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Maine News

Monday, January 14, 2008

Maine News for Monday, January 14, 2008


Road salt takes a tollMix used to treat ice often pollutes water, kills plants

Two bills to address campaign fund useState House 2008: One plan bans payments to family members; the other requires better disclosure.

Library's planning for renovation back on track in PortlandOfficials hope to choose architects this month and begin construction by March 2009.

Editorial: Fed rate cuts not ideal,but better than stimulusFaced with both recession and inflation worries, the central bank is challenged.

Editorial: Sagadahoc jail alternative is a program worth savingState consolidation will take away counties' motivation to save money.

Column: Women's presence in American politics is here to stayThe candidacy of Hillary Clinton is evidence that ties between gender and ability are fading.

Lucie ScholzLyme Disease cost: Beyond the physical Cases go far beyond the ones officially counted, threatening livelihoods as well as health.

LTE: Tax wealthy to pay off national debt The recently deceased columnist Molly Ivins made the suggestion in one of her books that if the United States really wanted to wipe out its national debt, it could do so fairly quickly by taxing not income but wealth.

LTE: Impeachment hearings imperative for America


Residents organize fuel aidBANGOR - When push comes to shove, Mainers take matters into their own hands.

Revenue projection presages more cutsAUGUSTA - With the ink barely dry on the proposed supplemental budget, the Baldacci administration is expecting more red ink and more spending cuts, as the recently re-projected sales tax revenues are failing to meet the lower estimates.

Personal bankruptcies rising in Maine PORTLAND - The number of personal bankruptcy filings in Maine is growing, adding to concerns about Mainers' debt and the state's economy.

Blogging soldier honored by Maine family STILLWATER - In his final moments, Maj. Andrew Olmsted held true to how he lived his life - words first.

In Pembroke, one woman fights to be free of poverty CALAIS - Nichole Nemecek grew up on welfare.

EDITORIAL: Is Alcohol Undertaxed?Almost everyone agrees that smoking is bad for the health. And it is clear that raising tobacco taxes has helped to reduce smoking.

EDITORIAL: Local Energy ActionSigning onto a national agreement to conserve energy is a progressive step for Bangor and other communities, but more important is work that the city and others have already done and will continue to do to reduce energy use, preserve open space and reduce pollution.

LTE: Hillary's gender card


Ethics law revised eyed; Merrill campaign spurs call for rule AUGUSTA -- A gubernatorial candidate's use of tax dollars to pay her husband for campaign work is building support for efforts in the Legislature to ban such spending or require that candidates disclose it in their finance reports.

New regional dispatch center coming together ahead of schedule AUGUSTA -- Kennebec County officials say they are ahead of schedule moving the county's emergency dispatch services to an Augusta-based regional center.

EDITORIAL: Hathaway 'good news' story began at Colby The groundbreaking at the Hathaway Shirt Factory in Waterville last week was one of the biggest celebrations of "good news" we've seen in many years in central Maine. The proverbial "everybody" was there because they wanted to bask in the optimism.

EDITORIAL: We need wind projects if they meet the tests The simple truths are that wind power will play a major role in Maine's economic future, and building wind-power plants is in our nation's best interest.

LTE: U.S. focused on primaries, so watch out for Bush "Bush predicts peace in Mid-east." That's the info the administration wants you to focus on. All the while he is preparing to send at least 3,000 Marines to Afghanistan and we have launched yet more air strikes in Iraq.

LTE: Letter writer gave 'flimsy' Plum Creek argument On Jan. 9, Tobin Brogunier wrote in about the Plum Creek Plan for the Moosehead Lake region. He said all the "right" things about not only spoiling the scenery but the reputation of us Mainers for being intelligent and self-sufficient.


SOMERVILLE: Town gets broadbandSOMERVILLE -- After more than five years of trying to access broadband Internet service, residents will be able to sign on with a provider.

LTE: Paid sick days reduce spread of diseasesAs a worker, I would prefer to be able to stay home and get well when I get sick. As a considerate co-worker, I would prefer not to have to go to work and spread the illness I have.

Bill targets payments to family AUGUSTA -- Rep. Janet Mills, D-Farmington, doesn't think family members should be paid to provide campaign help -- at least not when public money is involved.

Hathaway 'good news' story began at Colby The groundbreaking at the Hathaway Shirt Factory in Waterville last week was one of the biggest celebrations of "good news" we've seen in many years in central Maine. The proverbial "everybody" was there because they wanted to bask in the optimism.

