The Maine Legislature is currently negotiating a $127 million supplemental budget. In early February, Gov. Mills submitted her proposal, which included $20 million for the Budget Stabilization Fund, better known as the “Rainy Day Fund.” At the time, the allocation was very reasonable.

Much has changed in the past five weeks. The economic outlook on both the state and national level has gone from rosy to recession.

The uncertain impact of the coronavirus COVID-19 on our major industries – tourism and travel, food service, education and fishing – should compel state leadership to re-evaluate the budget and significantly increase the proposed 2020 allocation to the Rainy Day Fund.

I recognize that reallocation is a difficult task as it will cause worthy programs to go underfunded or, worse, unfunded. However, at its core, the responsibility of government is to protect our most vulnerable populations. We have an unprecedented opportunity to be prepared to do so in difficult times.

I urge you to contact your state senator and state representative and ask them to increase the Rainy Day Fund (Budget Stabilization Fund) allocation. Saving for our future should not be a partisan issue.

Sari Greene

South Portland

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