Maine To Begin Shutdown After Gov. LePage Says He Won't Sign Budget Bill

Tyler Durden's picture

After Maine Gov. Paul LePage delivered an ultimatum to state lawmakers, promising to provoke a government shutdown should the state's legislature hand him a budget that includes a tax increase, it appears the governor intends to keep his word.

LePage told reporters at the state capital that he won't sign anything Friday, ensuring that a shutdown will begin at midnight, because the current budget proposalwhich was endorsed late Thursday by a special panel of lawmakers but has not yet been approved by the state legislature, includes a 1.5% lodging tax increase.

According to the Bangor Daily News, the budget package currently under consideration would raise the lodging tax from 9% to 10.5%. The budget does, however, include a 3% cut to an education surtax on individuals earning more than $200,000. LePage has also taken issue with the size of the $7.1 billion budget.

To be sure, it’s not entirely certain that the budget will even make it to the governor’s desk before the day is over. That’s because LePage has asked the state’s House Republicans to oppose the deal, which was negotiated by Senate President Mike Thibodeau, R-Winterport, and House Speaker Sara Gideon, D-Freeport.

LePage has embraced brash rhetoric during the budget fight, accusing lawmakers of “trying to put a gun to the governor’s head."

“This budget they have has no prayer, and if they’re hell-bent on bringing this budget down, we will shut down at midnight tonight and we will talk to them in 10 days,” LePage said.

LePage’s comments came hours before the House and Senate were due to vote on the compromise spending plan.

Gideon, the democratic opposition leader, said lawmakers should focus on ginning up the two-thirds support that a deal would need. The governor can only legally sit on the budget for ten days before either vetoing or signing it. Once it has been vetoed, the legislature could override the governor with a two-thirds majority vote.

“If we do not do that and if the governor then does not do his job by either signing the budget or returning it to us immediately with his veto then we will be damaging the lives of too many people in this state,” she said.

Some Democrats have expressed a desire to work with the governor in eliminating the tax hike at issue in the bill.

“Senate Minority Leader Troy Jackson, D-Allagash, said during a hastily organized news conference after the governor’s comments that he will personally introduce a bill to eliminate the proposed lodging tax increase if that would spur LePage and Republicans to support the budget bill, though Gideon said she wouldn’t support any changes late in the process.


“If the governor has objections to the lodging tax, that’s fine,” Jackson said. “I will personally sponsor any bill he puts in that eliminates the increase in the lodging tax.”

Under a shutdown, Maine would have no authority to pay workers, meaning the state’s roughly 12,000 employees will either work or stay home without pay, LePage announced Thursday that state law enforcement, state parks, psychiatric hospitals, prisons and ferries will remain operational, but that was only a partial plan. During the state’s last shutdown, in 1991, 2,000 employees were called into work at the beginning of the shutdown.

The shutdown, though brief, could have a major impact on the state’s economy, according to BDN.

“Workers represented by the Maine State Employees Association will lose wages generating $2.5 million in daily economic impact, according to an analysis from the liberal Maine Center for Economic Policy, with $944,000 in Kennebec County alone.”

Uncertainty surrounding whether state workers will be paid next week inspired a wave of protests at the capitol.

Some of those union members were at the State House on Friday, including Kip Mitchell, 53, a Maine Department of Transportation employee who said he’s the only wage earner in a family of four who said “the uncertainty is scary.”


Jonathan French, 38, of Hallowell, a civil engineer in the same department, said he had worries besides his job, since his young son gets services through the Maine Department of Education’s Child Development Services program.


“We’re citizens, too, so we’re going to be out of work, but we’re also going to experience all the other effects of the shutdown … ,” he said. “So, it’s kind of a double-whammy for us.”

Two other states, Connecticut and Illinois, are struggling to pass budgets on Friday. Connecticut, which has seen its debt downgraded by all three of the major ratings agencies in recent months, is trying to winnow a $5 billion budget deficit that’s driven largely by overly generous benefits to state employees. Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy signed an executive order Friday afternoon to take control of state spending after the legislature was unable to reach a deal on the bienniel budget.

