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Both of Maine's senators support President Donald Trump's nomination of a superior court justice to the federal bench.

Trump nominated Justice Lance Walker to fill a vacancy in federal court in Bangor, where District Judge John Woodcock is now on active senior status.

Republican Sen. Susan Collins and independent Sen. Angus King issued a joint statement praising the nomination, saying that Walker has demonstrated "the intelligence, temperament, and integrity required for this important position."

PORTLAND, Maine — The City Council in Maine’s largest city has decided to keep renting space to a company that runs a ferry to Nova Scotia.

Councilors in Portland voted on Monday to approve renewal of Bay Ferries Ltd.’s lease of Ocean Gateway Terminal for 2018. The move ends months of uncertainty about whether the ferry, called The Cat, would be back.

A.J. Higgins / Maine Public

What is believed to be Maine's first tiny homes subdivision moved closer to reality Tuesday night after the Swanville Planning Board gave its final approval to a proposal to build a half-dozen of the 440-square foot structures on a 50-acre parcel on Oak Hill Road.

Derek Davis, of Thorndike, and Chad Tozier, of Unity, have formed a partnership to market the homes which are being constructed by the Amish-owned Backyard Buildings of Unity. Davis says the next challenge for the project will be connecting the tiny homes with renters or buyers.

Susan Sharon / Maine Public

Waterville Mayor Nick Isgro made his first public appearance at a city council budget workshop Tuesday night, one day after several residents began a recall effort against him and after he resigned, under pressure, from his position as a vice president at Skowhegan Savings Bank.

Republican Gov. Paul LePage, a former mayor of Waterville, weighed in Tuesday on his behalf.

Isgro has been under fire for a recent tweet mocking Parkland School shooting survivor David Hogg. He also has a history of making anti-immigrant and other inflammatory social media posts.

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The legal sale of recreational marijuana is one step closer to reality. The Maine Senate is backing a bill to allow retail marijuana sales approved by voters in 2016.

The Maine House and Senate are among the majority of legislative chambers nationwide that refuse to release formal records of sexual misconduct or harassment.

A 50-state review by The Associated Press found that the majority of legislative chambers say they have no publicly available records of formal sexual misconduct or harassment complaints, even when it's known that lawmakers have been accused.

Documents show 97,000 Maine power customers saw their bills double between December 2017 and February 2018.

WMTW-TV reports Central Maine Power filed documents with the state Public Utilities Commission Tuesday that showed 140,000 bills for monthly and average daily usage in that time period saw increases of more than 50 percent.

The state launched an audit into Central Maine Power after about 1,500 customers contacted the commission about high winter power bills.

A.J. Higgins / Maine Public

Second District Republican Congressperson Bruce Poliquin says GOP House Speaker Paul Ryan's decision not to seek reelection in November is the latest development in what he termed the nonstop news coverage of the "comings and goings" of people in various positions.

Poliquin said it really won't matter who the next speaker is.

Steve Mistler / Maine Public

There’s a new development in the saga over Maine’s landmark ranked-choice voting law: Superior Court Judge Michaela Murphy is recommending that the Maine Supreme Judicial Court review whether state election officials have the authority to implement the voting system for the June primary elections.

Penobscot Nation Leaders Charged With Assault

Apr 11, 2018
Linda Coan O'Kresik / Bangor Daily News

The chief of the Penobscot Nation, his two adult sons and another tribal leader face assault charges for their involvement in a fight that broke out in the parking lot of a Bangor bar, authorities said.

Around 12:20 a.m on Jan. 13, Chief Kirk Francis, 48, and his sons Kirk Francis Jr., 27, and Tannar Francis, 24, got into a fight with Robert Dana, 51, in the parking lot of the Penobscot Pourhouse at 14 Larkin St, said Bangor Sgt. Wade Betters. Francis lives in Bangor, but his sons are from Westbrook and Farmington, respectively.

Maine officials say they will take a more cautionary approach to managing toxic algae blooms this year in the hopes of avoiding shellfish recalls.

Sudden blooms in recent years have forced the Maine Department of Marine Resources to close large sections of coast to shellfish harvesting and issue recalls of clams and mussels. The Portland Press Herald reports the department is planning more vigorous and sensitive monitoring this year, and will immediately close harvesting areas if it detects toxins.

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke insists that his department is not changing scientific reports to edit out references to climate change. Zinke's response came under questioning by Maine Congressperson Chellie Pingree at a budget hearing Wednesday.

“There is a pending report about the national parks and the impact of climate change on the national parks, and there has been reporting to say there has been some editing to take climate change out of the document.”

Maine Senator Susan Collins talked today about bills she's co-sponsoring to address the nation's opioid crisis. At a hearing in Washington, Collins said that one measure deals with pain medications given to hospice patients after the patients have died.

"Hospice staff are not allowed to dispose of these unused medications, even after the patient has died,” she says. “So, this opens the door to diversion, to theft, to abuse."

Collins says the legislation she's cosponsoring would allow hospice staff to retrieve such leftover medications.

U.S. House Representative Chellie Pingree says Paul Ryan's choice not to seek reelection in November highlights Republicans’ struggle to work alongside the Trump administration.

Pingree wants House Speaker Paul Ryan to use his final time in office to work across the aisle on immigration. She says this is a chance for the Speaker to introduce a House immigration package similar to reforms passed by the U.S. senate in recent years.

Andrew Harnik / Associated Press

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is appearing on Capitol Hill for a second day of hearings about protecting its users' data.

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