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Official press releases from State of Maine agencies.



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Governor LePage Names Michael Beardsley Senior Policy Advisor

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 14:56:43 EST

For Immediate Release: Friday, January 19, 2017 Contact: Julie Rabinowitz, Press Secretary, 207-287-2531

AUGUSTA - Governor Paul R. LePage has named Michael Beardsley Senior Policy Advisor in the area of natural resources policy. "I am pleased to welcome Mike to our team," stated Governor Paul R. LePage. "His work experience will be an asset to our efforts this session."

Prior to joining the Office of the Governor, Beardsley served from 2013 to 2018 as the national director of marketing and sales for Santee Risk Managers, which provides insurance products to logging contractors nationwide. He previously served as the executive director of the Professional Logging Contractors of Maine.

He has also held several positions in the fields of banking, insurance, and financial services including time with TIAA, Bar Harbor Bank & Trust, MBNA and Chubb.

A graduate of Franklin & Marshall College in Pennsylvania with a Bachelor of Arts in sociology, and a minor in history, Beardsley lives in North Monmouth with his wife.

He began his new position on Tuesday, January 16.



CareerCenters to Modernize Model

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 13:09:21 EST

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: January 18, 2018

Media Contact: Laura Hudson, Maine Department of Labor, 621-5009

AUGUSTA--The Maine Department of Labor's Bureau of Employment Services (BES) announced today that it will be accelerating its commitment to improving Maine's CareerCenter delivery system in 2018. These actions are an effort by the LePage Administration toward a more efficient and effective service-delivery model for job seekers and employers, and to reform the system in anticipation of potential federal budget cuts.

"Being responsive to the needs of Maine employers and workers is at the forefront of everything we do," said DOL Commissioner, John Butera. "That means understanding and adapting to the ways our customers want to interact with us. While in the early years of the CareerCenter model that meant ‘bricks and mortar' to manage foot traffic into the offices throughout the state, today it means a modernized approach more in alignment with the current technology and the access demands of our customers."

According to BES Director, Ed Upham, the first major change is currently in the works. "We are moving our Augusta CareerCenter from its current location on Enterprise Drive now that our lease contract is up, and consolidating it into space in the same business park where the Maine Department of Labor is located, on Commerce Drive," he said. The move is expected for mid- to late-March, with limited disruption to service during the move and no changes to staff or services to workers and employers.

In 2016, BES completed the upgrade of the then-outdated online labor exchange, Maine's JobBank, to the cloud-based Maine JobLink, which today offers self-service options for labor information, career mapping and training. More recent changes have included updating mainecareercenter.gov for mobile devices and adding to it Live Chat, and co-locating the Portland CareerCenter and DHHS in State Offices in Portland to better serve Cumberland County residents and to provide a path from poverty to prosperity. "We definitely will look different a year from now, including smaller physical spaces, use of partner sites, and distance services," Upham added.

Department of Labor staff will be looking at contracts, seeking partners and finding new and more effective ways to reach workers and employers alike, with an emphasis on cost savings. "As we continually seek ways to better deliver CareerCenter services in the new year and beyond, we will build on existing partnerships and forge new ones to make delivery of CareerCenter services more efficient and effective, and modernize the system and its physical footprint to meet our customers' needs now and well into the future," said Commissioner Butera.

CareerCenters, with 12 locations across the state, are part of the Maine Department of Labor (MDOL), and provide employment and training services at no charge for Maine workers and businesses. Job Seekers can use the CareerCenter's free resources to jumpstart their job search. CareerCenters assist Employers with recruitment, training, and workforce services, and offers access to Labor Market Information.

Maine Department of Labor and Maine CareerCenters are equal opportunity providers. Auxiliary aids and services are available to individuals with disabilities upon request.

- end-



Maine licenses acceptable for federal ID purposes through Oct. 10, 2018

Wed, 17 Jan 2018 08:09:03 EST

**AUGUSTA** - Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap is reminding all Maine residents that Maine driver's licenses and ID cards are currently valid for federal purposes such as air travel.

