Last month I attended Gov. Paul LePage’s “town hall” meeting in Richmond. I went to hear his vision for moving Maine’s economy and quality of life forward. That is not the message I took away. Instead, among other falsehoods, I was told that the Natural Resources Council of Maine will do anything to kill jobs in Maine.

Nothing could be further from the truth. I have been a member of the Natural Resources Council of Maine for nearly 30 years because I want to live in a clean and healthy environment. NRCM’s work to clean up our rivers, lakes, streams and coastal waters has added to our economy.

NRCM represents the overwhelming majority of Maine people who know we need a healthy environment to have a healthy economy. The two go hand in hand. The governor tries to pit the environment against the economy, which is nonsense.

Earlier this year, NRCM led the effort in Augusta to pass a landmark solar energy bill. If it had passed, L.D. 1649 would have created 650 new jobs in Maine’s solar industry. Instead, the governor vetoed the bill. NRCM has been a leading proponent of a new national monument east of Baxter State Park. Economic studies estimate that 400–1,000 new jobs could be created, yet the governor has spoken out strongly against the proposal.

NRCM was founded by Maine people in 1959 to protect Maine’s waters, air, forests and wildlife. NRCM is more than just the staff in Augusta; it is thousands of Mainers from across the state like me.

If anything, the governor’s attacks on NRCM have strengthened the organization. In fact, I sent in a special donation as soon as I learned of the governor’s little “war.”

If you share my values, I encourage you to do the same.

Elizabeth Cuprak

Gardiner