- Associated Press - Monday, March 18, 2019

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) - Democratic Gov. Janet Mills’ administration wants a judge to dismiss a lawsuit claiming Maine failed to fill public health nurses positions that lawmakers budgeted.

The Bangor Daily News reports the Department of Health and Human Services argues Democratic Sen. Brownie Carson’s lawsuit is moot because Maine has tried multiple times to fill vacant positions.

A hearing about the lawsuit is expected to be set after March 18.

Carson sponsored a 2017 law calling for vacancies to be filled at a time when Maine’s public health nurses had dwindled from roughly 50 to below 20.

The Portland Press Herald reports Mills’ administration argues the law violates separation of powers. Health chief Jeanne Lambrew said she doesn’t know how long it’ll take to hire 24 public health nurses amid a nursing shortage.

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