Illinois, which has been operating without a budget for two years, could see its debt rating downgraded to junk territory if it fails to pass a budget. As the situation in Illinois appears increasingly uncertain, its house speaker has said he will ask the credit agencies to defer action based on progress being made toward an accord.

Right. Good luck.

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froze25's picture

Best thing about Gov't shut downs is we see that the world keeps turning and our lives are ok when they are closed.

takeaction's picture

Isn't Illinois going to collapse too this Friday?  What else?  Puerto Rico...what happened with that?


bamawatson's picture

P.R. voted for U.S. statehood

 next step is approval by our chickenshit congress 

takeaction's picture

So what the hell does that mean?  We take on their debt...Right?

JusticeTBuford's picture

Warren Buffet should buy PR.  He's got the down payment today.

GunnerySgtHartman's picture

Convert PR into a sovereign state in free association with the US - just like what was done with the Marshall Islands.

The central planners's picture

The partcipation rate for that vote was historically low about 21% everybody knew it was a joke.

bamawatson's picture

does not matter if turnout was 0.001; the territoy of P.R. has OFFICIALY opted to become as U.S. state

the procedure is now in play

what "everybody knew" is now irrelevant


The central planners's picture

You really dont know what are you talking about. There has been dozens of those referendums with higher volumes of voters and never has happened ANYTHING!!

This is just a pipedream the local pro statehood goverment is selling the people to distract from the relity. NOTHING WILL HAPPEN, trust me.

bamawatson's picture

man, I apologize; i just re-reviewed; NEXT step is another vote in P.R.  (( pertaining to them now approving a particular statute; i eat more crow, according to what i read P.R. is a common wealth. huh? i thought it was a territory; --- live n learn; this ole boy can't multi task anymore.... take it easy sir))

i am wrong; time will tell; let's keep up with when they schedule the next step

my bad

as to your statements about previous votes; all the other votes have been NO; this is the first YES vote, by a broke and desperate community; the next step is another vote; so time will tell

i will be happy to wager you, or anyone else; that they will continue voting yes.

The central planners's picture

Another referendum its more likely and another and another you know the shitshow playbook.

CheapBastard's picture

The budget could prob be balanced if they cut even as little as 10% of thw welfare payments to illegals an dimmigrants.

Pernicious Gold Phallusy's picture

The current Congress would never vote to permit two more Democrat senators and one more Democrat representative.

bamawatson's picture

i will HAPPILY book that bet

i am easy to contact

plenty plent plenty of rinos n goldminites will join with ALL demofaggs; it is a codlocks leadpipe cinch

(( my cursory superficial review of the procedure indicates, to me, that simply by virtue of the vote, P.R. sends two senators and rep to congress, and congress then votes on whether or not to seat them; just watch the predictable MSM sjw fest))

and i welcome a more informed disclosure of the actual process; just like with BREXIT, there are tons of opinions; yet minimal knowledge of the actual procedure


EDIT : ----oops; see my above apology to central planners;   i was mistaken about procedure; P.R. has to implement a few other steps as condition precedent my reasoning for believing congress will fold; if it ever gets to them, stiill stands

my dear momma always told me better to shut up n let them think you are a fool; then to open your mouth and prove it

Creepy_Azz_Crackaah's picture

As Maine residents suddenly feel the temporary relief of the boot being removed from their neck.

vato poco's picture

this might get interesting. the place to keep your eye on is Lewiston, ME. I understand that place is just chock-full of those rock-ribbed natural New Englanders: the somalian "refugees". All of whom, I'd guess, are on the infidel devil magic EBT. 

if *those* stop working.... how might the primitives react, I wonder? With that famous somalian stoicism and self-reliance, maybe?

HRH Feant2's picture

It is disgusting as to how Lewiston has been ruined by bringing in a population accustomed to living in a desert and that now live in a cold climate on the handouts of others. If you are a tourist just keep on driving. Don't stop in, or near, Lewiston. As for the locals, they have been disgusted by the gimmigrants for some time.

