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Maine News

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Maine News for Tuesday, October 23, 2007


Many 'emergency' bills unlikely to make the cut State House: Leaders of the Legislature will weed out those measures that can wait until 2009.

High hopes for higher-education bond Backers expect it to pass, even though a $9 million bond failed two years ago.

Plan would limit King Middle School birth control access The School Committee will consider setting a student minimum age and letting parents choose to opt out.

Erin Hoeflinger: Individual health insurance market broken Rising costs of care are partly to blame, but so are state laws that drive prices sky-high.


Question 3 would boost state colleges ORONO, Maine - University of Maine graduate student Mostapha Aghamoosa, 23, of Orono knows firsthand what funds from the $43.5 million education bond that will appear on the Nov. 6 ballot would do for UM.

Home child care providers to make case to Legislature for joining unionPORTLAND - Nearly 2,200 people who care for children in their homes plan to press their case for joining a union when the Legislature reconvenes next year, after a statewide vote in favor of organizing.

Penobscot River restoration groups near funding goalBoth chambers of Congress have approved budgets that contain $10 million to help purchase three Penobscot River dams that eventually will be removed or bypassed to restore fish habitat in Maine's largest watershed.

EDITORIAL: Budget WarningsDavid Walker has made himself the nation's fiscal Cassandra, a fitting pursuit for the comptroller general of the United States. But even as he warned again last week about budgetary doom, Washington tries to maintain business as usual.

Richard A. Bennett: Term limits preserve legislative processWhen I was first elected to the State House in 1990, big issues loomed in our fiscal policy and in workers’ compensation. The longest-serving members of the Legislature presided over the Maine House of Representatives, the Maine Senate and their committees.

Tuesday's Letters to the Editor … Who attacked first


QUESTION 3Invest now, pay later Backers of a $43.5 million bond issue for new buildings and improvements at Maine's universities and community colleges say they expect the measure to pass Nov. 6 -- even though voters rejected a higher education package two years ago.

AUGUSTACity considers housing tax break AUGUSTA -- City councilors discussing a tax break to help build new "affordable" housing worry that doing so would negatively affect current homeowners, especially those with older homes who may be looking to sell.

HALLOWELLBoard of Trade gets downtown pep talk HALLOWELL -- Downtowns such as those in Hallowell and Gardiner have a charm and personality that cannot be duplicated, Mary Kate Reny told members of the Hallowell Area Board of Trade Monday.

City Council candidate says Stop & Shop to be Augusta Crossing tenant With the Augusta Crossing opening only weeks away, news of a possible Stop & Shop grocery store and two restaurants are fueling more back-fence talk about the $40 million project.

Q&A with Ruth Summers
Ruth Summers, wife of Republican 1st Congressional District candidate Charlie Summers, is doing a lot of heavy lifting this fall to try to help her husband win the June primary and face a Democrat in the November 2008 election.

State's parks newly popularBut still need capital for repairs Maine's state parks and historic sites generate nearly $96 million annually in economic activity, according to a University of Maine study. That activity represents 1,449 jobs and $31 million in personal income.

LTE: Rowe's record of secrecy not good for Maine Journalist Bob Woodward of Watergate fame, speaking at Orono recently, said that government secrecy is the greatest threat to democracy. If true, the expected candidacy of Attorney General Steve Rowe for governor should give all Mainers pause.


Call to declare fishing industry a failure rejected The Bush administration dealt a setback to New England's struggling groundfishermen on Monday, denying requests from the governors of Maine, Massachusetts and Rhode Island for financial aid to help the fleet survive while fishing stocks rebound.

LTE: Angered at the decisions of the White House In his latest blatant display of utter disregard for vulnerable Americans, cowardice, depravity, protectionism for special interests and wrongdoing, George W. Bush vetoed the bipartisan bill to expand the State Children's Health Insurance Program. (Maine's congressional delegation strongly favors the bill.) Lacking courage to face the public, Bush vetoed the bill behind closed doors.


Limits sought on boat power AUGUSTA - Two months after a deadly boating collision on Long Lake, a Harrison lawmaker wants to change Maine boating laws to make the activity safer.

Recycling campaign is launchedPORTLAND (AP) - The state kicked off a new promotional and advertising campaign Monday that aims to get Mainers to recycle more trash.

Democrats slate meetingLEWISTON - The Androscoggin County Democrats will meet at 7 p.m. Thursday at 213 Lisbon St.

LTE: Family roots run deepSheryl Capponi Briggs, candidate for House District 93 in the Nov. 6 special election, is a lifelong resident of the area, whose family roots run deep in the towns of Mexico, Dixfield, Peru, Canton and Carthage.LTE: Sliding toward immoralityThe self-professed genius, Sen. Hillary Clinton, often states, "It takes a village to raise a child.


OP/ED: Bonds buttress Maine's future...(full story)


Governors Denied Disaster Relief for Groundfishermen

Childcare Providers Vote to Join Union


School Committee Recall Drive Underway In Portland
PORTLAND (NEWS CENTER) -- The chair of Portland's Republicans is organizing a petition drive to recall members of the school committee who voted in favor of providing birth control pills to some students at King Middle School. Full Story


Report: Government May Waste $100 Million On Unused VaccineSusan Collins is raising questions about waste in the government's program for stockpiling a vaccine for anthrax. A report by the Government Accountability ...


