MAINE REPUBLICAN STATE CONVENTION APRIL 28 — 29, 1960
A PROPOSED RESPONSIBLE REPUBLICAN PROGRAM
Professing our belief in the Providence of God and in the freedom and guidance that those created in his image derive from this source; We, the Republicans of The State of Maine, assert the following principles:
Since freedom is the fundamental principle which has made our State and Nation desirable to its citizens, we believe that it warrants our continued faith in the individual.
We believe that the Republican philosophy offers an opportunity for you, your sons, daughters and neighbors, to plan your lives and to achieve your objectives with minimum governmental interference. We propose to honor incentive, extra effort and excellence, as sources of promoting the best in mankind, causing man to give his best, unfettered by governmental paternalism but encouraged by tangible reward, status, and the contribution that he may make to his fellow man.
We recognize integrity as a guiding principle and seek this quality in every elected and appointed official.
Fiscal responsibility is a fundamental of honest government and we believe that if we accept this responsibility instead of burdening future generations we shall insure their freedom.
Acknowledging the need for government to act in emergencies, we approve this function of government in extending a helping hand to those in need, but we do not endorse government in the role of the Great Provider of all things for all people. If the latter ever came to pass, we surely would be forced to sacrifice personal dignity and commit future generations. A program must be judged by its objectives and by the effectiveness with which these objectives are met.
We urge all citizens in respect to their obligations to be alert and informed about their government and to remember that the most effective and economical government must be close to the people if individuality is to be retained.
We thus propose the following Resolutions in keeping with our convictions and desire to practice individuality for ourselves and our posterity.
Republican State Convention
Bangor, Maine, April 28-29, 1960
ADMINISTRATION AND ELECTION REFORMS
1. Governor’s Executive Council
Recognizing the Governor’s Council as the only body, with the exception of the Legislature, capable of exercising any check on the Executive, we advocate the retention of this body. The Council not only acts as a recess representative of the Legislature, but can and does function as an advisory board to the Governor.
2. Legislative Sessions
We favor the continuation of biennial sessions of the Legislature pending the findings of the Legislative Interim Study Committee of the Legislative Rules and Procedures. We commend the 99th Republican Legislature for the creation of this Committee.
3. Election Laws
The 98th and 99th Republican Legi1atures authorized the Secretary of State to study and compile suggested revisions of the Election Laws. The foresight of this legislative action is gratefully recognized. We advocate the continuation of this activity to the completion of the assignment.
4. District Court System
The 99th Republican Legislature authorized a study of the desirability of a District Court system. Recognizing the need of improving the administration of justice at the municipal court level, we commend and support this study.
We recognize that the Education of Maine children is of vital concern to the State and to each citizen and a major problem with all municipalities. Therefore, we recommend the following program:
1. Full accreditation of all Teachers’ Colleges.
2. Increased support for the University of Maine to enable it to attract and keep a high quality faculty and offer a program which will enable it to maintain the accredited status of its colleges.
3. Continued study of legislation permitting school consolidation and improvement to and reform in such laws.
4. Increased opportunities for vocational training at the high school and post high school levels.
5. Continued study of school programs in areas of finance, program and personnel in close collaboration with community officials, teachers’ organizations and educational officials.
6. Additional mobile libraries in order to provide increased service to the rural areas of Maine.
7. We recognize that the need for transportation of private school children in some of our municipalities is a problem; we therefore recommend legislation to permit the voters of each municipality to decide the problem for themselves.
8. Increase support for the Maine Maritime Academy to enable it to attract and keep a high quality faculty and offer a program which will enable it to continue to train fine and efficient officers to maintain Maine‘s traditional heritage on the sea.
HIGHWAYS AND HIGHWAY SAFETY
Recognizing the value of good roads to the economy of our State, we urge the construction of improved highway facilities to all sections of the State as rapidly as possible, including Farm to Market roads.
We advocate the continuation of the Special State Aid Construction Program and the Town Road Improvement Fund.
Deserving recognition is extended to the Governor’s Highway Safety Committee and we urge the full implementation of their safety program.
AGRICULTURE AND SOIL CONSERVATION
With the full recognition of the Maine Farmer as a dynamic force in the economy of the whole State that, during these days of declining farm income as against rapidly rising costs of farming, special effort and recognition be paid to is segment of our economy.
THE REPUBLICAN PARTY STANDS IN FAVOR OF:
1. Continued and accelerated State assistance for management and marketing of farm products. We endorse the employment of a full time Agricultural Processing Specialist, working for the Department of Economic Development, whose assignment is to secure Industries interested in processing State of Maine farm products. We commend the Republican Administration for this action.
2. Increased participation by land owners and farmers in the activities of the Soil Conservation Districts. That increased appropriations be made for the use of the Soil Conservation Districts which are legally constituted units of State Government, not the Federal Government. The dedicated purpose of these Districts is to help land owners and operators conserve the Soil, Water, Plant and Wildlife Resources of the State of Maine.
3. Providing for the future of our farmers as well as our State as a whole, the Party enthusiastically supports adequate Agricultural Research and Extension work of the University of Maine.
