November 17, 2011 | last updated December 2, 2011 6:03 pm

Group OKs plan to chop planning office

A government working group has approved Gov. Paul LePage's proposal to eliminate the State Planning Office and replace it with an Office of Policy and Management, which would be charged with finding efficiencies.

The Part FF Working Group unanimously endorsed the final plan to create the new office, which would find government inefficiencies and track money saved by eliminating them, according to MaineToday Media. Scrapping the planning office and creating the new office would eliminate nine state jobs, saving $750,000, and the other 29 planning office employees would be transferred to the new policy office or other state agencies. Created in 1968, the State Planning Office is charged with advising lawmakers and the governor on economic and natural resources policies, and it also houses the state economist.

The plan has been criticized by the Attorney General's Office, planning employees and the Maine Association of Planners, according to the paper. The Legislature must still approve the measure.


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