Maine jobs panel moves into gear


AUGUSTA — Maine business leaders and legislative leaders have formally launched a special, bipartisan committee that will look for ways to fill a “skills gap” and improve the state’s economy.

Maine State Chamber of Commerce President Dana Connors joined Senate President Justin Alfond of Portland and House Speaker Mark Eves of North Berwick for Wednesday’s announcement.

The Democratic leaders in December announced plans for the 15-member Joint Select Committee on Maine’s Workforce and Economic Future, whose mission is to report out legislation to strengthen Maine’s workforce and help small businesses thrive.

Much of the committee’s work will be directed at training Mainers with skills needed by businesses, and revitalizing small, downtown businesses, said Senate Majority Leader Seth Goodall of Richmond, who co-chairs the panel with House Majority Leader Seth Berry of Bowdoinham.