July 21, 2018  
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Maine State House Watch: Gubernatorial inauguration to be less 'dry'
Action Alert - Friday, December 31, 2010 

There will be no poetry read at this year's gubernatorial inauguration for Republican Paul LePage. No "chorale-style, dry singing" either. Instead, inaugural attendees will hear the 195th Army Band of the Maine National Guard. The inauguration will take place at the Augusta Civic Center on January 5 at 11:30 a.m., followed by a reception at 7 p.m. Both events are invitation-only.
LURC to Decide Kibby Wind Power Expansion Project, Jan 5
Action Alert - Friday, December 31, 2010 

The Maine Land Use Regulation Commission is scheduled to make a final decision on approval of the proposal by TransCanada Maine Wind Development for installation of 11 turbines in Kibby and Chain of Ponds Twps. At Spectacular Event Center, Bangor, Jan 5, 10 a.m.
Maine State House Watch: George Smith laments LePage lagging
Action Alert - Thursday, December 30, 2010 

Governor-elect Paul LePage is in Florida, returning Thursday night, so he hasn’t interviewed anyone this week. With many key cabinet positions undecided, the man has a lot of work to do if he’s going to have the entire cabinet named by January 5, as he said he would.
Maine State House Watch: Letter from Hampden
Action Alert - Wednesday, December 29, 2010 

Who knew that under the tree would be a job from Daddy? I had mused during the election how Mr. LePage’s previous employment working for Marden’s would assist him in approaching the question of unemployment. I hadn’t thought of the time-honored tradition of hiring family first. That may work at Marden’s, but in Augusta, it always comes at a cost, no discount.
Maine State House Watch: MPA not trying to recall LePage
Action Alert - Tuesday, December 28, 2010 

The Maine People's Alliance released a statement today saying they are not circulating a petition to remove Gov.-elect Paul LePage from office. In a Monday opinion piece LePage Communications Director Dan Demeritt wrote that "word on the street is that the Maine People's Alliance is already circulating a petition to remove Paul LePage from office." MPA says while it is going door to door to talk to Mainers about LePage's "plans to eliminate regulations on polluters" it is not trying to recall the governor.
Maine State House Watch: Lauren LePage perfect choice
Other - Monday, December 27, 2010 

Since Gov.-elect Paul LePage announced his decision to add his daughter Lauren to his staff many have been fixated on what Lauren LePage gets. You will not find someone more qualified to serve in a position of trust in a LePage administration than a LePage.
Stanton Bird Club to hear about Maine eagles, Jan 3
Event - Posted - Monday, December 27, 2010 

A discussion about Eagles in Maine will be presented at a meeting of the Stanton Bird Club. The presentation will be by Pam Richardson, game keeper at the Maine Wildlife Park, and will feature Lawrence, a 5-year-old bald eagle. At the Auburn Public Library, Jan 3 at 6 p.m.
BDN Opens Outdoors Web Page to Bloggers
Announcement - Saturday, December 25, 2010 

The Bangor Daily News is opening its Outdoors web page to established or aspiring bloggers. Contact Outdoors editor Jeff Strout at jstrout@bangordailynews.com.
A Christmas Poem by Dave Corrigan, Registered Maine Master Guide
Action Alert - Saturday, December 25, 2010 

It was Christmas Eve Day and true to my soul
I was out on The Mountain, taking a stroll
I crossed over the brook and then up the slope
Just wandering and dreaming and looking for hope...
Maine State House Watch: Letter from East Machias
Action Alert - Friday, December 24, 2010 

Gov.-elect Paul LePage has complained that state commissioners are not paid enough, but state employees are overpaid. This is in keeping with LePage’s campaign promise to run Maine like a business. In a typical business (such as Marden’s), the executives get paid in excess of $250,000 while the employees get paid minimum wage.
Maine State House Watch: LePage chooses daughter for administration post
Action Alert - Thursday, December 23, 2010 

Gov.-elect Paul LePage has appointed his daughter to a staff position within the upper echelon of his administration. Lauren LePage, 22, will serve as a salaried political appointee earning approximately $41,000 a year as assistant to the governor’s chief of staff.
No Wolf Delisting
Announcement - Thursday, December 23, 2010 

Anti-wolf groups had sought to advance legislation in Congress to remove Endangered Species Act protections for gray wolves throughout the United States. In the end, Congress did not cave in to special interests who tried to use the wolf issue as an opportunity to weaken the ESA — our nation’s safety net for fish, plants and wildlife on the brink of extinction. However, conservationists expect that special interests will try again next year to undermine the Endangered Species Act.
Allagash fundraising to be launched
Announcement - Thursday, December 23, 2010 

