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Blue Hill Memorial Hospital has set up a new prescription drug drop box for Hancock County in an effort to prevent substance abuse.

The secure drop box in the Sussman Medical Office Building is designed to allow community members to safety dispose of medications that are expired, unwanted or no longer needed. Many Mainers are able to dispose of old meds at police stations and sheriff’s offices across the state.

J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press

Independent U.S. Sen. Angus King of Maine said Thursday that he will vote against President-elect Donald Trump’s nomination of Scott Pruitt to head the Environmental Protection Agency.

AUGUSTA, Maine - City Council members in Maine's capital city say they will accept the donation of a 164-acre estate that provides a forest backdrop to the Maine State House.
 
The Augusta City Council unanimously voted to accept the Howard Hill property donation on Thursday night. The city is receiving the land from the Kennebec Land Trust.
 

BOSTON - A Maine blueberry processor has agreed to pay a $103,613 settlement to resolve federal concerns over its handling of a chemical used in refrigeration.

The settlement agreed upon by Hancock Foods and the Environmental Protection Agency resolves questions surrounding the blueberry processor's handling of anhydrous ammonia and its failure to timely report a release of the chemical.

Anhydrous ammonia, which is used in refrigeration, is flammable, and potentially explosive, in some situations. It's also corrosive to the skin, eye and lungs.

MANCHESTER, Maine - Officials say air quality testing is underway at a Manchester school after parents questioned how the district and administrators dealt with mold in the basement and three classrooms.
 
The Kennebec Journal reports that air tests began Thursday in several classrooms, two hallways and the gymnasium at Manchester Elementary School.
 
Officials say the results will be given to parents once the school receives them.
 

Irwin Gratz / Maine Public

PORTLAND, Maine - For a lot of reasons, the nation's economic outlook has changed from a year ago.  Brett Miller, senior portfolio manager for Key Private Bank in Portland tells Maine Public's Morning Edition host Irwin Gratz that recovering corporate profits and rising consumer confidence are among the reasons.

AUGUSTA, Maine - A high school band from rural Maine set to help kick off Republican President-elect Donald Trump's inaugural festivities is at the center of a clash between leaders of the state's Green Independent Party.
 
Two leading Green Independent Party members are vowing to defect to the Socialist Party USA in part because the secretary of the Maine Green Independent Party member also directs Madawaska's middle school and high school marching band.
 

A.J. Higgins / Maine Public/file

AUGUSTA, Maine - The LePage administration is proposing A $7 million bailout of the Maine Military Authority. The proposal would help the authority satisfy the terms of a $19 million contract with the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority to refurbish nearly two dozen commuter buses.

Independent U.S. Sen. Angus King of Maine says he won’t be supporting Scott Pruitt’s nomination to head the Environmental Protection Agency, but he will support President-elect Donald Trump’s three national security-related nominations.

Abhishek Srivastava / Flickr/Creative Commons

Acadia National Park got a record number of visits last year, an estimated 3.3 million.

Park spokesman John Kelly says that an 18 percent increase over the previous year. He says they assume that among the reasons for the increase was the marketing around the centennials of both the National Park Service and Acadia National Park.

“National park visitation was up across the country, so we sort of are part of that overall increase,” he says.

A 54-year-old South Paris woman has been charged with a civil violation in connection with the death of a Lewiston Middle School student who was in a crosswalk when he was struck by a pickup truck.

Lewiston police say that Laurie Young was driving the Ford F-150 that hit 13-year-old Jayden Cho-Sargent this past November. Officials say that the Androscoggin County district attorney’s office reviewed the investigation and that Young has been charged with a “motor vehicle violation resulting in death.”

It’s Thursday and time for Across the Aisle, our weekly roundtable on politics.

This week, Cynthia Dill, an attorney and former Democratic lawmaker; Dick Woodbury, and economist who served in the Legislature as an independent; and former Republican state lawmaker Meredith Strang Burgess of Burgess Advertising and Marketing.

A moratorium on the retail sale of marijuana approved by voters is one step closer to approval by the Legislature.

The Veterans and Legal Affairs Committee voted unanimously to push back the date on which Mainers could buy or sell marijuana until February of next year. The proposal also fixes a drafting error in the citizen-initiated law to ensure that minors cannot possess marijuana.

LEWISTON, Maine - Sometime today, President-elect Donald Trump can expect to receive an open letter from more than 700 U.S. physics and astronomy faculty about the need for science to inform national policy such as climate change and nuclear proliferation. 

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