Petition Maine Technology Institute to offer Fiscal Sponsorship

Petition Closed

Petition Maine Technology Institute to offer Fiscal Sponsorship

This petition had 21 supporters

Mackenzie Andersen started this petition to and

In 1979 Maine’s current economic development programs were established under Governor Longley. A board of Maine’s most prosperous businesses was formed to lead the legislature. The Governor’s Task Force report of 1979 presented the following argument. and the Legislature deemed that centrally managing the economy is an essential government function which must be done by public private relationships.

The Legislature finds that one of the limiting factors on the beneficial economic development of the State is the limited availability of capital for the long-term needs of Maine businesses and entrepreneurs. In particular, the lack of equity capital to finance new business ventures and the expansion or recapitalization of existing businesses is critical. This lack of equity capital may prevent worthwhile businesses from being established; it may also force businesses to use debt capital where equity capital would be more appropriate. This creates debt service demands which a new or expanding venture may not be able to meet successfully, causing the venture to fail because of the lack of availability of the appropriate kind of capital.

This impediment to the development and expansion of viable Maine businesses affects all the people of Maine adversely and is one factor resulting in existing conditions of unemployment, underemployment, low per capital income and resource underutilization. By restraining economic development, it sustains burdensome pressures on State Government to provide services to those citizens who are unable to provide for themselves.

To help correct this situation, it is appropriate to use the profit motive of private investors to achieve additional economic development in the State…….

The Maine Technology Institute is an outgrowth of the Longley Doctrine.The statute chartering the Maine Technology Institutes makes these points:

  • §15302. Maine Technology Institute : 1 Establishment The Maine Technology Institute, as established in section 12004-G, subsection 33-D, is a nonprofit corporation with public and charitable purposes. The duties, activities and operations of the institute are within the provisions of the federal Internal Revenue Code, Section 501(c)(3).[ 1999, c. 401, Pt. AAA, §3 (NEW).]
  • §15302. The Maine Technology Institute is chartered as "a nonprofit organization consistent with its composition and broad public purposes."
  • §15302 2. Purpose.  The institute, through a public and private partnership, shall encourage, promote, stimulate and support research and development activity leading to enhance the competitive position of those sectors and increase the likelihood that one or more of the sectors will support clusters of industrial activity and to create new jobs for Maine people. The institute is one element of the State's economic development strategy and will contribute to the long-term development of a statewide research, development and product deployment infrastructure.
  • §15302 3. states "Board of Directors of the Maine Technology Institute.   The institute is governed and all of its powers exercised by a board of directors..."
  • §15303-A. Maine Technology Capacity Fund 2.Organization, states" "The board has all the powers and authority, not explicitly prohibited by law, necessary or convenient to carry out and effectuate the functions, duties and responsibilities of the fund, including, but not limited to: .."
  • §15303-A G. Owning intellectual property, licensing intellectual property and negotiating for and collecting royalty rights or otherwise realizing a return on investment made under the fund and all programs of the institute when appropriate in order to promote the interests and investments of the State in furthering science and technology; and [2003, c. 20, Pt. RR, §7 (NEW); 2003, c. 20, Pt. RR, §18 (AFF).]

1.       The charter for MTI states that has a purpose within the provisions of the federal Internal Revenue Code, Section 501(c)(3)

 2.       MTI is defined it as a broad public charity. It defines its charitable purpose as developing the commercialization of new products and services in the State's technology industrial sectors. It states that MTI is governed by the board of MTI and does not place a limit on MTI’s functions, not exclusively prohibited by law.

 3.       The only function Which MTI currently serves is as a matching fund for private enterprises which are already significantly capitalized, excluding the broader economy from services offered by MTI.

 4.        All Maine made products serve the purpose defined in the Maine Technology Institute Charter.

  •  ·         All Maine made products are part of a technology intensive industrial sector, whether that technology be established or on the innovative edge. Any method used to produce anything is a technology.
  • ·         The entire description applies to all Maine -made products involved in developing products for the commercial market, the more so if capitalization is available to all Maine manufacturers as is implied as the intent for the Longley doctrine of economic development in The Governor’s Task Force report of 1979

 5.       Fiscal sponsorship allows for a corporation processing the federal Internal Revenue Code, Section 501(c)(3) status to sponsor projects which are consistent with its non-profit purpose so that the project can qualify for tax deductible contributions. This allows the project to apply for foundation grants.

 6.       Maine Made Products is a State of Maine government program. A program cannot be a fiscal sponsor. Only a non-profit corporation can be a fiscal sponsor.

 7.       In its current functional status, MTI does not serve a broad public benefit. It serves special interests only. By adding the function of fiscal sponsorship, available to all Maine made products, MTI will be consistent with its statutory definition as serving a broad public benefit.

 8.       Fiscal sponsors can charge a management fees. There is no cost to the taxpayer by adding fiscal sponsorship to MTI’s functions. The project is responsible for doing its own fundraising. Fiscal sponsorship will allow Maine Made products to apply to foundations. In that case the project will be another means of capitalizing the Maine economy.

 9.        By offering fiscal sponsorship, the Maine Technology Institute can be truly said to be a "broad public charity", serving the whole of the economy and not just a small sector which is already substantially capitalized.


Petition Closed

This petition had 21 supporters