2023 Session in Review
The longest legislative session in recent history wrapped up in the final days of July and, with your help, we achieved major wins for the environment and our democracy. We also made incredible progress towards a just, clean energy future for Maine.
Together with legislative champions, partners from the Environmental Priorities Coalition, labor unions, Mainers for Modern Elections – and members and supporters like you – we are:
– Launching a responsible and equitable Maine-based offshore wind industry;
– Ensuring access to affordable clean energy for all;
– protecting loons from lead poisoning;
– protecting voting rights for eligible voters; and
– building momentum for bold, transformative policies.
We were inspired by the Legislature’s bipartisan support and passage of An Act to Restore Access to Federal Laws Beneficial to the Wabanaki Nations, but deeply disappointed by Governor Mills’ veto of the legislation. A separate bill, An Act to Advance Self-determination for Wabanaki Nations, was carried over to the 2024 legislative session. We’ll be standing shoulder to shoulder with our partners in the Wabanaki Alliance as the Legislature and governor weigh yet another important opportunity to recognize the inherent sovereignty of the Wabanaki Nations.
Maine’s annual Environmental Scorecard tracks legislators’ voting records on critical environmental, climate, environmental justice, and democracy legislation. This year, 88 lawmakers scored 100% on Maine’s Environmental Scorecard, earning the title of Conservation Champion. Unfortunately, 66 policymakers scored ZERO on the Scorecard, voting against bills that protect our environment, democracy, and communities.
Previously, the Scorecard counted legislators’ absences as votes against our shared values. Though this process accurately captured who showed up to vote, it often lumped lawmakers who missed votes due to family and medical leave with those who “took a walk” to avoid a difficult vote. To better reflect legislators’ commitment to our priorities, this year’s Scorecard does not count absences against a member’s score.
Now is the time to hold your elected officials accountable and keep building support and momentum for environmental justice, thriving communities, a healthy democracy, and protections for our beautiful lands, waters, and wildlife.
Thanks again to all of you who were so engaged in helping move our shared priorities forward this session – we can’t do this work without you!
Maureen Drouin, Executive Director
Jennifer Melville, Board President