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Maine News

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Maine News for Thursday, August 14, 2008

Portland Press Herald
Gas prices driving motorists off road, especially in Maine
The state's traffic decline in June - 7 percent - was almost the sharpest in the nation.

State puts brakes on electric vehicle
Maine tells the owner of a ZAP Xebra three-wheeler the he must pull over.

Elderly, disabled riders save their bus stop
The city drops its plan to scrap a downtown bus route after residents at 100 State Street oppose it.

School choice plays role in districts' merger plan
Windham and Raymond officials are expected to vote next month on a consolidation plan.

Baldacci pick wins bipartisan backing
The appropriations panel endorses Ryan Low to take over the state agency responsible for budgeting.

Asphalt prices put road work on hold
A sharp increase leads the state to suspend work on several projects, including many in the Portland area.

Asphalt prices put road work on hold
A sharp increase leads the state to suspend work on several projects, including many in the Portland area.

HILARY SCHNEIDEREmergency department task force needs consumer representation
Without ordinary Mainers on the panel, any results or recommendations will inevitably miss the mark.

Candidate looks forward to November's balloting

Bangor Daily News
DEP to broaden scope of milfoil survey

Divers plan to survey additional areas of Salmon Lake and Great Pond near Belgrade for signs of a particularly aggressive type of the invasive plant known as milfoil.

Task force reviews pros and cons of wood heat

AUGUSTA, Maine - Converting a large number of Maine homes from oil heat to wood heat would save consumers money but could have implications for both the environment and other forest product industries, members of a task force were told Wednesday.

Academy signs deal for schools in China

LEE, Maine - Agreements have been signed for three more Lee Academy satellite schools in China, and plans are in the works for possibly five in South Korea, Headmaster Bruce Lindberg said Wednesday.

Council 'fine jar' targets bad cell phone manners

BANGOR, Maine - Many Americans of a certain age are familiar with the 'fine jar' concept.

Asphalt prices delay roadwork

AUGUSTA, Maine - The skyrocketing price of liquid asphalt is causing the Maine Department of Transportation to suspend the paving of about 85 miles of state roads that was scheduled to begin this fall.

DOT projects affected by high fuel costs.
Guantanamo Justice

The fact that the trial of Osama bin Laden's former driver appears to have resulted in an appropriate verdict and sentence will be meaningless if the Bush administration does not release the Yemeni man after his sentence is served.

UMS Financial Gain

With the University of Maine System in the midst of an effort to reduce costs, especially by reducing administration and increasing collaboration, it has hired the right person to oversee this work.

Richard K. Dimond: National debt about to sink us
Only 9 percent in the country approve of the job Congress is doing and 80 percent do not like the direction their country is going.

August 14 Letters to the Editor

Kennebec Journal
Spencer Aitel is usually well into his second crop of hay come mid-August.

CENTRAL MAINE State delays some area paving projects
Roads in need of paving this construction season -- including those in Gardiner, Monmouth and Litchfield -- will not get the attention they need until next spring, Maine Department of Transportation officials said.

AUGUSTA School board OKs new hires Advisor program at Cony approved
AUGUSTA -- Hodgkins Middle School has a new principal, Farrington Elementary a new assistant principal, and all the city's public school students have a new person overseeing their curriculum.

State 'zaps' electric cycle
Tom Joyal couldn't be happier with his new ride: an electric, three-wheel vehicle that saves him plenty at the pump and draws an uncommon amount of attention from passers-by.

Low likely in finance job
AUGUSTA -- A legislative committee gave its unanimous backing Tuesday to Gov. John Baldacci's new nominee to fill the top post at the state's Department of Administrative and Financial Services.

Collection set for home toxics
AUGUSTA -- Maine residents with banned or unusable pesticides lurking in their basements, garages or back sheds will have a chance this fall to get rid of the stuff -- legally and safely.

Costs halt paving on 4 Litchfield roads
LITCHFIELD -- Residents will have to wait until at least next year for paving work on four town roads.


Income tax level too high for those earning little
We have consistently stated that when it comes to Maine's taxes, the tax on income is the one most in need of fixing.

KAY RAND : Natural resources consolidation should be handled prudently
I grew up in Aroostook County as the daughter of a potato farmer and pulp cutter. My father's notion of heaven is prime farmland.

ALEC CAMPBELL : GEORGIA Conflict reveals U.S. to be bad, maybe even dangerous ally
Many people will see a double standard in the American response to the Russian invasion of Georgia given our current involvement in Iraq. This is a problem for the United States, and the Russians have exploited it in their public statements.

MIKHAIL GORBACHEV WAS THE LAST PRESIDENT OF THE SO : GEORGIA Lasting peace possible, needed in the Caucasus
MOSCOW -- The past week's events in South Ossetia are bound to shock and pain anyone. Already, thousands of people have died, tens of thousands have been turned into refugees, and towns and villages lie in ruins. Nothing can justify this loss of life and destruction. It is a warning to all.


Some voters expect more from candidates
David Offer states that "For the first time in many elections, I think the parties have selected two very qualified candidates." What?

Fee increase double-taxes those with vanity plates
The stated purpose for the increased fees for vehicle registration, according to Maine secretary of state's office, is "to generate revenue to support bridge and road maintenance." Certainly a fair way to raise much needed revenue.

Katz lets hypocrisy show in KJ column
This letter comments on Roger Katz's Aug. 7, Kennebec Journal, Community Compass column.

