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Montana Firm Eyes $22 Million Maine Expansion For High-tech Timber

Feb 16, 2018
Bangor Daily News

The nation’s first manufacturer of cross-laminated timber plans to set up shop in Maine, with a goal of creating 100 jobs at a $22 million mill, officials said Friday.

A Montana company is using a grant from the state-funded Maine Technology Institute to create a composite wood products plant in Maine.

SmartLam LLC said Friday that the $22 million manufacturing plant would create 100 jobs. MTI is providing $3 million to help launch the mill. SmartLam hopes to settle on a site in a couple of months. 

It's the second announcement this week of a Maine plant that'll produce cross-laminated timber. The composite wood is strong enough to replace steel and concrete in construction.

Maine.gov

The State Senate, with a vote of 31 to 3, has signaled its desire to keep the Downeast Correctional Facility (DCF) in Washington County open for another year. But the margin of support in the House was less than what is needed to override an expected veto of the bill by Governor LePage, who abruptly closed the facility last week.

Maine.gov

The State Senate, with a vote of 31 to 3, has signaled its desire to keep the Downeast Correctional Facility (DCF) in Washington County open for another year. But the margin of support in the House was less than what is needed to override an expected veto of the bill by Governor LePage, who abruptly closed the facility last week.

The Maine House of Representatives has passed a resolution calling on President Donald Trump to leave Maine out of offshore oil and gas drilling.

The Maine House unanimously passed the resolution Thursday. Opponents of offshore drilling in the Legislature say drilling and exploration off Maine's coast would endanger commercial fishing jobs.

The proposal was made by Rep. Mick Devin, a Newcastle Democrat.

An unhappy customer is suing LL Bean over its new return policy, claiming the company broke a vow to customers.

The lawsuit in federal court in Chicago contends customers bought items because of LL Bean's unlimited “satisfaction” guarantee. The lawsuit accuses LL Bean of breach of warranty.

The Maine-based retailer announced Friday it's imposing a one-year limit for most returns, because it says too many people are abusing the system.

PORTLAND, Maine — Maine’s fishing managers are considering letting new people into the scallop fishery for the first time in nearly a decade.

A legislative committee is set to vote on a proposal to create a license lottery system on Wednesday. The average age of Maine scallop fishermen is higher than 50. The fishery has been closed to new people since 2009.

Maine’s scallop fishery has stabilized recently after crashing in the mid-2000s. It set a record value at $12.77 per pound at the docks in 2016.

Margaux Rioux / Maine Public File

Gov. Paul LePage’s administration wants electric and hybrid vehicle owners to pay a new annual fee of up to $250. That could make up for the gas taxes they avoid by driving ultra-efficient cars, the argument goes. But at a legislative hearing today, early adopters of the technologies turned out in force to oppose the measure.

Department of Transportation Commissioner David Bernhardt says a wave of electric vehicles is on its way to the state.

Courtesy of Husson University

More than 100 new jobs will be coming to Millinocket if plans for a new laminated wood products manufacturing company stay on track in the coming year.

Jennifer Mitchell / Maine Public

If you’ve planned to make the trip to South Korea for the Olympics, you’re likely to experience some exotic new foods — but you might also find Maine blueberries on the menu, since Maine holds a corner on the global market for this very special crop.

WESTBROOK, Maine — A large veterinary technology company headquartered in Maine is seeking to extend a favorable property tax deal as it plans a major expansion.

The Portland Press Herald reports that Idexx Laboratories Inc. is asking Westbrook city officials to extend its tax increment financing deal for 10 years and include its planned 135,000-square-foot expansion as part of the agreement.

If the change is approved, the company could save about $1 million in property taxes every year until 2037.

Maine.gov


Washington County residents and former employees at the Downeast Correctional Facility (DCF) in Machiasport say the early morning closure of the minimum-security prison is a betrayal by the governor that they can't accept.

Updated at 11:35 a.m. ET

The wild swings in the stock market in the last two weeks grabbed headlines and were hard to miss for most Americans.

But do those market gyrations actually affect anyone's day-to-day finances?

Relatively few Americans actively trade or own stocks. But a 10 percent drop in the markets can affect our attitudes about the economy, even for those who don't invest, says James Poterba, president of the National Bureau of Economic Research and an economist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Two housing authorities in Maine will receive more than $450,000 from the federal government to improve opportunities for residents.

Republican Sen. Susan Collins says the money is going to the Portland Housing Authority and Lewiston Housing Authority from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's Resident Opportunities and Self Sufficiency grant program.

Robert F. Bukaty / Associated Press/file

Did that dog bed you purchased from LL Bean five years ago get chewed by its occupant? Until today, you could just take it back and get a replacement for no charge. The company has announced that it's changing its famous unconditional return policy that has been a part of the brand since it started more than a century ago. The change comes as a response to the growing number of customers who have been taking advantage of the policy.

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