In October 2017, the Department of Homeland Security issued a one-year waiver for the State of Maine's REAL ID Act compliance, which will allow federal agencies to continue to accept driver's licenses and identification cards from Maine through Oct. 10, 2018. During this period, Maine driver's licenses and IDs will be accepted as valid identification for federal purposes, such as entrance to federal facilities and boarding commercial aircraft.

"Many people are seeing outdated or inaccurate information online, particularly via social media sites, so we want to remind everyone that this waiver is in place through Oct. 10, 2018," said Secretary Dunlap. The DHS is implementing the final phase of the REAL ID Act, a federal law passed in 2005 that seeks to improve the security standards for state-issued identification credentials. During the waiver period, the Maine Bureau of Motor Vehicles will work toward implementing the systems and procedures that will enable BMV to issue Real ID-compliant licenses and IDs. The waiver can be renewed annually upon request through 2020, as long as the State can demonstrate efforts towards compliance. The State of Maine must begin to offer REAL ID-compliant licenses by July 1, 2019, per the new Maine law.

At that time, any person who desires a Real ID-compliant license or ID will be able to obtain one at their local BMV office. In addition to the standard license requirements http://maine.gov/sos/bmv/licenses/index.html , Real ID applicants must provide proof of legal presence, such as a birth certificate (a copy of which will remain on file with the BMV) and submit to a photograph using facial recognition technology.

Once REAL ID-compliant credentials are available in Maine, those who have a valid license or ID will not be required to renew it prior to its expiration date, unless they choose to do so because they desire/need a REAL ID-compliant credential. Upon renewal, the BMV will issue REAL ID-compliant credentials unless a person states that s/he would prefer to opt out. Those who opt out will be choosing a "non-compliant" license. Beginning in 2020, those who choose to have "non-compliant" licenses will need to produce a passport or another acceptable identity document for federal purposes that require identification, such as boarding commercial aircraft and accessing federal facilities.

The Maine Department of the Secretary of State homepage http://www.maine.gov/sos/ includes the most up-to-date information about the State's REAL ID status. For additional information, visit the Department of Homeland Security website https://www.dhs.gov/real-id-public-faqs .



ATTORNEY GENERAL JANET MILLS SIGNS ONTO BIPARTISAN SUPPORT FOR REVIEW OF FEDERAL BANKING REGULATIONS AS THEY APPLY TO MARIJUANA

Tue, 16 Jan 2018 17:59:12 EST

ATTORNEY GENERAL JANET MILLS SIGNS ONTO BIPARTISAN SUPPORT FOR REVIEW OF FEDERAL BANKING REGULATIONS AS THEY APPLY TO MARIJUANA

Attorney General Janet Mills today signed onto a letter submitted by a bipartisan group of 19 Attorneys General to Congressional leaders urging them to review federal banking regulations as they apply to the growing marijuana industry in states that have legalized marijuana. The letter requests legislation that would provide a safe harbor for institutions that provide financial services to covered businesses in states that have implemented laws and regulations that ensure accountability in the marijuana industry.

"The federal government needs to bring its practices in line with the states that have seen fit to legalize marijuana, encouraging those businesses to use established banking institutions and to protect those financial institutions from federal sanction. We need to do away with cash based transactions that carry with them a lack of accountability and that sometimes lead to violent crime," said Attorney General Janet Mills.

###



Attorney General Janet Mills Joins Suit to Stop Rollback of Net Neutrality

Tue, 16 Jan 2018 17:48:06 EST

ATTORNEY GENERAL JANET MILLS FILES SUIT TO STOP ILLEGAL ROLLBACK OF NET NEUTRALITY

Coalition of 22 Attorneys General Files Petition for Review, Formally Commencing Lawsuit

Today Attorney General Janet Mills joined a coalition of 22 Attorneys General in filing a multistate lawsuit to block the Federal Communications Commission's rollback of net neutrality. The coalition filed a petition for review in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, formally commencing the lawsuit against the FCC and the federal government.

