April 2, 2024

Dear Harpswell and Brunswick Neighbor,

With tax filing season in full swing, I want to share some success we have made In the Legislature, that will bring meaningful tax relief for Mainers. 

In the first session, we made significant strides in measures that support tax relief to Mainers. We created a $300 state child tax credit, increased the annual income tax pension deduction from $30,000 to $35,000, and increased the Property Tax Fairness Credit for those 65 or older from $1,500 to $2,000. We also expanded the benefits for disabled veterans. 

Permanently disabled Veterans are now allowed an additional income tax credit equal to the amount of the Property Tax Fairness Credit the individual otherwise qualifies for, effectively doubling the Property Tax Fairness Credit.

In addition, we're maintaining Municipal Revenue Sharing at 5% and meeting our commitment to fund 55% of public education costs, lowering the property tax burden on taxpayers. This is by no means an exhaustive list. Legislative Democrats have worked to provide hundreds of millions of dollars in tax relief to Mainers who need it. The measures we've passed will provide $285 million back to Maine people this year alone, projected to grow to an estimated $750 million in the next two years. 

We will work hard to pass a budget over the next few weeks. I am grateful for all the work Governor Mills has put into her Supplemental Budget Proposal and her change package. We have the biggest Rainy-Day Fund in our State's history. Today, the fund has as much in it as is legally allowed, at nearly a billion dollars, and there is a proposal to add another $107 million. We just received a revenue forecast that another surplus is on its way. Our State is fiscally in a great place. 

This is all good news, and with an even higher surplus than expected, we have an opportunity before us to keep commitments made as well as secure funding for programs that benefit all Mainer's things, such as the Medicare savings program, which will benefit our older residents, SNAP to help to reduce our state food insecurities and the ability to reverse cuts to general assistance. Investments in rental assistance, housing, childcare, will help replenish our much-needed workforce and reduce our homeless population as well as decreasing our eviction court rates. The short of the long is that there are a number of initiatives that can lift fiscal burdens off our local communities, which still need funding.

We could improve our teachers' and other public workers' salaries, boost resources in our behavioral health care system, provide treatment for substance use disorder, and more. The list of positive changes we can bring to our State is long, and the ideas are never-ending. 

We can build a brighter future for all of Maine. I look forward to discussions with my colleagues in the Legislature and continuing to work towards solutions that benefit us all.

I will continue to advocate for policies and changes that invest in our community and State.

As always, please feel free to contact me with any ideas, questions, or concerns.



Rep. Cheryl Golek

Serving HD 99, Harpswell and part of Brunswick

(207) 535-9857


Connect with me on Facebook


I am thrilled that my bill, LD 337, will expand affordable housing opportunities for Mainers across the state. It was a collaborative effort between myself and several advocates, notably Eli Rubin and Shelly Norton of Maine's Association of Planners

The measure will allow municipalities to amend their local zoning regulations to allow the placement of manufactured homes on single-family plots. The law will take effect 90 days after the Legislature adjourns. 

Additionally, my measure to create a commission to support low-income renters better has been voted through both the House and the Senate and now awaits funding from the Legislature's budget-setting committee. This bill will enhance landlord-tenant relations and encourage greater utilization of rental assistance programs. 

You can learn more about my legislative record and the bills I have sponsored here


While the total extent of damage to the businesses along our working waterfronts is still being assessed, Maine Coast Fisherman Association has begun to accept donations to aid in the recovery and reconstruction process. 

Our fishermen and women are incredibly industrious and resilient. Still, in the face of such devastation and labor shortage, it will require all hands-on deck to get our working waterfront back up and running. 


President Biden has approved the State of Maine's request for a Major Disaster Declaration to help eight counties recover from the January storms that caused severe flooding and devastated coastal communities like ours. 


The federal assistance will help cover the cost of public infrastructure repairs and make direct assistance available to eligible families and businesses.


To see if you qualify for relief, you can begin the application process by visiting www.disasterassistance.gov or calling 800-621-3362. Anyone using a relay service, such as video relay service (VRS), captioned telephone service or others, can give FEMA the number for that service.


Additionally, in the coming weeks, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), in partnership with the Maine Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) will establish Disaster Recovery Centers in impacted areas.


These centers will offer assistance and provide information about how impacted residents can apply for assistance in person, online, or by telephone. These locations will be announced as soon as possible, and I will share more information once it becomes available. 


I will continue to do everything in my power to help our community recover and rebuild following these devastating storms. 


There are many resources available to help eligible Mainers file their taxes for free. Among them is CA$H Maine, a collaboration of organizations across the state that work together to provide free tax preparation and other financial services for those who meet income requirements. 


Maine's unclaimed property list includes money that belongs to Mainers but is being held by the State Treasurer's Office because it couldn't be returned, including bank balances from old accounts, overpaid bills, uncashed checks and more. You can easily search the list for yourself or a family member and claim any property that is rightfully yours. 


Last month was Women's History Month, a time to celebrate and honor the countless women with exceptional courage, strength and leadership who paved the way for this generation of leaders, and who stand beside us now.


I'm proud to serve alongside so many incredible women in the Legislature, and I'm committed to continuing to fight for greater equality in all my work.


The House passed a resolution recognizing March 8 as International Women's Day. You can read the full text online here