August 29, 2015  

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Maine Environmental News
Announcement - Saturday, August 29, 2015 

Thanks for visiting Maine Environmental News, the most comprehensive online source available for links to Maine conservation and natural resource news stories and events. I have posted links to nearly 40,000 news articles and announcements. I also post breaking stories and exclusives. Be sure to check not only today's news, but take a look at the headlines from the past several days as well. Articles often come to my attention a few days after they are published. Follow us on Twitter @MaineEnviroNews. Will Sugg is the website developer. ~ Jym St. Pierre, RESTORE: The North Woods
Rangeley Trail Town Festival, Sep 5
Event - Posted - Saturday, August 29, 2015 

A celebration of Rangeley as an official Appalachian Trail Community. Sep 5, 10 am - 4 pm.
Lichens at Bonyun Preserve, Aug 29
Event - Posted - Saturday, August 22, 2015 

Maine Master Naturalist Volunteer Becky Kolak will guide a hike to discover the world of lichens — those unassuming organisms that are a combination of fungi and algae (or cyanobacteria). At Bonyun Preserve, Westport, August 29, 9:30 am. Sponsored by Kennebec Estuary Land Trust.
Hike Up Barnard Mountain in Proposed National Park, Aug 29
Event - Posted - Friday, August 21, 2015 

Hike approximately four miles roundtrip, along a portion of the International Appalachian Trail, over Katahdin Brook, to the top of Barnard Mountain. Spectacular views of Katahdin, Katahdin Lake, and the Traveler Mountains. August 29, 11 am. Registration required. Sponsored by Natural Resources Council of Maine.
E-waste recycling drive, Aug 29
Event - Posted - Friday, August 21, 2015 

An E-waste recycling drive for homeowners will be held at Bangor Humane Society, August 29, 8 am-3 pm. $10 donation will benefit the Humane Society.
Reading the Landscape with a Ranger, thru Aug 29
Event - Posted - Friday, August 21, 2015 

Explore the stories woven subtly across our fields and forests by earlier visitors and the lives they led. At Frazer Point Picnic area, Schoodic Peninsula (at Acadia National Park), Winter Harbor. Thursdays and Saturdays through Aug 29.
Rare Plant Walk, Aug 28
Event - Posted - Friday, August 21, 2015 

Ecologist Andy Cutko, Maine Natural Areas Program, will lead a rare plant walk through the intertidal zone of the Cathance River. At Merrymeeting Bay Wildlife Management Area, Bowdoinham, Aug 28, 5-7 pm, pre-registration required. Sponsored by Friends of Merrymeeting Bay.
Maine State Star Party, Aug 28-29
Event - Posted - Friday, August 21, 2015 

At Cobscook Bay State Park, Edmunds, August 28-29. Hosted by the Downeast Amateur Astronomers
Bow Ties & Bean Boots Gala, Aug 28
Event - Posted - Friday, August 21, 2015 

Put on your classiest bow tie (or boa or ball gown) and dirtiest Bean Boots and join Teens To Trails for an evening to celebrate and support the work T3 is doing for high school Outing Clubs. At Camp Ketcha, Scarborough, August 28, 6-10 pm.
Maine Board of Pesticides Control wants feedback, Aug 27
Event - Posted - Thursday, August 20, 2015 

The Maine Board of Pesticides Control will hold a public forum to hear pesticide-related comments from the public on the state's pesticide policy. At University of Maine at Machias, August 27, 6:30 pm.
Virtual tour of proposed national park, Aug 27
Event - Posted - Thursday, August 20, 2015 

Lisa Pohlmann, Executive Director, Natural Resources Council of Maine, will present a virtual tour of a planned national park in northern Maine. At Atlantic Hall, Kennebunkport, Cape Porpoise village, Aug 27.
Permanent Atlantic Ocean protections are within reach
Action Alert - Thursday, August 20, 2015 

The Obama administration is considering permanent federal protection for areas off our New England coast. Proposed marine monuments, which include Cashse Ledge, 100 miles off the coast of Portland, and the Canyon Seamounts are home to a remarkable diversity of ocean life, from whales to sea anemones to lobsters. But without protections, these fragile habitats are at risk. Now is the time for President Obama to act, as New England waters are warming, disrupting fish populations and undermining the marine food web. ~ Environment Maine
Dangerous Juniper Ridge Landfill Expansion
Action Alert - Wednesday, August 19, 2015 

