Senate District 13

Dow hopes to develop a state economic plan

By Beth A. Birmingham | Oct 11, 2018

Waldoboro — State Sen. Dana Dow, a Republican from Waldoboro, is seeking reelection in Senate District 13, running against Laura Fortman, a Democrat from Nobleboro.

A native of Waldoboro, Dow is a former schoolteacher and is the owner and president of Dow Furniture, a family business in Waldoboro.

Being always concerned about the economy of the state of Maine, and not liking the direction it is going, Dow said is the reason for his seeking reelection.

He is especially concerned with the declining enrollment in area schools, and believes that is due to the fact that young families are taking their children and moving outside the state where the job opportunities are.

"The biggest thing for me, as a businessman, is always the economy," he said.

He said he recently read a study that placed Maine as the third-highest-taxed state in the nation.

"We are about 30th in income, and we cannot keep going in that direction," he said, adding that policies need to be in place to encourage businesses to stay and expand, and bring new ones in to develop.

"We need to have fair taxation. Something is out of skew there," he said.

As the chair of the Taxation Committee, Dow said he was proud to help negotiate an agreement on tax conformity, which was created to align Maine's tax code with the federal tax overhaul approved by Congress last year.

Dow said all the issues facing the state should be brought to the table and discussed.

"It's going to take a bunch of people to sit down and have a legitimate conversation without pushback from every group that doesn't want to participate," he said.

Dow thinks in the next term of the Legislature health care has got to be a priority.

"Being the oldest state in the country, we really have to come up with a solution" for health care concerns.

He said he was pleased to hear that the University of Maine is putting a program in place to assist with the nursing shortage the state is dealing with, but admitted that is going to cost money.

"If we have a larger, healthier economy, it's automatically going to bring in more tax money," he said.

"We cannot exist with a stagnant population," he said, and blamed the trend on the lack of a statewide economic plan, which is something he would like to focus on in the next two years if reelected.

As for the opioid crisis, Dow said it's a problem that is going to take some money.

"It's a major crisis, and it's happening now, and we've got to address it," Dow said, adding that there must be adequate rehabilitation to help people get off and stay off drugs.

Considering himself an unusual candidate, because he has done extensive traveling and evaluated the history of the area, Dow said he has watched things happen in Aroostook County that have trickled down to this area.

"We've got to take a good, hard look at the history and reverse the trend," Dow said.

Dow previously served on the Waldoboro Planning Board, the Board of Directors for First National Bank and the Board of Directors for both MSAD 40 in Waldoboro and Region 8 in Rockland.

Senate District 13 represents Washington, Windsor, and all of Lincoln County except Dresden.

Courier Publications reporter Beth A. Birmingham can be reached at 594-4401 ext. 125 or via email at bbirmingham@villagesoup.com.

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