Governor Paul LePage - Executive Orders

Executive Orders issued by the Governor of Maine.
  1. AN ORDER ESTABLISHING THE COMMITTEE TO REVIEW MAINE ANIMAL CRUELTY INVESTIGATIONS

    WHEREAS, the purpose of the Animal Welfare Program in the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry is to ensure humane and proper treatment of animals by developing, implementing and administering a comprehensive program that upholds the animal welfare laws of Maine through communication, education and enforcement; and

    WHEREAS, the work of enforcing Maine's animal welfare laws is difficult, requires a high level of cooperation with many local and regional law enforcement and animal protection entities and by its nature entails interest from concerned parties; and

    WHEREAS, the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry's Animal Welfare staff continues to be responsible for numerous, complex animal neglect and abuse cases including high-profile animal seizures throughout Maine; and

    WHEREAS, the increasing volume and number of animal abuse investigations strains local, county and state human and financial resources; and

    WHEREAS, there is an ongoing need to improve cooperation and strengthen partnerships between the Animal Welfare Program and all levels of law enforcement including District Attorneys; and

    WHEREAS, the Maine Animal Welfare Advisory Council, as established by Title 5, section 12004-1, subsection 2-C currently exists to advise the Commissioner of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry regarding the implementation and enforcement of Maine's animal welfare laws, but not pertaining to administration of the Program;

    NOW, THEREFORE, I, Paul R. LePage, Governor of the State of Maine, do hereby establish the Committee to Review Maine Animal Cruelty Investigations ("the Committee") for the purposes of: (1) reviewing the laws, rules, regulations and procedures followed by the Maine Animal Welfare Program, (2) looking for any systemic issues that can or should be addressed in the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry's administration of animal protection programs, (3) ascertaining the effectiveness of existing resources and (4) developing recommendations on how the DACF administration of the Maine Animal Welfare Program can be strengthened and improved.

    ###THE COMMITTEE

    Membership of the Committee and its chair, shall be selected by the Governor and consist of nine (9) members. The Committee's composition shall include:

    - Two (2) representatives from the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, to include staff support for the committee - One (1) Assistant District Attorney or District Attorney - Two (2) veterinarians with cumulative experience in large animal, small animal, livestock, domestic animal and equines - One (1) local Animal Control Officer - One (1) representative of the Maine State Police - One (1) member involved with animal sheltering - One (1) member of the Animal Welfare Advisory Council

    ####DUTIES OF THE COMMITTEE

    The Committee shall:

    - Establish goals and timeframes for the Committee's work - Review Animal Welfare Program policies and procedures with respect to investigations and animal seizures - Review the Program to determine how state and community staff resources are allocated and how the allocation impacts the efficiency of program delivery - Consult with public-sector and private-sector experts - Evaluate the level of cooperation of all responsible parties with the Animal Welfare Program - Make recommendations to the Governor as appropriate

    The Committee shall deliver a report to the Governor summarizing its fact-finding review by August 31, 2018. The effective date of this Executive Order is January 29, 2018.

    Paul R. LePage Governor
  2. WHEREAS, Tourism is a major industry in the State of Maine, attracting over 35 million visitors in 2016 who spent nearly $6 billion; and

    WHEREAS, the scenic vistas and pristine waters of Western Maine, our coast and coastal islands, and our significant avian migratory pathways (the Areas) attract significant tourism to the State; and

    WHEREAS, the visitors to the Areas in Maine are known to come to enjoy outdoor and nature oriented activities; and

    WHEREAS, noise and vibration caused by wind turbines are well known effects of the turbines; and

    WHEREAS, the sight of wind turbines can affect property values; and

    WHEREAS, wildlife will be affected by the wind turbines; and

    WHEREAS, the future estimated decommissioning costs of wind turbines are uncertain; and

    WHEREAS, any decision regarding siting wind turbines in the Areas will have long term consequences to the tourism industry; and,

    WHEREAS, the benefit from wind turbines are therefore uncertain.