The FCC's vote to rollback net neutrality allows Internet Services Providers to slow or block access to certain sites or mobile applications, doing away with "net neutrality" that has allowed ideas and commerce to flourish across the web. Additionally, the vote followed a public comment process that was flawed and tainted by "fake" comments submitted during the FCC's comment process in which nearly two million comments stole the identities of Americans from across the United States. New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman reported that over 400,000 "fake" comments from New York, Florida, Texas and California were discovered.

"The rollback of the net neutrality rule is bad news for consumers, individuals and businesses who use the Internet daily to do banking, pay bills, do schoolwork, and do their jobs," said Attorney General Mills. "Additionally, if we as Americans cannot trust our government to conduct a truthful and legitimate process for one of the most significant regulatory rollbacks in this country's history, how can we trust that this is the right decision? The FCC's decision to vote on this matter during an ongoing investigation sends a bad message about their agenda. I am pleased to join Attorneys General from across the country in this important lawsuit to preserve and promote the public commons," added Mills.

The multistate lawsuit was filed today in Federal Court and can be found here:

https://ag.ny.gov/sites/default/files/petition_-_filed.pdf



Maine Office of Tourism Announces Marketing Grants

Tue, 16 Jan 2018 10:15:48 EST

AUGUSTA - The Maine Office of Tourism has awarded nine Tourism Enterprise Marketing Grants and one Special Event Marketing Grant for a combined total of $132,875 in the most recent Maine Tourism Enterprise Marketing and Special Event grant cycle.

"Today's travelers are seeking unique experiences for their next vacation," said Steve Lyons, director of the Maine Office of Tourism. "These grants assist smaller organizations that have taken a more creative approach to marketing themselves and inspiring visitors to explore what's new in Maine."

Tourism Enterprise Marketing Grants awarded in Fall 2017 will support tourism marketing projects planned for spring and summer 2018. Recipients are:

**Bastille Day, Castine- $2,500** Celebrating the 250th anniversary of Bastille Day, and Castine's historic connection to France, the funds will support the event website, social media, and print marketing materials.

**Maine Grains Conference and Kneading Festival - $2,500** Funds will support public relations promotion of both the Maine Grains Conference and the Kneading Festival on the following day.

**Maine Huts & Trails - $10,000** Funds will support development of photo and video assets to promote active outdoors activities in Maine's High Peaks Regions.

**Maine International Film Festival - $10,000** Funds will support website upgrades.

**Main Street Maine Trail - $9,500** Funds will support website development for a collaborative effort by the eight designated Main Street Community downtowns in Maine to promote themselves as touring/sightseeing attractions to Maine visitors.

**Moose Lottery Festival - $10,000** The Annual Moose Permit Lottery will take place in Skowhegan in June 2018, accompanied by a three-day festival of events and activities. Funds will support print and social media promotion.

**Moosehead Lake Region Chamber of Commerce - $8,575** Funding supports development of photo and video assets to promote the re-energized tourism destination in the Moosehead Lake area.

**Portland Bach Experience- $10,000** This weeklong music event held in Portland in June has a distinctly contemporary twist. Funding will support website and asset development, digital advertising and public relations.

**Whoopie Pie Festival - $9,800** Funds will support website development, social media, and maps to help visitors explore Piscataquis County during the annual festival in June.

*Special Events Grant:*

**Abbe Museum Indian Market - $60,000** This is a new event that brings national and international attention to Maine's Native American basket makers and artisans. The event will take place in Bar Harbor in May, during what is considered a shoulder season for the region.

Tourism Enterprise Marketing Grants are awarded biannually in spring and fall, with awards ranging from $2,500 to $10,000. Eligible non-profit organizations may also apply for Special Event Marketing Grants.

"Since the Enterprise Marketing Grant program was initiated in 2014, the Office of Tourism has helped over 50 Maine destinations and organizations across the state to take their individual marketing efforts to the next level, and thrive" said Phil Savignano, Senior Tourism Officer and grant administrator for the Maine Office of Tourism.

