This measure passed.

The gist

If passed, this referendum would issue $45 million in bonds to fund the Maine Technology Institute (MTI) and $5 million in bonds to fund the Maine Venture Fund (MVF).

Ballot question

“Do you favor a $50,000,000 bond issue to provide $45,000,000 in funds for investment in research, development and commercialization in the State to be used for infrastructure, equipment and technology upgrades that enable organizations to gain and hold market share, to increase revenues and to expand employment or preserve jobs for Maine people, to be awarded through a competitive process to Maine-based public and private entities, leveraging other funds in a one-to-one ratio and $5,000,000 in funds to create jobs and economic growth by lending to or investing in small businesses with the potential for significant growth and strong job creation?”1

Yes means No means
I am in favor of issuing a bond to pay for technology and business loans. I don't want to issue a bond to pay for technology and business loans.

Tell me more

This referendum would provide funding to grow business in the state.

  • Companies in 7 key technology sectors (biotechnology, aquaculture and marine technology, composite materials technology, environmental technology, advanced technologies for forestry and agriculture, information technology, and precision manufacturing technology) would be able to compete for funds to make infrastructure and equipment upgrades provided they can provide matching funds.
  • Small businesses (fewer than 50 employees or $5 million in gross sales) in high growth sectors would be eligible for loans from the Maine Venture Fund.

Follow the money

Principal: $50 million1
Interest: $13.75 million1

The money will be used to:

  • The $45 million going to the Maine Technology Institute would be used for infrastructure and equipment upgrades in key technology sectors.
  • The $5 million going to Maine Venture Fund would be used to fund the Small Enterprise Growth Fund, which makes loans to small businesses for job growth and creation.

The money will be coming from:

  • A bond issued by the state
  • Matching funds from businesses awarded funds by the Maine Technology Institute.


The primary arguments for this referendum are:

  • Job creation
  • Business growth


The primary arguments against this referendum are:

  • Increased state debt

Further reading

Full Text
Ballotpedia Article


  1. Dunlop, M. Maine Citizen’s Guide to the Referendum Election. Accessed May 31, 2017.  2 3