LD 50
Session - 129th Maine Legislature
LR 632
Item 1
Bill Tracking, Additional Documents Chamber Status

An Act To Implement the Recommendations of the Government Oversight Committee To Improve the Development of a Long-range Strategic Plan for Economic Improvement in the State

Be it enacted by the People of the State of Maine as follows:

Sec. 1. 10 MRSA §929-A, sub-§1,  as enacted by PL 1993, c. 410, Pt. MMM, §1, is amended to read:

1. The Maine Economic Growth Council; establishment.  The Maine Economic Growth Council, referred to in this section and section 929-B chapter as "the council," is established to develop, maintain and evaluate a long-term long-range economic plan for the State.

Sec. 2. 10 MRSA §929-A, sub-§2, ¶A,  as amended by PL 2007, c. 420, §5, is further amended to read:

A. Thirteen members having a broad range of expertise in areas including but not limited to: labor, environment, large and small business and education;

Sec. 3. 10 MRSA §929-B,  as amended by PL 1999, c. 272, §3, is repealed.

Sec. 4. 10 MRSA §929-C,  as enacted by PL 2007, c. 420, §6, is repealed.

Sec. 5. 10 MRSA §929-D  is enacted to read:

§ 929-D Powers and duties

1 Develop and maintain a long-range strategic plan for the State's economy.   By December 31, 2020, the council shall develop a long-range strategic economic improvement plan for a sustainable state economy in accordance with this subsection. The plan must be sufficiently broad in scope to address relevant state, national and international economic, financial, demographic, natural resources, educational, science and technology and infrastructure factors. The council shall update the plan by December 31, 2022 and every 4 years thereafter. Plan updates may include, but are not limited to, adjustments to objectives, action items, timelines or benchmarks in response to changing economic conditions and market trends and taking into account current progress on planned efforts. The council shall complete a full review and revision of the plan by December 31, 2024 and every 4 years thereafter. Plan revisions may include, but are not limited to, reconsideration and revision of the State's overall long-range economic improvement strategy and related goals.
A In developing and revising the plan, the council shall:

(1) Employ a continuous process with a 5-year to 10-year planning horizon;

(2) Include consideration of:

(a) The types of industries and jobs with significant growth potential in the State;

(b) The State's evolving industrial base;

(c) The dynamic regional, national and international markets and the State's comparative, competitive and absolute advantages, including, but not limited to, the impact of tax policy, energy costs and regulation on competitiveness;

(d) Other relevant studies and evaluations in the private and public sectors regarding the long-term economic growth of the State;

(e) The quantity, quality and demographic composition of the State's workforce;

(f) Discrepancies in challenges and opportunities among different regions in the State;

(g) Opportunities and challenges for small businesses; and

(h) Optimization of the return on investment in the State;

(3) Use a public and private partnership approach that is objective and nonpartisan, with appointment of working groups and advisory committees as necessary to represent stakeholders; and

(4) Use a transparent public process that allows for public input as appropriate.

B The plan must consist of:

(1) Goals and objectives for the long-term economic improvement of the State that support economic opportunity and a high quality of life for all people in the State;

(2) Specific, quantifiable and measurable benchmarks against which progress toward accomplishing the goals and objectives of the plan can be measured;

(3) Strategies and actions to accomplish the benchmarks based upon the best practices in this State, other states and other countries; and

(4) Recommendations with respect to allocation of resources.

2 Monitor progress.   The council shall regularly assess progress toward achievement of the strategic plan goals, objectives and benchmarks and produce a written progress report by December 31, 2022 and every 2 years thereafter.
3 Submit and present plans and reports.   The council shall:
A Submit the strategic plan, progress reports, updated plans and revised plans developed pursuant to subsections 1 and 2 in writing to the Governor and Legislature by the dates set forth in subsections 1 and 2. The council may distribute the plans and reports to those additional entities it considers appropriate, including state and quasi-state agencies, public institutions of higher education in the State, regional economic development agencies and other stakeholders; and
B By January 31, 2021, present the initial strategic plan developed pursuant to subsection 1 in public meetings to the joint standing committee of the Legislature having jurisdiction over appropriations and financial affairs, the joint standing committee of the Legislature having jurisdiction over economic development matters, the joint standing committee of the Legislature having jurisdiction over labor matters and other joint standing committees whose policy areas are captured in key components of the plan. Annually thereafter, the council shall brief these committees on the current status of the plan, including presentation of any progress reports, updated plans or revised plans submitted under paragraph A.
4 Fiscal agent.   The Department of Economic and Community Development shall serve as the council's fiscal agent providing regular financial reports to the council on funds received and expended and an annual audit. The council shall seek funds and accept gifts, if necessary, to support the council's objectives.
5 Staff support.   The council shall contract with the Maine Development Foundation for project management, contracted services and staff support for carrying out the purposes of this section.

Sec. 6. 10 MRSA §929-E  is enacted to read:

§ 929-E Strategic plan implementation

1 Consideration of strategic plan.   The Governor, the Legislature and agencies receiving the initial strategic plan, progress reports and updated and revised plans pursuant to section 929-D, subsection 3, paragraph A shall consider the goals, objectives, benchmarks and recommendations contained in the plans and reports when planning, administering and budgeting resources for programs and activities intended to, or with the potential to, affect the State's economy.
2 Progress reports.   To assist the council in preparing the progress reports pursuant to section 929-D, subsection 2, state agencies with responsibilities, programs or activities relevant to the strategic plan's goals, objectives and benchmarks shall provide information requested by the council.

Sec. 7. 10 MRSA §929-F  is enacted to read:

§ 929-F Authority to submit legislation

The joint standing committee of the Legislature having jurisdiction over economic development matters may submit to the Legislature legislation it considers necessary to improve the required elements of the long-range strategic economic improvement plan as described in section 929-D, subsection 1 or the process through which it is developed, maintained or communicated.

Sec. 8. 12 MRSA §8876, last ¶,  as amended by PL 1997, c. 720, §9; PL 2011, c. 657, Pt. W, §7; and PL 2013, c. 405, Pt. A, §23, is further amended to read:

The director shall coordinate the efforts of this program fully with ongoing bureau and federal forestry program planning efforts and with the efforts of the Maine Economic Growth Council to develop a long-term long-range plan for the State's economy pursuant to Title 10, section 929-B 929-D.

Sec. 9. Maine Economic Growth Council to develop review criteria. The Maine Economic Growth Council shall develop proposed review criteria for use by the joint standing committees of the Legislature when committees are considering legislative proposals that may affect the long-range strategic economic improvement plan developed by the council pursuant to the Maine Revised Statutes, Title 10, section 929-D, subsection 1. The council shall report its findings and recommendations relating to the proposed review criteria to the Joint Standing Committee on Innovation, Development, Economic Advancement and Commerce by January 15, 2020. The committee may report out a bill to the Second Regular Session of the 129th Legislature based on the report of the council.


This bill provides additional clarity, requirements and resources for the Maine Economic Growth Council's efforts to fulfill its current statutory mandate to develop, monitor and maintain a long-range strategic economic improvement plan for the State. It also includes provisions to support the State's achievement of the goals and objectives in that plan by establishing requirements for the Governor, Legislature and agencies with relevant programs and activities to consider the long-range strategic economic improvement plan and provide information to the Maine Economic Growth Council at the request of the council.

Top of Page