AUGUSTA — Maine Governor Paul LePage says he wants to use surplus revenue from timber harvests on public lands to defray heating costs for low-income residents.

The state’s Public Reserved Lands Management Fund receives revenue from the sale of timber from public lands. LePage says the fund has a balance of about $8 million because of higher prices for timber cut on Maine public lands and a higher cut level. The Republican governor is calling for the Legislature to support a bill that would establish the Affordable Heating from Maine’s Forests Fund.

LePage says the fund would allow the transfer of money from the Public Reserved Lands Management Fund to Efficient Maine Trust to lower heating costs for rural and low-income households.

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