Legislative Updates and Alert List

February 10, 2024

An important part of the work we do at 30 Mile is advocating for lake-related legislation in Augusta. You may have received recent alerts from 30 Mile and Maine Lakes requesting action and support to encourage our state leaders to vote in favor of bills that will protect our lakes and the health of our watershed. Thanks to everyone who submitted testimony or showed up at recent public hearings in Augusta. When you testify and share your stories about the need to fund and support protective lake policies, you have an impact!

LD 1342, a bill carried forward from last session, was voted unanimously out of committee and includes two increases in the Lake and River Protection Sticker Fee, one in 2025 and another in 2028. Both increases would be $15 for nonresidents and $10 for residents. This would deliver much-needed funding to lake associations and organizations like 30 Mile that are doing critical aquatic invasives prevention work. 

LD 2141, a bill that would have given an infusion of $2M to the invasive aquatics fund had a split vote in committee, so has an uncertain future. 

LD 2101, a bill to allow municipalities to place a lien on properties where egregious shoreland violations have occurred (think 500 feet of completely clear-cut shoreline with a bank of rip rap, all in clear and unambiguous violation of shoreland zoning rules), had widespread support other than from a few forest industry folks who felt it was too vague and overreaching. Stay tuned for amendments on that bill. 

The last lake bill for this session is still to be printed. The Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Committee is drafting a bill to manage the activity of wake surfing and the large wakes it creates. 

The more people who speak on behalf of Maine’s lakes, the better. Here are some ways you can take action:

  1. Stay informed on the latest lake bills and sign up to receive Maine Lake’s legislative alerts for timely emails with bill and hearing information
  2. Submit written testimony
  3. Speak at a public hearing in-person
  4. Speak at a public hearing via Zoom

Click here for tips on how to prepare deliver effective testimony, how to find your local legislator, and other resources.

This article was included in 30 Mile’s February 2024 newsletter. To view the full newsletter, click here.

Photo Credit: Josh Robbins (Banner)