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Why does the Maine National Guard have a side business (and a troubled contract)?

Why does the Maine National Guard have a side business (and a troubled contract)?

 

I’ve dealt with the U.S. military for decades, but I confess I didn’t know until yesterday that the Maine National Guard has a business arm called the “Maine Military Authority.” In fact, it has a troubled multimillion dollar contract to renovate busses for the Boston-area transportation authority.

Upon first reading the linked article, I guessed that this was some colonial-era hangover (Maine Native American tribes, for example, hold designated seats in the state legislature, apparently as a result of a colonial treaty). But when I checked I saw that the authority was formed in 1997.

My question 4 U: Do any other National Guard units have such side operations?

As long as we’re on the subject of my state of residence, a place I do love, do you know how to tell if you are reading an article about last weekend in Maine? It contains at least two of these three phrases: “alcohol was believed to be involved,” “also charged with violating conditions of release,” and “habitual offender.”

Thinking like a beat reporter: As for that Maine Maritime Authority contract, I wouldn’t be surprised if meetings about it in Boston somehow coincided with Red Sox home games, followed by dinner in the Ted Kennedy booth at the Union Oyster House. “Monsta seats?”

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