Government relations is a key membership benefit and we are engaged 12-months a year in legislative, regulatory and policy matters impacting our members.

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The MGFPA reviews proposed bills and will post Legislation of Interest.  Each week during the session, members receive the Legislative Watch E-Newsletter.  In addition, during the session, the MGFPA Government Relations Committee meets via conference call. Be part of the discussion! Or just listen in. Email Us for the dial-in details!


Legislation of Interest

The First Regular Session of the Maine State Legislature convened on Wednesday, December 2, 2020.  Statutory adjournment is June 16, 2021.
*Please note: Bill summaries are added as bills are released during the legislative process. Reference the bill's chaptered law via the hyperlink to read the passed legislation specifics.

LD 174: An Act To Implement the Recommendations of the Ending Hunger by 2030 Advisory Group

Category: Miscellaneous | Status: Pending

Concept Draft Bill. This bill proposes to implement the recommendations of the advisory group assembled pursuant to Resolve 2019, chapter 32 to end hunger in Maine by 2030.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 42 : An Act Making Certain Supplemental Appropriations and Allocations and Changing Certain Provisions of the Law Necessary to the Proper Operations of State Government

Category: Taxation | Status: Pending

This emergency bill proposes to adjust certain appropriations and allocations from the General Fund and other funds for the expenditures of State Government related to position changes and to change certain provisions of the law necessary to the proper operations of State Government for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2021.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 229: An Act To Increase Investment Caps in the Maine Seed Capital Tax Credit Program

Category: Taxation | Status: Pending

This bill increases the annual cap on eligible investment in any one business eligible for the seed capital tax credit from $2,000,000 to $3,000,000 and the aggregate cap on eligible investment in any one eligible business from $3,500,000 to $6,000,000.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 179 : An Act To Exclude Energy Efficiency Improvements from Property Tax

Category: Taxation | Status: Pending

Concept Draft Bill. This bill provides property tax exemptions for energy efficiency improvements and requires the Efficiency Maine Trust to identify and make available and list such improvements.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 225 : An Act Regarding the Treatment of Vacation Time upon the Cessation of Employment

Category: Labor | Status: Pending

This bill amends the law governing the provision of vacation pay on cessation of employment. Under current law, on cessation of employment, if the terms of employment or established practice includes provisions for paid vacations, vacation pay has the same status as wages earned. This bill provides that on cessation of employment all accrued vacation pay must be paid to the employee.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 182: An Act To Expand the Definition of "Essential Worker" To Include Retail and Food Service Workers

Category: Labor | Status: Pending

Concept Draft Bill. This bill proposes to expand the definition of “essential worker” during a pandemic or other emergency to include retail and food service workers.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 177: An Act To Improve Labor Laws for Workers in Maine

Category: Labor | Status: Pending

Concept Draft Bill. This bill proposes to improve labor laws for workers in Maine.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 169: An Act To Authorize a General Fund Bond Issue To Stimulate Investment in Innovation by Maine Businesses To Produce Nationally and Globally Competitive Products and Services

Category: Food Production | Status: Pending

(Bond) The funds provided by this bond issue, in the amount of $100,000,000, will be used to provide funds for investment in research, development and commercialization in the State’s 7-targeted technology sectors to be used for infrastructure, equipment and technology upgrades that enable organizations to gain and hold market share and to expand employment or preserve jobs, to be awarded through a competitive process to Maine-based public and private entities, leveraging other funds in a one-to-one ratio.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 168: An Act To Provide a Tax Break for Businesses That Employ People with Disabilities

Category: Taxation | Status: Pending

Concept Draft Bill. This bill proposes to provide a payroll tax cut for businesses that employ people with disabilities.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 219: An Act To Enhance the Agricultural Marketing Loan Fund by Establishing a Variable Interest Rate for Loans and To Allow Participants in the Maine Farms for the Future Program To Borrow at That Rate

Category: Food Production | Status: Pending

This bill allows the Commissioner of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, in consultation with the Finance Authority of Maine, to periodically review interest rates and establish an interest rate for agricultural marketing loans that varies with the prime rate of interest and is a competitive interest rate at the time of loan origination. It prohibits the rate from being less than 1% per year. It also allows participants in the Maine Farms for the Future Program to borrow at that rate.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 226: An Act To Limit the Use of Hydrofluorocarbons To Fight Climate Change

Category: Environmental | Status: Pending

This bill prohibits the sale, lease, rent, installation, use or entering into commerce of any product or equipment that uses or will use a substance that is a hydrofluorocarbon with high global warming potential intended for any air conditioning, refrigeration, foam or aerosol propellant end use as determined by the Department of Environmental Protection in rules. It directs the department to adopt rules to implement the prohibition and specifies the substances and end uses that are to be addressed in the rules. In adopting the initial rules, the department must regulate each substance and end use as specifically provided for in the bill and may not regulate any substance or end use not addressed in the bill. In the future, the department may adopt rules adding or removing substances from the list of prohibited substances or adding or removing end uses.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 205: An Act To Extend the Ability of Restaurants and Bars To Serve Alcohol To Go

