WATERVILLE — A rogue state agency that’s attacking businesses with unethical investigations and taxes.

A dysfunctional system that allows tenants and workers to bilk their landlords and employers.

And cumbersome state reviews that can make property development an expensive and lengthy endeavor.

Those were among the frustrations aired Tuesday during the latest of Gov. Paul LePage’s Red Tape Audit forums, held at Thomas College.

The frustration of many seemed to be summed up by Frank Sterner, president of Lohmann Animal Health, a poultry-vaccine producer in Winslow.

“The systems aren’t meant to be fair; they’re on the side of the employees,” he said.

The Mid-Maine Chamber of Commerce hosted the gathering in Waterville, where LePage lived and served as mayor before becoming governor.

The administration was represented by Mark Ouellette, director of the state’s Office of Business Development. Ouellette was joined on stage by Rep. Henry Beck, a Democrat representing District 76 in Waterville and Oakland, and Rosemary Winslow, a Waterville city councilor and representative of U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud, a Democrat.

Kimberly Lindlof, president and CEO of the Mid-Maine Chamber, told the crowd of about 60 people that the forums are intended to provide the governor’s team with information and ideas “to make Maine a more business-friendly state without compromising the environment.”

Lindlof was finance director of LePage’s gubernatorial campaign.

Business people who spoke echoed similar themes of being “harassed” and “attacked” by state rules and officials. Several singled out the Maine Revenue Services, suggesting it’s a rogue agency that isn’t being held accountable.

Duane Ellis, owner of Central Maine Orthotics & Prosthetics, said the revenue service has recently audited his business, going back six years, to see whether it has been charging sales tax.

But, Ellis said, his business has always been exempt from charging sales tax because it offers a service, not a product. “We were attacked by the Maine Revenue Service,” Ellis said.

Several members of the Central Maine Apartment Owners Association said they’re frustrated by the image people have of “slumlords,” saying they try to maintain quality properties but face increasingly restrictive state requirements and expensive eviction proceedings.

Chris McMorrow, owner of Eastside Rentals, recounted how Pine Tree Legal, by providing free legal assistance to low-income tenants, contributed to evictions taking longer and becoming more expensive than needed.

It has taken months to evict someone who has simply stopped paying rent, McMorrow said.

Another problem: A new state rule requires landlords to finance measures to address bedbug infestation if a tenant can’t afford it, McMorrow said.

Three more red tape audits are scheduled, through Feb. 4.