or other forms of
“capitated” coverage, and many other implementation issues.

The important issue is less who pays than what we pay for. 60% of all of our health
care dollars right now are spent on treating illnesses that were preventable. We
must focus on keeping people healthy, so that we are not just paying for costly
procedures after people get sick.


9. Would you support expanding Medicaid enrollment as encouraged by the Affordable Care Act
(LD 1066; LD 1487)?

____YES ____NO

All of Maine's hospitals are now, or soon will be, back in the red.

Because Maine has “opted out” of Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act
and is booting off the MaineCare rolls many who are currently covered, tens
of thousands of Mainers will be without access to preventive health care of any
kind, and without access to quality healthcare when they become ill, except in the
emergency rooms of Maine hospitals. This will drive costs higher and
opportunities lower. The problems we face with access to quality health care in
Maine – and the excessive costs we pay for it – aren’t caused by federal policies and
won’t be fixed by the Affordable Care Act. The problems are largely of our own
making right here in Maine. Maine’s health care system for the most part has been
permitted to design itself, even though taxpayers are footing the bill. The health
care system in too many ways ends up serving narrow institutional interests instead
of primarily serving the broader public interest. That needs to change if we want to
create opportunity and see Maine’s economy grow. Maine needs to develop and
follow a statewide strategy that applies traditional Maine concepts of value and
innovation to our healthcare system.



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10. In general, which policy best results in broad economic growth?

___X_ Lowering costs of doing business __X__ Economic development & financing programs


11. Would you support a Small Business Impact Note (such as done in Maryland) for proposed laws that
would affect small businesses prior to consideration on the Senate or House floor?

_X___YES ____NO


12. Would you support further efforts to reduce paperwork and red tape burdens imposed on regulated
entities?

____YES ____NO

Like most states, Maine has thousands of rules flowing from statutes and
regulations enacted or promulgated over many decades. Taken together they are
complicated, confusing, and – due to the law of unintended consequences – often
counterproductive when measured against our aspirations for a clean, competitive
state economy with a strong sense of community. Many of these regulations were
drafted to serve a narrow purpose that no longer exists, and many have been
rendered out of date by changes in the world around us. Maine’s governor could
establish a small, one or two-person Office of Regulatory Review and Repeal
(ORRR). The head of the ORRR – (call her or him The Grim Repealer)– would report
directly to the governor and would have two principal responsibilities: first, review
Maine rules and regulations to identify those that are unnecessary,
counterproductive, inefficient and ineffective – or just don’t work the way they
should and should be repealed or modified; and second, review rules and
regulations that agencies and departments propose, before they take effect, to
ensure that they will accomplish their purposes in the most efficient and least costly
and disruptive ways.

We’ll find many examples of redundancies and poorly tailored efforts that can either
be eliminated or improved. In many cases, the rules can be repealed or modified by
agency or executive order. Where the approval of the legislature is required, the
changes could be considered together as part of a package or separately. This office
should also engage the talents of those who are on the cutting edge of developing
“apps” and related tools to take a fresh look at how we do things and to suggest
efficiencies, enhancements and service improvements that can be created through
the smart application of technology.

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Below are initiatives that the Cutler Administrative will take to create the conditions
for economic growth and be a good partner of small business.


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• A Cutler Administration will eliminate or modify regulations that cause
unnecessary costs, delays and uncertainties and deter investment in Maine
cost-effective and make sure we have a predictable and fair regulatory
environment for business.

• The Cutler Administration will work to ensure the containment of employer
costs such as energy and electricity, premiums for workers’ compensation
safety, and spiking health care costs.

o The Cutler Administration will establish the Maine Energy Finance
Authority (MEFA) within the Finance Authority of Maine – not in a big
new state bureaucracy – to provide low-cost capital for 21
st
-century
energy projects that promise to make energy more affordable for
citizens and businesses. In communities where access to a lower-cost
energy source, such as natural gas, could transform the region’s
economic prospects, MEFA will be able to finance or co-finance energy
infrastructure improvements that target job growth.

o The Cutler Administration will support and preserve the reforms that
have made Maine’s system of workers’ compensation less litigious,
less costly and more predictable, and a Governor Cutler will veto any
attempt to reverse these hard-won victories.

o See Response to Q8 regarding health care costs

• Maine’s tourism and marketing budget will double under my Property Tax
Relief plan, bringing more people to Maine and increase business revenues.

• Under the Cutler Administration, the Department of Economic Development
and the Department of Labor will collaborate to restart the Job Training
Initiative launched during the King Administration, cut under Governor
Baldacci and eliminated under Governor LePage. This program supports
innovative and non-routine training for both new hires and current employee
that is championed by employers and that leads to workforce expansion as
well as retraining of existing workers for new technologies, processes or
markets.