    NOW, THEREFORE, I, Paul R. LePage, Governor of the State of Maine, do hereby establish the Maine Wind Energy Advisory Commission ("the Commission") for the purposes of (1) Studying the economic impact of potential Wind turbines in the Areas, (2) Assessing the economic impact of expedited wind rules and procedures, (3) Assessing and developing recommendations in a written report. I order that no permits related to wind turbines are issued in the Areas until the report is issued in writing. I also order that Pursuant to Title 1, section 402, subsection 2, paragraph F, the meetings of this Review Panel are not "public proceedings" subject to Maine's Freedom of Access Act.

    ###The Commission

    The Commission shall be comprised of no less than 11 and no more than 15 representatives from state agencies and other entities that have substantial responsibilities and/or interests in the siting of wind turbines in Western Maine, including:

    - The Director of the Governor's Energy Office or Designee(s) from the Governor's Energy Office, which shall serve as the lead agency for the proceedings and activities of the Commission. - The Commissioner of the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development or Designee(s) from the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development. - The Commissioner of the Maine Department of Environmental Protection or Designee(s) from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection. - A representative from the Public Utilities Commission. - Other public and private sector entities and individuals, including members of the Maine Legislature, municipal officers, advocacy organizations and businesses, per appointment by the Commissioner of the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development.

    ####Duties of the Commission

    The Commission Shall:

    - Act as the State's official review and advisory body for the assessment of economic impact likely to occur by siting wind turbines in the Areas. - Assess the economic impact of wind power to Maine's electricity rate structure. - Conduct its work in a manner that will maximize interagency coordination. - Monitor compliance with federal and state environmental laws. - Consider the economic impact of previously sited wind turbines in Maine. - Develop and propose policies regulating the future deployment and operation of wind turbines in the Areas. - Act as the State's distributor of official public information, and for development of educational resources, related to wind turbines in the Areas. - Provide comment on federal policies and reports about wind turbine deployment and operation, as needed. - Establish goals and time frames for the Commission's work.

    Recommendations of the Commission will be formalized upon the approval of an Executive Committee comprised of the Commissioner of the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development, the Commissioner of the Maine Department of Environmental Protection, and the Director of the Governor's Energy Office, in consultation with other officials as appropriate to the proposed project.

    The Commission shall deliver a report summarizing its recommendations to the Governor when finished.

    I direct that the agencies involved undertake this work within their existing resources and budgets.

    The Effective date of the Executive Order is January 24, 2018. Paul R. LePage Governor
  3. 2018-001 January 17, 2018

    AN ORDER ESTABLISHING THE MAINE HIGHLY AUTOMATED VEHICLES ADVISORY COMMITTEE

    WHEREAS, the rapid emergence of Highly Automated Vehicle (HAV) technologies across the United States carries with it the promise of motor vehicles that are capable of traveling on public roadways partially or completely without the active supervision of a human operator; and

    WHEREAS, the concurrent development of connected vehicles, autonomous vehicles, vehicle electrification and ‘transportation as a service' are indicators of an impending transformation of how transportation is obtained and provided in Maine and across the nation; and

    WHEREAS, the traveling public and the taxpayers of Maine have significant interest in the potential benefits-safety, accessibility, efficiency, economic and environmental-of Highly Automated Vehicle technologies; and

    WHEREAS, the public safety is the most important consideration in the planning, development, deployment and operation of Highly Automated Vehicle systems; and

    WHEREAS, the introduction of Highly Automated Vehicle technologies in Maine requires interdisciplinary coordination across Maine state government, local government, the federal government, and other public- and private-sector entities, to address legal and policy issues, and infrastructure needs related to these technologies; and

    WHEREAS, the federal government should retain responsibility to develop and maintain standards for the design, manufacture and distribution of automated motor-vehicle systems that are deemed safe, and that are backed up by their manufacturers; and

    WHEREAS, at this time, there exist no laws in the State of Maine that explicitly regulate the operation of Highly Automated Vehicles in our State; and

    WHEREAS, municipalities and other public- and private-sector entities can soon be expected to envision and propose testing or deployment of Highly Automated Vehicle systems in certain locations, and will need the support and oversight of state government agencies to maximize public safety and ensure compliance with the laws and regulations of our State;

    NOW, THEREFORE, I, Paul R. LePage, Governor of the State of Maine, do hereby establish the Maine Highly Automated Vehicles Advisory Committee ("the Committee") for the purposes of (1) overseeing the beneficial introduction to Maine of Highly Automated Vehicle technologies, and (2) assessing, developing and implementing recommendations regarding potential Pilot Projects initiated to advance these technologies.

