LePage talks job creation success at Ameridial grand opening in Fort Kent

FORT KENT — Gov. Paul LePage was in the St. John Valley on Friday for the grand opening of a new call center where he said the 90 jobs created stand as an example of his job creation policies.

“Nothing makes me prouder than to be Maine’s governor and to see new jobs created,” LePage said during a brief ceremony at the Ameridial call center. “It is showing Maine is not only a great place to visit, it’s a great place to work and do business.”

Ameridial offers teleservice voice and data support for its clients in multiple industries, including health care, education, financial services and consumer products.

The company took up residence last summer in the former MBNA building on Pleasant Street, which more recently was home to Synergy Solutions before that firm closed its Fort Kent center in 2010.

The building had been empty since.

Ameridial’s willingness to invest in the area shows that Maine is beginning to turn a corner with regard to jobs, LePage said.

“Since January 2011, when I was inaugurated governor, 8,000 new private sector jobs have been created,” he said. “In the entire decade previous to that there were a net 56 jobs created.”

Moreover, according to LePage, those jobs mean a better quality of life for Maine workers.

“Maine has had a 40-year struggle to become prosperous,” the governor said. “Government policies and the private sector need to be partners, not adversaries [and] government must move at the speed of business.”

LePage, who this week announced he is seeking a second term as governor, said he remains committed to fostering that partnership.

Creation of new positions within the state Department of Economic Development exemplifies that partnership, he said.

Companies and individuals looking to do business in Maine can contact the department, where employees will take care of any licensing and permits, he said.

“We will do the work for you,” LePage said. “All you need to worry about is your business plan.

“We have cut taxes [and] lowered the cost of doing business in Maine,” he said. “But we are just toying with that and we must continue to lower the costs of energy and of getting an education so the next generation is prepared and ready when a company like Ameridial comes knocking.”

Company President Mark Schmidt said when it was time to look into expanding into other areas, Fort Kent quickly rose to the top of the list because of the solid reputation of the work ethic in the St. John Valley.

“We had heard people speak of the work ethic here, so we thought, ‘All right, let’s go have a look,’” Schmidt said. “I have never seen the kind of support like what we have gotten in Fort Kent.”

Once word got out in town last summer that a company was interested in locating in the facility, an army of volunteers descended on the building to clean and spruce up the grounds before a single executive arrived.

“The number of business leaders who came up here and rolled up their sleeves to do everything from repair the wiring to mow the lawns was amazing,” Schmidt said.

The center handles customer service calls for 12 health care clients and things are about to get a lot busier, according to Schmidt.

“We are going to be up to 39 clients within two or three weeks,” he said. “We are absolutely here for the long haul.”

Julia Bayly/Bangor Daily News

Gov. Paul LePage was in Fort Kent on Friday for the grand opening celebration of the Ameridial call center. While there, center customer service representative Nola Began took a moment along with fellow employee Greg Cyr (left) to demonstrate the computer technology to LePage and company president Mark Schmidt (right).

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Comments

AL PELLETIER's picture

Fuzzy numbers?

Last Tuesday the 5th he announced 7,000 new jobs had been created since he took office. This Friday, the 8th, he said 8,000 jobs have been created since he became governor. That's 1,000 new jobs in 3 days!
Is he just plain full of bull s--- or simply delusional?
Three cheers to the nice folks of Fort Kent, but those jobs had nothing to do with deranged Lepage.

CLAIRE GAMACHE's picture

Great

Always glad to see economic development. Why does he always pose with call center jobs though? Why isn't he posing with the new factory jobs and the new wind power jobs and the new insurance and banking center jobs and those new hospital jobs? Oh wait ! We don't get any of those. The hospitals got the money and laid off people, the factory jobs went to Wisconsin and the wind power company took a hike. And the new ACA jobs aren't happening because he won't lift a finger. We will now wait to see if any of the bonds produce jobs. Won't happen if they are sitting under his prodigious derriere though.

Steve  Dosh's picture

LePage talks job creation success at Ameridial grand opening

Mainers 09:45 hst ? Saturday
Do these people have health care and other benefits ?
What is minimum wage in Maine these days ?
Jus' askin' . .. rhetorical questions
/s, Dr. Dosh , FSO ( ret. )

JOHN GUY's picture

At least he is bringing jobs

At least he is bringing jobs in..... What did Baldacci do?

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Oh, I know, I know. Baldacci


Oh, I know, I know. Baldacci racked up debt to hospitals with no intention of paying it.

FRANK EARLEY's picture

Could someone please explain?????????

Since LePage was inaugurated, he is responsible for 8000 private sector jobs, Thats a nice number. Now for the decade before he was elected only 56 net jobs created. I find that very hard to believe. As usual I'm assuming he is scewing the real numbers to make his statement accurate. I worked at one firm and possibly two where at least 200 jobs were filled just while I was employed at these two. At the latter of those companies, I know for a fact that there were occasions where many jobs went unfilled because of the lack of skilled applicants.
As I am still notified of positions that become open on a bi-weekly basis. There are a lot of very well paying jobs available, have been available and will continue to become available. So the 56 amount seems awful low..............

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Nice if you would go back to

Nice if you would go back to work and get out of the wagon to pull for a while.

FRANK EARLEY's picture

There is nothing I would like more.......

Technically I'm still an employee with the company I was working for when I got sick. I still get the stock news and monthly pension fund analysis. I also get invited to the Christmas Party every year. If I could go back to work tomorrow, I would increase my income right now, five times. Don't you think I would if they'd let me. Your starting to sound like my friend Bob, and thats far from being a compliment.................................

JOANNE MOORE's picture

Don't forget.........

Frank, don't forget. Grovell knows a lot about pulling. He has been yanking on it forever.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

What I hear is that you are

What I hear is that you are lacking the right stuff. Nothing we don't already know.

Better living through smaller government.

 's picture

credit

Got to give the guy some credit. BIW announces layoffs, and a call center hires the same number. Replace solid middle class union jobs with minimum wage call center jobs - way to go doughboy.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Do you really think a

Do you really think a governor has that much control of either? I think not.

Employment at BIW is

Employment at BIW is cyclical. Always has been, always will be.

Bob White's picture

When did they raise the

When did they raise the minimum wage? I know the call center in Lewiston starts at $12 per hour plus bennies.

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