The deadline for applications for the next round of Tourism Enterprise Marketing and Special Event grants will be in early May 2018. More information and grant guidelines can be found at MOTpartners.com under Maine Tourism Marketing Partnership Program (MTMPP).

###




DHHS Statement Regarding Guidance on Medicaid Work Requirements from Trump Administration

Thu, 11 Jan 2018 15:47:47 EST

AUGUSTA - Today, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a letter to state Medicaid Directors, providing guidance aimed at supporting efforts to engage able-bodied Medicaid recipients in work or community-engagement activities. The announcement was an encouraging step in the right direction, as the Maine Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) awaits a final decision on its demonstration waiver application under section 1115 (a) of the Social Security Act.

The Department filed its application in the fall of 2017. In this waiver application, DHHS requested the authority to institute work requirements for able-bodied adults, with the objective of promoting individual accountability within the MaineCare program. The Department is pleased to hear that the Trump administration's vision for Medicaid lends states the flexibility to improve their respective program – ensuring it operates in the most effective and efficient way possible.



"It is important to continue our efforts to break the cycle of poverty here in Maine," said Maine DHHS Commissioner Ricker Hamilton. "The announcement today by the Trump administration goes a long way in allowing states the flexibility to work with Medicaid recipients on ways to find a job – effecting real change in people's lives."



A copy of the letter from CMS can be found at www.medicaid.gov/federal-policy-guidance/downloads/smd18002.pdf




Governor LePage Hails Trump Administration Decision on Medicaid

Thu, 11 Jan 2018 14:59:23 EST

For Immediate Release: Thursday, January 11, 2018 Contact: Julie Rabinowitz, Press Secretary, 207-287-2531

AUGUSTA - Governor Paul R. LePage hailed the decision by the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to allow states to institute work requirements for able-bodied adults.

"Most people have something to contribute to their community through either work or volunteering, and people who can contribute should do so," stated Governor LePage. "Although the details on Maine's waiver request still must be worked out, this decision by CMS is a critical first step."

The Governor added, "Under our proposal, people who receive Medicaid and are able bodied will need to work, be training for a new career, or volunteer. We want to see the same successes that Maine's TANF beneficiaries have realized. These work-oriented activities end isolation, build relationships, improve quality of life and help move our economy forward."

On Thursday CMS issued a letter to state Medicaid Directors, providing guidance aimed at supporting efforts to engage able-bodied Medicaid recipients in work or community-engagement activities. The Maine Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) awaits a final decision on its demonstration waiver application under section 1115 (a) of the Social Security Act, filed in the fall of 2017.



Warmer Temperatures Combined with Rain Prompt Flood Safety Reminders from the Maine Emergency Management Agency (MEMA)

Thu, 11 Jan 2018 11:34:46 EST

AUGUSTA, MAINE - With a forecast of temperatures into the 40s and 50s over the next two days combined with rain, Mainers are urged to pay close attention to weather alerts and warnings due to the potential for flooding and sleet and freezing rain. Flooding prompts a reminder of the following:

- Never drive a car into a flooded roadway as the road underneath may be washed out. Remember to "turn around, don't drown."

- Stay clear of streams during flooding, swiftly moving water is extremely powerful and can easily overpower a person or vehicle.

- Keep children and pets inside and away from flooded streets, culverts, and streams.

- Report flooding to the appropriate authorities.

- Obey road blocks and barriers, even if the flooding has receded. Flood waters may have undercut the road surface or left dangerous debris in the roadway.

- If you live in a flood prone area, have a plan in case the water starts rising quickly.

- Know your evacuation route and if advised to evacuate, do so immediately.

Flood insurance is always a good idea, especially if you live in a flood-prone area. Flood insurance is not included in a typical homeowner's policy and takes 30 days to go into effect.

