After graduating from Bates College, I could not seriously consider staying in Maine without institutional action to lower energy costs, and to not only catch up with the clean-energy industries in other states, but exceed expectations to become a leader in solar power and solar jobs.

Legislators who voted in favor of LD 1711 convinced me to stay in Maine. Their actions will attract other young people invested in clean energy, environmental protection and low energy costs.

Increased access to community solar and the potential for more than 500 new jobs created by that legislation are two of the biggest benefits to me as a recent graduate looking to move somewhere with a vibrant job market, a thriving economy and environmentally conscious policies. I am pleased that Maine legislators took the opportunity to ensure economic vitality and environmental sustainability.

A special thank-you to my representatives, Sen. Nate Libby and Rep. Kristen Cloutier, for voting to prioritize Maine’s solar future. I hope other legislators are held accountable for their vote, for or against. There must be bipartisan support to build a sustainable future for all.

Claire Sickinger, Lewiston


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