Governor Janet T. Mills, the first woman governor of Maine, today signed into law two pieces of legislation to help combat poverty in Maine. The package of bills sponsored by House Speaker Sara Gideon and House Minority Leader Greg Stewart (R-Presque Isle,) seeks to help families in poverty meet their basic needs and ensure economic opportunities are accessible once those families are stabilized and able to take advantage of them. The bills passed the legislature unanimously are: LD 1774, LD 1772.
“Maine is confronting workforce shortages that will be solved in part, by making sure that every able adult is working and every child is getting a good education that will allow them to flourish. But right now poverty is holding too many families back from realizing this potential,” said Governor Mills.
“By signing these bills into law, we are lifting children and families out of poverty and helping them to step back into the workforce, obtain skills training, and get the education necessary for future success. I am grateful to Speaker Gideon, Representative Stewart and the many others who worked so hard and in a bipartisan fashion on this critical issue,” the Governor concluded.
“It was critical that I continued my work this session in the ultimate goal of making sure that families can gain financial independence and build their own path to prosperity. This legislation will result in real positive change in the lives of Mainers experiencing poverty – those who are struggling and only want better, brighter futures for themselves and their kids,” said Sara Gideon. “By prioritizing education and training services and making the investments called for in these bills, we’re going to see the dividends pay off in a big way for our State’s economy today and in the years to come. I want to thank both Rep. Stewart and Governor Mills for their partnership, along the tireless work of the Invest in Tomorrow Coalition. I am proud that these bills are now law,” Gideon concluded.
The laws will take effect 90 days after the adjournment of the Legislature.
House Speaker Sara Gideon has announced that she will run against Senator Susan Collins (R) for her seat next year.