LePage, Democratic Leaders Finally Meet To Discuss Riverview Woes, Alexander Report Payments

Posted Friday, August 8, 2014 in Politics

by Andi Parkinson

Democratic leaders had waited for more than two months for an opportunity to speak with Governor Paul LePage on a number of concerns, not the least of which were the troubling news of Riverview once again failing to qualify for federal re-certification and final resolution of the monies owed back to the state from the Alexander Group for their now widely discredited and plagiarized report.

DSC_0032A reminder: It was reported back on May 23 that Maine had finally suspended payments to Alexander and at that time, Paul LePage indicated that the option was on the table.

Apparently “the damage” ultimately wasn’t that bad in Paul LePage’s eyes.

Yesterday Democratic leadership finally got their chance to question the governor and others, albeit in a closed door meeting. The news for Maine was pretty bleak, as LePage now has no intention of recouping the $475,000 already paid to the Alexander Group.

While the Governor’s office has had very little to say about the meeting, Senate President Justin Alfond and Speaker of the House Mark Eves quickly issued a joint statement about the first meeting between the three since January:

 

Mike Michaud at June 2014 press conference discusses plans as governor to create inspector general office, charged with investigating DHHS issues. Also pictured: State Senator Colleen Lachowicz (D-Kennebec)

Mike Michaud at June 2014 press conference discusses plans as governor to create inspector general office, charged with investigating DHHS issues. Also pictured: State Senator Colleen Lachowicz (D-Kennebec)

Today Democratic gubernatorial candidate Rep. Mike Michaud issued a statementof his own:

 

In July it was reported that LePage thought Maine should give up on the Riverview Psychiatric Center re-certification efforts, throwing away more than $14 million in federal funding. Michaud’s response at that time:

Maine Republican Party spokesman David Sorensen took to Twitter, as the thus far sole GOP reaction on the meeting.

"So this is what happens when meets w/D leaders: They use it as a PR opp to grab cheap headline about old story."

"...and you wonder why doesn't like to meet with Dem leadership. Not about issues; all about headlines for Dems."

Not quite accurate, as the federal government is demanding Maine pay back monies dating back almost a year and will be still on the hook for a hefty sum, even were the hospital to become re-certified.

(To be updated as needed.)

*RELATED: Paul LePage And Gary Alexander: A Timeline

 

*RELATED: Emergency Hearing On Riverview Psychiatric Center Held; Dems Voice Concerns

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