November 7, 2010

Maine businesses eager for change, LePage-style

By J. Hemmerdinger
Staff Writer

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"Any time you have a new governor and new Legislature, it is an education process," she said. "We will reach out to legislative leaders and offer information. And individual farms will say, 'Come on over, take a walk in the barn."'

Maine business owners also hope LePage will work to reduce health care costs and curb business and income taxes.

"You hear stories about businesses not coming to Maine because owners realize they would have that level of taxes," said Johnson of Kennebec Technologies. "We need an environment where you don't have killers right out of the gate."

Hall hopes the new governor works to modify minimum-coverage regulations for health insurance companies and to encourage competition from out-of-state health care providers.

"When you introduce competition, it is clear you will pay less," he said.

Health care and taxes also concern Will Rood, president of Benton-based aircraft component maker B&B Precise Products Inc., which has 42 employees.

While some LePage critics fault the governor-elect's brusque style, Rood thinks it might work to businesses' advantage.

"I feel his style is going to certainly create changes that will make it easier to operate," he said. "It isn't always going to feel good, but it will be positive for businesses and job creation."

And Rood is ready for concrete improvements.

"The campaigns can be tiresome, listening to what everyone is going to do. I am looking forward to the action," he said.

Staff Writer Jonathan Hemmerdinger can be contacted at 791-6316 or at:


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