We need wind projects if they meet the tests The simple truths are that wind power will play a major role in Maine's economic future, and building wind-power plants is in our nation's best interest.


Windmill projects face hearings todayAUGUSTA - With Maine's spot as New England's largest generator of wind power already well-established, state regulators today will consider two more projects that would produce enough clean power to keep the lights glowing and toasters cooking in more 70,000 homes.

Nation battles R-word 'gorilla' Odds of recession grow, currently put at 50-50WASHINGTON - The unemployment rate leaps to a two-year high, record numbers of people are forced from their homes and Wall Street nose-dives again. Such is the fallout from a housing meltdown that threatens to slingshot the country into a recession.

EDITORIAL: Giving a name to numbersSchool consolidation is like owning an old house. One can tinker with it forever, and it still won't be perfect. It'll be drafty in places, musty in others. Floors and walls won't quite be straight and level. Now and again, major improvement projects are needed.

LTE: Pitts wrong about LincolnLeonard Pitts' column Jan. 9 about the dangerous path President Bush has taken by infringing on our civil rights in the name of "security," falls flat on its face. Pitts states that "Lincoln's suspension of habeas corpus during the Civil War - stands justified by hindsight."


Real ID Compliance Extended
The federal government is giving states five more years to comply with its controversial Real ID program, intended to tighten national standards for driver's licenses. But the extension isn't lessening concerns about Real ID in Maine, where a law has been enacted prohibiting the state from implementing it. Barbara Cariddi reports.

Heating Crisis Creating Landlord
Tenant FrictionCity officials in Auburn are grappling with what they say is a serious side effect of the high cost of home heating oil: in some cases landlords are abandoning their apartment buildings and literally leaving their stranded tenants in the cold. And in some cases tenants, unable to afford the rent and pay for heat, are choosing to leave their landlords in the lurch. As Susan Sharon reports, both situations are creating a range of problems including a health and safety hazard.

Experimental Patrol Boat Launched in East Boothbay
A team effort that included state and federal lawmakers, an innovative boatbuilding company and the University of Maine culminated this morning with the launch of an experimental military patrol boat. The Maine Marine Engineering Division of Hodgdon Yachts in East Boothbay is now poised to pick up a $200 million procurement order from the U.S. Navy if sea trials for the 82-foot craft are successful. As A.J. Higgins reports, the Mark V patrol boat features features a hull design that utilizes specialized composite materials developed in cooperation with the University of Maine.


Maine caucuses coming upThe outcomes of the New Hampshire Democratic and Republican primaries have piqued the interest of Maine voters. The town clerks in southern Maine communities have been inundated with calls from residents looking for information on how to get involved in their state's February caucuses.


Acadia budget still unknownACADIA NATIONAL PARK – President Bush signed the 2008 federal budget bill Dec. 26, but it is likely to be a few more weeks before Acadia National Park officials know how much money they will have to operate the park this year.


Capitol Hill websites fail to make gradeThe websites of many lawmakers on Capitol Hill are below par, and few are doing anything about it, according to a new report.


Sens. Collins, Sununu are strong advocatesWhile much of the nation is focused on presidential primary politics, the work of some members of the Maine and New Hampshire congressional delegations should not go unnoticed.


New boat aims to make SEALs' travels less painfulBOOTHBAY, Maine (AP) -- Navy SEALs are tough by nature, but they take a beating from their patrol boats: bruises, bumps and sore backs, even sprained ankles and chipped teeth.


UN Double Talk From Straight Talker McCainMcCain joins liberal Republican Senators Susan Collins and John Chafee in a 1998 letter to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee urging immediate .


Turn Maine Blue: GrowSmart Maine on Plum Creek DevelopmentI'm not opposed to development - in fact, my livelyhood depends, in part, on it. So, when I first heard about the planned development around the southern end of Moosehead Lake, it did nt set off alarm bells in my head.

Turn Maine Blue: A Real ID NightmareOn Friday, DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff outlined the Bush Administration's final rules on the controversial Real ID program .


PolitickerME: Lawmakers, officials still concerned over REAL IDDespite the announced delayed implementation, Maine politicians are speaking out against the REAL ID Act of 2005.

PolitickerME: Collins is a Bo-Sox fan Just in case you were wondering, Sen. Susan Collins is a Red Sox fan,

Magic City News: Rewards of Public Service by Susan Collins The holiday recess has given me the opportunity to visit communities all over the state, to meet with constituents, to attend special events, and to visit schools.