If flooded basements become an issue, homeowners should:

- Make sure to shut off any power around the area, including electricity and gas. Never enter a flooded area while the power is on. If you aren't sure how to shut these areas off, call a qualified electrician before entering the room and beginning to work.

- Unless the water is caused by rainfall, act as soon as you notice flooding. If rain or storm water is the cause of the flood, wait until it's passed before getting to work. - Regardless of the water source, wear boots and gloves for protection. You may also choose to wear a protective mask. Hip or chest waders may also be useful if they are available. Take care when walking and moving around the flooded area since it will likely offer itself as a slipping hazard. - Determine the source of the water. If a burst pipe is the cause of the flood, shut off water to the basement.

- If your basement has a floor drain, check to make sure it didn't become clogged during the flood. Keeping it open and functioning will help drain the water.

- Start removing water from the basement. Depending on the amount of water, you can use a sump pump, a pool pump, a wet/dry vacuum or a mop and bucket

As the temperature begins to drop again Friday night, some sleet and freezing rain is expected and drivers are reminded to check the forecast and use caution if they must travel. Mainers can receive Citizen's Alerts by signing up at Maine.gov. FEMA also offers a free smartphone app that allows users to subscribe to weather alerts and targeted preparedness information for up to 5 locations. Safety and emergency information is also available at MainePrepares.com and on Facebook and Twitter.



Attorney General Janet Mills Applauds Nationwide Injunction by Federal Court Against the Trump Administration's Rescission of the DACA Program

Wed, 10 Jan 2018 12:20:13 EST

Attorney General Janet Mills applauded the ruling of the federal court in California, issued late last night, that permits hundreds of thousands of law-abiding hard-working young people brought from other countries at a young age, to keep their jobs and remain in school in Maine and across the nation."People working in Maine, going to school in Maine, paying taxes in Maine and contributing to our economy, should not live under the threat of being arrested and deported to some war-torn country they never knew, risking their lives and their families' security," Attorney General Mills stated.Maine was a plaintiff in the action, with three other states, in a case that was joined with suits brought by the University of California, the Service Employees International Union Local 521 and others. The case was argued in December, and all plaintiffs welcomed last night's ruling by Federal District Court Judge William Alsup.Deferred Action For Childhood Arrivals, or "DACA," is the federal government's program to postpone deportation of undocumented immigrants brought to America as children and, pending action in their cases, to assign them work permits allowing them to obtain social security numbers, pay taxes, and become part of the mainstream economy. DACA grew out of a long agency history of discretionary relief programs going back to at least 1956, under Presidents Eisenhower, Reagan and George H.W. Bush, providing a pathway to lawful permanent residency in the United States for broad categories of individuals, including victims of domestic violence, foreign born orphans adopted by American parents, victims of human trafficking, and refugees fleeing the Hungarian revolution in the 1950's. DACA, adopted in 2012 as an exercise in prosecutorial discretion, requires that the individual (1) have come to the United States before the age of sixteen and been under the age of thirty-one in 2012; (2) have been present in the United States on June 15, 2012; (3) have continuously resided in the United States for at least the prior five years; (4) have been enrolled in school, graduated from high school, obtained a GED, or been honorably discharged from the United States military or Coast Guard; and (5) not pose a threat to national security or public safety. The program requires substantial documentation from the applicant on all of these elements. The program allows individuals to obtain social security numbers and become "eligible to become legitimate taxpayers and contributing members of our open economy."In Maine, this program has meant that more than one hundred people have met these stringent qualifications and are contributing to Maine's diminishing young work force. Across the country, there are nearly 700,000 active DACA recipients, nearly all of whom are working legitimate jobs and/or enrolled in school. These individuals under the program are entitled to a measure of safety from detention and removal for a period of two years, subject to termination at any time in any individual case.On September 11, 2017, Maine, along with California, Maryland and Minnesota, filed suit alleging that the loss of their residents' DACA status and work authorizations will injure their public colleges and universities, upset the states' workforces, disrupt the states' statutory and regulatory interests, cause harm to hundreds of thousands of their residents, damage their economies, and hurt companies based in these states. The federal court last night ruled that plaintiffs are likely to succeed on the merits of their claim that the Trump administration's rescission of DACA was " based on a flawed legal premise and was arbitrary, capricious, an abuse of discretion, or otherwise not in accordance with the law."The court also ruled that many of the plaintiffs have "clearly demonstrated that they are likely to [...]



