PORTLAND (AP) — Residents of Maine’s largest city say they have mixed feelings about a plan to create an Office of New Americans to help recent immigrants in Portland.

City officials say the office would help immigrants create businesses and integrate into the workforce. Maine Public Broadcasting Network reports that some residents were cool to the idea at a Tuesday night public hearing.

They say they are concerned the office would disenfranchise minority groups such as African Americans and Latinos who have lived in Maine for years. Others supported the office as long as its formation does not come at the expensive of other needs.

Mayor Ethan Strimling mentioned interest in creating an Office of New Americans during his first State of the City address last month.

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