• Under the Cutler Administration, Maine will once again be the northeast
region’s breadbasket. Maine has terrific resources in terms of arable land,
access to nearly unlimited quantities of water, and a brand that is coming to
define quality and wholesomeness to consumers. Maine’s young farmers are
a perfect opportunity to combat Maine’s looming demographic difficulties and
the Cutler Administration will make sure we balance the temptation to
develop farm land with a vision to protect Maine’s rural character, farm jobs
and the Maine brand upon which they will increasingly come to represent and
rely.

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• Maine is operating 20th century transportation and communications
networks that aren’t capable of supporting a robust 21st century economy. A
Cutler Administration will ensure that Maine gets an upgrade.

o Building enhanced, optical fiber networks will help lift Maine from 50th
in business and 49th in broadband speed and will make Maine a state
that keeps its young here, cares for its elderly in the safety of their
homes and will serve as a magnet for talent and resources into Maine.

o Boosting and broadening mobile phone infrastructure throughout the
State of Maine will also be a Cutler Administration priority. As smart
phones have become the telephone service of choice, especially with
the young adults whom Maine needs to attract and retain, inadequate
cellular service along the I-95 and I-295 corridors and in Maine towns
such as Stonington, Bar Harbor, Millinocket and Sebago impedes
economic growth. In the first 60 days in office, Governor Cutler will
convene all significant stakeholders – including consumer
representatives -- assess where there is inadequate service and
develop a definite plan and schedule to provide reliable and universal
cell phone service to our citizens.

Please feel free to submit additional typed/printed comments concerning your views on issues affecting,
small business, elaborate on any question above, or provide campaign material.

I am running for governor to improve Maine’s economy, help create new jobs, and
to give all Maine people a chance to succeed. I don’t believe in just telling people
what they want to hear or giving different answers to one group than I would give
to another, so I hope that your members will look at my responses as an honest
representation of my positions on these issues. I am committed to making Maine a
better place for all its citizens.

I also am running to give Maine people a choice, because the collective choice we
make this November will have huge consequences for us, our children and our
grandchildren, and for all the people of Maine who, in Teddy Roosevelt’s words,
yearn for “a more substantial equality of opportunity.” I am offering Maine people a
real plan and vision for getting our economy growing again and getting Maine
people back to work.

Every corner of Maine harbors intense sparks of desire, determination, and vitality.
To harness that energy and promise, Maine needs a vision that we can share and
believe in, a government we can trust, and a governor who has the courage, the
experience, the temperament, and the independence to lead the way. I welcome
the challenge of leadership. I’ll make the tough choices and do the hard work that
is required of a leader. I have worked hard my whole life – from cleaning cooking
vats in a hospital kitchen, to building roads and parking cars, to working for Ed
Muskie and President Carter, to building law firms and successful companies.


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My grandfather was an immigrant peddler who arrived alone and penniless in
Bangor when he was 12 years old. He spoke no English. He began his life in this
country by walking on the Airline (Route 9) from Bangor to Calais and back, selling
notions to folks who lived along the road. Through hard work, grit, and
determination – and with help from a family who took him under their wing – he
started a business, got married, and had three daughters, who all graduated from
college and the oldest of whom was my mother. My grandfather’s story is a story
of opportunity, and for me equality of opportunity is what this campaign is all
about – not just opportunity for the lucky, but opportunity for every man, woman,
and child in Maine.

We cannot guarantee success for anyone, but we must guarantee opportunity for
success to everyone. Opportunity should be the product of deliberate policies and
practices, not the random consequence of birth. Opportunity for all Mainers should
be what the leaders of our state work to achieve – and indeed it is what we can
achieve, if we have a vision, a plan, and a strategy.

My background makes me uniquely poised to lead this effort. As a public servant,
I helped craft America’s foundational environmental laws and managed the policies
and budgets of federal energy, natural resources, science and environment
agencies. As a strategist and lawyer for governments, business corporations, and
citizens groups, I helped clients grapple with worldwide legal and public policy
problems during a career in three law firms and two countries that spanned more
than 35 years. As an active entrepreneur, businessman, and investor, I helped
start and manage successful businesses, served on the boards of directors of
private and public companies and advised and managed private and public
philanthropic organizations.

I hope you will read the book I spent much of last year writing, “A State of
Opportunity: A Plan to Build a Healthier, Smarter, Stronger, Younger and More
Prosperous Maine”, which details my plans to lead Maine forward and which is
available for free download on our campaign website, http://www.eliotcutler.com.
And I would welcome the opportunity to meet with you to discuss the issues of
most importance to you and to work with you to return Maine to a path of vitality
and prosperity for all.

Let us not waste this chance to make Maine the turnaround story of the century in
America.

Thank you for your participation in this survey.