By Evan Belanger, Full article go to City Councilor Joe Baldacci, brother of former Gov. John Baldacci, is making a run for Congress.
Posted July 29, 2015
Baldacci filed a statement of candidacy with the Federal Election Commission on Wednesday in order to seek the Democratic nomination in next year’s race for the 2nd Congressional District seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Baldacci, 50, formally announced his candidacy via a website that went live Wednesday night.
“I am a life-long Mainer who wants to go to Washington to make sure that all of us get a fair shake from our government; that people without wealth or power can be heard and helped, and that our government and our country can work for all of us,” he said on the site, which seeks donations for his campaign.
“Our current leadership is more concerned with ideology, special interest, and Wall Street values than representing the people of the 2nd District,” he said. Continue reading →
From an article in Maine Insights
A town hall to consider raising Bangor’s minimum wage will take place tomorrow, Wednesday, April 9th, to discuss a minimum wage increase for Mainers.
A municipal ordinance has been proposed by City Councilor Joseph M. Baldacci to set the city’s minimum wage next year to $8.25 an hour.
“We need to focus on the issue and raise public awareness that the state minimum wage hasn’t been increased in the past six years. This is a way to get started and jump-start the conversation,” said Baldacci.
The forum will feature guest speakers, and will allow local residents and business people to share their viewpoints about the issue.
“Having a real and substantial conversation about raising the minimum wage is a part of a necessary discussion we need to have about raising people’s incomes in general,” said Baldacci.
Special guests will include Donato Tramuto of Ogunquit, Maine businessman and global healthcare activist; former Maine Gov. John Baldacci; Jim Wellehan, Auburn, owner of Lamey Wellehan Shoes, a statewide business; and Todd Gabe, Orono, University of Maine professor of economics. Also attending will other state and local legislators. The forum is free and open to the public.
• Maine’s Minimum Wage Town Hall, 5:30-7 p.m.
• Thursday, April 9, Abraham Lincoln School, 45 Forest Ave. Bangor, Maine
• Guest speakers with question-and-answer period following
• Refreshments will be served
• Free and open to the public
Earlier this year, Councilor Baldacci proposed a draft ordinance to raise the Bangor minimum wage to $8.25 an hour, effective Jan. 1, 2016, with additional increases to $9 an hour by 2017 and $9.75 an hour by 2018. Under his proposal, the citywide minimum wage thereafter would increase each year in conjunction with the previous year’s consumer price index.
Baldacci acknowledged that other city councilors and some Bangor businesspeople have raised concerns about the draft ordinance. He said he organized the public forum “so we can have a discussion that is more fact-based than emotion-based.”
The city councilor pointed out that the guest speakers will provide informative perspectives on the issue.
• Tramuto is CEO and chairman of Physicians Interactive, a Boston-based interactive healthcare company, and a 2015 Robert F. Kennedy Ripple of Hope laureate, He is expected to discuss how health care and low wages form basic middle-class economic issues that need to be addressed.
• Former Governor John Baldacci will speak about the importance of raising the minimum wage for economic growth. He was the last Governor to raise Maine’s minimum wage in 2009.
• Wellehan, who owns and operates the highly successful shoe store business in six Maine locations, will speak as a business owner on the advantages of increasing the minimum wage. Founded in 1914, Lamey Wellehan was named Retailer of the Year in 2011 by B.S.T.A., the New England trade group of footwear suppliers.
• Garrett Martin, the executive director of the Maine Center for Economic Policy, will speak first to give everyone an over view of the minimum wage’s history and why increasing it should spur an increase in all wages.
• Gabe, professor at the UM School of Economics, will speak about his research concerning the minimum wage and its impact. His academic research areas are regional and community economic development and public finance.
• Jane Searles, from Women Work and Community, will speak about how critically important raising the minimum wage is for women, particularly single working mothers.
The event will be recorded by Don Cookson, WZON radio host, and be available after the event. Refreshments are being provided by Frank’s Bakery and Gosselin’s Bakery, both of Bangor.
Baldacci’s proposal comes as city councils in Portland, South Portland and Augusta also are discussing raising the local minimum wage. As of 2015, workers in 20 states and the District of Columbia saw increases in local minimum wage requirements. At least 10 city and county governments across the U.S. have raised their minimum-wage requirements during the past two years including Connecticut, Massachusetts and Vermont in the New England region.
Maine Gov. Paul LePage vetoed a bill in 2013 that would have increased the state’s minimum wage this year to $9 an hour. The current state minimum wage is $7.50 an hour.
“This issue needs to be taken seriously,” said Baldacci. “It needs to happen at the local and state level. We need to hear from the people in our community about this.”
Excerpt from the Bangor Daily News article:
Will LePage drug enforcement plan win Bangor City Council support?
By Evan Belanger
BANGOR, Maine — They don’t always agree on political issues, but two Bangor councilors on opposite ends of the political spectrum want the City Council to support Gov. Paul LePage’s drug enforcement plan.
Councilor Joe Baldacci, brother of former Democratic Gov. John Baldacci, and Councilor Pauline Civiello, who tends to vote conservative, want the council to consider a resolution expressing support for LePage’s plan to add funding for the enforcement and prosecution of drug related crimes and urge the Legislature to support it.
To gauge whether there is interest in drafting such an ordinance, they’ll present their argument to the council’s Government Operations Committee at 5:15 p.m. Monday at City Hall.
“Despite the partisan rhetoric that’s gone on, this is supported by Democrats and Republicans,” Baldacci said Sunday. “It just needs to pass.” Continue reading →