GAO Report Cites Waste In Anthrax Vaccine CacheSusan Collins (R-Maine), ranking member of the homeland security committee, said in a statement. "HHS must learn the lessons from past failures so that we ...


Presidential order gives additional protections for striped bassTom Allen is applauding a presidential order that gives additional protections to striped bass. The order designates striped bass as a game fish, ...


Dems appeal to Maine's independent streakRep. Tom Allen of Maine is taking a page from the Democrats’ playbook from last year’s congressional wave in his bid to unseat Republican Sen. Susan Collins. Whether that approach works in 2008 is an open question.


Government May Waste Anthrax Vaccine
... terrorist attack using biological weapons," Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, said in a statement Monday. Collins is the top Republican on the Senate committee.

Survey: No. 2 oil up 9 cents per gallonMaine's latest weekly survey of home heating oil prices found the average cash price for No. 2 oil jumped 9 cents to $2.79 per gallon statewide, or 56 cents above the price at this time last year. (AP, 10/22/07)


Presidential Order Gives Additional Protections For Striped Bass
PORTLAND (AP) -- Maine Congressman Tom Allen is applauding a presidential order that gives additional protections to striped bass.

Last Spring Semester I was able to work on a Congressional internship in Washington DC for Congressman Tom Allen who is currently running for the US Senate. UMaine has a lot to offer for those looking to get involved on campus, ...

Dean Scontras Speaks Out Against Portland School Committee
Eliot, Maine - Dean Scontras, candidate for Maine's 1st Congressional District, issued a statement today regarding the decision by the Portland School Committee to allow the birth control pill, RU-486 (the "Morning After Pill"), to be distributed to students at King Middle School without parental consent.

ME Congressional Delegation on Internet Tax Ban
AUGUSTA - On Nov. 1, states will be in the clear to tax access to the Internet unless Congress acts to extend the ban or make it permanent as urged by some members of Congress. Collins supports a permanent ban. Snowe believes in a permanent ban. Tom Allen opposes a permanent ban, supports four year extension of tax moratorium. Mike Michaud no mention of permanent ban, supports four year extension of tax moratorium.

Don’t Change Your Light Bulbs, Change Your Leaders
Thomas Friedman is right: the energy-climate challenge we face today is a huge scale problem. Without scale, all you have is a green hobby. The answer is not to change a lightbulb here and there but to change your leaders.

Maine Senator Proposes To Prevent Cuts To Home Health Care ...Susan Collins (R-Maine) on Wednesday introduced legislation that would prevent a scheduled $6.2 billion reduction in Medicare reimbursements for home health ...

Dem Allen appeals to Maine independence
Rep. Tom Allen takes notes on wave of Democratic victories in bid to unseat GOP Sen. Susan Collins. 41 Vote(s)

Poll deficits and the Schumer comeback
I published polling earlier today showing Republican incumbent Sen. Susan Collins leading Democratic challenger Rep. Tom Allen, 56-33. As bad as that might seen, MyDD's Jonathan Singer takes us back to Schumer's 1998 Senate run. ...

ME-Sen: Tom Allen Down, But Certainly Not Out
If the 2008 election for US Senate were held today, would you to reelect Susan Collins, would you consider voting for another candidate, or would you vote to replace Collins? Reelect 55 Consider 20 Replace 21 If 2008 election for US ...

Stanley I. Kutler: The New American Imperium
But the silence of such "moderates" and critics" as John Warner (R-VA), Olympia Snowe (R-ME), Arlen Specter (R-PA) and Susan Collins (R-ME) tells us about the strength of White House discipline. The Democrats, more diverse and more ...

The Senate Races in 2008, Part I
Susan Collins, Maine: Collins may well be one of those Republicans who pays the price for the growing unpopularity of George W. Bush and the war in Iraq. Both John Kerry and Al Gore carried the state against Bush. ...

Susan Collins, both claim to be moderates, yet have never voted down a Republican bill when it's genuinely mattered. They also posit that they stand for women's issues, yet I fail to comprehend how attacking any bill set before them ...

Kos Poll
If 2008 election for US Senate were held today, for whom would you vote for if the choices were between Tom Allen, the Democrat, and Susan Collins, the Republican? Collins (R) 56 Allen (D) 33. Kos adds: ...

More On The Poll
My blasé initial reaction to the new Maine senate poll may have been premature. Digging deeper into the results, one number sticks out as a genuine surprise:

Collins Introduces Bill to Block Medicare Home Healthcare Cuts
Susan Collins (R) introduces a bipartisan bill that would block Bush administration cuts in the Medicare home healthcare benefit. The legislation (S 2181) is being co-sponsored by 60 senators including Sens. Bob Casey (D-PA), ...

Usually quiet Senate races making news today
The conventional wisdom of the Maine Senate race is that it is and will remain a toss-up between incumbent GOP Susan Collins and challenger Tom Allen. My Senate rankings reflect that. The DSCC wants to believe that Collins will be ...

Collins Pushes Legislation To Block Medicare Cuts
TOPSHAM (NEWS CENTER) -- Under a proposal by the Bush administration, home health care benefits for the elderly could be cut from the Medicare program. This week, Maine Senator Susan Collins introduced legislation to block those cuts.