W. Wright: Attracting people to Maine

All over this country, thousands of retired people, or those who are about to retire, think about where they would like to live. Some choose to stay put, while others decide to go elsewhere, for many reasons, such as climate, crime, taxes, family, etc.

Maine has a lot going for it. There is a low crime rate, many retirement communities, more than 3,400 miles of shoreline, a small population, four seasons and unparalleled beauty, etc.

When it comes to taxes, Maine taxes and benefits for retirees with low incomes are competitive with most states. However, many of today's retirees have higher Social Security benefits, along with company pensions, IRAs, 401(k) accounts, etc. For that group, taxes in Maine are the tipping point for many to make the move to more tax-friendly states. Others, including Mainers, call those tax friendly states home and come to Maine for six months or less to avoid Maine income taxes.

Exempt retirees from those income sources, as many other states do, and I truly believe that many retirees will stay, move back, or decide to call Maine their home.

That would be a game-changer for Maine in regards to businesses, jobs, property taxes, housing, etc. Sure, the state would lose some income on some current retirees; however, the new income from the higher end retirees would more than offset the loss to the state.

Warren Wright, Buckfield

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Jason Theriault's picture

It sure would.

It sure would be a game changer. To pay for those cuts, that burden would be dropped on younger families. And like they need more reason the flee Maine. We need to invest in industries to create jobs, not make Maine the retirement capital of America

ERNEST LABBE's picture


Jason hopefully you will live well into your retirement years. I have been where you are right now. I have also worked at a union jobfor over 30 years. One that required me to work all the hours neccessary to complete the days work, and still give 110 percent a day every day. I averaged over 50 hours a week for the entire 30 years. The only reason I am still in Maine is because this is where my children and grandchildren are. I would be about 5 thousand a year ahead living in Florida because of taxes. Then you would nothing from me.

RONALD RIML's picture

Taxes are what we pay for civilization, Warren.

Even in Buckfield, I reckon. And I'm paying Maine taxes on two retirements I earned elsewhere.

 's picture

If this is civilization ...

... we're grossly overpaying. Taxes are what we pay so that politicians can pick winners and losers. In Maine the winners are unions, public sector employees, public sector retirees, and the poor; the losers are other retirees and, well, everyone I haven't mentioned. No wonder southbound pike traffic is higher than northbound. The real tipping point will come when enough taxpayers have chosen to move out and Augusta can no longer float bonds to pay bribes.

RONALD RIML's picture

Do I detect the odor of 'sour tomatoes' there, Mike???

I remember when grocery store check-out girls were paid more than cops......

 's picture

I knew some of those cops.

They were overpaid.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

That is your choice Ronald,

That is your choice Ronald, and that is probably why you are not in the set of retirees that are well off. Just a thought. The wealthy know how to manage money.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

What makes you think he isn't

What makes you think he isn't well off? 0O:-)

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Coastal properly is

Coastal properly is expensive. It is not fair to those who live inland. Perhaps we need a law for social equality – Ronald must allow in landers to use his home.

Sounds fair, right?

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

After 40 years of piracy, the

After 40 years of piracy, the Pirate still can't afford coastal property. I guess it's only for a chosen few.

RONALD RIML's picture

Give me a call.....

We'll chat.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

You're not going to point me

You're not going to point me in the direction of that pristine piece of ocean front property in Jay are you?

RONALD RIML's picture

I've been here about fourteen years....

A couple from Masshole-chusetts came through - told me I bought it right out from under them. Gotta be quick. (I married my realtor)

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

Opportunity only knocks; one

Opportunity only knocks; one must open the door.
How long have you been in Maine? What brought you here?

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Or that piece of property

Or that piece of property owned by Davy Jones.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

Which turned out to be

Which turned out to be nothing more than an old gym locker to which he had lost the key 15 years prior. Bummers on the bounty.

RONALD RIML's picture

Twenty years.

My 'Ex' and I intended to migrate to Maine as soon as I sewed up my '20' with the PD back in Illinois. Quality of life issues; even Lewiston looked good compared to what I came out of. The rest is history.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

The Pirate came here in 1973

The Pirate came here in 1973 with 'Ex' and three kids. Thought we were moving to a conservative state. Shows what ignorance will do for you. What keeps me here now, you say? Same thing; ignorance.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Well, did your Ex make the

Well, did your Ex make the journey?

RONALD RIML's picture

She's made several journeys.......


RONALD RIML's picture

I'll give you first right of refusal when I sell.

Up to it???

RONALD RIML's picture

This retiree is well-off enough without being a greedy Scrooge

As you are.

I'll miss you while I'm on my Danube River cruise later in the spring. Those boats are so much nicer than those 'Carnival' Cattle Cars. Then some quality time in Vienna - not that the museums and art would appeal to a clutz like you.

BTW - How's your water view this morning???

 's picture

So what's your job on this trip?

Washing dishes or swamping out the heads? You're well qualified based on your hands on experience in Veet Nayum.

Bruce Hixon's picture

What's your job

Mike, I traditionally agree with your political positions. I don't know you or any of your life story. I'm not even sure about the premise of your comment. But because of my active duty service between 1969 and 1973 and two tours of duty across the pond, plus the fact that Ford and Nixon pulled the rug from under what service members we still had in Laos and Cambodia as they conceded the war, any comment disrespective or insulting to American veterans from whatever conflict they participated in raises my hackles. War only ends for the ones who die. Please be more considerate of those who served. The've already been through enough.

RONALD RIML's picture

Mike will stoop to any depth to get his point across.

I'm used to it. But thanks.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Ronald, what color is your

Ronald, what color is your pot again?

Oh, the same as Mike's kettle.

Bruce Hixon's picture

Viet Nam

For the 58000 + brothers I lost in Viet Nam, I find your comment ignorant, an insult to those who served, and a sign that you have done nothing in your life to benefit others. You would do well to remember that a good protion of that war was fought by conscripted soldiers.

RONALD RIML's picture

Odd you don't recall disparaging me for selling rare books....

Don't you take trips with tomato profits??

At least to Lewiston? Gay Paree' on the Androscoggin........

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Ronald, I can understand how


I can understand how someone has that attitude when they are accustom to signing their checks on the back instead of the front.

On the one hand, you cry for government to provide more goodies. On the other hand, you lavishly spend money on yourself instead of giving to those who need it most. Ah, the smell of hypocrisy in the morning – a not so uncommon behavior of the liberal clan. Appears that you can afford to pay more taxes.

RONALD RIML's picture

Of course I sign checks on the back.....

Or are you anti-business?


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