One of the objectives in a new Strategic Plan for Maine's Allagash Wilderness Waterway calls for establishment of "a private find-raising foundation, independent of the Waterway administration and management, to obtain donations..." The AWW Advisory Council hopes to catalyze formation of an Allagash Foundation and AWW Endowment Fund in 2011.
Maine State House Watch: Waterville Council bans adult business in downtown; LePage objects, moves to Augusta
Action Alert - Wednesday, December 22, 2010 

Despite objections raised by outgoing Mayor Paul LePage, the Waterville City Council on Tuesday night voted unanimously to prohibit "adult entertainment businesses, including pornography, nudity, escort services, massage parlors" from the city's downtown area....Maine's governor-elect has sold his Waterville home and is planning to move into the Blaine House with his wife, daughter and mother-in-law....
Moose at Viles Arboretum
Announcement - Wednesday, December 22, 2010 

Come see the moose. Fall’s Taxidermy Studio in Dixfield has loaned a moose to the Viles Arboretum in Augusta in support of new and expanding public outreach and educational initiatives.
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News Items
Volunteers needed for native brook trout posters
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Saturday, July 21, 2018 

The Native Fish Coalition, Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine and Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife are seeking volunteers to help post informational signs on Maine’s State Heritage Fish lakes and ponds. The goal of this project is to protect this irreplaceable resource from the introduction of invasive fish, the number one threat to Maine’s wild native brook trout. These signs will let anglers know where they are, the threats to these waters, and what laws are in place to protect them.
Curbside pickup helps turn your table scraps into rich compost
Bangor Daily News - Saturday, July 21, 2018 

ScrapDogs is the newest and most northern of the state’s few residential curbside compost collectors. Garbage to Garden, a Portland-based company that was founded in 2012, picks up compost at homes in Portland, South Portland, Falmouth, Cumberland, Yarmouth, Westbrook, Cape Elizabeth, Brunswick and Bath. We Compost It!, based in Scarborough focuses primarily on commercial compost collection but does do curbside residential pickup in parts of Portland, Brunswick and Kennebunkport and transfer station compost pickup in certain locations. One thing that drives these businesses is the reality that Mainers send a lot of food and organic material to landfills and incinerators.
Opinion: Healthy Lakes: The invisible platoons of conservation
Kennebec Journal - Saturday, July 21, 2018 

Platoons of volunteers, led by experts, have surveyed all the Belgrade Lakes, often more than once. Combined, we are a good-intentioned army fighting the good fight for the future enjoyment of our fellow citizens. Like the military, we used air and “sea” support (aerial photography and boat tours of the lakes). We conservationists are fighting for the boaters, fishermen, and swimmers of today and the future. People love their lakes, and they want to help. Threats to human health are studied, diagnosed, and treated. That’s what conservationists do for the lakes you love. ~ Doug “Woody” Woodsum, Lake Trust
Letter: Losing Maine farmers is not acceptable
Portland Press Herald - Saturday, July 21, 2018 

Maine should make it a priority to support all Maine farmers. They work very hard to provide food and dairy products for our homes and should not be shut out by the callousness of a conglomerate. I am willing to pay extra for Maine farm products if it ensures that the farmers can raise and support their families. I see our farmers out plowing and planting their fields on very hot days, and I see the dairy cows outside and realize how much work it takes to operate a farm. I do not want my milk and farm products coming from out of state. We are losing more Maine farmers each day, and this is not acceptable. ~ Linda L. Allen, Windham
Letter: Mainers called upon to support PRINT Act
Portland Press Herald - Saturday, July 21, 2018 

I urge everyone to call and write to their Maine members of Congress to support a bill called the PRINT Act (H.R. 6031/S.2835) to save the newspaper and publishing industries. President Trump has ordered tariffs on newsprint and publishing, which will cripple both industries, causing newspapers to cut back staff and pages being printed, and send the cost of buying newspapers and books through the ceiling. Sen. Susan Collins has introduced this bipartisan bill, which has 29 co-sponsors, including Sen. Angus King and Rep. Bruce Poliquin. ~ Pat Davidson Reef, Falmouth
Norovirus caused the illnesses that prompted Bridgton to close Woods Pond Beach
Portland Press Herald - Friday, July 20, 2018 

The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention said norovirus is what made nearly 100 people sick this month after they swam at Woods Pond Beach in Bridgton or had contact with someone who did. Norovirus is a gastrointestinal disease that spreads easily from person to person. People who put their heads under water or swallowed water while swimming were at greater risk of infection, but several people who were not at the beach caught got sick after caring for someone who was ill.
The Lost Forests of New England - Eastern Old Growth
Other - Friday, July 20, 2018 

A film about New England's ancient, old growth forests...what they once were, what changes have taken place across central New England since European settlers arrived, and what our remnant old growth stands look like today.
Belfast shipyard lands maritime grant
Portland Press Herald - Friday, July 20, 2018 