Casella Waste Management is proposing an expansion to the state-owned Juniper Ridge Landfill in Old Town/Alton totaling 74 acres, including 54 acres for waste expansion, filling 2 acres of wetland, and 20 acres to accommodate a new industrial methane facility. Casella predicts approximately 700,000 tons of waste per year for the next 10-12 years, jeopardizing water quality of the Penobscot River. You can help by requesting a public hearing on Casella's two DEP applications. Deadlines: August 21 and 27.
Full Moon Canoe Tour, Aug 27, 28 & 29
Event - Posted - Tuesday, August 18, 2015 

Meet at Scarborough Marsh, August 27, 28 and 29, 7:30-9 pm, $12 members, $14 non-members, registration required. Sponsored by Maine Audubon.
National Parks Free Entrance, Aug 25
Announcement - Tuesday, August 18, 2015 

Only 133 of our country's 405 National Park System areas charge an entrance fee, but even that will be waived on National Park Service Birthday, August 25.
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News Items
Column: No more chocolate for Yogi
Sun Journal - Saturday, August 29, 2015 

We can all heave a huge sigh of relief. Finally, the live-free-or-die state ­ neighboring New Hampshire ­ has put in effect a new rule that bans the use of chocolate of any kind in bear baits. It seems that processed chocolate, including the kind we eat, contains theobromine, which officials say can be toxic to bears and other wild animals. As we all know, especially those of us who have baited Maine bears or studied their eating habits, the omnivorous black bear is known for its delicate tummy and discriminating appetite when it comes to dining out. The good news, for the bears and the hunters who want to have their cake and eat it, too, is this, seriously: "White chocolate may be used as bait during the 2015 black bear baiting season and all subsequent black bear baiting seasons." Yes, in today’s America, truth is stranger than fiction. ~ V. Paul Reynolds
The Appalachian Trail is inspiration for Maine novelist
Boston Globe - Saturday, August 29, 2015 

Maine native and author Paul Doiron, whose sixth crime novel came out this summer, uses his home state as the setting for his series featuring Mike Bowditch, a game warden who tackles all sorts of crimes around the state. In his latest book, “The Precipice,” the action centers on the Appalachian Trail. Doiron said, "I nearly died on it in 1988 when two friends and I were struck by lightning....My goal for this book needs to be bringing the Appalachian Trail to life.”
Editorial: Latest port activity writes new maritime story
Portland Press Herald - Saturday, August 29, 2015 

What started three years ago with occasional visits from an Icelandic container ship is blossoming into an international relationship that could write a new chapter in Portland’s maritime history. It started when Eimskip made Portland its North American headquarters, using recently upgraded facilities on the eastern end of the harbor. That terminal is now connected to the nation’s rail system, allowing Eimskip to bring cargo from Europe and reach any part of the country, and return loaded with American goods. It will also be the site of a cold storage facility that will facilitate more trade. But this relationship goes beyond shipping. An Icelandic businessman, working with American partners, is planning a marine-focused business incubator which would give entrepreneurs the tools they need to bring ideas to the marketplace.
Opinion: When Baxter State Park staff don’t bend the rules, they’re not being hostile
Kennebec Journal - Saturday, August 29, 2015 

On Aug. 14, Keith Taylor (“Why are Baxter officials hostile to park visitors?”) shared his frustrations from a visit to Baxter State Park to pick up his son, who had just completed the Appalachian Trail. In my 36 years of visiting the park, I have always felt welcome, and not once have I experienced anything other than friendliness from a staff member. I have observed, however, that an increasing number of visitors think the rules apply to everyone else, but not themselves. Not getting your own way, especially when you are asking someone to bend the rules for you, does not mean the other party is being hostile. Baxter State Park staff members do an admirable job of meeting the needs of park visitors, and balancing those needs with the park’s primary mission of wilderness preservation. ~ Aaron Megquier, Friends of Baxter State Park
Letter: State parks passport gets a stamp of approval
Portland Press Herald - Saturday, August 29, 2015 

