Maine Gov. Paul LePage has presented lawmakers with a supplemental budget that includes further spending cuts, such as eliminating all support for the Maine Public Broadcasting Network, reports the Bangor Daily News. The move took MPBN President Mark Vogelzang by surprise. In a story on the station’s website, Vogelzang said he has been unsuccessful in attempts to meet with the governor. “MPBN has taken our fair share of cuts in response to the challenges that this state faces,” he said. “But this looks like it’s punitive, it looks like it’s political rather than financial.”
Some elements of the supplemental budget, including the zeroing out of MPBN, were initially included in the governor’s biennial budget proposal, but were restored in a subsequent spending plan.
Adrienne Bennett, the governor’s spokesperson, told the Bangor newspaper that the governor believes the pubcasting network should be funded by advertisers.