- Associated Press - Friday, August 21, 2015

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) - Republican Gov. Paul LePage says the elimination of 300 jobs at a Maine mill underscores the need to reduce the state’s taxes and energy costs.

Verso Paper Corp. said Thursday that it will lay off 300 workers in Jay, citing declining demand for coated paper as well as high energy costs and local property taxes.

In a letter to House Speaker Mark Eves and Senate President Michael Thibodeau Friday, LePage criticized lawmakers for blocking his energy and tax proposals and urged them urged them to “come out from under the dome” to see what’s happening in the real world.

Eves said in his response that LePage’s energy proposals would do little to reduce the burden on ratepayers and that his tax plan would’ve had “devastating effects” on communities like Jay.

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