AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) – Maine Gov. Paul LePage’s administration is pushing a proposal to use money generated from increased logging on public lands to fund a program designed to help residents reduce their energy bills.
LePage criticized lawmakers Tuesday for stalling a similar measure introduced by Senate Majority Leader Troy Jackson. He’s introducing a new bill this week to put $1 million per year into a fund allowing residents to invest in modern heating equipment to reduce energy costs.
Maine’s Department of Agriculture, Conversation and Forestry has internally agreed to increase the harvest on public lands from 115,000 cords to 141,000 cords this fiscal year and then gradually raise it to 180,000 cords.
Dylan Voorhees of the Natural Resources Council of Maine says the state’s public lands aren’t an appropriate source to fund programs.