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AUGUSTA, Maine - Police and other first responders would be allowed to bill overdose patients for the cost of administering naloxone under a bill that's being considered in Augusta.

Republican Rep. Trey Stewart, of Presque Isle, says while he supports allowing police and others to  administer naloxone, he is worried about the cost of the drug.

"We don’t want to deter law enforcement agencies from carrying this, or being trained to carry this, all of which has a very steep cost. At the same time, we want to make sure the taxpayers' interests are represented in this issue.”

Robert F. Bukaty / Associated Press/file

BANGOR, Maine - Maine's maple industry seems to be off to a decent start, with no significant problems foreseen, as the state prepares to celebrate its 34th annual Maine Maple Sunday.

"Last year, you know, the season had  675,000 gallons, and that's up from 315,000 gallons in 2010," says Department of Agriculture, Conservation, and Forestry spokesman John Bott.

Bott says the trend for the last six years has been one of steadily increasing effort across Maine, with the number of taps increasing by 26 percent over the period.

PORTLAND, Maine - Almost 200 asylum seekers living in Portland may face another hurdle to getting financial aid for food and housing:  New state legislation limits to two years the length of time asylum seekers can receive general assistance benefits.

City officials in Portland say federal law may prevent the city from stepping in to provide that aid.

"The problem is at the federal level, their law says unless the state allows it, the local municipality may not be able to provide that assistance on their own," says Portland Mayor Ethan Strimling.

AUGUSTA, Maine - Maine's two members of the U.S. House are expected to vote today on a controversial bill to repeal key elements of the Affordable Care Act and replace them with provisions that could have wide ranging impacts on Mainers. 

Debate is underway for the American Health Care Act, also dubbed Trumpcare and Ryancare. The proposal is designed to fulfill a seven-year promise by Republicans to unravel President Obama's signature legislative achievement.

Maine's Cod Fishermen Have Worst Year in History

3 hours ago
Robert F. Bukaty / Associated Press/file

ROCKPORT, Maine - The cod isn't so sacred in Maine anymore.
 
The fish-and-chips staple was once a critical piece of the state's fishing industry, but state records show 2016 was historically bad. Fishermen brought less than 170,000 pounds (77,110 kilograms) of the fish to land in Maine last year. That was below the previous record low of 250,000 pounds (113,398 kilograms) a year earlier.
 
Maine's record year for cod was 1991, when fishermen brought more than 21 million pounds (9.5 million kilograms) to the docks.
 

AUGUSTA, Maine - A bill to make Maine comply with federal identification standards is gaining key committee support.
 
Two state senators want Republican President Donald Trump to issue an executive order repealing the standards, which they say jeopardize privacy.
 
The Legislature's Transportation Committee on Friday voted 12-1 in favor of an amended version of the bill.
 
The committee will now work on an amendment to allow Mainers to obtain licenses that don't comply with federal standards.
 

PORTLAND, Maine - Maine's unemployment rate fell again in February, to 3.2 percent.  

That was a decline of three tenths of a percent from January, one of the biggest declines of any state in the country.

The latest unemployment rate was down half a percentage point from February of 2016 and well below the nation's unemployment rate last month, which was 4.7 percent.

Irwin Gratz / Maine Public

The Portland Press Herald and Maine Sunday Telegram launch a series this Sunday that attempts to put a human face on the opioid crisis.  Maybe too many faces, says Dieter Bradbury, the publication's deputy managing editor for news.  Bradbury spoke about the series with Maine Public Radio's Morning Edition host, Irwin Gratz.

Matt Dunham / Associated Press

LONDON - London's top anti-terror officer says two more "significant arrests" have been made in connection with the Westminster attack, in central and northern England. Nine people are currently in custody, while one has been released on bail.
 
Counter-terror chief Mark Rowley on Friday also identified the latest victim, who died in the hospital on Thursday, as 75-year-old Leslie Rhodes from Streatham, south London.
 

WATERVILLE, Maine - A Maine bridge is set to get a $1 million overhaul this summer.
 
The Morning Sentinel reports that work on the Thayer Memorial Bridge over Messalonskee Stream in Waterville is scheduled to begin in mid-June and be completed in the fall.
 
Waterville Public Works Director Mark Turner says the work will include taking the bridge down to its lower support beams under the bridge. He says workers are taking the entire deck off and redoing some of the beams underneath.
 

ORONO, Maine - A mechanical engineer at the University of Maine will receive more than a half million dollars to study human voice production.
 
The National Science Foundation is giving Xudong Zheng the grant, which will help him lead a project to use computer models to look at sound production.
 
The university says Zheng's long-term goal is to understand the mechanism responsible for the range, complexity and uniqueness of the human voice. That will aid in personalized voice care.
 

The American Civil Liberties Union of Maine is urging local sheriffs and chiefs of police to resist pressure from the Trump administration to participate in immigration enforcement. And the ACLU is warning law enforcement that if they do participate, they’ll face legal liability.

Under an executive order signed by President Donald Trump, local towns and cities are expected to provide direct support to U.S. immigration policy. If they don’t, the order threatens to strip them of federal grant funding.

Officials with the Maine Department of Labor says they are working with an out-of-state vendor and law enforcement to determine how to protect Mainers whose personal information may have been stolen during a recent breach.

It's Thursday and we are talking politics on Across the Aisle. This week, Dick Woodbury, an economist and former independent legislator; Mike Cianchette, an attorney and former chief counsel to Gov. Paul LePage; and public affairs consultant David Farmer, who served as deputy chief of staff for Gov. John Baldacci.

Jennifer Mitchell / Maine Public

Finding a pack of blueberries these days is as easy as pie — they’re plentiful in both the fresh and frozen sections of the supermarket. But while the supply is high, the market price has taken a dive, and that has growers feeling blue.

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