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Maine News

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Maine News for Thursday, October 2, 2008

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Portland Press Herald
Senate resuscitates rescue
Sweetened with tax breaks for businesses and the middle class, the $700 billion package passes easily, 74-25.

Despite crisis, state to sell bonds
Higher interest rates could cause budget woes for the communities involved, which want to raise $99 million.

Maine senators back bailout, hope House will follow suit

Personalities, not policy, could dominate debate
Analysis: The candidates for vice president must avoid tripping over their own shortcomings.

Mainers turning to lower-risk investments
Lenders say the shift to CDs, which has picked up speed recently, could offset any broader credit squeeze.

Report urges city to invest in the arts
A committee says creating an agency to attract innovative businesses will pay off for Portland.

State hands over proposal to Plum Creek
By Oct. 14, the developer must say yes or no to changes backed by regulators.

Stereotypes and spin infect VP debate
It’s really a matter of who’s able to take over as president and whose policies will help most.

New mandate needed for low-level nuclear waste
The material is being stored in hospitals and other places where it shouldn’t be.

Bangor Daily News
PORTLAND, Maine — A ferocious-looking denizen of the deep that can gobble up whole urchins and crabs in a few swift chomps is in need of protection, according to a petition filed with the federal

ROCKLAND, Maine — The Maine Lobstermen’s Association hosted a meeting Tuesday to educate midcoast state legislative candidates on issues facing the industry. Gathering at Rockland City Hall,

BANGOR, Maine — Maine voters may be getting mixed signals about the term “early voting,” which is generating interest recently in some Maine municipalities, including Bangor.

FORT KENT, Maine — Forget the image of a hapless Bob Cratchit huddled next to a small stove, scuttle in hand, stoking the boiler with his meager coal rations under a thick cloud of black

Fourteen small community hospitals in Maine have made a commitment to improve medication safety for their patients, supported with funding from the Maine Health Access Foundation, or MeHAF.

It’s officially Plum Creek’s call. State regulators gave Plum Creek a formal answer Wednesday nearly 3½ years after the company unveiled Maine’s largest development proposal:

WASHINGTON — Republican Sens. Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe of Maine welcomed with gravity the U.S. Senate’s passage Wednesday night of a revamped $700 billion financial rescue plan.

Vice presidential debates are usually afterthoughts, overshadowed by the matchups between those at the top of the ticket. This year, however, the debate between the vice presidential nominees, to be

Kennebec Journal
Officials say state's banks able to lend
AUGUSTA -- The head of the state's Bureau of Financial Institutions, which oversees banks and credit unions, said Wednesday that Maine banks are able to lend money despite national upheaval in financial markets.

SENATE 20 1 race, 2 veteran legislators
The two men vying to fill the Senate District 20 seat both offer voters a dose of legislative experience.

SAD 47 boss selling China on new school unit
CHINA -- School Administrative District 47 Superintendent James Morse told more than two dozen China residents Monday he sees the proposed regional school unit as key to reducing the expected loss of state education funds.


Son's music rocks campaign on our dime
Robert "Bo" Zabierek, of Sherman, is a candidate for the Maine House of Representatives. He's challenging long-time lawmaker Henry Joy of Crystal, and his chances of knocking off Joy are about as good as his chances of knocking down Mt. Katahdin. Joy's part of the northern Maine landscape.

ISSUE OF THE DAY: Augusta City Charter
On Nov. 4, Augusta residents will vote on significant changes to the city's Charter. A seven-member commission has spent much of the last year reviewing and discussing those revisions. Here, we present three columns: one from member Don Roberts, representing the majority which is recommending the changes; one from member William Johnson, representing the minority members who object to the changes; and one from member Bill Seitzinger, who explains the controversial proposed initiative and referendum revisions.

DAN BILLINGS : Voting early by absentee ballot convenient, but it has a price
While the calendar indicates Election Day is 33 days away, ballots are already being cast. Absentee ballots are now available and the increasing popularity of absentee voting is having a profound impact on our political system.

Sun Journal
State bond sale faces uncertainty
Despite the stormy markets and uncertainty about a $700 billion federal bailout, Maine plans to sell $99 million in bonds Friday to raise money to pay for more than a dozen municipal projects, ranging from building new schools to buying ambulances.

Collins, Snowe back bill
Maine's Republican Sens. Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe voted in favor of the $700 billion bill aimed at thawing the nation's frozen credit market. The bill passed 74-25, with significant support from both parties.

Maine rail service gets $500,000
PORTLAND (AP) - Maine's U.S. senators say the Downeaster passenger rail service that links Portland and Boston is getting a $500,000 federal grant.

Conference aims to get kids outside
AUGUSTA (AP) - Parents, government officials and leaders in education, health, child development and outdoor recreation will gather Thursday in Augusta to find ways to get children to spend more time outdoors.

Immunization rate slips, report says
PORTLAND (AP) - A coalition of public health groups says Maine's immunization rates in 2007 fell to a new low, 82 percent.

Wood pellet supply short
BANGOR (AP) - In the South, motorists are dealing with a short-term gasoline shortage. In Maine, consumers are dealing with a shortage of an altogether different type of fuel - wood pellets.

Group seeks protection for ugly fish
PORTLAND - A ferocious-looking denizen of the deep that can gobble up whole urchins and crabs in a few swift chomps needs protection, according to a petition filed with the federal government.

Save this report from the fireplace
Gov. John Baldacci's wood-to-energy task force deserves credit for releasing an insightful final report about the state's forestry reserves and industry, absent of the potential biases that marred the initial drafts.

Should pastors use pulpit for political speeches?
There is no telling how many churches actually participated in "Pulpit Freedom Sunday," an event designed to challenge the government's restriction on political pronouncements from the pulpit.

Maine Troops Experiencing Life In Afghanistan
Soldiers of the Maine National Guard are living and working on a small base in eastern Afghanistan. It's a long way from home and in a country where Americans are often unwelcome. MPBN news correspondent Doug Grindle has this special report, the first of two.

LURC Approves Plum Creek Development Changes
In what might be its last action for several months, the state's Land Use Regulation Commission met today in Bangor and approved a series of changes to the highly controversial Plum Creek development plan for Moosehead Lake. After tentatively approving the plan last week, the commission put forth changes Plum Creek will have to agree to in order for their plan to receive regulatory approval. As Anne Ravana reports, LURC still faces heavy criticism from opponents of Plum Creek.