By Associated Press - Thursday, April 19, 2018

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) - The Latest on the end of the legislative session in Maine (all times local):

3:30 p.m.

Maine Republican Gov. Paul LePage and the Democratic Speaker of the House are accusing one another of using legislative “terrorism” to stop progress in the lawmakers’ session.

Members of both parties are blaming each other for lawmakers leaving town without addressing key issues facing Mainers.

LePage said Speaker Sara Gideon should be more concerned with helping the elderly stay in their homes and enacting tax conformity to give much-needed tax relief to small businesses.



Funding for schools, infrastructure projects, the opioid crisis and Medicaid coverage for low-income Mainers hangs in the balance as legislators feud. House Republicans blocked efforts to extend the legislative session for five more days.

Lawmakers worked into early Thursday though their official last day was Wednesday.

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1:50 p.m.

Democrats and House Republicans are blaming each other for lawmakers leaving town without addressing key issues facing Mainers.

Funding for schools, infrastructure projects, the opioid crisis and Medicaid coverage for low-income Mainers hangs in the balance as legislators feud. House Republicans blocked efforts to extend the legislative session for five more days.

Democratic House Speaker Sara Gideon blamed Republicans Gov. Paul LePage and House Leader and gubernatorial candidate Ken Fredette for blocking compromise and referred to their tactics as “terrorism.”

Fredette said Democrats were spreading “blatant lies” and were too obsessed with Medicaid expansion at the expense of other priorities.

Republican Senate President Mike Thibodeau said he hopes lawmakers will put their heads together and work on a deal.

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9:28 a.m.

Resistance from House Republicans has forced Maine lawmakers to return home instead of making progress on tax code reform, bonds and voter-approved Medicaid expansion.

Lawmakers worked into early Thursday though their official last day was Wednesday.

Republican Gov. Paul LePage or Gideon and Republican Senate President Mike Thibodeau could call lawmakers back to Augusta in coming weeks. Lawmakers must handle vetoes and could also consider pending bills.

Whether lawmakers will make progress this year on a number of unresolved issues facing Mainers is unclear.

Democrats and Senate Republicans reached some agreement on a spending deal including new staffers to handle Medicaid expansion set for July. But two House GOP members called Medicaid expansion a “poison pill” and demanded minimum wage reform before funding pay increases for personal care aides.

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1:09 a.m.

Maine lawmakers are working overtime as the House GOP resists efforts to give the Legislature five extra days to work on tax code reform, bonds and Medicaid expansion.

Lawmakers worked into early Thursday though their official last day was Wednesday.

Democratic House Speaker Sara Gideon said early Thursday that lawmakers would get one extra day after all because legislators worked past midnight of their last day without objection. Some House Republicans questioned her statement.

Democrats and Senate Republicans reached some agreement on a spending deal including new staffers to handle Medicaid expansion set for July. But two House GOP members called Medicaid expansion a “poison pill” and demanded minimum wage reform before funding pay increases for personal care aides.

Lawmakers must also handle vetoes at some point.

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12:36 a.m.

Maine lawmakers are working overtime as the House GOP resists efforts to give the Legislature extra days to work on pending issues.

Lawmakers worked into early Thursday though their official last day was Wednesday. House Republicans defeated efforts to give lawmakers more days for topics like tax code reform, bonds and Medicaid expansion.

Democrats and Senate Republicans reached some agreement on a spending deal including new staffers to handle Medicaid expansion set for July. But two House GOP members called Medicaid expansion a “poison pill” and demanded minimum wage reform before funding pay increases for personal care aides.

Republican Gov. Paul LePage or Democratic House Speaker Sara Gideon and Republican Senate President Mike Thibodeau could call lawmakers back to Augusta under certain circumstances. Lawmakers must handle vetoes and could consider bills.

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