Processing Your Payment

Please do not leave this page until complete. This can take a few moments.

Updated: July 22, 2022

'Making Maine Work' policy roadmap urges more R&D spending, housing construction

Three portrait headshots File photos From left, Dana Connors of the Maine State Chamber of Commerce, Jason Judd of Educate Maine and Yellow Light Breen of the Maine Development Foundation. The three organizations released the newest "Making Maine Work" report on Thursday.

Maine needs to boost spending on research and development, increase participation in the labor force and build more housing to meet demand.

Those are among 15 recommendations laid out in a 28-policy memo released Thursday, based on a survey of close to 500 Maine businesses and nonprofit organizations. 

cover image report
Courtesy / Maine State Chamber of Commerce
The "Making Maine Work" report sets six key goals that aims to encourage investment in Maine and grow the state's economy.

The report, "Making Maine Work: Critical Investments for the Maine Economy," was published by the Maine State Chamber of Commerce, the Maine Development Foundation and Educate Maine, as a policy roadmap for Maine's next governor and Legislature.

The latest report is the eighth in the series and third released in a gubernatorial election year. This November, Gov. Janet Mills, the Democratic incumbent, is running for reelection against Paul R. LePage, her Republican predecessor. He served for two terms, from 2011-2019.

The 2022 report lays out six key goals that aim to encourage investment in Maine and grow the state's economy, along with 15 targeted recommendations and strategies to achieve those goals. Broad goals include expanding Maine's workforce at all levels, championing investments in innovation and improving health outcomes to keep costs in checks. 

While workforce availability and skill levels remain top priorities for survey respondents, the 2022 report puts a sharper focus on the availability of entry-level talent.

Other priorities this year relate to tackling the costs of energy, health insurance and housing, while resources to improve workplace diversity, equity and inclusion emerged as new areas of focus. The 2022 report was released at a morning event in Augusta.

“We encourage state leaders to consider the priorities, goals and strategies identified in Making Maine Work as a starting point for policy discussions, a ‘call-to-action,’ and an invitation to expand on partnerships with the business community, all with the purpose of promoting economic growth and prosperity across Maine,” said Dana Connors, president of the Maine State Chamber of Commerce.

“We must continue leveraging our state’s assets and the economic gains we are making, such as expanding broadband, while also addressing Maine’s longtime workforce challenges, the costs of doing business in Maine, and importantly, investing in innovation.”

'Optimistic about Maine's future'

Jason Judd, executive director of Educate Maine, said, “We are optimistic about Maine’s future and that Maine is in a strong position to build on the successes of the past several years ... We are confident Maine can and will address the economic challenges before us and that the 2022 Making Maine Work report will help guide the way.”

Survey respondents represent sectors including manufacturing, retail, health care, professional services, hospitality, nonprofits and education.

Maine Development Foundation CEO Yellow Light Breen noted that strategies and recommendations from previous reports have been critical to strengthening Maine's economy, helping shape the state's 10-year economic development strategy adopted in 2019.

"Our intent is for the 2022 Making Maine Work report to play an equally constructive, nonpartisan role in helping Maine's governor and the 131st Legislature address our state's most pressing economic issues going forward," he said.

More information

Read the full report and executive summary here.

Sign up for Enews

Related Content


Order a PDF