Erin Cabana’s April 22 op-ed, “Maine Voices: Greater Portland’s rental properties unfairly priced sky-high,” was spot on.

Like her, I’m a young professional; so far, I have spent my career working outside my home state of Maine due to the dearth of job opportunities in my field (academic librarianship) there.

Nearly every time I talk with my parents, I observe how my cost of living here in Chattanooga, Tennessee, is dramatically lower than that of Maine. Gasoline is consistently 30 to 40 cents cheaper per gallon, the warmer climate requires less heating in the winter months, rent is a fraction of what it is in Portland, and food is less expensive, just to name a few things.

As an only child whose parents are advancing in years, I’d love to be able to move back to Maine and be closer to them.

It’s a wonderful state with a rich quality of life, a beautiful environment and more progressive politics and is in close proximity to Boston, one of the nicest medium-sized cities in the country.

Unfortunately, the sad realities of lackluster employment opportunities and a high cost of living prevent me from doing so.

I’m a clear example of the “brain drain” that’s often discussed by politicians and the media, yet I don’t see many concrete initiatives being undertaken to solve the problem.

The young Mainers living away could certainly contribute a great deal to the state’s economy and culture – if only we had the chance.

Charlie Remy

Chattanooga, Tenn.