LePage to tax strapped farmer, “Get a reverse mortgage”

From maineprogressiveswarehouse.me:

“At last week’s town hall in Auburn, the public had an opportunity to directly ask questions of Governor Paul LePage or make observations about how the governor’s proposed biennial budget for FY 2016-17 would affect them.

One moment jumps out here, Turner beef farmer Ralph Caldwell took his turn:

After describing how his family’s working farm established in 1894 has paid as much as $48,000 a year in property taxes while declaring no income taxes with anticipated carry forward of $500k for the next decade, Caldwell concludes:

“I think you are coming to get me, and you have been a hero of mine for four years.”

LePage denies that he is “coming to get him”, immediately pivots to discuss the plight of the Millinocket mill, the three different rates of property taxes possibly applicable, then returns to Caldwell’s specific raised issues:

“I don’t know of your particular situation, but you must own a whole lot of land, and maybe we can get you a reverse mortgage.”


Chris Shorr

About Chris Shorr

Chris is a sixth generation Portlander who loves all things Maine. He has worked with mentally ill and marginalized adults at a Portland non-profit, on a lobster boat in Casco Bay, at several high-end Portland restaurants, and at a local meat packing plant. He also ran for Portland City Council in 2013, wrote a weekly column in the now defunct Portland Daily Sun, and currently writes a weekly column in The Portland Phoenix.