President close to an agreement to end war
With all of the media coverage of the John Edwards affair, did anyone notice that Iraq has asked us to set a date for withdrawal? President Bush is now close to an agreement that calls for U.S. combat forces to be out of Iraqi cities within a year and entirely out of the country by the end of 2010.

Sun Journal
Towns pay for state's error
LEWISTON - State revenue officials have admitted to making an error when calculating a specific tax reimbursement payment to Maine towns, resulting in overpayments to more than 100 towns and underpayments to more than 300 others.

Maine jail guard placed on leave
BELFAST (AP) - Officials say a Knox County jail guard is on leave following his arrest for alleged sex crimes involving girls.

Asphalt prices pinch projects
With the price of liquid asphalt more than doubling since January, the Maine Department of Transportation announced Tuesday it is suspending $14.3 million worth of road paving projects scheduled for later this summer.

Report: Edwards' wife in anguish after affair
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - Elizabeth Edwards' cancer diagnosis forced her to decide quickly whether she would leave her husband after he confessed to having an affair, her brother and a friend told People magazine.

Wood-pellet silo hinges on FAA OK

Put a stop to notion of moratorium
A development moratorium in downtown Lewiston is the opposite of what's needed, which are more thoughtful efforts to identify what downtown should have, rather than what it should not.

The lies and coverup are worst part for Edwards
There is something familiar about the storyline: woman has more than one sex partner; woman becomes pregnant; no father's name on the birth certificate; paternity questioned.

Corporate spin
Are Maine's media outlets so hard up that they have to accept bogus ads such as the ones being produced by the so-called "Coalition for a Democratic Workplace?"

Maine Lobster Industry Says Its Product Deserves Seal of Approval
An effort to have Maine's lobster industry certified as sustainable is moving forward with the release of a preliminary review of the state's lobster fishing practices. The Governor's Working Group on Maine Lobster Sustainability is pushing to have Maine's signature seafood certified as sustainable by the international Marine Stewardship Council. Fisheries that are certified can use a seal that assures consumers that the seafood was not overfished or harvested in a harmful way. As Anne Ravana reports, task force members say the lobster industry could lose valuable markets if it doesn't obtain certification.

Petitioners Call For Limits On Global Warming Pollution
An environmental advocacy group arrived at the governor's office today to present petitions carrying the signatures of more than 10,000 Mainers calling for mandatory limits on Maine's global warming pollution. David Littell, commissioner of the Maine Department of Environmental Protection, accepted the petitions on behalf of Gov. John Baldacci. Littell says the administration is prepared to expand its leadership role in tackling global warming which, left unchecked, could mean rising sea levels, severe weather and fewer sugar maples.

Catholic Author Urges Flexibility On Abortion
More than one in four Americans are Roman Catholic, and as one of the most important US elections in decades approaches, many assume that those 60 million plus Americans are going to stick to a fairly narrow political agenda, based on opposition to abortion and gay marriage. Not so, says Portland-based author and practicing Catholic Chris Korzen, who argues the Catholic faith has more flexibility than you may think. Korzen is co-author of "A Nation For All: How The Catholic Vision for the Common Good Can Save American from the Politics of Division." He's also director of Catholics United - a non-partisan, online advocacy group dedicated to promoting social justice. MPBN's Tom Porter asked Korzen what inspired him to write the book.

Confirmation hearing turned toast to Ryan Low

Allen tours state to tout economic plan

Collins gossips about Edwards on radio show

Ellsworth American
Maybe the Answer Is Blowing in the Wind
NORTHPORT — Willie Sutton had a very good reason for robbing banks.

In Winter Harbor Wind Turbine’s Effect Has Been Electrifying
WINTER HARBOR — A once-controversial wind turbine is now humming away with the help of the shoreline breezes along Schoodic Point.

Cheap Firewood Program Is Too Popular
AUGUSTA — A program that allows Mainers to cut wood on state land for $25 a cord, which in recent years has had three or four dozen participants, is now attracting 10 times that many applicants.

The Nuclear Option
Several of Maine’s past and present political leaders are quick to say that the state must consider a variety of energy options as it faces the most serious challenge in its nearly 200-year history. But they are just as quick to reject any notion that nuclear energy might be a part of the mix. Among five politicos interviewed for the “Re-energizing Maine” series that began in last week’s issue of The Ellsworth American, only State Sen. Dennis Damon (D-Hancock County) showed an open mind where nuclear power is concerned. “There are those who have quickly dismissed nuclear power as not being appropriate for Maine, but I’m not among them,” said Damon. “I think nuclear power does have a role and that it ought not be off the table. It ought to be talked about as a serious way to fill some of Maine’s power needs and not just dismissed hysterically.”

Weeklies Are Holding Their Own
Weekly newspapers have been living by their wits for years while providing the kinds of information their readers want and have come to expect.
The doom-and-gloom that surrounds daily newspapers these days — most especially a group of Maine dailies — might lead many observers to believe that the very survival of the newspaper as an institution is at risk. Last week, the president of Blethen Maine Newspapers, which publishes the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram, the Kennebec Journal in Augusta and the Morning Sentinel in Waterville, was reported as saying in a court document that severe financial problems facing the parent company could force a shutdown of those newspapers. And indeed, daily newspapers across the country have been struggling with increased production costs and from circulation and advertising revenue declines.