The legislation, which would bar the sale of menthol cigarettes, fails.

A bill that would ban the sale of flavored tobacco products, including menthol cigarettes was defeated in the Legislature as a bipartisan budget compromise brokered over the weekend excluded funding for the measure.

The tobacco legislation, which would cost the state about $32 million in lost sales tax revenue if approved, is among about 45 bills lawmakers will took up when they returned to session Wednesday morning.

The Legislature also took votes on 11 vetoes issued by Gov. Janet Mills in recent days, including on a bill that would force the closure of the Long Creek Youth Development Center, the state’s only juvenile prison.

Governor Mills had signaled her support for the tobacco bill last month in a budget proposal that set aside $32 million in surplus revenue to cover the cost of the measure. But the Legislature’s Appropriations and Financial Affairs Committee cast a unanimous vote Sunday on a budget change package that excludes funding for the bill.

The bill, L.D. 1550, enjoyed bipartisan support at a hearing in May but has since faced opposition from organizations that support small businesses, especially convenience store owners, who derive some of their income from the sale of tobacco products.

Governor Mills’ spokeswoman, Lindsay Crete, said the governor supports the budget deal reached by lawmakers and was unlikely to try to make line-by-line changes to it.

Megan Diver

Megan has worked in Maine politics for more than ten years and all of her professional career, having served in many roles for elected officials (including former Secretary of State Charlie Summers), in-house with the Maine Association of REALTORS®, legislative specialist at Pierce Atwood LLP providing lobbying services and support to Pierce Atwood’s government relations clients and most recently senior government relations specialist at the Maine State Chamber of Commerce. Megan currently is the Vice President at the Maine Energy Marketers Association, utilizing her vast knowledge and legislative experience at the State House to represent MEMA on policies relating to the Association and its members.