Mayor of Maine town wants to publicly list welfare recipients

Mayor of Maine town wants to publicly list welfare recipients

Mayor Robert Macdonald, who is seeking re-election to a third term, said he intends to submit a bill to the Legislature to require the creation of a website listing names of people on welfare, their addresses, length of time on welfare and types of benefits received.

All of that information is shielded from the public under current law, and Macdonald believes that should change so taxpayers know who is getting what.

In a regular column he writes for the Twin City Times, a free Lewiston-based weekly publication, Macdonald said he thinks the public has a right to know who is receiving welfare benefits and for how long.

He would still want to protect a person’s medical records, financial statements and other personal information from “busybodies who seek it out of curiosity.”

In his column titled “Enough is Enough,” Macdonald points out that “in Maine there is a website that lists the pension amounts received by everyone who is issued a monthly check by the state of Maine. No privacy here because this is being paid out by the state; accordingly, taxpayers have a right to know.”

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