November 6, 2020 Article

Legislative Alert: Legislative Leadership Election Update

The Senate Democratic Caucus met on November 5th and, as expected, re-elected their current leadership team. Thus Senate President Troy Jackson (D-Aroostook), Senate Majority Leader Nate Libby (D-Androscoggin), and Senate Majority Assistant Leader Eloise Vitelli (D-Sagadahoc), will retain those positions. There was no challenge made by any member of the newly elected caucus to any of the current leaders. Senator Cathy Breen (D-Cumberland) will likely remain the Senate Chair of the Appropriations Committee.

The House Republicans have met today, November 6th. Current Republican Leader, Kathleen Dillingham (R-Oxford), fended off a challenge from Rep. Heidi Sampson (R-Alfred) to retain her leadership position. Reps. Mary Anne Kinney (R-Knox), Mike Perkins (R-Oakland), Joel Stetkis (R-Canaan), and Will Tuell (R-East Machias) competed for the Republican Assistant Leader position. Rep. Stetkis prevailed to become the Republic House Assistant Leader.

The Senate Republicans will hold leadership elections on November 10th. Current Republican Leader, Senator Dana Dow (R-Lincoln), lost his re-lection bid, but current Assistant Leader, Senator Jeff Timberlake (R-Androscoggin), is expected to run for the Republican Leader position. Senator Matt Pouliot (R-Kennebec), and Senator Stacey Guerin (R- Penobscot) have expressed an interest in the Assistant Republican leadership position, and newly elected and returning Senator Rick Bennett (R-Oxford) could step up, if recruited to do so. Senator Bennett previously served as Senate President and as the Republican Senate Leader

House Democrats will make their leadership decisions on November 12th. Current Assistant House Majority Leader, Rep. Ryan Fecteau, (D-Biddeford) appears to face no opposition in his race for Speaker of the House. Reps. Michelle Dunphy (D-Old Town) and Denise Tepler (D-Topsham) are known to be running for the House Majority Leader position If Dunphy becomes the Majority Leader it is likely Rep. Theresa Pierce (D-Falmouth) will become the House Chair of the Appropriations Committee.  Reps. Lori Gramlich (D-Old Orchard Beach), Michele Meyer (D-Eliot), and Rachel Talbot-Ross (D-Portland) are understood to be running for the Assistant Majority Leader position.

At this time it is expected that current Attorney General Aaron Frey, and current State Treasurer Henry Beck will not be challenged for their positions from within the Democratic Party. However, current Secretary of State Matt Dunlap is termed out in December. At this time Senator Justine Chenette, Rep. Janice Cooper, Rep. Craig Hickman, Rep. Erik Jorgensen, and current House Majority Leader, Rep. Matt Moonen, are running for this position. House members often have an edge in these races, and Rep. Jorgensen had declared his interest almost 4 years ago. However, House Majority Leader Matt Moonen is a popular leader in his caucus. Speaking of Matt Dunlap, it is likely that he will be the new State Auditor. Current State Auditor, Pola Buckley, is termed out.

It is unknown at this time if the Republicans will offer up any candidates for these positions. Both parties will presumedly schedule joint caucuses in late November to vote on what candidates will be put forward on swearing-in day, which is Wednesday, December 2nd.

We will provide regular updates.

Firm Highlights


Maine Workers' Comp Alert: Maine Supreme Court Issues Decision Regarding Statute of Limitations in Coordination of Benefits

Maine Supreme Court Issues Decision in Charest v. Hydraulic Hose Dealing with Unique Statute of Limitations Issue in the Context of the Coordination of Benefits On March 30, 2021, the Law Court issued a...


2021 Cannabis Breakfast Series: Maine Legislative Review

What is happening with cannabis in Augusta and how will it affect your business, your clients, and the industry? Attorney  Dan Walker , chair of Preti Flaherty's  Government Affairs Practice Group , founder of...


Fifteen Preti Flaherty Attorneys Selected as Chambers USA Leaders in Their Field

Fifteen Preti Flaherty attorneys and five practice groups have been selected for inclusion in the 2021 Chambers USA Guide to America's Leading Lawyers for Business , the highly regarded directory of leading attorneys and...


Deadline for PPP Loan Applications Extended to May 31, 2021

On March 30, 2021, President Biden signed H.R. 1799, known as the “PPP Extension Act of 2021,” extending the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) application deadline by 60 days – from March 31, 2021 to...


Changing Control in the Time of COVID: Navigating ‘Change of Ownership’ Prior to PPP Loan Satisfaction.

The Hypothetical Everyone loves a hypothetical, right? So let’s begin with one about Billy Builder: Billy Builder holds 55% of the equity in a construction business he founded way back when the fax machine...


2021 Cannabis Breakfast Series: The Latest on Medical Rules and Dispensary Applications

In this multi-topic session,  Cannabis Business Group  chair  Dan Walker  and  Business Law Practice Group  attorney  Sara Moppin  examine the current state of the Medical Marijuana rules in Maine and present an in-depth walkthrough...


Maine Workers' Comp Alert: WCB Meeting Notes for June 2021

The following are highlights from the Maine Workers’ Compensation Board’s meeting of June 8, 2021. Attorney Kate Gatti Rooks Appointed for Partial Term as Administrative Law Judge in Portland Attorney Kate Gatti Rooks was...


Benchmark Litigation Names Preti Flaherty 2021 “Maine Firm of the Year”

Benchmark Litigation has named Preti Flaherty as 2021 Litigation Firm of the Year in the State of Maine. The Benchmark Awards honor distinguished litigators and law firms in all 50 states and 10 practice...


Maine Justice Foundation Makes Inaugural Grants to Six Maine Groups Working for Racial Justice and Equity

The Maine Justice Foundation has made inaugural grants from its Racial Justice Fund to six Maine groups. The goal of the Fund is to support Black, Indigenous, and People of Color statewide to forge...


ABI Northeast Bankruptcy Conference and Consumer Forum

Recent legislation and judicial decisions have changed consumer bankruptcy practice substantially over the last year. Bodie Colwell will join a panel discussion providing perspectives and analysis from the judiciary and debtors’ and creditors’ attorneys regarding...