Front Street Shipyard in Belfast has been awarded a more than half-million dollar grant by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration. The shipyard will put the $667,028 award toward purchase of a machine that “will streamline the construction of custom and production vessels, reducing costs and improving quality of the end-products.” Capable of cutting nearly any material including stainless steel and titanium, the new machine will cut very large parts such as wooden frames for recreational boat molds and carbon fiber panels for commercial ferry construction.
Some in Sanford urged to boil water after pipe break
Journal Tribune - Friday, July 20, 2018 

Customers of the Sanford Water District in the industrial park area are being advised to boil water prior to use because of the possibility of water contamination. Apparently, a contractor working behind the airport in the industrial park accidentally broke a water line and the boil water alert is precautionary.
Trump ups tariff threat, slams Fed, big U.S. trading partners
Associated Press - Friday, July 20, 2018 

President Trump has indicated that he’s willing to hit every product imported from China with tariffs and again criticized the Federal Reserve, as well as some of the nation’s biggest trading partners. The comments sent U.S. markets sliding early Friday. China has retaliated with duties of its own. Beijing is targeting sectors, like [Maine lobsters].
Fish and Wildlife Department Critical of CMP Plan
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Friday, July 20, 2018 

Maine’s Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife has stepped up big time to criticize Central Maine Power’s proposal to construct a massive new transmission line through Maine to move electricity from Quebec to Massachusetts. The good people of New Hampshire rejected CMP’s proposal, so they’ve moved it to Maine. DIFW identified lots of troubling things in CMP’s plan and issued a lengthy list of changes that would have to be made to protect fish and wildlife and the habitats they depend on.
Drilling in Alaska National Wildlife Refuge to get fast review
Washington Post - Friday, July 20, 2018 

The Interior Department has commissioned an expedited environmental review of the impact of leasing part of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge for oil and gas drilling, according to a document released under the Freedom of Information Act. The nearly $1.7 million contract that Interior signed on April 8 with Colorado-based Environmental Management and Planning Solutions, Inc. shows how rapidly the Trump administration is moving ahead with its plans to open up the refuge’s coastal plain to energy exploration.
Support for the Endangered Species Act remains high as Trump administration and Congress try to gut it
Other - Friday, July 20, 2018 

The Endangered Species Act, or “the Act,” is arguably the most important law in the United States for conserving biodiversity and arresting the extinction of species. Congress passed the ESA in 1973 with strong bipartisan support at the behest of a Republican president. Since its passage, the Act has helped reverse and stop declines in numerous species and served as a model for similar laws around the world. Nevertheless, the Trump Administration this week proposed to severely curtail the scope of the Act. In contrast to the often-repeated statement that the Act is controversial, these data suggest that support for the law among the general population is robust and has remained so for at least two decades.
How Mainers are working to prevent the coast from losing public access
Bangor Daily News - Friday, July 20, 2018 

Maine Coast Heritage Trust Director of Communications Rich Knox said, “About 1 percent of the coast is open to commercial and public recreational access that’s guaranteed. We’re trying to keep the coast open to people.” Since it was founded in 1970, MCHT has conserved 150,000 acres and 322 islands along the Maine coast, establishing more than 100 public preserves from Kittery to Lubec. All of these preserves are open to the public to visit for free, offering a wide variety of recreational opportunities including camping, hiking, boating and hunting.
Bruce Poliquin backs GOP bid to smother carbon tax
Sun Journal - Friday, July 20, 2018 

U.S. Rep. Bruce Poliquin, a two-term GOP lawmaker from Maine’s 2nd District, joined colleagues Thursday to approve a resolution that insisted a carbon tax “would be detrimental to American families and businesses, and is not in the best interest of the United States.” A near-party-line vote backed the proposal, 229-180. Poliquin was the only representative from New England to back the resolution. Shawn Moody, Maine GOP’s gubernatorial candidate, recently said he thinks a carbon tax “would dramatically increase home heating bills for Mainers, if enacted here.”
Opinion: The truth about mega-biomass
Other - Friday, July 20, 2018 

Concord (NH) Monitor - Gov. Chris Sununu recently extended subsides to the Burgess biomass plant in Berlin another three years. How much could the state accomplish if that $100 million was used to develop low-carbon footprint energy policies, instead of subsidizing wholesale forest destruction in [northern New Hampshire and western Maine] followed by massive carbon emissions from Burgess? ~ Jamie Sayen
Letter: Parking garages are bad for waterfront, traffic, Portland residents
Portland Press Herald - Friday, July 20, 2018 