Physician Assistant Placed on Probation

Wed, 10 Jan 2018 11:17:11 EST

AUGUSTA, ME - On January 9, 2018, the Maine Board of Licensure in Medicine (Board), Office of Attorney General, and Ronald D. Oldfield, PA entered into a consent agreement that resolved a complaint against Mr. Oldfield's physician assistant license. The complaint was based on Mr. Oldfield's termination from employment for violating his employer's sexual harassment policy. The consent agreement places Mr. Oldfield's license on probation for at least one year. Mr. Oldfield most recently practiced in Bangor.

During the probation, Mr. Oldfield must undergo a substance misuse evaluation, engage in therapy, and successfully complete a Board approved course for disruptive providers.

All Board disciplinary actions are reported to the National Practitioner Data Bank and the Federation of State Medical Boards Action Data Bank. These reports are regularly reviewed by every state licensing board in the country.

The Board is made up of 6 physicians, 3 public members, and a physician assistant appointed by the Governor. Disciplinary actions taken by the Board are available to the public either by telephone at (207) 287-3601, or on the Board's website at www.maine.gov/md.

The Board of Licensure in Medicine is the State of Maine agency charged to protect the health and welfare of the public by verifying the qualifications of physicians to practice, and disciplining physicians for unprofessional conduct and incompetence. Any citizen can request an investigation of a physician or physician assistant by contacting the Board office by telephone at (207) 287-3608, by letter, or by visiting the Board's web site.



Barry Higgins honored at the Maine Agricultural Trades Show

Tue, 09 Jan 2018 17:13:59 EST

AUGUSTA- Barry Higgins of Maple Lane Farms (Charleston, ME) received the Commissioner's Distinguished Service Award today at the 77th Annual Maine Agricultural Trades Show Commissioner's Luncheon. Governor Paul R. LePage joined Commissioner Walt Whitcomb to present them with the award in recognition of their many contributions to Maine agriculture. The annual award has been given since 2001. Award inscription:

"Your leadership in defending the importance of food safety helped turn the tide of public policy. As a highly diversified agricultural enterprise, Maple Lane Farm is an outstanding example of a business that adjusts its focus to meet market demand."

Maple Lane Farms:

Maple Lane Farms is a fourth-generation family farm and has been at the same location since 1935 when Stanley Higgins bought the farm. Today, the whole family is incorporated into the business. The farm has nearly 1600 acres in Penobscot and Piscataquis Counties, with 500 acres in Corn, 60 acres in barley and the rest in hay production. They keep about 400 head of dairy and beef cattle.

More information is available at: http://maplelanefarmsme.com/

Maine Agricultural Trades Show:

The Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry's annual Maine Agricultural Trades Show highlights Maine agriculture and the people involved through demonstrations, presentations and meetings of nearly 50 major agricultural organizations. There are over 125 exhibits featuring the newest in agricultural products, equipment and services. One of the state's largest agricultural exhibitions, the event is expected to draw more than 5,000 people over the course of three days (January 9-11). Admission is free and open to the public.

This three-day event has something for everyone, the farmer, non-farmer, hobbyist, educator or supplier. Attendees can walk through, observe and learn about how food is harvested and processed. Farmers and producers can see the most up-to-date farm equipment and processing methods and equipment.

Remaining Trades Show floor hours:

- Wednesday, January 10, 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. - Thursday, January 11, 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

The complete program and schedule are available at: http://www.getrealmaine.com/

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Governor LePage signs another emergency declaration to ensure heating fuel deliveries continue

Tue, 09 Jan 2018 12:33:33 EST

For Immediate Release: Tuesday, January 9, 2018 Contact: Julie Rabinowitz, Press Secretary, 207-287-2531

AUGUSTA - Governor Paul R. LePage has signed a new emergency proclamation to ensure Maine residents receive heating oil deliveries during the extended period of cold weather the state is experiencing.

