Associated Press: Maine to Issue 9,525 Fewer Deer Hunt Permits
Maine is accepting applications for the 2014 antlerless deer permit lottery.
Paper applications are due by the end of the day on July 25 and online applicants have until 11:59 p.m. on Aug. 15. The state is scheduled to issue 37,185 “any deer” permits in 12 districts around Maine. The number represents a decrease of 9,525 from last year.
The lottery drawing is scheduled for Sept. 9 and results will be posted on the department’s website after 2 p.m. Hunters who do not get an “any deer” permit may only shoot an antlered deer.
Photo EBT Moves to Statewide Implementation
AUGUSTA – After a successful pilot project in the Bangor Office, the Maine Department of Health and Human services will begin producing Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) cards with photographs statewide, beginning July 1.
“Placing photos on the Maine EBT card is one additional way to strengthen the integrity of our public assistance programs,’’ said Maine DHHS Commissioner Mary Mayhew. “The photo will also help our staff to verify the identity of the benefit recipient and will be helpful in EBT trafficking cases where cards are sold for cash or drugs, or when multiple cards are in the possession of an individual.”
Approximately 223,000 EBT cards are active in Maine. The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (Food Stamps), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families and other welfare benefits are placed on the EBT card. Over the last 12 months, more than $383 million in benefits have been placed on EBT cards in Maine.
The new card features a white background and a blue banner. It replaces the former Pine Tree Card, which has scenic photographs of Maine on the front. The card will also include language that clearly indicates that misuse of the benefit card is considered a crime.
“Adding a photo to the EBT card will help to deter fraud and protect benefits for those who are legally and legitimately receiving them,’’ said Governor Paul R. LePage. “The card now makes it crystal clear that using EBT inappropriately is a crime, which makes it easier to prosecute those who take advantage of the system.”
Governor LePage Announces $11.3 Million to Support At-risk Students
PORTLAND – Governor Paul R. LePage announced today that the Maine Department of Education is giving out $11.3 million over the next five years to support extended learning opportunities for at-risk students.
The Governor announced the awards alongside Education Commissioner Jim Rier, LearningWorks CEO Ethan Strimling, Portland Public Schools Superintendent Manny Caulk and South Portland School Department Superintendent Suzanne Godin at the Reiche School in Portland.
LearningWorks will receive around $2.5 million over the five-year award period to provide hands-on, engaging and relevant extended day and summer programming at six schools in Portland and South Portland through the establishment and continuation of 21st Century Community Learning Centers.
Community learning centers provide academic support and enrichment opportunities outside of school hours that improve the in-school performance of at-risk students – including those who struggle academically or are from low-income or immigrant families.
Senator Brian Langley Appointed to School Funding Commission
AUGUSTA – State Senator Brian Langley (R-Hancock) has been appointed to the Commission to Strengthen the Adequacy and Equity of Certain Cost Components of the School Funding Formula.
During the 125th Legislature, a bill was passed to review the Essential Programs and Services funding formula. That led to the creation of the Commission by the 126th Legislature. Public pre-school, support for economically disadvantaged children, teacher professional development, debt service for locally approved construction projects, and special education funding are among the topics to be considered by the Commission.
“It is a true honor to be appointed to this Commission and a responsibility I take very seriously,” Senator Langley said. “Education funding is one of the most complicated, yet vital considerations for those of us in elected office and it is essential to ensure that our citizens’ tax dollars are being spent fairly and wisely when it comes to education.
“School funding is a constantly changing and evolving dynamic, given population shifts around the state as well as new developments in education. We in the Legislature felt it was important to make sure education funding remains responsive to the needs of local communities, and that is the charge of this Commission.”