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Angus King on Technology

Independent Former ME Governor


High-speed Internet connection for rural parts of Maine

I am announcing tonight that this winter, Maine really goes on-line. To anyone who has waited for an Internet site to open or a file to download, the key is speed and the key to speed is something called bandwidth-the size of the “pipe” that carries the phenomenal resources of the Internet to our homes and businesses. In the age of e-commerce, bandwidth is the essential commodity. Just as the roads and railroads defined economic opportunity a century ago, these wires or the lack of them - will spell the economic difference between businesses, towns, and states in the new century.

And tonight, we’re hitting the bandwidth jackpot. First, Time Warner is extending their cable-based high speed internet service, called Roadrunner to northern Maine, the first time Roadrunner has been deployed outside an urban area anywhere in the country. For the rest of the state, Bell Atlantic will be bringing to Maine their own high speed Internet service over ordinary phone wires-called DSL-within the next month.

Source: 2001 State of the State address to the Maine legislature , Jan 24, 2001

Cooperate with Canada on regional info tech workforce.

King signed the New England Governors' Conference resolution:

Source: NEG/ECP Resolution 26-6: Joint Information Workforce 01-NEGC6 on Aug 28, 2001

Level playing field for Main Street vs. Internet sales tax.

King adopted a letter to Congress from 44 Governors:

The nation’s governors have a strong and unified message to Congress: deal fairly with Main Street retailers, consumers, and local governments. In a letter sent to all members of Congress late Friday, 44 governors said:

If you care about a level playing field for Main Street retail businesses and local control of states, local governments, and schools, extend the moratorium on taxing Internet access ONLY with authorization for the states to streamline and simplify the existing sales tax system. To do otherwise perpetuates a fundamental inequity and ignores a growing problem.
The current moratorium on Internet access taxes, like those consumers pay to Internet service providers, and multiple and discriminatory taxes is scheduled to expire in October. The moratorium does not apply to sales taxes.

Currently, sales and use taxes are owed on all online transactions, but states are prohibited from requiring “remote sellers” to collect and remit those levies. A 1992 US Supreme Court decision said states can only require sellers that have a physical presence in the same state as the consumer to collect so-called use taxes. In instances when a seller does not have a physical presence, consumers are required to calculate and remit the taxes owed to their home states at the end of the year. The problem is most people are unaware that they’re supposed to pay, and states lack an effective enforcement mechanism. Online and catalog sellers, thereby, have a significant price advantage over Main Street businesses that must collect a sales tax on all transactions.

The loophole creates serious budget problems for schools, states, and local governments. A study estimated that states could lose as much as $14 billion by 2004 if they are unable to collect existing taxes on Web-based sales. Nearly half of state revenues come from sales taxes.

Source: NGA Press Release, "Level Playing Field" 01-NGA18 on Aug 20, 2001

Create International Northern and Biotechnology Corridor.

King signed the New England Governors' Conference resolution:

Source: NEG/ECP Resolution 23-6: Biotechology Corridor 98-NEGC6 on Jun 9, 1998

Other governors on Technology: Angus King on other issues:
ME Gubernatorial:
Paul LePage
ME Senatorial:
Olympia Snowe
Susan Collins

Newly seated 2010:
NJ Chris Christie
VA Bob McDonnell

Term-limited as of Jan. 2011:
AL Bob Riley
CA Arnold Schwarzenegger
GA Sonny Perdue
HI Linda Lingle
ME John Baldacci
MI Jennifer Granholm
NM Bill Richardson
OK Brad Henry
OR Ted Kulongoski
PA Ed Rendell
RI Donald Carcieri
SC Mark Sanford
SD Mike Rounds
TN Phil Bredesen
WY Dave Freudenthal
Newly Elected Nov. 2010:
AL: Robert Bentley (R)
CA: Jerry Brown (D)
CO: John Hickenlooper (D)
CT: Dan Malloy (D)
FL: Rick Scott (R)
GA: Nathan Deal (R)
HI: Neil Abercrombie (D)
IA: Terry Branstad (R)
KS: Sam Brownback (R)
ME: Paul LePage (R)
MI: Rick Snyder (R)
MN: Mark Dayton (D)
ND: Jack Dalrymple (R)
NM: Susana Martinez (R)
NV: Brian Sandoval (R)
NY: Andrew Cuomo (D)
OH: John Kasich (R)
OK: Mary Fallin (R)
PA: Tom Corbett (R)
RI: Lincoln Chafee (I)
SC: Nikki Haley (R)
SD: Dennis Daugaard (R)
TN: Bill Haslam (R)
VT: Peter Shumlin (D)
WI: Scott Walker (R)
WY: Matt Mead (R)
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Page last updated: Nov 21, 2011