Maine News Headline Animator

Maine News

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Maine News for Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Portland Press Herald
Democrats motivated to vote on budget
State House: If they pass a budget quickly and adjourn, cuts could take effect in late June.

Plan to gut watchdog agency draws GOP fire
The state Office of Program Evaluation and Government Accountability is in line for a $1.2 million cut.

Truckers plan State House protest against cost of diesel

The mortgage squeeze: Adjustable rates are creating a crisis for subprime borrowers
As their mortgage costs rise along with prices for daily necessities, more Mainers struggle to keep their homes.

Pine Tree Legal gets funds to fight foreclosures
Lawyers say homeowners facing foreclosure need to act quickly.

Tax hikes likely even with cuts in spending
Projects such as road repairs will have to wait as communities struggle to balance budgets.

Special ed law should define education broadly
Not all disabilities that prevent a child from succeeding show up on reading or math tests.

State building standards should be enforced locally
All but the smallest cities and towns should work to make a uniform building code the law.

Column: Tarren BragdonMaine Medicaid program far more generous than almost all others
If the state merely conformed to national averages, we would save $146 million.

Bangor Daily News
Groups opposing LNG pipeline

Several government agencies and Washington County residents have responded critically to Downeast LNG's intended pipeline route to connect its proposed liquefied natural gas facility in Robbinston to an existing pipeline in Baileyville.

Maine Arts Commission seeks design for UM plaza

ORONO, Maine - The Maine Arts Commission is calling on professional artists to submit proposals to design, execute and install artwork at the University of Maine's Cloke Plaza.

Maine leads nation in novelty-lighter ban

AUGUSTA, Maine - While in a small southern Maine grocery store with his mother last June 12 to buy sandwiches, Shane St. Pierre picked up a miniature baseball bat and flicked the switch to see what would happen.

Bethel soldier killed in Iraq

BETHEL, Maine - A 22-year-old soldier from Bethel has become the latest Maine service member killed in Iraq. Army Pvt. Tyler J. Smith died Friday of wounds received when his forward base near Baghdad received indirect fire.

Decline of bees stings growers

ORONO, Maine - As beekeepers across the country continue to lose beehives at unprecedented rates and as Maine's blueberry, strawberry and other crop farmers pay higher prices for migratory bee services, key research is taking place at the University of Maine.

ClickBack on Lottery

This week, the Bangor Daily News' interactive commentary feature ClickBack seeks readers' thoughts on the Iraq War, new lottery tickets and summer vacation.

Kennebec Journal:
Funds for private high schools on chopping block
A tight budget forcing public school districts to cut back could spell trouble for a handful of private high schools in Maine that serve students whose tuition is funded by public money.

Watchdog office faces downsizing
AUGUSTA -- A proposal to significantly cut funding to the state's independent government watchdog office is drawing sharp criticism.

Heating-oil aid group to raise money year-round
AUGUSTA -- An informal group of social-service agencies and charities working together to help people with heating costs has decided to work year-round to raise money and enhance their effectiveness.

AUGUSTA: Job cuts set
AUGUSTA -- A proposed $28.1 million school budget, which cuts 18 staff positions, goes to the Board of Education for a vote Wednesday.

Colby to install new siren
WATERVILLE -- Colby College, in a move to bolster its ability to alert students and faculty to emergencies, has purchased a siren system once part of the Maine Yankee nuclear power plant early warning system.

4,000 deaths in 5 years, but no end in sight
Last week marked the fifth anniversary of America's invasion of Iraq. Sunday, the full human cost of that conflict was demonstrated when the day's death toll brought the total American service members and Defense Department employee deaths in Iraq to 4,000.

TARREN BRAGDON : Without layoffs, fewer state employees would save $200M
In many ways, the Kennebec Journal's March 21st editorial was right on the money. Maine does indeed need a "steadfast commitment to fiscal conservatism and a new approach" if it is ever to turn around its economy and create a brighter future.

DAVID B. OFFER : We must not be numb to Iraq war news
Soldiers die; the news is reported in small articles inside the newspaper.

Sun Journal:
Hearing next week on plan for casino in Oxford County
AUGUSTA - Mainers will have the opportunity to tell lawmakers how they feel about a proposed casino in Oxford County at 1 p.m. Wednesday, April 2. That's when a public hearing is scheduled before the Legal and Veterans Affairs Committee addressing the latest bid to build a casino in the state.

Editorial: Trusting your gut on ethics
If lawmakers gave the same amount of scrutiny to all legislation, as they have to ethics reform, Maine would boast the most informed, enlightened - but not necessarily efficient - representative government in all the land.

Columnist: Democrats promise hike in government spending
We've all seen or heard about them. Perhaps they are friends or family members who have demonstrated financial irresponsibility: a college student who has a budget and quickly exceeds it on wild partying; a cousin or best friend who asks for a "loan" and then never pays it back; people whose credit cards are maxed out and they can't afford the finance charges.

Letters: Taxing tobacco
There is a proposal to add 50 cents to the cigarette tax to help fund the DirigoChoice program. I realize that it will affect people with low incomes the most, as people, like myself, with low incomes will spend a higher percentage of their income on increases in taxes like that one. However, I support that tax increase because it will provide health care to many who can't afford it on their own.

Regulate oil prices
With the price of a sweet crude oil barrel climbing to more than $110, with no end in sight, some predict gasoline will cost $3.50 per gallon by July 4. That would be economic travesty.

Casinos Prosper While Lotteries Suffer
A weakening economy didn't prevent New England gamblers from attending casinos in record breaking numbers during the fourth quarter of last year. That's the finding of research in Massachusetts. But while gamblers flock to casinos, state lotteries, on the other hand, are reporting a shortage of players and a decline in revenue. Keith McKeen reports.

Bowdoin to Offset Carbon Emissions with Wind Power
Bowdoin College has announced a three-year agreement to buy so-called renewable energy certificates, or REC's, from the owner of the Mars Hill Wind farm in Aroostook County. Barbara Carridi reports.

Whither OPEGA?