We’ve changed our name. Here’s why


Today, The Maine Heritage Policy Center is announcing it is changing its name to Maine Policy Institute, effective Wednesday, March 11, 2020. This organizational change reflects our commitment to independent, nonpartisan research and analysis, and will enable us to grow and have a greater impact on the lives of Maine people.

After more than 17 years of serving the people of Maine by advancing policies in Augusta that promote fiscal responsibility and limited, transparent and constitutional government, it’s time for us to make this change and position ourselves for future success. Here’s why:

The name Maine Policy Institute best reflects the primary idea and focus of our organization: to develop, analyze, research and advocate for policies that grow individual liberty and economic freedom in Maine. Maine Policy Institute will relentlessly pursue policies that protect the rights of Maine citizens and eliminate the roadblocks constructed by government that prevent hardworking Maine families, business owners and entrepreneurs from achieving prosperity.

With the new name comes a renewed commitment to build out a robust infrastructure of free-market ideas that move our state forward, and to articulate those ideas to the public at large and lawmakers while building a respected, academic reputation.
Maine Policy Institute will focus its efforts on conducting detailed and timely research and analysis that informs the public and arms lawmakers with the data and information they need to support and adopt sound policy that advances our core principles of economic freedom and individual liberty.

In addition, our previous name created brand confusion for our supporters, prospects, lawmakers and the media. The inclusion of the word “Heritage” in our previous name led many people to believe we were a state-level affiliate of the Washington D.C.-based Heritage Foundation. While we approached issues with a similar philosophy, our organization was never associated with The Heritage Foundation.

The name Maine Policy Institute eliminates this brand confusion, and after nearly 20 years of existence, it is time for our organization to plant its own flag in the ground and to have our own identity that is separate and identifiable from any other established think tank.

Our organization was originally founded to fill a giant need in Maine: a voice in Augusta that advocates for limiting the size and scope of government instead of expanding it, fiscal responsibility instead of reckless spending, and accountability to taxpayers at all levels of government.
Over the last 17 years, our organization has played a pivotal role in enacting public policies that have improved the lives of Maine students, families and businesses. This includes the largest tax cut in state history, historic welfare reforms that led to higher rates of employment, public-sector pension reform that saved taxpayers more than $1 billion, financial transparency, including “sunshine” on the pay and perks of government employees, pro-market health insurance reforms that reduced premiums for Mainers, and charter school legislation that expanded educational opportunity in our state.
In recent years, we successfully ushered legislation through the Maine Legislature that enabled the Direct Primary Care industry to operate in Maine, restoring the doctor-patient relationship, established Right to Shop, injecting competition in the healthcare marketplace to reduce costs for consumers, and required public hearings on direct initiatives of legislation, improving transparency in the ballot initiative process.

Under our new name of Maine Policy Institute, we will continue to build on this legacy and work on behalf of Maine people to make our state what it should be: a place where individuals and families can thrive, pursue their dreams and achieve prosperity without being held back by an overbearing government.

So please join me in welcoming this change and positioning our organization to grow well into the future.


Matthew Gagnon
Chief Executive Officer
Maine Policy Institute