A New Prosperity: An Action Plan for Maine’s Economic Future

Here’s what Paul LePage’s Department of Labor predicted in August for Maine’s future: virtually zero job growth.

In other words, complete economic stagnation – and that’s after eight years of an allegedly “pro-business” administration.

When Maine communities, especially rural communities, are in dire straits and when we are confronting a severe workforce shortage along with an aging and declining population, that is unacceptable.

So the question we have to ask ourselves is: why would we continue to do things the way we have been and expect new and better results?

We shouldn’t.

It’s time to act – it’s time for a new direction. That’s why I am presenting “A New Prosperity: An Action Plan for Maine’s Economic Future”.

This plan is one of action, and it’s the result of months of collaboration with people ranging from small business owners, innovators and entrepreneurs, to economists, to every day, hard-working Mainers – and it’s unlike what any other candidate – of any party – has put forward before. It’s time for bold, dynamic, and transformative ideas that will change Maine immediately and for the better. That’s why I will:

  1. Create the Small Business Accelerator to serve as a “one-stop shop” for Maine businesses and start-ups who need help accessing financing, training workers, or handling state regulation
  2. Launch the Job Growth Loans program to provide 18 months of no-interest loans for small businesses to finance adding a new employee
  3. Establish the Welcome Home Program to help former and future Mainers to bring their current job to Maine to work remotely and live here
  4. Provide the Rural Workplace Grant to help communities convert a downtown building into a co-working space with high-speed broadband for small businesses and remote workers

In the pages that follow, the people of Maine will find a complete plan that includes specific action items I will pursue in my first year in office. This plan is designed to make it easier for small businesses to grow, for people to stay and come, and for Maine to thrive. This plan doesn’t waste time with a single task force, working group, or any new web of bureaucracy – in fact, it significantly reduces the complicated and often confusing web of programs and agencies that the current administration forces people to wade through in order to get help.

It’s time to act. But more importantly, it’s time for us to empower Maine people to act – to grow businesses, start new ones, and rebuild their communities. Let’s get started.

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