With candidates for office commanding the airwaves and newspapers, it’s understandable that many people remain unaware of the important ballot questions that Maine voters will soon decide at the polls. Like the policymakers who will be chosen on Nov. 6, those ballot questions will determine the future direction of our state.

Question 4 is such an example. It’s a $49 million bond proposal that tackles one of Maine’s most important needs: educating tens of thousands of Mainers to prepare them for opportunities and success right here in Maine.

As members of the University of Maine’s Board of Visitors, we closely track how well Maine’s public universities and community colleges are helping make Maine a great place to live, work and raise a family. We pay particular attention to the role that UMaine, the state’s flagship university in Orono, plays in helping students, employers, entrepreneurs and individuals achieve those goals.

Passage of Question 4 will advance those efforts by funding much-needed modernization of classroom buildings and student labs throughout the University of Maine System. These upgrades will provide students at Maine’s public universities with improved learning facilities; and will increase the number, quality and preparedness of Maine’s workforce in ways that will help grow the state’s economy.

Question 4 has received the support of Maine’s governor and nearly all members of the Maine House and Senate. Newspapers, employers and economic advocacy groups throughout Maine have endorsed Question 4 as well. This level of broad support is not often found these days. When it is, it sends a positive and strong message to voters.

Please join us in supporting Maine’s workforce and future by voting “yes” on Question 4.

Owen Z. McCarthy

Gorham

Kathy J. Olmstead

Caribou