The Coalition has been working hard to address the high fuel prices impact on Maine residents and Maine businesses alike. How we have spent the last year:
Calling for meetings with our state and federal delegation, once those meetings came to fruitation we attended, spoke out, pressed for calls to action.
We have been an integral part of state legislation and are planning legislation for this fall's session as well.
We have supported a public repossession of trucks at Maine's Capital to give legislators a visual of what is actually going on in Maine's transportation industry.
We have acquired seats on the committee to look at Maine's commercial vehicle laws and the Governor's pre-emergency task force committee.
We have travel via a convoy to DC to protest by vehicle , protest march and federal delegation meetings to insure that Maine voices are being heard and their voices have resulted in new federal legislation.
Our members have worked hard to acquire the support and respect of their fellow Mainers. They have acquired the support of some of Maine's own legislators to engage in Coalition happenings and thus far those happenings have been benficial in the slow turning wheels of politics. Our goal at this moment is to keeping trying in every way we know how , for as long as it takes , to move our state and federal governement into action to bring the high cost of fuels down in our state and across the nation, to see a solid energy plan placed into action and to support only legislators working hard to do the same !
Mill closures are of major concern. The Coalition has a feature page called " Mill WATCH" reporting on mills that provide numerous jobs for our areas. Coalition members have and will continue to speak with Maine Legislators about the possibility of "at risk" mills in Maine. Maine mills need a good supply of wood fiber to operate. They need solid loggers, truckers and millworkers to make the process complete and all of those integral parts needs decent rates, prices and fuel costs to continue to operate. We ALL need to join together to secure the supply chain.
LP & T of Lincoln is a reported " Success Story " at the legislative level. Rep. Jeffery Gifford of Lincoln, District 12 spoke about his hometown mill and the need to aid the forest products industry at a transportation committee hearing in Augusta, on January 17th,2008, along with Senator Elizabeth Schneider, Speaker of the House, Glenn Cummings, Rep. Douglas Thomas, John Kerry of the Governor's Office of Energy Independence & Security, Dale Hanington of MMTA , and Coalition members: Albert & Belinda Raymond and Larry Sidelinger,
Aerial photo of L.P. & T. taken by Mike Libby of Lincoln, Me
RATIO OF AFFECT
The ratio of people affected when an individual looses a job in this industry is 8 to 1. So when you see that over 200 workers lost their jobs when a mill shut down that actually effects 1600 people or when you see that Maine has lost 50-60 independent truckers that means that 400 to 480 people were affected . It also means that when logging companies cut back the same ratio takes effect for loggers, skidder, clambunk, harvester,delimber and crane operators. The frontline of the forest products industry in Maine woodlands.