Many fuel-delivery drivers will shortly be approaching their federal limit on hours of operation and may have to cease delivery of heating fuel and bulk petroleum fuels. The emergency proclamation will facilitate the granting of a waiver from the U.S. Department of Transportation to allow drivers delivering and transporting heating fuels, specifically fuel oil, propane and natural gas, to operate additional hours.

"Our oil delivery drivers need the flexibility to be on the roads so Mainers can heat their homes over the next several days," said Governor LePage.

The Governor also reminds drivers who are picking up extra hours to remain safe on the roadways. "We want to keep Mainers warm, but drivers and business owners should understand their limitations too," said Governor LePage.

The order is in effect until January 14 or until the Governor declares the emergency is over.

The proclamation can be viewed here:

http://www.maine.gov/governor/lepage/news/news_display.shtml?id=775527



Secretary Dunlap reminds citizens to be wary of for-profit websites offering state services

Mon, 08 Jan 2018 15:49:36 EST

**AUGUSTA** - As the new year begins and many Mainers are looking to renew registrations or conduct other business online, Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap is reminding all Maine residents to be vigilant in accessing state services only via the http://www.maine.gov/portal/index.html .

All state agencies and their online services can be accessed by typing in http://www.maine.gov/portal/index.html in your browser's URL address bar (at the very top of the browser window). This address should be typed in directly, as it is the safest way to access Maine government services.

Any other website that is not accessed via the http://www.maine.gov/portal/index.html website may have incorrect information or direct users to pay for services that the state does not require, or for which the state does not actually charge a fee.

"When people search for the Bureau of Motor Vehicles online, for example, often what pops up in the search engine is a for-profit website that charges people to access services that we provide for free," said Secretary Dunlap. "It's not necessarily illegal, but it sure is misleading."

The online service provider for state agencies is the Information Resource of Maine, known as "InforME," which manages the official State of Maine website. Online transactions via http://www.maine.gov/portal/index.html direct users to the "Informe.org" websites, which are legitimate and secure.

For the Department of the Secretary of State, the website is http://www.maine.gov/sos/ . The department oversees the Bureau of Motor Vehicles, Maine State Archives, and the Bureau of Corporations, Elections and Commissions. The department offers many online services at http://maine.gov/sos/online_services/ using the secure InforME portal, including driver license and registration renewals, replacement titles and oversize permits through the BMV; and corporate filings through CEC.



Governor LePage Thanks Chief of Staff for His Service

Mon, 08 Jan 2018 13:56:24 EST

For Immediate Release: Monday, January 8, 2018 Contact: Julie Rabinowitz, Press Secretary, 207-287-2531

*Holly Lusk to serve as chief of staff*

AUGUSTA - Governor Paul R. LePage announced today that John McGough, his longtime chief of staff, has stepped down effective January 8, 2018 to accept a position with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

"John has been with me since I first ran for governor in 2010," said Governor Paul R. LePage. "I have appreciated his leadership the past several years, and I congratulate him as he continues his career in public service at the federal level."

McGough has been Governor LePage's chief of staff since the Governor first took office, and during the 2010 campaign he served as deputy chief of staff and policy director. Prior to joining the campaign, McGough was the director of human resources for the City of South Portland.

His prior experience includes serving as the assistant city administrator/human resources officer for the City of Waterville. He was also the former chief of staff for the House Republican Office of the Maine House of Representatives.

McGough holds Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Public Administration from the University of Maine system. He resides in Brunswick with his wife Jillaine and daughter Molly.

Governor LePage has appointed Holly Lusk as his chief of staff and legislative director, effective today. Lusk has served as deputy chief of staff since rejoining the LePage administration in November 2017. An attorney, Lusk is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Maine School of Law.