Category: Alcohol & Tobacco | Status: Pending

This bill temporarily permits, until April 15, 2022, certain categories of on-premises retailers to sell liquor to customers through take-out and delivery service if the liquor is accompanied by a food order. The bill also temporarily permits licensed Maine distilleries and small distilleries that operate tasting rooms but that do not operate licensed on-premises retail establishments to sell spirits through take-out and delivery service unaccompanied by a food order. Wine and malt liquor may be sold for off-premises consumption only in an original container. Spirits may be sold for off-premises consumption only as an ingredient of an approved cocktail, which must be sealed in a tamper-evident container bearing a label identifying the vendor. A person who delivers wine, malt liquor or approved cocktails to a customer by motor vehicle must be at least 21 years of age.The bill directs the Department of Administrative and Financial Services, Bureau of Alcoholic Beverages and Lottery Operations to adopt rules governing the categories of on-premises retailers that may engage in liquor take-out and delivery services, the type of food order that must accompany a take-out or delivery sale of liquor and the requirements for sealing and labeling the tamper-evident containers in which approved cocktails must be sold.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 147: An Act To Update References to the United States Internal Revenue Code of 1986 Contained in the Maine Revised Statutes and Amend Income Tax Modifications and the Maine Capital Investment Tax Credit

Category: Taxation | Status: Pending

Makes a variety of changes to Maine’s tax code in relation to the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, or “CARES Act” as well as excluding qualified improvement property placed in service after December 31, 2017 and prior to January 1, 2020 from the Maine capital investment income tax credit.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 140: An Act To Assist Certain Businesses in the State That Sell Prepared Food or Alcohol

Category: Taxation | Status: Pending

This bill permits retailers selling prepared food or liquor sold by establishments licensed for on-premises sales to retain 1/8 of the sales tax collected on those sales to cover administrative expenses.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 131: An Act To Amend the Governor's Emergency Powers

Category: General Business | Status: Pending

This bill limits a state of emergency proclaimed by the Governor to 30 days. It requires subsequent renewals of a state of emergency to receive approval from 2/3 of the membership of the Legislature. It also amends the Governor’s powers during a state of emergency. It also seeks to remove the suspension or limiting alcoholic beverage sales during a declared state of emergency.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 63: An Act To Revise Maine's Environmental Laws

Category: Environmental | Status: Pending

A concept draft bill (meaning the drafted language is not yet available). In summary, the bill proposes to revise laws governing environmental protection.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 155: Resolve, Directing the Board of Pesticides Control To Prohibit the Use of Certain Neonicotinoids for Outdoor Residential Use

Category: Environmental | Status: Pending

This resolve directs the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, Board of Pesticides Control to prohibit the use of any product containing certain neonicotinoids used for application in outdoor residential landscapes such as on lawn, turf or ornamental vegetation. The resolve also provides that products used for preserving wood, controlling or treating indoor insects and treating pets are specifically exempt from the prohibition.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 95: RESOLUTION, Proposing an Amendment to the Constitution of Maine To Establish a Right to Food

Category: Food Production | Status: Pending

This constitutional resolution declares that all individuals have a natural, inherent and unalienable right to grow, raise, harvest, produce and consume the food of their own choosing for their own nourishment, sustenance, bodily health and well-being.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 61: An Act To Include Grandparents under Maine's Family Medical Leave Laws

Category: General Business | Status: Pending

This bill allows a grandparent to request employee family medical leave in order to care for a grandchild who has a serious health condition.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 80: An Act To Provide Critical Communications for Family Farms, Businesses and Residences by Strategic Public Investment in High-speed Internet and Broadband Infrastructure

Category: General Business | Status: Pending

This bill requires that 33% of sales and use tax revenue collected by the State Tax Assessor from marketplace facilitators, with respect to marketplace-facilitated sales, after required transfers to other funds be transferred to the ConnectMaine Authority to further deployment of high-speed Internet and broadband infrastructure to unserved and underserved areas of the State.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 105: An Act To Adopt the Department of Economic and Community Development's 10-year Economic Development Strategy for Maine

Category: General Business | Status: Pending

This bill is a concept draft pursuant to Joint Rule 208. This bill proposes to codify the 10-year economic development strategy for Maine that was developed by the Department of Economic and Community Development in 2019. The bill would provide additional clarity and include requirements for the Maine Economic Growth Council to fulfill its statutory mandate to develop, maintain and evaluate Maine’s long-range strategic economic and community development plan and build out the adopted 10-year strategy. It would also include provisions to support the State’s achievement of the adopted goals and objectives by establishing requirements for the Governor, the Legislature and state agencies to engage in the ongoing evaluation, reporting and review of the strategy.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 108: An Act To Improve Public Safety by Repealing the Single-use Plastic Carry-out Bag Ban

Category: Environmental | Status: Pending

This bill repeals the law restricting the use of single-use carry-out plastic bags by retail stores and instead allows a retailer to use plastic bags to bag products at the point of retail sale if the retailer locates inside the store or within 20 feet of the main entrance to the store a receptacle for collecting any used plastic bags and ensures that the plastic bags collected are recycled or delivered to a person engaged in recycling plastics.The purpose of this repeal is to allow the use of single-use bags instead of reusable bags and prevent the spread of disease that may exist on reusable bags.

Updated: January 28, 2021

LD 39: An Act To Remove the Plastic Bag Ban

Category: Environmental | Status: Pending

This bill repeals the law restricting the use of single-use carry-out plastic bags by retail stores and instead allows a retailer to use plastic bags to bag products at the point of retail sale if the retailer locates inside the store or within 20 feet of the main entrance to the store a receptacle for collecting any used plastic bags and ensures that the plastic bags collected are recycled or delivered to a person engaged in recycling plastics.

Updated: January 28, 2021