Developer Jonathan Cohen is asking the city to increase the allowable building height along the eastern Waterfront so his company can erect a 600-car parking garage at 100 Fore St., where Hamilton Marine is presently located. To grant this request would be to allow the permanent desecration of Portland’s beautiful harbor frontage in order to invite in 600 more cars to add to the glut of traffic on Franklin and Commercial streets. Since when do we have to roll over every time a developer sees an opportunity to exploit our waterfront for profit? It’s time to say “no.” ~ Tica Douglas, Portland
Work starts on removal of 200-year-old dam on Sheepscot River
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, July 19, 2018 

Work began Thursday to remove a roughly 200-year-old dam in the upper Sheepscot River to improve fish passage while providing the town of Whitefield with a more reliable source of water to fight fires. The removal of the Coopers Mills dam – located roughly a dozen miles east of the State House in Augusta – is part of a three-year, roughly $2 million campaign to improve fish passage in a river within the heart of midcoast Maine that is home to Atlantic salmon, sturgeon, alewives and other sea-run fish. The projects also aim to preserve some of the history surrounding historic dams and mills while enhancing public access.
Column: Some Maine birds are Montana birds too
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, July 19, 2018 

My recent trek took me through South Dakota, Montana, Alberta and Saskatchewan, then back home via all the remaining Canadian provinces between there and here. Traveling is a good chance to get reacquainted with humility. I have a superpower. I know almost every sound a Maine bird can make. However, put me in the Rockies among unfamiliar birds and my powers weaken. It’s kryptonite. But wait. Many Maine birds are also Montana birds. ~ Bob Duchesne
DRA campers explore the Damariscotta River watershed by canoe
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, July 19, 2018 

Six campers from Damariscotta River Association’s Camp Mummichog paddled into South Bristol on Friday, July 13 after a four-day canoe trip along the length of the Damariscotta River watershed. The campers learned different paddling strokes and how to handle their canoes under a variety of conditions, such as wind or a strong current. along the way the paddlers spoke with an artist, a harbormaster, and a marine researcher.
Persuasive 2nd-grader prompts Portland to ban plastic straws in City Hall cafe
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, July 19, 2018 

Portland has joined the growing backlash against disposable plastic straws by ending their use in the Clock Tower Cafe at City Hall. The move comes the day after a persuasive second-grader from Ocean Avenue Elementary School, Phoebe MacDonald, spoke to the City Council’s Sustainability & Transportation Committee on Wednesday night and urged the city to make the transition.
Endangered Species Act stripped of key provisions in Trump administration proposal
Washington Post - Thursday, July 19, 2018 

The Trump administration unveiled a proposal Thursday that would strip the Endangered Species Act of key provisions, a move that conservationists say will weaken a law enacted 45 years ago to keep plants and animals in decline from going extinct. The proposal would end the practice of extending similar protections to species regardless of whether they are listed as endangered or threatened. In another rollback, the administration wants officials to consider economic impacts when determining how wildlife should be protected.
Class-action Lawsuit Targets Alleged Utility Overbilling
Associated Press - Thursday, July 19, 2018 

A class-action lawsuit aims to recoup alleged overbilling of Central Maine Power customers last winter. The lawsuit filed Thursday adds to the woes for the state's largest electric utility. CMP already is facing dual investigations over complaints of overbilling, one by the Maine Public Utilities Commission and another by an independent auditor. Attorney Sumner Lipman said it's not clear what caused the overcharges but he told reporters that the facts speak for themselves. He said 97,000 customers' bills increased by 50 percent or more, and another 200,000 saw smaller increases up to 50 percent.
Column: Rabies and Red Flags
Times Record - Thursday, July 19, 2018 

Summer in Maine used to mean shorts and T-shirts, some sunscreen and insect spray. Now I wear a wide hat, long sleeves and pants tucked into my socks when anywhere ticks or Browntail hairs might be encountered, and a dust mask when mowing the lawn. Such is the new, now mournfully shrimpless, Maine. Until a few years ago my urban Bath yard was never visited by deer or foxes. Now that’s commonplace. I looked up from gardening the other day to lock eyes with a very close and surreally beautiful gray fox. We starred at each other equally surprised at our worlds apart shared proximity, while I tried not to think of rabies. ~ Gary Anderson
BIW, Round Pond firm to pay $447K in EPA settlements
Mainebiz - Thursday, July 19, 2018 

Two Maine companies must pay nearly $500,000 in civil penalties to settle federal complaints that they failed to file required reports about their use of toxic chemicals. Bath Iron Works agreed to pay $355,000 to resolve allegations by the Environmental Protection Agency that the company did not report handling of chromium, copper, manganese and nickel as required by the Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Act, according to an EPA news release. The EPA also reported that Masters Machine Co. of Round Pond will pay a $92,210 penalty to settle EPA complaints that it did not submit the required reports for its use of copper during 2013-2015, and for the use of lead in 2014. Masters is a manufacturer of precision aerospace, automotive and electrical components.
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