Tuesday, February 15, 2011

LePage Retreats Slightly In Regulation Fight, But Still Determined To Wage War on State

Paul LePage is already walking back some of the more controversial anti-regulatory proposals he laid out earlier this year. The amended package of reforms that will go to the legislature will not include the oh-so-lovely lifting of the ban on harmful chemicals in children's products, along with some of the other less popular proposals. LePage has also temporarily given up his crusade against the vile scourge of vernal pools.

However, what he has submitted to legislatures is still a steaming pile of suck. It includes such beauties as the removal of requirements for Big Box Stores to undergo an economic impact study (oh the horror!), and the dissolution of the Department of Environmental Protection.

Worse yet, LePage has not abandoned his hopes to turn Maine into a festering toxic waste dump...he is simply considering strategically how best to go about destroying things like air emissions standards and land use regulations while avoiding the hard work of jamming things through legislative committees.

As such, LePage has promised to reintroduce the REST of his anti-regulatory crusade as "Governor's Bills" that can proceed directly to the entire legislature.

It really is hilarious that the Governor's opening salvo in his war against Maine is to attack the one thing that almost all Mainers cherish: the state's natural beauty. You'd think he would have gone for--I don't know--tax cuts or something. Or anti-immigration laws. Instead he's asking the people of this state to feel comfortable setting aside their environmental and economic safeguards so that...what, exactly...WalMart and Target won't have their feelings hurt by an impact study? Please. Mainers, stand up for yourselves!

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