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Weekend News Round-up from Rep Michaud's Desk
By Office of Rep Michaud
Mar 16, 2013 - 7:20:26 AM

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Michaud Encourages 2nd District Students to Participate in Congressional Art Competition

WASHINGTON, DC -- Representative Mike Michaud is encouraging Maine students to participate in this year's Congressional Art Competition. Each year, one high school student from each participating congressional district from around the country is selected to have his or her artwork displayed in a corridor of the U.S. Capitol Building. Members of Congress walk through this corridor to get to the House floor to cast their vote.

"Each time I cast my vote, I'm proud to see the outstanding work from a student in my district on display," said Michaud. "I encourage all interested Maine students to participate in this year's competition."

High school students are eligible if they are enrolled in grades 9-12. Work must be two dimensional and may fit into one of seven categories: paintings, drawings, collage, prints, mixed media, computer generated art, or photography. Interested students may read the full list of requirements and fill out the art submission form online here. The deadline for entries is Friday, March 28th, and art must be received in digital format. Individuals with questions should contact Darrell Bulmer of the Maine Arts Commission at (207) 287-6746 or at

Michaud Adds Support to Distinguished Warfare Medal Bill

WASHINGTON, DC -- The Department of Defense (DoD) recently announced the creation of the new Distinguished Warfare Medal to recognize servicemembers off the battlefield whose actions contributed to successes on the ground, such as drone or cyber operations post September 11, 2001. The DoD has positioned the new medal immediately below the Distinguished Flying Cross and above the Bronze Star and Purple Heart.

"While I support the creation of the new medal, I agree with veterans that I've met with that it should not be positioned above the Bronze Star and Purple Heart," said Representative Mike Michaud, Ranking Member of the House Veterans' Affairs Committee. "The battlefield has changed from previous generations, but we cannot devalue the sacrifices and risks made by our servicemembers who face ground combat."

Michaud has requested that his name be added as a cosponsor to a bipartisan bill (H.R. 833) that would ensure that the Bronze Star and Purple Heart always have precedence over the new Distinguished Warfare Medal.

Brownfield, Windsor & Carmel to Receive Funding for First Responders

WASHINGTON, DC -- Representative Mike Michaud has praised the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) announcement that the Brownfield Volunteer Fire Department and the Windsor Fire and Rescue Department will receive funding through the Assistance to Firefighter Grant (AFG) program. The departments will receive $62,700 and $89,296 respectively. Additionally, the Carmel Fire Department will receive $71,500 through the Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grant program. The funding announced today will be used to acquire new safety gear and support first responder personnel.

Michaud sponsored a series of workshops last spring aimed at helping Maine fire departments navigate the process for obtaining Assistance to Firefighter Grants. Specialists from FEMA visited the Lewiston-Auburn, Bangor, and Presque Isle communities to provide additional information on the application process.

"Maine's fire and rescue departments are so critical to the safety of our communities," said Michaud. "These FEMA programs help our first responders access more personnel, newer equipment, and better training."

According to FEMA, the primary goal of AFG is to meet the firefighting and emergency response needs of fire departments and nonaffiliated emergency medical service organizations. Since 2001, AFG has helped firefighters and other first responders to obtain critically needed equipment, protective gear, emergency vehicles, training and other resources needed to protect the public and emergency personnel from fire and related hazards. Funds under the SAFER program are intended to support the hiring of firefighters and the recruitment and retention of volunteer firefighters.

Michaud Provides Constituents Tour of Capitol Building after White House Tour was Cancelled

WASHINGTON, DC -- Representative Mike Michaud met with constituents from Greenville and provided them a tour of the U.S. Capitol Building after being told by the White House that the tour he arranged for them on Saturday was cancelled due to sequestration. The photo below was taken during this morning's visit with Michaud before the tour.

L-R: Jenny Ward, Peyton Ward, Michaella Gilbert, Jeri Gilbert, Michaud

"While I know they were disappointed in the White House tour being cancelled, hopefully the tour of the Capitol Building my staff was able to provide them will help make up for it," said Michaud.

Michaud encourages Mainers visiting the nation's capital to contact his Washington office so that he can help them arrange tours. In addition to the Capitol Building, tours of the U.S Bureau of Engraving and Printing and the Library of Congress are popular and well received. Public tours of the White House have been cancelled indefinitely.

"Due to staffing reductions resulting from sequestration, we regret to inform you that White House Tours will be canceled effective Saturday, March 9, 2013 until further notice. Unfortunately, we will not be able to reschedule affected tours," read the email Michaud's office received from the White House Visitors Office. "We very much regret having to take this action, particularly during the popular Spring touring season."

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