In his controversial column in a local paper, Lewiston Mayor Robert McDonald wants people to think twice before applying for help. 



According to the Portland Press Herald, Lewiston Mayor Robert McDonald has some serious suggestions on how to make public assistance recipients more culpable for the help they are receiving. Robert McDonald wants to make an online registry.

McDonald wrote in his weekly column in the Twin City Times that the general public has a right to know where their money is being spent and feels as though an online registry of welfare recipients along with their names, addresses and how long they've received those benefits. McDonald remarked that public servants salaries are available to be viewed online now and doesn't see a difference between this information and that.

McDonald also suggested another plan to limit General Assistance, a program thats used on a emergency basis by cities and towns, to 60 months in a persons lifetime. Ultimately meaning if you use up your 60 months and need the program again later in life, it will not be available to you.

There have been significant critics to Mayor McDonald's plans including Ben Chin, who's opposing McDonald in the Lewiston Mayorial race. Chin mentioned to the Portland Press Herald that McDonald is "good at grabbing headlines, but not at delivering". You can read the entire Portland Press Herald story here with further details and quotes. 

So what do you think? Does the Lewiston Mayor have a point? Should the public know how their tax money is spent?

Or do people receiving assistance have the right to privacy?