Fontavius Jones's picture

Wow!  You would not do well outside of Maine.  That is assuming you live in Maine and know a little of what you are talking about. A little, not much.

HRH Feant2's picture

Fuck you. You know nothing about me, where I live, where I have lived, Or where my family are from.

Fontavius Jones's picture

If by chock full you mean 5000 out of 35000 residents... 

TheReplacement's picture

One in seven is chock full.  Find another town/city with numbers like that that is not struggling.

HRH Feant2's picture

Exactly. I call that a fucking invasion. Who planned it? The State Department under Obama and Kerry. This wasn't an accidental placement of sub-sarahan savages to a primarily white state. Not accidental at all. What could ruin a community more than importing raghead niggers to a white, Christian area? This is a perfect storm. If I were one of those ragheads I would be leaving for NYC as fast as possible.

SweetDougisaTwat's picture

You just revealed yourself to be the retard in this argument.  5000 out of 35000 is huge, pal.  The 1:7 ratio is a destined ruiniation of Lewiston.  Do us all a favor and quit posting Zero Hedge.  Your blog is worthless here.

serotonindumptruck's picture

If by the word "stoicism", you mean the willingness to destroy the Evil White Devil and kill any White person who might have a better standard of living than they do, then you are probably correct.

Scuba Steve's picture

If I'm hearing you right, and I think that I am, you are saying that that part of Maine is going to have a New Hunting Season?

How much will Out-of-State Licenses cost? Would a hunter have to wear Orange? Can we bait (ahem),  I mean will they allow baiting? 

Colonel's picture

There are many examples of the economy actually improving. Who would have thunk it? Stop feeding the parasite(.gov) and the host gets healthier.

Bill of Rights's picture

Wow this is gonna be a great weekend!


Checks VIX....yup all is well.

A. Boaty's picture

At the time, what the Feds spent to bail out AIG could have made whole every state budget.

froze25's picture

Yeah, but you know..... Could of paid off everyone's mortgage as well and that would of helped the banks at the same time, can't have that.

Endgame Napoleon's picture

So, pay off the mortgages so that homeowners who already get a big tax break for owning a home on top of another big tax break for kids get another freebie, while sticking it to the renters as usual, even though they often have only one income to cover unaffordable rent.

Renters get scr**** every time, unless they reproduce while single, after which they get free lodging in Section 8 rentals or reduced-cost lodging in mixed-income apartments, which are located in nicer, safer areas than most single, childless citizens can afford, including those with degrees.

In addition, they get free food, energy assistance, monthly cash assistance and almost free daycare so that they can dominate many categories of jobs in excused absenteeism-based mommy cliques. Then, on top of all of that, they get a lump-sum "Child" Taxfare Credit between $3,337--$6,269, which is nothing but an additional cash assistance check to spend on tattoos or trips to FL with their latest boyfriend.

Meanwhile, the childless, single renters are struggling to pay all of their bills, including unaffordable lodging that often takes half of their pay, on jobs paying between $10--$12/hr, with spit-in-the-face tax returns of $300 or less that will not finance a car repair.

How about cutting back on the expensive lodging for state employees to meet and greet at fancy hotels so that they can present papers on How To Provide More Free Stuff for Low-Income Citizens and Immigrants in Cases Where Sexual Intercourse Leads to Reproduction Outside of Marriage.

Taxpayers need to pay for all of their everyday, back-watching, family-friendly, excused and frequent ansenteeism, just like the private-sector employers do for the busy working parents who dominate so many jobs in excused-absenteeism gangs. They can accept low wages due to unearned income from spouses or from welfare/taxfare.

Using the Government Services Administration model, do the states really need to add to this, financing work-related trips, like the one where GSA managers spent $20,000 on drumsticks so that state employees could all drum together on the convention floor to create a since of employee unity.

States could stop emulating GSA's $800,000 expenditure on Las Vegas convention entertainment for the busy working parents who dominate most government jobs. There is a lot of waste in government agencies that is 100% superfluous.

