AUBURN – Gov. John Baldacci and his cabinet will spend the better part of the next two days in a retreat at the Hilton Garden Inn planning the future of the state.

“It’s a team-building exercise in the face of very challenging times for state government,” said Lee Umphrey, Baldacci’s director of communications. “It’s a chance for the governor to reinforce his vision and encourage them to work together more, maybe look for ways to collaborate a little better.”

This is the second Baldacci cabinet retreat. The group met last November in Bangor.

“We picked the governor’s home town for that one, really to help some of the cabinet members get to know him a little better,” Umphrey said. “But this year, we wanted to get beyond Bangor and away from Augusta.”

The retreat is scheduled to begin about 8 a.m. this morning and continue into the evening.

The Lewiston Auburn Economic Growth Council and the Chamber of Commerce are sponsoring a reception for cabinet members tonight at the hotel.

“The idea is just for the governor’s cabinet to get to know the local leaders,” said Paul Badeau of the LAEGC. “It’s a nice opportunity for the local business community to meet with those officials and also to thank them for everything they’ve done for the community.”

The retreat continues Tuesday and is scheduled to wrap up about 2:30 p.m.

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