On June 11, the Maine Senate and House voted by overwhelming, veto-proof majorities to stand with Maine people when it comes to honoring their will as expressed at the ballot box.

As Mainers who make our livings from farming, working waterfronts and Maine’s sporting and recreational economy, we write to urge legislators to hold firm to the vote they cast just a month ago and override Gov. Paul LePage’s veto of LD 1378.

Here is what this issue is all about and why it is so important to us and working people like us all over Maine. LePage has been holding nearly $12 million in voter-approved Land for Maine’s Future bonds hostage for several years now in order use them as “political leverage” on totally unrelated issues.

What is Land for Maine’s Future? LMF has been one of the most successful, transparent, nonpolitical and respected programs in Maine for more than 28 years and through three gubernatorial administrations.

Each public LMF dollar approved by Maine voters is matched by at least three dollars in additional investment and there are nearly three dozen projects in 13 Maine counties trying to hold on while the governor stalls releasing these funds year after year. The governor is holding $30 million in total economic investment back from farmers, fishermen, sportsmen and women.

LD 1378 does only one thing: It says this governor and future governors have all of their regular authority when it comes to the timing of issuing bonds — but they cannot ignore voters and hold up voter-approved investments for “political leverage” on entirely unrelated issues.


If the Legislature does not hold to the vote it cast last month and overrides the governor’s veto of LD 1378, we know first-hand that it is going to hurt farmers, working waterfronts and people who depend on Maine’s sporting and recreation economy.

My name is Kyle Murdock and I own Sea Hag Seafood in Tenants Harbor. If the override is not upheld, my business will be hurt.

I have worked for five years to build up my business, support the local fishing community and increase lobster processing capacity in Maine. Protecting my waterfront property through the LMF program will create a ripple of positive impacts throughout our community — just as LMF projects have helped more than 24 other working waterfront projects in six Maine counties during the past eight years.

My name is Marilyn Meyerhans. I am a farmer and owner of The Apple Farm in Fairfield and Lakeside Orchards in Manchester. LMF has been a critically important economic lifeline to small farmers such as myself.

During the past 28 years, local leaders have come together to leverage bond funds and private investment to complete 40 farmland projects across 10 Maine counties. These are important investments in rural economies across Maine and holding firm to override the veto of LD 1378 is a priority for the farming community.

My name is David Trahan and I am the executive director of Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine. LMF has been an essential tool in preserving Maine sportsmen and women’s access to more than 580,000 acres of land during the past three decades.


The Cold Stream Forest Project — which is currently being held up by the governor — is a shining example. It includes 30 miles of streams on a major tributary to the Kennebec River, and conserves more wild brook trout pond habitat than in the rest of Northern New England.

It ensures access for fishing, hunting, snowmobiling and continued timber supply to local mills — supporting jobs, wood supply and outdoor recreation uses — all while supporting Maine’s economy.

The three of us are writing on behalf of more than 250 other organizations and members of the Lands for Maine’s Future Coalition who are urging our elected representatives to honor the will of voters by standing firm on the vote they cast one month ago and overriding the governor’s veto of LD 1378.

There is $30 million in economic investments in communities across 13 Maine counties depending on this one vote. Maine voters have spoken and approved those bonds. It is time to stop the games in Augusta and get these funds out to communities that are struggling.

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