I feel sorry for any one-earner households, including the few without kids who survive to get civil servant status in the government agency crony-parent cliques, but many government employees are in two-earner households, with the other spouse also holding a job with benefits and steady income. It is a safe, back-up income in many cases, in a country awash in underemployment.$270000-on-one-day-awards-ceremony

danl62's picture

"which is nothing but an additional cash assistance check to spend on tattoos or trips to FL with their latest boyfriend."


Isn't that the truth. I really loved the tatoo reference.

gimme soma dat's picture

Endgame Napoleon, you're my hero. 

StychoKiller's picture

Meh, you were a Child once (probably still are in some ways!), naked and crying and hungry!  Focus yer anger on the guilty!

RovingGrokster's picture

I'd cheerfully give up the mortgage deduction for lower tax rates and a higher standard deductible.
I also loved Trump's idea to eliminate state and local tax deductability - stick it to the high tax states and force the citizens to elect responsible adults, or move to a state which has them.

chicken_goose's picture

So it begins... Shut it all down and don't reopen it until all the budgets are balanced.

nmewn's picture

What is it with the dimz anyways? Can't they make do with the money they've already stolen? 

Lumberjack's picture

Nah, they like everyone else miserable at any cost.

takeaction's picture

Its gone....Spent on GOLD teeth.

Lumberjack's picture

Maine PUC commissioner resigns!

Note: I was deeply involved with the creation of the net billing rules (and the renewables industry) during the de-regulation process. That practice should only give credit for energy produced and not for transmission and distribution charges. Under the Angus King administrstion, King used his office (in conjunction) with Enron to enter into the wind business himself while forcing competitors out. Aslo involves stolen proprietary business information/property.

One of the PUC commisioners was hired by former Enron staff at Evergreen/UPC/First Wind while still sitting as commisioner. After this came to light (and favorable rulings for UPC/ FW, he stepped down and lo and behold, got an executive position with them as did Angus Kings son.

And this is just for was one hell of a dirty fiasco. Even Larry Summers and organized crime were involved.

Lumberjack's picture

King also was on the board of directors of an offshore bank in Bermuda. How convenient...

Here’s another part of his resume you have to deep-Google to find. In 2004, King joined the board of directors of W.P. Stewart, a Bermudian global investment firm advising the mega-rich. Because the company is based off-shore, its filings with federal regulators aren’t as detailed as those submitted by American companies, so King’s role, and his compensation, don’t seem to have been publicly disclosed. I did discover that he served on several sub-committees of the board, meaning some extra cash in addition to his annual director’s fees and pay. Amid an internal economic crisis at Stewart, it appears King helped make hard decisions like selling the firm’s $17 million jet. Must have been hard to justify the jet’s expense when the company was being delisted by the New York Stock Exchange due to plummeting value. Annual reports indicate the ship had been sinking for a while. When the corporation was restructured a few years ago, King and a couple other directors were apparently shown the door. Sometimes the business world just ain’t fair....

I've also got to bring up Donald Sussman (on general principle)
who also loves offshore banking and is a boaerd member of the infamous CAP, a darling if John Podesta.

Colonel's picture

"It appears the governor intends to keep his word."


Call their bluff Governor or the people lose.

Lumberjack's picture

He will stand his ground. The only thing is, is that the dems/progs like to use human shields when they don't get their way. It's their only card left and their oldest trick.

Kidbuck's picture

Right, cue grandmas eating dog food and babies sucking on dry teats on tonight's evening TV news.

UmbilicalMosqueSweeper's picture

Cue the FSA and their spawn following each other over a cliff. Awesome sight and sounds!

FreeNewEnergy's picture

Good timing for another American revolution, 4th of July!

Freedom! Independence Day.

I just bought two new flags. Going to display them with pride and hope that New York (my state) shuts down soon. Psst... Guv Cuomo is secretly a mob boss.

HoserF16's picture

This Absolute RETARD should go back to high school. Does he not know that our entire system is based on debt??? Why even have a budget? If his retarded state needs cash, Aunty Yellen will just print the shit. FUCK ME SIDEWAYS!