I write with regard to the proposed state budget. Disregarding the referendum results, the governor would, once again, reduce revenue sharing and necessary programs — the Homestead Exemption, the General Assistance Program, Maine Care and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, to name a few. That would mean, among other losses, less money to continue to provide a solid education for today’s children and to maintain essential municipal services.
In considering the proposed state cuts, it is important to remember that today’s children are the future health care providers, plumbers, electricians, mechanics, accountants, public servants, etc. They need the chance to become well-informed, well-trained, healthy, thoughtful and responsible adults. The public must provide not only the schools but, as importantly, the services they and their families need so that they can be alert and successful in the classroom.
Dedicated school personnel do their best to see to the individual and special needs of students in a variety of essential programs and do so, sometimes, despite a shortage of space and materials. Trimming school budgets even more could further undermine the quality of life.
If the proposed state budget is approved, increases in local property taxes may lead to hardship for young families starting out, for the elderly and for responsible landlords.
I urge my state legislators to prepare a more responsible state budget.
Anne Burg, Lewiston