Wednesday April 18, 2012 | 01:05 PM

Portland Mayor Michael Brennan and his wife, Joan, escaped to Jacksonville, Fla. last Thursday for some rest and relaxation after the Maine Legislature restored most of the cuts that Gov. Paul LePage had proposed for the General Assistance program in the supplemental budget.

Portland stood to lose more than $2 million under the proposed cuts, but the Legislature's changes lessened that number to $300,000, which Brennan said the city could handle.

LePage on Saturday, however, issued a line-item veto removing nearly $6 million from the program.

In doing so, he also put an end to Brennan’s vacation.

Brennan, who spent a portion of his youth growing up in Miami, spent the rest of his trip on his cell phone talking to lawmakers and Rickmond McCarthy, a lobbyist hired by Portland and Bangor to work on the issue.

Brennan returned to Maine last night, and today he plans to meet with other members of the Mayors Coalition on Jobs and Economic Development to discuss their next move.

In addition to Brennan, the coalition includes mayors from Waterville, Auburn, Augusta, Bangor, Biddeford, Lewiston, Saco, South Portland and Westbrook.

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Open Season is your guide to the 2014 campaign. Our team of political writers has its sights set on Maine’s major elections, from the Blaine House to the U.S. Capitol.

Steve Mistler is covering the 2014 governor's race. He covers politics and government for the Portland Press Herald. He spends a lot of time in the hallways of the State House.
Steve can be reached at 791-6345 or
On Twitter: @stevemistler

Eric Russell is covering Independent Eliot Cutler during the 2014 governor's race. He is a general assignment reporter for the Portland Press Herald.
Eric can be reached at 791-6344 or
On Twitter: @pphericrussell

Matt Byrne is covering Republican Paul LePage during the 2014 governor's race. He covers Falmouth, Cumberland, North Yarmouth, Yarmouth and Freeport for the Portland Press Herald.
Matt can be reached at 791-6303 or
On Twitter: @mattbyrnePPH

Randy Billings is covering Democrat Mike Michaud during the 2014 governor's race. He covers Portland City Hall for the Portland Press Herald.
Randy can be reached at 791-6346 or
On Twitter: @randybillings

Kevin Miller is covering Maine's U.S. Senate race and 1st Congressional District race. He covers politics and government for the Portland Press Herald.
Kevin can be reached at 317-6256 or
On Twitter: @kevinmillerdc

Michael Shepherd is covering Maine's 2nd Congressional District race. He is a news and State House reporter for the Kennebec Journal.
Michael can be reached at 621-5632 or
On Twitter: @mikeshepherdME

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