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Bonds

Today, Maine State Treasurer Neria Douglass announced that voter-approved projects funded by the successful general obligation bond sale in late June are listed on the Maine Treasury web site.  A brief description of each project, together with the responsible agency, legal authorization and total amount of funds to be transferred is available. The web address is http://www.maine.gov/treasurer/debts_bonds/index.html .

“I am very proud that we were able to secure $127 million for a long list of projects that will improve our economy and the quality of life in Maine. We received millions more from the sale than first anticipated as a result of our determination to achieve the best price possible within our existing budget,” said Treasurer Douglass.  “These voter-approved projects are important to Maine’s economy, including jobs and infrastructure. I’m pleased we have already put the money to work throughout the state.  Our work provided funds for projects delayed from 2009, and even funded projects approved in November 2013 that were not yet budgeted. ” Bonds for tax-exempt projects sold to Raymond James at a true interest cost of 2.03%, while bonds for taxable projects sold to JP Morgan Chase at a rate of 0.96%. Priced by competitive sale, the transaction netted $127 million at closing on June 24. Funds were transferred to project accounts as listed shortly after. 

Contact:           Neria Douglass, State Treasurer                   

Kristi Carlow, Deputy State Treasurer   207- 624-7477

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Student hunger

The Task Force to End Student Hunger, established by Resolve 2013, chapter 107 (­http://www.mainelegislature.org/legis/bills/getPDF.asp?paper=SP0729&item=3&snum=126) will hold its first meeting on Monday, July 7, 2014 from 9:30 am – 3:30 pm in Room 209 of the Cross Office Building.  Public is welcome.

Posted in News.

June 2014 Fiscal News

The June 2014 issue of the Fiscal News is now available on the Office of Fiscal and Program Review’s web page through the following link: http://www.maine.gov/legis/ofpr/other_publications/fiscal_news/FiscalNews_2014_06.pdf

This month’s issue includes the usual revenue, cash and MaineCare updates.  The revenue updates include rough estimates of the year-end revenue surplus based on preliminary June data.

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State retirees and cost-of-living increases for 2014

During the 125th Legislature, a three-year freeze on cost-of-living adjustments for retired state, judicial and legislative employees and teachers was put into effect as part of a package of changes to the state pension program. That freeze has expired and eligible retirees will see a COLA increase this September if the Consumer Price index for Urban Consumers is positive at the end of June. COLA increases take place each September if the CPI-U is positive at the end of each preceding June.

The increase to the retirement benefit would be permanent. The maximum possible COLA benefit is 3 percent of the first $20,000 of annual retirement benefits.   

This is also the final year for the annual lump sum non-cumulative COLAs the Legislature approved for each of the years the regular COLA was frozen. The annual lump sum non-cumulative COLA is contingent on the availability of sufficient undedicated revenue at the end of each fiscal year.

It’s expected that funds will be available for the annual lump sum non-cumulative COLA this year, as they have been in the previous two years. The annual lump sum non-cumulative COLA would be based on the June 30, 2013 CPI-U of 1.8 percent. It would be paid to retirees who would have been eligible for the regular COLA in 2013.

The annual benefit on which the lump sum non-cumulative COLA would be calculated is increasing from $20,000 to $30,000 this year, thanks to a law passed by the 126th Legislature. The maximum payment would be 1.8 percent, or $540. This final lump sum non-cumulative COLA would be made in addition to the regular COLA that resumes in September.

The Maine Public Employees Retirement System has more information.

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May revenue

The monthly revenue report for May has been posted to the link below.   The report consists of the Commissioner’s memo, revenue tables and the taxable sales summary in separate links on the web page below.

http://www.maine.gov/osc/finanrept/revenue.shtml

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April revenue report

The monthly revenue report for April provided by the Commissioner of Administrative and Financial Services Revenue Report has now been posted to the web.  This includes a combined chart report of revenues along with the memo and taxable sales.  This report was very recently updated to reflect the new monthly distribution of budgeted revenue based on all laws affecting FY 2014 revenue.  It is now consistent with the revenue results for April reported in the OFPR’s May Fiscal News.

http://www.maine.gov/osc/finanrept/revenue.shtml

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If you read can this…

I would like to hear from you.  As I prepare to run for re-election to my 4th and final term in the House of Representatives, I would really like to hear your thoughts and ideas on the most important issues of this election year facing our region and our state. E-mail me:

cbkruger@myfairpoint.net

…And let me know you’ve been on this page.  THANKS!

Posted in Issues.

Fiscal Impacts

The Office of Fiscal and Program Review has posted a report that summarizes the fiscal impact of all acts and resolves of the 2nd Regular Session of the 126th Maine Legislature. 

The report is available at the Office of Fiscal and Program Review Session Information web page at: http://www.maine.gov/legis/ofpr/session_information/index.htm or directly at: http://www.maine.gov/legis/ofpr/session_information/126th/Acts&Resolves-126thR2-Final.pdf.

I hope you find this useful.

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126th Legislature is officially over

The Maine State Legislature adjourned sine die early this morning, Friday, May 2, 2014. Pursuant to the Constitution of Maine, Article IV, Part Third, Section 16, the general effective date for nonemergency laws passed in the Second Regular Session of the 126th Legislature is Friday, August 1, 2014.

per Suzanne M. Gresser  / Revisor of Statutes

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April fiscal news

The April 2014 issue of the Fiscal News is now available on the Office of Fiscal and Program Review’s web page through the following link: http://www.maine.gov/legis/ofpr/other_publications/fiscal_news/FiscalNews_2014_04.pdf

This month’s issue includes the usual revenue, cash and MaineCare updates.  It also includes an update on state expenditures and Maine Public Employee Retirement System investment performance. 

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