Maine Gov. Paul LePage says his state needs to raise the wages of law enforcement officers to bring them in line with other states in New England.
LePage has crafted a bill to provide pay increases for some law enforcement workers as a recruitment and retention tool.
The proposal increases salaries by 12 to 18 percent during the current fiscal year. It would apply to some law enforcement positions in the Department of Public Safety, Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife and Department of Marine Resources.
LePage says he opposes efforts by Democrats to roll the bill into a separate budget bill. He says the proposal needs to pass on its own.
The governor says the state has 32 Maine State Police positions vacant and 25 members are up for retirement.