Archives for municipalities

Democracy Forum 6/15/18

State Preemption: From Guns to Garbage, Who’s Got the Power?

Host: Ann Luther, League of Women Voters of Maine
Engineer: Amy Browne

Key Discussion Points:
a) how federalism protects and constrains states’ rights and?
b) how states can both protect and commandeer local control.
c) from guns and garbage to water quality and pesticides, how much control do states and towns have to protect their assets or advance their values

Garrett Crobin, a Legislative Advocate for the Maine Municipal Association
Lauren E. Phillips, newly-minted JD from Columbia Law and authored an important article on state pre-emption for the Columbia Law Review.

To learn more about this topic:
Impeding Innovation: State Preemption of Progressive Local Regulations, Lauren Phillips in the Columbia Law Review, Volume 117, No. 8, December 2017.
Blue Cities Want to Make Their Own Rules. Red States Won’t Let Them. more from TheUpshot at the New York Times, July, 2017.
From Fracking Bans To Paid Sick Leave: How States Are Overruling Local Laws, PR Watch’s Lisa Graves on Fresh Air with Terry Gross, April, 2016.
Soda And Fast Food Lobbyists Push State Preemption Laws To Prevent Local Regulation, Robb Waters in Forbes Magazine, June, 21, 2017.
Municipal Approaches in Maine to Reduce Single-use Consumer Products, Travis Wagner in the Maine Policy Review, 2016.
Preemption Watch Newsletter,
Preemption Doctrine, by Ellerbe P. Cole, Maine Municipal Association in Maine Townsman,” Legal Notes,” June 1991.

The all-volunteer team at the League of Women Voters – Downeast who plan and coordinate this series includes:
Starr Gilmartin
Maggie Harling
Linda Hoskins
Sheil Kirby
Ann Luther
Maryann Ogonowski
Pam Person
Leah Taylor
Linda Washburn

FMI re League of Women Voters of Maine:

Talk of the Towns 3/13/15

Host: Ron Beard, University of Maine Cooperative Extension
Studio Engineer: Amy Browne

Issue: Community concerns and opportunities

Program Topic: Governor LePage’s Tax Reform Plan and its impacts on Maine towns and Non-Profit Organizations

Key Discussion Points:
• Michelle describes Ellsworth… its economy and tax base, with reference to the number/relative size of non-profits, role of city manager and city council in making decisions about property taxes
• Josh describes the mission and programs of Woodlawn Museum, brief history and current estimate of property valuation, if known (land and improvements)
• We review (from published source that Ron will share/bring) a summary of the sorts of changes in Maine’s tax system, as envisioned in the Governor’s budget and other sources. Reminder of the role of the legislature in reviewing Governor’s proposals
• Michelle describes the Maine Municipal Association, its policy review process and shares some of the potential impacts of the proposed tax system changes on municipalities, and the position(s) MMA has taken/is taking on these changes
• Josh describes the potential impacts of proposed change for non-profits—what he has heard from his non-profit colleagues, and potential impact for Woodlawn
• By Phone Joel Johnson, from Maine Center for Economic Policy, describes other potential impacts from the proposed tax reform, especially the reduction or elimination of income tax, shifting of tax burden, concept of tax progressivity, who would benefit and who would be disadvantaged by the Governor’s proposals
• Michelle/Josh shares where listeners can learn more, track the legislative process from MMA and Maine Association of Non Profits points of view

Michelle Beal, City Manager, Ellsworth & President, Maine Municipal Association
Joshua Torrance, Executive Director, Woodlawn Museum, Ellsworth
Joel Johnson, Maine Center for Economic Policy