Thank you for the article on the Maine State Parks Passport program in Thursday’s MaineToday Magazine. My sons and I discovered this program earlier this summer while visiting the Blockhouse in Fort Kent. Since then, it has become a competitive mission to collect stamps; one boy sneaked off to Crescent Beach with his grandparents expressly to stamp an extra page! Thursday, we went for a perfect morning hike on Bradbury Mountain. This program is a brilliant way to engage kids in our state’s history, beauty and conservation efforts. Also, many local libraries have state park passes available for cardholders. Check it out! ~ Emily Read, Scarborough
Rep. Poliquin votes with Big Oil and Wall Street against Maine lobstermen
Other - Friday, August 28, 2015 

Beacon - Though most of the attention from Global climate change is has been on impacts to the air temperature, melting ice caps, and aberrant weather, there’s another consequence to Maine’s signature industry: ocean acidification. The Maine Legislature found an urgent need for action on carbon emissions to avert massive harm to the state’s shellfish industry. It is no surprise then that Members of Congress up and down the New England coast have championed efforts to fight carbon emissions. And yet, Maine Congressman Rep. Bruce Poliquin (R-Oakland), has been firmly opposed to combating the threat to this iconic and vital industry. Why does a congressman who represents lobstermen from Belfast to Lubec regularly vote against the economic and cultural interests of his constituents? There is one clear possibility: money.
9-year-old missing from Mattawamkeag wilderness park
Bangor Daily News - Friday, August 28, 2015 

Law enforcement personnel from the region are searching for a 9-year-old girl who went swimming Friday evening near Mattawamkeag Wilderness Campground and Park and is now missing, a Penobscot Regional Communications Center dispatcher confirmed late Friday. “They’re out looking for a female who was swimming in the river,” the dispatcher said about 8:30 p.m..
Rangers searching for overdue hiker in Baxter State Park
Bangor Daily News - Friday, August 28, 2015 

Baxter State Park rangers were searching backcountry hiking trails Friday for a 78-year-old Virginia man who failed to return from a Thursday hike in the Mount Coe area of Baxter State Park. John Lyon last was seen on the Mount Coe Trail between Mount Coe and South Brother Mountain around 1:30 p.m. Thursday. Lyon reportedly was hiking with three others from the Virginia/Washington, D.C., area when he left the group at lunch to hike ahead.
SunEdison is testing conditions for another Somerset County wind development
Morning Sentinel - Friday, August 28, 2015 

Energy company SunEdison is testing wind conditions in the Misery Ridge area of Somerset County with plans to possibly build a 26-turbine commercial wind farm there. The company installed meteorological towers in the area this week on land owned by Plum Creek near Moosehead Lake. No application has been submitted to the Department of Environmental Protection for the project yet. SunEdison is also working on construction of the Bingham Wind Project in Somerset County, a planned 56-turbine wind development. Opponents of the Bingham project have said that wind "farms" have a negative impact on the scenery in rural Maine.
Talks stall between Howland, river group over fill removal
Bangor Daily News - Friday, August 28, 2015 

Negotiations between Howland officials and the Penobscot River Restoration Trust have broken down due to the trust’s apparent failure to remove about 70 yards of fill from a town-owned site on Lagoon Lane, officials said Friday. Town Manager William Lawrence said that talks between he and PRRT Executive Director Laura Rose Day have been broken off for more than a week. Town officials have turned the matter over to the town’s attorney. Lawrence said the nonprofit environmental group’s officials believe they have not violated their agreement with the town to remove the fill. A great deal rides on the successful conclusion of the project. A $3.2 million fish bypass on land adjacent to the town-owned tannery site, which is at the confluence of the Penobscot and Piscataquis rivers, is part of trust plans to open nearly 1,000 miles of habitat to endangered Atlantic salmon, sturgeon and other species of migratory, sea-run fish.
Self-promotion, festivals bring visitors to Eastport
Bangor Daily News - Friday, August 28, 2015 

The secret to Eastport’s success has been “shameless self promotion,” according to the city manager. “We’re not afraid to try,” Elaine Abbott told members of the Machias Rotary Club on Aug. 25. “We’re not afraid to fail. We know what we’re celebrating and we love a party.” Festivals help to bring people in. Eastport is the site of four major festivals each year — New Year’s Eve, the 4th of July Festival, the Eastport Salmon & Seafood Festival (Sept. 6) and the Eastport Pirate Festival (Sept. 11-13). “Eastport is being recognized by national and international media because it’s a little bit crazy,” she said. Eastport also works to make visitors feel welcome.
Holding on to a Mill Town's Heritage
Maine Public Broadcasting Network - Friday, August 28, 2015 