    THE COMMITTEE

    Membership of the Committee shall be no less than 11 members in number, and no more than 15 members. The Committee shall be comprised of senior representatives from state agencies and other entities that have substantial responsibilities and/or interests in the management of Highly Automated Vehicle technologies as they become active in the state of Maine, including:

    - The Commissioner of Transportation or Designee(s) from the Maine Department of Transportation, which shall serve as the lead agency for the proceedings and activities of the Committee - The Secretary of State or Designee(s), which will include representation from the Bureau of Motor Vehicles - The Maine Department of Public Safety or Designee(s), which will include representation from the Bureau of Highway Safety and the Maine State Police - The Maine Department of Professional and Financial Regulation or Designee(s), which will include representation from the Bureau of Insurance - The Department of Health and Human Services, which will include representation from the Office of Aging and Disability Services - The Chief Information Officer or Designee(s) from the Maine Department of Information Technology - Representation from the Maine Turnpike Authority - Staff support for the abovementioned State agencies - Other interested public- and private-sector entities and individuals, including members of the Maine Legislature and the public, per appointment by the Commissioner of Transportation

    DUTIES OF THE COMMITTEE

    The Committee Shall:

    - Act as the State's official review and advisory body for the testing, deployment and operation of HAVs and related infrastructure in Maine - Conduct its work in a manner that will maximize interoperability and interagency coordination as HAV technologies transition from concept, to planning, to operation - Monitor compliance with federal and state HAV-related regulations - Review and make recommendations regarding existing and proposed State of Maine laws and regulations that would govern the testing, deployment and operation of HAVs - Develop a straightforward, simple application and approval process for municipalities, counties or other entities that wish to conduct HAV Pilot Projects on public roadways in Maine - Develop and propose policies for regulating the future deployment sale, and operation of HAVs in the State of Maine, at such time as they are needed - Act as the State's distributor of official public information, and for development of educational resources, related to HAV technologies - Provide comment on HAV-related federal policies and reports, as needed - Consult with public- and private-sector experts on HAV technologies, as appropriate - Be available to work with the Maine Legislature on HAV-related legislation, as needed - Establish goals and time frames for the Committee's work

    PILOT PROJECTS

    The Committee shall evaluate and make recommendations regarding proposed HAV Pilot Projects, as follows:

    - Sponsors of proposed Pilot Projects are required to contact the Committee and apply for a permit prior to operating pilot vehicles on public roadways in the State of Maine. - The Committee will assess the purpose(s) of proposed Pilot Projects, including their benefits for the traveling public and their value for the advancement of HAV technologies in the State of Maine. - In evaluating proposed pilot projects, the Committee shall prioritize the public safety above all other aspects. - The Committee may consider: the safety record of the proposed technology; the speed of the pilot vehicles; the definition of the vehicles' ‘operator;' the training of the nominal operator of the pilot vehicles; the geographical confines of the testing area; the times of day and of year during which the pilot vehicles may operate; and any other considerations that may be needed to protect the public safety. - In evaluating proposed Pilot Projects, the Committee shall ensure that pilot vehicles can be operated in compliance with State of Maine motor vehicle laws. - Sponsors of proposed Pilot Projects shall furnish evidence of financial capacity, and of insurance against personal injury or property damage related to the operation of Pilot Project vehicles. - The duration of a Pilot Project must be defined by the proposer of the project. - Pilot Project sponsors may seek to recover operating costs, but may not pursue profits for the duration of the project. No state funding will be utilized in conducting a Pilot Project. - Upon completion of a Pilot Project, the Committee will recommend any possible next steps. - The Committee shall be prepared to review Pilot Project proposals within 90 days of the issuance of this order.