4. Continuing development of programs and activities to place more and more emphasis on farm and home safety.
SEA AND SHORE FISHERIES
1. Quality Control
Legislation is advocated to establish an inspection program for various fishery products to set standards of quality in order to improve the competitive marketing position of the Maine industry. Such a State inspection system would be available to Maine processing plants and would entitle those qualifying to a State Seal of Approval which would be a guarantee of quality to the consumer.
2. Cooperative Marketing
We suggest a cooperative marketing program similar to that which is operated by the Maine Department of Agriculture. To finance such a program, matching funds would be provided by the State and by the Maine Fishing Industry.
A special advisory committee would be established to approve projects for this program, and field representatives would be employed to develop markets and promote the sale of Maine seafood products.
Should Federal Funds be made available for fisheries research on a matching basis, legislation should be provided at the State level to provide funds in order to be able to take advantage of such assistance.
LABOR AND INDUSTRY
We point with pride to the fine record of labor-management relations in the State of Maine.
In l958 Maine’s work stoppage record was considerably better than the national average in that only .05% of total man hours worked was lost due to strikes while during that year .22% of estimated working time was lost by strikes nationally. Only five (5) states, principally agricultural, had a percentage of time lost lower than Maine’s.
1. Labor Management Relations
We pledge our support to the continuation of this favorable climate for both industry and the workers, and commend both for their fine records.
2. Minimum Wage
We advocate the clarification of the Minimum Wage Law so that the policy as established by the Legislature may be equitably and fairly applied.
a. We favor legislative protection of employees covered under the Maine Minimum Wage Law who are summarily dismissed for filing a complaint against an employer.
We believe that it is the employer’s responsibility to provide reasonably safe working conditions and that it is the worker’s responsibility to work with due care and consideration for his own and his fellow worker’s safety. We advocate strengthening of the industrial safety laws.
We favor a rehabilitation program for the injured worker, wherever necessary so that the worker may be returned to full employment as promptly as possible.
Our interest and concern are with a stable and continuing program of economic improvement with the objective of increased and more favorable opportunities for profitable employment and better living for all Maine citizens. To this end we recommend:
1. That adequate appropriations be provided for the Department of Development that it may continue and expand its programs of recreational promotion and industrial growth.
2. The Republican Party recognizes the importance of a health and attractive business climate within the State and, consistent with such recognition, supports legislation that will provide a climate attractive and equitable to both industry and labor.
3. We, of the Republican Party, pledge an urgently advocate that the state take immediate and vigorous action to improve, develop and enhance the utility and economic effectiveness of the state’s harbors, tidal waters, and tributary inlets, with due regard for the Federal matching share of responsibilities both fiscal and administrative, all to the end that cities and towns of the coastal area be provided with the basis to redevelop, develop anew, and expand the magnificent, unique and rich economic potential which our seacoast provides.
NATURAL RESOURCES – FOREST AND WATER CONSERVATION – MINERAL DEVELOPMENT
Recognizing that the conservation and development of our Natural Resources is of vital importance to the economy of the State of Maine and is the basis for future expansion, we recommend that the citizens of Maine:
1. Continue to protect mature and growing timber in Maine’s 17,000,000 acres of forest from damage by fire, disease, insects and other destructive agents.
2. Continue to promote sound practices of management under the TREE FARM PROGRAM and fire control under the KEEP MAINE GREEN PROGRAM.
3. Continue to re-forest poorly stocked and unstocked areas and burned lands best suited for timber growth.
We advocate promotion of wise utilization of wood and “the multiple land use concept” of
1. Timber growing
2. Fish and Game Management
3. Water Power
Continuation of the expansion of mineral research, discovery, development and marketing under the Department of Economic Development.
HEALTH AND WELFARE
1. We favor an expansion of the existing program of service to the Superior Courts by the Health and Welfare Department at the request of the courts in pending divorce actions.
2. We recognize the inadequacies in legislative appropriations to pay for hospital and nursing home care given under the several aid programs provided for by Maine laws, There deficiencies create substantial financial burdens unfairly imposed upon hospital and nursing home and their paying patients. We recommend legislative action that will provide more adequate payments to the hospitals and nursing homes for these services rendered to patients in each of the aid programs.
3. We favor elimination of the relative responsibility law with, however, the recognition by law of the moral responsibility of children to contribute to the support of their parents.
4. We recognize the importance of the community in a good Mental Health Program.
Therefore we recommend increased support for the Community Services Act as passed by the 99th Republican Legislature.
5. We favor providing adequate specialized services in the community for those retarded children who can live at home.
It is our belief that only essential programs and services promoting the most economical use of its tax resources should be adopted and administered by the State.
Whenever it is proven necessary or desirable to Promote beneficial changes and improvements in the State’s programs and services, these should be limited by every means possible to existing revenues. The 99th Legislature, recognizing the ever increasing tax burden on the public, directed the Legislative Research Committee to complete a comprehensive study of the State and municipal tax structure and report its findings and recommendations to the 100th Legislature. It is our belief that no change in the State’s program on tax structure should be made until the results of this study are known.