The Millinocket fire horn will sound once again, as it has for decades, twice a day, every day. The sudden absence of the daily blasts has had residents up in arms for more than two weeks, to the surprise and dismay of the town's governing body, which decided in council action Thursday night to restore the tradition immediately. But the whole incident has revealed a town pushed too far. Sometimes a horn isn't just a horn. Resident Susan D'Alessandro. D'Alessandro says the town that was built on lumbering and paper has lost too much with the demise of the mills."
Maine Studying Plan to Transplant Sea Urchins for Fishing
Associated Press - Friday, August 28, 2015 

Maine fishing regulators want to close an area to sea urchin fishing so they can evaluate a plan to transplant the spiny creatures. A proposed regulation would close sea urchin harvesting in the Cat Ledges area off of Southport until May 1, 2018. State officials say they want to evaluate the success of transplanting wild sea urchins and hatchery-raised juvenile urchins. The state says the transplant is a means of re-establishing a colony of "commercially viable urchins'' in an area that formerly supported a wild harvest. The Department of Marine Resources says urchins are now "commercially extinct'' in the area.
SunEdison withdraws application to build wind farm in Hancock County
Portland Press Herald - Friday, August 28, 2015 

SunEdison has withdrawn the application for its Weaver Wind project from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection in order to address environmental issues raised by state regulators. A DEP staff analysis of the project raised concerns about the proposed wind farm’s potential impact on bats and migratory birds. SunEdison disagrees with the study’s conclusions, but requires more time to prepare a response. SunEdison, through its subsidiary Weaver Wind LLC, had proposed a 23-turbine wind farm in the Hancock County towns of Osborn and Eastbrook. The company has two nearby wind farms, Bull Hill and Hancock Wind. The DEP analysis raised concerns that the combination of the three farms in close proximity would heighten the risk to bats and birds. The DEP staff analysis claims “Bull Hill Wind has recorded the highest estimated per turbine mortalities in northern New England.” SunEdison, which acquired First Wind in November 2014, has five operating wind farms in Maine, plus another three under construction.
Maine's First Youth Bear Hunt Day Set for Saturday
Associated Press - Friday, August 28, 2015 

Maine is holding a bear hunting day for young hunters for the first time as its annual season for the elusive animals draws near. The youth bear hunt will be Saturday, two days before the general hunting season for bears begins. Youth hunters who have a junior hunting license can hunt bears with a firearm, bow or crossbow on Saturday. The young hunters are also permitted to lay bait. Maine's general bear hunting season runs from Aug. 31 to Nov. 28. The season for hunting with bait begins Aug. 31 and ends Sept. 26. There is also a season for hunting with dogs from Sept. 14 to Oct. 30.
Environmentalists press on with Maine lynx trapping lawsuit
Associated Press - Friday, August 28, 2015 

A coalition of environmental groups is pressing ahead with a lawsuit it says will provide more protection for Maine’s lynx, despite new trapping restrictions adopted by the state to safeguard the animals. Canada lynx are protected under the federal Endangered Species Act so, so states cannot allow incidental harm to the wild cats without a permit from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Their status impacts trapping rules in Maine, where hundreds of trappers target animals like minks, fishers and foxes for their fur.
Eastern Mountain Lions May Be Extinct, but Locals Still See Them
Wall Street Journal - Friday, August 28, 2015 

Dozens of missives have poured into the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service as it proposes removing the Eastern mountain lion from the list of endangered species, where it has been since 1973. That change comes because the agency believes the creature no longer exists and would effectively render the subspecies extinct. The roar of protest is from Easterners who contend the formidable felines still roam forests, fields and backyards from Maine to Georgia.
The irreplaceable Andrea Erskine retires from Fish and Wildlife Department
George Smith's Outdoor News Blog - Friday, August 28, 2015 

