Hello, I am Kathleen Dillingham, the Maine House Republican Leader from Oxford.

For the past 8 Years, Republican leadership has improved the lives of Mainers through responsible fiscal discipline and policies.

By lowering taxes, restraining the growth of government, lowering debt and improving state finances, we have improved the budget for families in Maine.

Low unemployment, higher wages and historically high workforce participation is and should be the new norm.

When voters gave Republicans the chance to lead Maine in 2010, 70,000 low-income earners were freed from having to pay state income tax!

So what has happened now that Democrats control the Governorship, the House and the Senate?

Proposal after proposal has come forward to tax Maine citizens, our small businesses and our families!

Several proposals to “tax” home heating fuel, gasoline, diesel, kerosene and propane, will negatively impact Maine families.

Like most listeners, I need to heat my home during the winter and travel long distances to and from work. Anything our family spends on fuel comes directly out of the household budget.

The ruling party in Augusta doesn’t seem to understand, or doesn’t seem to care, that high fuel prices cost families twice. Not only does it cost more for fuel, but it will also cost extra at the register for goods that are manufactured with, then transported by fuel. When fuel prices are increased, the cost of goods are increased.

Their proposals would make our businesses even less competitive with the rest of the country.

Virtually everything that we buy and sell in Maine, moves by truck or rail.

But the desire to tax doesn’t stop with fuel. Just last week, the legislature heard another bill sponsored by six Democrats to impose additional taxes on alcohol.

If passed, it will raise taxes on spirits, malt liquor, fortified wines, hard cider, while imposing a higher sales tax on the sale of liquor sold in establishments.

  • Taxes on malt liquor would increases 43%
  • Taxes on low-alcohol spirits products & fortified wines would increase 21%
  • Taxes on wine would increase 67%
  • Taxes on hard cider would increase 43%

And the sales tax will increase by 2% on all alcohol sold in bars, restaurants and breweries.

It is disappointing to me that my Democratic colleagues want to sacrifice our flourishing microbrewery industry, distilleries, and our growing wineries to feed their unending appetite for growing government spending.

Those growing industries and others that support them, are creating jobs, opportunity and economic activity. This is especially true in rural areas where local businesses help bring people together.

Several testified at the hearing that the new taxes would cost individual breweries anywhere from $18,000 to $47,000 dollars and raise the price of a beer .65 cents.

In her testimony, the bill sponsor actually said:

“If this increase is a problem, then you are drinking too much.”

Republicans are working hard to try and kill this bill in committee, before it gets to the floor.

We are also encouraged that so many citizens and small businesses have let their voices be heard this session.

You have shown that you can make a difference by contacting legislators to express your concern over extreme proposals like the ones I have mentioned and others. 

Republicans will continue to keep the promise of Maine’s future for our children and those wanting to come to Maine.

This has been State Representative Kathleen Dillingham with the Weekly Republican Radio Address.       

Thank you for listening.


House Republican Leader Kathleen Dillingham represents District 72: Mechanic Falls, Otisfield and Oxford.

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