Governor signs Cuddy bill to support maritime education into law

Tue, 04/12/2022 - 10:00pm

AUGUSTA – A bill to support maritime education LD 1389, sponsored by Rep. Scott Cuddy, D-Winterport, was recently signed into law by Gov. Janet Mills.

The Maine Ocean School in Searsport opened in the fall of 2018 and accepts students from around the state into its hands-on educational program. MOS seeks to foster connections between its students and the ocean while helping kids develop real, transferable skills intended to prepare the next generation of leaders for Maine’s evolving maritime economy.

Since the school’s founding, it has been subject to a sunset provision that requires legislative action in order for the school to retain funding and continue operation.

As amended, LD 1389 restructures MOS such that it is no longer considered a diploma-granting school but rather an educational program focused on training students in marine science, technology, transportation and engineering.

The bill would also extend the sunset provision, set to expire at the end of the current 130th Legislature, until the end of the first session of the 131st Legislature.

“After working for several years to ensure the Maine Ocean School can continue operating in this manner, I am extremely pleased that we’ve landed on a solution that empowers the school, rather than the Legislature, to set the course for its future,” said Cuddy.

Cuddy, a member of the Labor and Housing Committee and the Energy, Utilities and Technology Committee, is serving his second term in the Maine House. He represents the communities of Frankfort, Searsport, Swanville and Winterport.