“She’s irreplaceable.” That was the comment of one of my friends after he heard that Andrea Erskine, Deputy Commissioner of the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, is retiring. And I agree. Some people thought Andrea was too quick to defend members of the agency’s staff, whenever they came in for criticism, but I think her personality, her experience, and her deep love and respect for the agency and its work, has to be respected.
Column: Gulls may bore birders, but their sheer numbers are impressive
Bangor Daily News - Friday, August 28, 2015 

The channel between Eastport and Campobello features the largest whirlpool in the Western Hemisphere. Gulls make me yawn, an opinion shared by many birders. But what happens in this channel is astounding. There is the usual complement of Maine’s common gulls: herring, great black-backed and ring-billed. These are joined by countless Bonaparte’s gulls and black-legged kittiwakes. By countless, I mean I am too lazy to count them. I’d estimate 20,000. ~ Bob Duchesne
Maine summers are magical
Bangor Daily News - Friday, August 28, 2015 

Summer in Maine is, quite honestly, something different to everyone who’s fortunate to spend one here. And though summer isn’t over, even though some view Labor Day as the unofficial end to the magical season, here’s a sampling of what our readers had to say … and what they chose to show us in their photos.
Saviello, Hickman named co-chairmen of land management fund commission
Kennebec Journal - Friday, August 28, 2015 

Sen. Tom Saviello and Rep. Craig Hickman will be co-chairmen of the Maine Legislature’s Commission to Study the Public Reserved Lands Management Fund. The commission was formed by the 127th Legislature. The commission will evaluate the state’s use of public land, specifically harvesting practices, the preservation of forests for recreation, wildlife habitat and public use, according to a news release from the office of the Senate president.
Opinion: Clean Power Plan a step toward sunshine for Maine’s economy
Portland Press Herald - Friday, August 28, 2015 

The solar industry is growing fast. Partly because costs of installation are falling across the nation with each new investment, another home or business is going solar in the United States every 2.5 minutes. Since 2010 alone, prices have fallen by 46 percent. That rapid growth is being felt right here in Maine, where 3.5 megawatts of solar capacity were installed in Maine in 2014, a 43 percent increase over a single year. Even sunnier news: Solar energy is poised to play a major role in Maine’s transition to a cleaner future. That’s exactly why we need the Clean Power Plan, which was released last month by the Environmental Protection Agency. ~ Sam Zuckerman, Maine Solar Solutions, and Mike Curran, Environment Maine
Despite pending appeal, work to begin on Downeaster train shed in Brunswick
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, August 27, 2015 

Crews will start work on an Amtrak train layover facility in Brunswick next month even though the Board of Environmental Protection could kill the project if it rules in favor of a neighborhood group that is appealing a decision to allow construction. Clearing of the site will start as early as Sept. 14 and the superstructure is scheduled to be built this fall, said Matt Tonello, project executive with Consigli Construction, which is building the $12.4 million, 60,000-square-foot train shed. Company officials will meet Friday with state Department of Environmental Protection staffers for a final review of plans to handle stormwater runoff and contaminated soils on the site during construction. The site is an abandoned rail yard polluted with coal ash.
Maine Farmers Sail to New Markets the Old-Fashioned Way
Maine Public Broadcasting Network - Thursday, August 27, 2015 

A 90-year-old, twin-masted schooner sailed into Portland harbor Thursday morning. The "Adventure," as she's called, arrived to pick up three tons of Maine-grown farm produce. She'll then depart for Boston at first light on Friday. The project is called Maine Sail Freight, and while it's part of historical re-enactment, organizers say they're also out to make a serious point about food systems and regional economics. The idea is to educate people about local food systems and how relevant they are, even in a globalized economy.
Colby freshmen to create temporary downtown Waterville parks
Morning Sentinel - Thursday, August 27, 2015 

Colby College freshmen typically do community cleanups as part of orientation, but this year they will take part in an entirely different community service activity — creating temporary parks downtown. While the project’s goal for the college is to have students interact with each other and collaborate, it also could have implications for downtown and is the latest installment in the college’s continuing effort to help revitalize the city’s center.
Current  Archive      Page: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 ...


