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Caroline Losneck / Maine Public

Mainers Find Camaraderie, Competition In Senior Women’s Basketball League

While the NBA season doesn’t start for a few weeks and the WNBA season is wrapping up soon, a group of women is hitting jump shots and setting picks on basketball courts in southern Maine. The players range in age from 50 to 74 years old, and as they prepare for the Maine Senior Games this weekend, there is no sign they are slowing down.

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Consumers in the U.S. are buying more organic products than ever before — organic food sales now make up more than 5 percent of the total market, and the industry continues to see record growth.

But Democratic U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree of Maine’s 1st District is worried about what she said are inadequate standards and inspections by the U.S. Department of Agriculture for organic imports.

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Verizon Wireless says it intends to resolve customer concerns in the wake of recently announced plans to drop more than 200 subscribers Down East. But some affected customers say they still have lots of questions.

Jim Mone / Associated Press

The International Trade Commission ruled Friday that inexpensive, imported solar panels have harmed U.S.-based panel manufacturers. In New England, solar installers say they started stockpiling the panels even before the decision.

The ITC supported a complaint by bankrupt U.S. solar panel maker Suniva and another company, calling for tariff charges on imported solar panels. Cheap panels, made mostly in China, have helped to fuel a surge in solar installations at all levels in the U.S.

As contract talks continue this weekend between the Bath Marine Draftsmen’s Association and Bath Iron Works, unions across the state are making plans to show support should a strike be called next week.

Should the talks fail this weekend and more than 700 members of the draftsmen’s union go on strike, the Maine AFL-CIO and BIW’s largest union, Local 6, are working on plans to stand in support.

As a GOP-crafted bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act heads toward a vote in the U.S. Senate, those who are fighting the opioid epidemic are urging lawmakers to reject the proposal.

Updated at 3:36 p.m. ET

Sen. John McCain may, once again, be the savior of President Barack Obama's signature domestic achievement.

The Arizona Republican announced in a statement on Friday that he opposes the latest GOP legislation to dismantle the Affordable Care Act.

A Biddeford lawmaker is leaving the Democratic Party. Rep. Martin Grohman says he will finish out his term as an independent.

Grohman, who manages a roofing company, says he's felt too restricted by Democratic leaders' efforts to get the caucus to vote as a bloc.

"Our state needs to fix, not fight. We've got serious issues to resolve. We need legislators who can cross the partisan divide who are beholden first and foremost to the Maine people, and not to a particular political party," he says.

Ten years ago, Maine Gov. John Baldacci signed a law changing the structure of education across Maine, forcing districts to consolidate with schools in nearby towns as a way of saving money. But a decade later, the consolidation experiment has led to more conflict than success in many districts.

Pete Webster’s Spanish class at Whittier Middle School in Poland begins quietly enough. Webster introduces a few vocab words to his students, and they repeat them back. But about five minutes in, Webster picks up a guitar and, soon, the classroom becomes a whirlwind of sound.

Kevin Bennett / For Maine Public

The Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry is moving to acquire a $1.2 million conservation easement to protect a remote plantation of sugar maples — meaning it could soon become a stakeholder in Maine’s maple syrup industry.

North Korea has suggested that it could test a hydrogen bomb in the Pacific, the latest in an escalating tit-for-tat between leader Kim Jong Un and President Trump.

If Pyongyang makes good on the threat, it would mean marrying the two most powerful weapons known to man: a fusion-type nuclear weapon and a ballistic missile.

"This could probably mean the strongest hydrogen bomb test over the Pacific Ocean," North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho told reporters in New York on Thursday in response to a question about what action the regime might take against the U.S.


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The State of Legal Education

Monday-University of Maine School of Law Dean Danielle Conway joins us to talk about legal education today, reaching diverse and underserved populations, and her own background and philosophy.