Paul LePage announced a policy Thursday that would allow tourists to visit Maine’s only turkey viewing area, while allowing others to visit areas without any restrictions.
The rule, announced at a news conference at the State House in Augusta, Maine, was designed to “create a more relaxed atmosphere for visitors and visitors alike,” the governor’s office said in a statement.
It was introduced in response to a request from the Maine Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.
The governor’s announcement came after state lawmakers in July passed a bill allowing people to visit turkey viewing areas for free for the entire season.
Under the plan, visitors would only be allowed to visit certain areas.
The policy changes, which the governor said would help prevent a “simmering social media” and a “stunning” trend, will also be effective through Jan. 31.
LePage said the new policy will help ensure Maine’s population is “continuing to grow and thrive.”
The governor said he’s “delighted” that tourism is booming, and that it’s “a great time to visit our beautiful state.”
He said it’s important that tourists are able to “experience the beauty of Maine.”
LePage has said he would sign an executive order allowing the state to restrict tourism if he were to become president.
The Republican governor has been a staunch critic of the federal government’s turkey program, saying he is concerned that the federal program is hurting the state’s tourism industry.