A Closer Look: Question 2

Published: Oct. 19, 2021 at 6:58 PM EDT
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There are three referendum questions on this year’s ballot.  Question 2 is a Transportation Infrastructure Bond question.  News Source’s Brian Bouchard takes a closer look at the issue.

Question 2 is a Transportation Infrastructure Bond Question. In the most basic terms, the state is looking to borrow $100 million dollars to build or improve transportation infrastructure.  $85 Million would going towards roads, highways and bridges, and $15 million would go towards railroads, aviation, and harbors. The state would use the 100 million to leverage an estimated 253 million in federal and non-state funding through matching grants and other programs.

Senator Trey Stewart is in favor of Question 2.

“If lets say the revenues from the state come crashing down in 6 months and we have to pull that back, we’ll at least have this money that’s locked in. I’m not a fan of bonds generally, but I do think that the only time that bonds should be used as a mechanism for funding something for the state is in regards to infrastructure, and that’s what this bond is going to do is deal with transportation infrastructure. Similar to if you were building something on your own property, that taking out a mortgage would probably make sense, and you’d have a plan to pay that down over time if you can’t pay for it all right now”, says Stewart

Sen. Matt Pouliot represents District 15. Senator Pouliot was the only state senator to vote against LD 1702, which is the bill that placed Question 2 on the ballot. The Senator was not available for an interview, but did comment on his opposition to Question 2:

“… Maine has enough cash to pay for our transportation infrastructure if we prioritize it - we should use cash not credit cards to pay for it.”

In summary, a Yes vote for Question 2 would mean:

A bond would be issued of $100 million in general obligation bonds to build or repair transportation infrastructure

A No vote would mean:

No bond would be issued.

Election day is November 2nd.  Brian Bouchard, NewsSource8

In the next part of this series, we will take a look at Question 3, speaking with both supporters and those opposed.

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