Active Advocacy and Policy Issues

Maine Lakes Society has an active advocacy program focused on policies and laws that keep Maine’s lakes clean and healthy. In the 129th Legislature, which will be in full session from January to June, 2019), we will be following bills that deal with septic tanks, shoreland zoning, invasive species, land conservation and river protection. Bookmark this page and check back often for updates, or sign up for our Legislative Alerts to receive periodic notices about advocacy opportunities.

Upcoming Advocacy Opportunities

Public Hearing, Augusta, Feb. 27 – Please consider testifying before the Legislature’s Committee on Inland Fisheries & Wildlife IN SUPPORT of LD 235: An Act to Increase Funding to Contain and Manage the Spread of Invasive Aquatic Species. Weather permitting, this will take place Wednesday, Feb. 27, 9:15 a.m. in Room 206 of the Burton M. Cross Building, 111 Sewall St.

COMPLETED – Thank You for Your Support! Citizen’s Hearing, Portland, Feb. 7 – You are invited to join us on Thursday, Feb. 7, from 6 – 8 p.m. at the Portland Public Library, 5 Monument Square, for a citizens hearing on the proposed “Dirty Water Rule” that, if passed, could undermine the strong protections Maine lakes enjoy today. To learn more and to register for the event, click here. (This is helpful, but not mandatory. And please tell NRCM that Maine Lakes Society sent you.)

COMPLETED – Thank You for Your Support! Public Hearing, Augusta, Feb.  7:  Your voice is needed! Please consider testifying in SUPPORT of LD 216 and LD 319, two bills that will likely be combined as they do the same thing: extend the requirement for septic inspections to all property transfers in the shoreland zone. This proposal was first introduced in 2017, and despite enjoying broad bipartisan support in both the House and Senate, failed by only six votes to override the Governor’s unfortunate veto.

Maine Lakes Society believes this is a critical bill for many reasons. It will:

  • Protect water quality by identifying systems that are failing
  • Protect property values by helping maintain high water quality
  • Protect property owners from liability and unanticipated consequences from failed systems

Please join us and speak up at the hearing in front of the Environment and Natural Resources (ENR) Committee in Room 216 of the Cross Building at 1 p.m. on Thursday February 7th. To view our testimony, click here.

Finally, here are some other resources to support efforts in endorsing these bills:

  • Links to 2017 testimony in support of this change here.
  • For tips on writing and delivering testimony, click here.
  • Can’t make it in person? Write a letter to your legislator! Letters from constituents of ENR Committee members are particularly helpful. See the list of legislators and districts further down on this page.
  • Don’t know your district? The Senate and House maps, also below, should help.

Additional Resources:

  • Find your State Senator here.
  • Find your State Representative here.
  • Map of Maine’s 35 Senate Districts here.
  • To zoom into specific districts, click here.
  • Map of Maine’s 151 House Districts here.
  • To zoom into specific districts, click here.

Credit to Maine Audubon (www.maineaudubon.org/advocacy) for sharing much of this information found on this page.