Student debt

I’ll never use the phrase “Ok Boomer”, but I think many legislators in Augusta don’t know first-hand what it’s like to struggle as a younger Mainer in a profoundly tough job market. I graduated from UMaine-Orono into the great Recession in 2009, and even I can’t fully imagine what it’s like for our recent graduates and college students facing an economy far worse than that. When the federal government has been indifferent at best to the student debt crisis, the state must step up and make critical investments in workforce retention. That’s why I support LD 149, which would float a $250 million bond to provide funds for student loan payments for individuals who agree to live and work in Maine for 5 years, and for reimbursement of employers that cover those payments. This investment in our college graduates will more than pay for itself by helping to stop the population outflow of qualified professionals who want to live and work in this state.