Augusta – Senator James Hamper (R-Oxford) will serve as the Chair of the Legislature’s powerful budget writing Appropriations and Financial Affairs Committee (AFA) for the 127th Maine State Legislature.

“Serving as Chair of the Appropriations Committee is a responsibility I do not take lightly,” said Sen. Hamper. “Each decision made about the state budget impacts every Mainer in some way, and I intend to keep that in mind and at the forefront of committee deliberation as we move through the upcoming process of negotiating the biennial budget.”

The Committee on Appropriations and Financial Affairs has jurisdiction over General Fund appropriations and general fiscal policy. Its responsibilities also include federal funds allocations, special revenue and block grant allocations, the Budget Stabilization Fund, bond issues, financial evaluation of agencies of state government, and the Maine Public Employees Retirement System (MainePERS).

The appointment of Senator Hamper as Chair was made by Senate President Michael Thibodeau (R-Waldo). “With his wide policy knowledge, gained from four terms in the House and a previous term in the Senate, Senator Hamper is well-positioned to delve into the intricacies of state spending,” said Sen. Thibodeau.

Added Senate Majority Leader Garrett Mason (R-Androscoggin), “Senator Hamper has years of experience on the Health and Human Services Committee, which gives him great insight into the area of state government where huge amounts of taxpayer money are spent, and much reform is needed. I am confident that he will provide the necessary leadership to bring about important spending reforms in Maine’s social services programs, as well as state government overall.”

In the 125th Legislature, Senator Hamper served as House Chair of the Environment and Natural Resources Committee.