AUGUSTA — Looking to incentivize school consolidation in Maine, Gov. Paul LePage issued a sweeping executive order on Monday calling for new regional school models.

The Republican governor signed the executive order on Monday, but it was posted to his state website on Tuesday and it directs the Maine Department of Education to take three main steps:

— Propose legislation in 2017 that would establish “regional education service agencies to remove barriers and promote the sharing of educational programs and services” and develop an application for “integrated regional school models.”

— Propose legislation to issue a bond to “cover debt service for innovative construction integrated regional school models.”

— Identify unused General Purpose Aid and use it to establish a competitive process to award it to school districts to use for upfront costs of efforts promoting “economic efficiencies within and across schools and districts that enhance the delivery of educational services for the benefit of Maine students.”

LePage’s office and the Department of Education did not immediately respond to questions about regionalization initiatives on Tuesday morning.

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