Yes, dear readers, it’s true: your editor, Peter A. Steele, has joined the team at The Maine Heritage Policy Center, a nonprofit conservative think tank based in Portland.
And no, your favorite weekly paper, Twin City TIMES, isn’t going anywhere! Rest assured, Publisher Laurie A. Steele runs a tight ship, and TCT is on a straight and steady course.
TCT Office Manager Sharon Lagasse, who is Laurie’s sister, and TCT Advertising Consultant Jen Pike, as well as the production staff, are veteran employees who have been with the paper for many years. They are out and about in the community more now than ever before, and they promise many good things to come for TCT!
But your former editor will serve as full-time communications director for MHPC. Steele is very familiar with the agenda that MHPC has advocated for years, such as welfare reform, health insurance reform, a lower tax burden and more competition in public education. Those initiatives have now become law under the LePage Administration.
TCT has published reports, stories and Op/Eds from MHPC for over a decade. Having recognized a strong bias in Maine’s daily newspapers and media, Steele regularly published reports, stories and analyses from The Maine Heritage Policy Center in Twin City TIMES.
“My hope was to educate our readers, to let them know that there was more to the story than the Maine media was telling them,” he said. “They only saw a very one-sided agenda in the daily papers. I really felt there was a need to get the other side of the story out to the public. Publishing the work of MHPC was the best way to do that.”
Now The Maine Heritage Policy Center has now started its own online news service, www.TheMaineWire.com, which provides coverage of stories that Maine’s media has ignored for years. TheMaineWire.com has already broken stories that revealed fiscal mismanagement at the Turnpike Authority and the Maine State Housing Authority.
Despite long-standing grumblings about these issues, which have cost the taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars—if not millions—the Maine media refused to cover them. Now they are playing catch-up, thanks to TheMaineWire.com.
With the continued success of Twin City TIMES, the launch of TheMaineWire.com and the vacancy in the communications director’s post, the Steeles decided the time was right for your former editor to join the MHPC team. “It’s a perfect fit,” he said. “Having admired the work of MHPC for over a decade, it’s a privilege to help the center continue their excellent work of creating legislative initiatives, educating the public and advocating for real, common-sense reforms that will help all the people of Maine.”
Now, under the leadership of CEO Lance Dutson, The Maine Heritage Policy Center has a renewed energy and an ambitious agenda. Dutson created TheMaineWire.com, and he has a bold vision for the future of MHPC and for Maine. Steele is excited to join the team and help spread the word about MHPC’s mission.
As for Twin City TIMES, well, it’s in very good hands, and nothing will change. TCT will continue to be Lewiston-Auburn’s favorite happy-go-lucky community paper. The only difference is you won’t see your former editor’s picture on Page 3. But, don’t worry, you’ll still see him frequently at Chamber functions, community events and local happenings. (You can’t get rid of him that easy!)