    Recommendations of the Committee to authorize pilot projects will be formalized upon the approval of an Executive Committee comprised of the Commissioner of Transportation, the Secretary of State and the Commissioner of Public Safety, in consultation with other cabinet-level officials as appropriate to the proposed project. Prior to the launching of a Pilot Project, the proposing entity shall enter into a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with the abovementioned agencies, outlining the terms for and expectations of the project. In consultation with the Committee, the Executive Committee will render decisions on project approval within 60 days of the Committee's receipt of an application.

    The Committee shall deliver a report summarizing its recommendations to the Governor on an annual basis.

    The effective date of this Executive Order is January 17, 2018.

    Paul R. LePage Governor
  4. 2017-008 July 24, 2017



    AN ORDER TO OFFER ASSISTANCE TO MUNICIPALITES IN THE REVIEW OF LAND ENROLLED IN THE TREE GROWTH TAX LAW PROGRAM

    WHEREAS, Maine's natural resources are a fundamental part of our lives as Mainers and our State's economy; and

    WHEREAS, proper enforcement of our Tree Growth Tax Law Program ensures that these assets are managed for the benefit of all Mainers; and

    WHEREAS, the Tree Growth Tax Law Program provides an incentive for woodland owners to actively manage their property; and

    WHEREAS, woodland property enrolled in the Tree Growth Tax Law Program covers 11.2 million acres in the State of Maine; and

    WHEREAS, woodland owners who participate in the Tree Growth Tax Law Program are required to have a forest management plan and are required to follow the conditions of their plan; and

    WHEREAS, woodland owners who participate in the Tree Growth Tax Law Program shift a portion of their property tax burden to other property taxpayers in their municipalities; and

    WHEREAS, municipal assessors are responsible for administering the Tree Growth Tax Law Program and assessors can request technical assistance from the Maine District Foresters and Forest Rangers from the Bureau of Forestry under the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry; and

    WHEREAS, the Bureau of Forestry found in its previous work with municipal assessors that some woodland owners who participate in the Tree Growth Tax Law Program are not fulfilling their responsibilities under the program; and

    WHEREAS, the failure of some woodland owners to follow their forest management plan under the Tree Growth Tax Law Program jeopardizes the credibility of the program and creates perennial uncertainty about the program's stability among the large percentage of woodland owners who are fulfilling their responsibilities under their forest management plans;

    NOW, THEREFORE, I, Paul R. LePage, Governor of the State of Maine, do hereby direct the Bureau of Forestry to undertake the following actions to ensure that municipal assessors can carry out their administrative duties under the Tree Growth Tax Law Program:

    1. Contact all municipal assessors in the state and offer technical assistance in reviewing the forest management plans of parcels enrolled in the Tree Growth Tax Law Program;

    2. When requested by a municipal assessor, a district forester will review a forest management plan and provide recommendations if needed on how to fulfill the requirements of the forest management plan to both the municipal assessor and the woodland owner;

    3. Assist any woodland owners found not in compliance with the Tree Growth Tax Law Program and help bring their forest management plans into compliance within a reasonable amount of time;

    The Bureau of Forestry shall submit a report of its findings with respect to the above actions to the Office of the Governor no later than December 15 of calendar year starting in 2017.

    The effective date of this Executive Order is July 24, 2017.

    Paul R. LePage, Governor

  5. 2017-006 July 4, 2017



    AN ORDER RESCINDING THE CIVIL PREPAREDNESS EMERGENCY EXECUTIVE ORDER OF JULY 3, 2017

    WHEREAS, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and Laws of the State of Maine, I declared a state of emergency in this State on July 1, 2017, thereby deployed those forces and resources necessary and appropriate to execute those laws that minimize the risk of harm to persons and their property; and

    WHEREAS, in order to appropriately manage to the emergency, I issued Executive Order #2017-005, "An Order Regarding Civil Emergency Preparedness"; and

    WHEREAS, a budget document that appropriates and allocates funds sufficient to operate State government during the coming biennium has since become effective; and

    WHEREAS, I have therefore declared the immediate termination of the state of emergency that began on July 1, 2017;

    NOW, THEREFORE, I, Paul R. LePage, Governor of the State of Maine, do hereby rescind Executive Order #2017-005 "An Order Regarding Civil Emergency Preparedness." This Executive Order shall be effective upon my signature.



    Paul R. LePage Governor