News Feeds

Maine Organic Farmers
and Gardeners Assn

Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association holds tomato talk
By Rachel Carter - A few weeks ago, a consortium of local vegetable growers gathered at the Albion, ME research farm of Johnny’s Selected Seeds with one task in mind, to discuss the obstacles and opportunities related to growing tomatoes in the New England region.
8/23/2015 11:00:00 PM

Demand for locally raised meat increases in Maine
By Kathleen Pierce - Foraging for insects, tender roots and other delicacies in a 4-acre pasture, a passel of Berkshire and Tamworth hogs are happy – at least as happy as pigs in mud can be.
8/23/2015 11:00:00 PM

Pesticides in paradise: Hawaii's spike in birth defects puts focus on GM crops
By Christopher Pala - Pediatrician Carla Nelson remembers catching sight of the unusually pale newborn, then hearing an abnormal heartbeat through the stethoscope and thinking that something was terribly wrong.
8/22/2015 11:00:00 PM

Composting heats up in Maine
By Mary Pols - Plenty of Maine supermarkets, corporate customers, schools and other institutions have already embraced composting. (The University of Maine even has an on-campus composting facility.) The next frontier is municipalities, not an easy nut to crack.
8/22/2015 11:00:00 PM

Maine Senior FarmShare helps low-income seniors, local growers
By Meg Haskell - Newport, Maine: On a recent Friday morning, Debbie Bradstreet propped open the wide doors of her Newport farmstand and flipped over the sign hanging nearby, from “Closed” to “Open,” promptly at 10 a.m. Among the first to walk through the doors was Nancy Booth, 65, who lives in a nearby senior housing complex. She made a beeline for a quart of sweet blueberries before turning her attention to the big bin of corn picked earlier that morning.
8/22/2015 11:00:00 PM

Young couple’s Monroe farm takes root
By Gabor Degre - Early on a recent morning, Noami Brautigam and James Gagne sat at their kitchen table planning out their work for the day at [MOFGA-certified organic] Dickey Hill Farm in Monroe. It was about 6 a.m. With the list completed, Gagne headed to the barn to take care of the chickens, feed the pigs and make sure the cows had enough water.
8/21/2015 11:00:00 PM

Joel Salatin: Synergy between Nature, Science and Technology
By Karen Rybold-Chin, Greg David - On The Earth Productions: Joel Salatin, a keynote speaker at the Mother Earth fair, talks about “cow days” and the value of using technology as a co-laborer with nature. Just as “a carpenter uses inches, a wheat farmer uses bushels, and a water manager uses gallons, a cow day is a constant measure of what a cow will eat in a day.”
8/20/2015 11:00:00 PM

Central America issues alert as severe drought hits agriculture
San Salvador - Central American and Caribbean governments on Thursday issued an official alert as severe drought in the region damages the crops of some 1.6 million people.
8/20/2015 11:00:00 PM

Natural Resources Council
of Maine

Wear “Green”
When purchasing new clothing, try to opt for green fibers. Good choices: organic cotton (conventional cotton i...
8/29/2015 4:00:27 AM

Clean Power Plan a Step Toward Sunshine for Maine’s Economy
The plan represents the beginning of a more sustainable economic and environmental future for our state. By Sa...
8/28/2015 8:11:21 AM

Share Your Thoughts
Let businesses know when you’re spending your money with them because of their environment-friendly policies—a...
8/28/2015 4:00:20 AM

Denmark has Climate Change Lessons for Maine, This Group Will Find Them
By Nancy Smith and Sue Inches, Special to the BDN Bangor Daily News op-ed If you saw a threat, would you avoid...
8/27/2015 9:52:43 AM

Environmental Agencies Sue City of Bangor to Stop Pollution from Wastewater System
Bangor officials and the environmental agencies have signed a proposed agreement that includes infrastructure ...
8/27/2015 9:34:28 AM

Beat the Battle against Soap Scum, Safely
Beat the battle against soap scum without using harsh chemicals. Try spraying the area with undiluted vinegar ...
8/27/2015 4:00:26 AM

You Can Benefit From Solar Even If You Don’t Have a Place to Put Panels!
Did you know Maine is the sunniest state in New England and in fact receives 33 percent more sun than Germany,...
8/26/2015 11:39:54 AM

Waterville Residents Overwhelmingly Uphold PAYT
This spring citizens in Waterville sent a resounding message when they voted by a margin of nearly two to one ...
8/26/2015 11:29:25 AM

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